Congress Not Yet Willing To Outlaw Being A Jerk Online

from the that-whole-free-speech-thing dept

In the wake of the whole Megan Meier/Lori Drew thing, politicians started shoving each other aside to introduce "anti-cyber bullying legislation" that would outlaw being a jerk. The whole thing was pretty ridiculous. People are going to be jerks. You can't outlaw it. Beyond just the First Amendment issue, the simple fact is some people will act like jerks some of the time. It happens. It doesn't mean that it's good, but that also doesn't mean that you can just outlaw it. Of course, seeing as this is the type of legislation that politicians like to claim is "to protect the children" and gets them in the press, there's always a chance that laws like this get some momentum. Thankfully, it looks like our Congressional Reps. at least recognize what a dumb idea this is. While Rep. Linda Sanchez insists that such a law is needed, it appears that other politicians are not very interested, pointing out the First Amendment issues, as well as the unintended consequences of making such a vague concept a criminal offense.


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  1.  
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    Matt (profile), Oct 1st, 2009 @ 1:50pm

    If being a jerk online were outlawed, Congress would have to destroy its computers.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2.  
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    Chronno S. Trigger (profile), Oct 1st, 2009 @ 1:52pm

    If this ever passed

    Angry Dude would be in jail in an instant. Then I would be beside him for making fun of him (and so would Dark Helmet). Lily Allen would have the cops busting down Floor 64's door (and I would be in jail again for poking fun).

    After all the smoke cleared, who would be left?

     

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  3.  
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    Dark Helmet (profile), Oct 1st, 2009 @ 1:55pm

    Re: If this ever passed

    "After all the smoke cleared, who would be left?"

    A rather extensive dialogue between Mike and Rose M. Welch and no one else....

     

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  4.  
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    Rose M. Welch (profile), Oct 1st, 2009 @ 2:04pm

    Sometimes, even I am a jerk online. :)

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  5.  
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    slackr (profile), Oct 1st, 2009 @ 2:07pm

    Do any of the numbskulls who propose this sort of stuff actually spend more time than the nanosecond knee jerk to think it through?

    For people who want to stop trolls and name calling idiots on the internet, they have a funny way of doing the same thing through a different medium.
    "Haha you can't call me names anymore I changed the law and it says you can't nyah-nyah-nyah-na-nyah"

     

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  6.  
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    Misanthropist (profile), Oct 1st, 2009 @ 2:22pm

    Re:

    Sometimes, even I am a jerk online. :)

    YOU EVIL WENCH!









    *the topic made me do it.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  7.  
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    Rose M. Welch (profile), Oct 1st, 2009 @ 2:32pm

    Re: Re:

    I was thinking about it, actually, and I am much bitchier in real life than online. Here's hoping they don't pass a 'No Jerks In Real Life' law. I would be SCREWED.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  8.  
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    Fake Steve Colbert, Oct 1st, 2009 @ 2:36pm

    Will it be a late lunch or early dinner?

    Did you say something? I was so busy eating a burrito that I ordered with my iPhone.

    Mmmmm.

    http://itunes.apple.com/WebObjects/MZStore.woa/wa/viewSoftware?id=327228455& ;mt=1

    So good. Mmmmm.

    You know, Nation, I love burritos. And burritos love the iPhone. So by the transitive quality, if you don't have an iPhone, you don't love burritos.

     

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  9.  
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    thublihnk (profile), Oct 1st, 2009 @ 2:36pm

    A victory for jerks on the internet everywhere.

     

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  10.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 1st, 2009 @ 2:48pm

    Re:

    "Do any of the numbskulls who propose this sort of stuff actually spend more time than the nanosecond knee jerk to think it through?"

    Sure they do. The majority of their constituents are too stupid to comprehend anything beyond the knee-jerk.

     

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  11.  
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    Dark Helmet (profile), Oct 1st, 2009 @ 2:58pm

    Re: Will it be a late lunch or early dinner?

    "You know, Nation, I love burritos. And burritos love the iPhone. So by the transitive quality, if you don't have an iPhone, you don't love burritos."

    Fair enough, but will an iPhone also, by the transitive quality, turn my backside into an engaged firehose the way a burrito does?

     

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  12.  
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    AnonY1, Oct 1st, 2009 @ 3:52pm

    Fair enough, but will an iPhone also, by the transitive quality, turn my backside into an engaged firehose the way a burrito does?


    TMI, even from behind the mask.....LOL.

     

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  13.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 1st, 2009 @ 4:32pm

    Re: Re: Will it be a late lunch or early dinner?

    Whoa, you really are from the mid-west. Here in Little Mexico, I mean California, we do not have that problem.

     

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  14.  
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    Some Anonymous Jerk, Oct 1st, 2009 @ 4:50pm

    Good thing, too. If they did this, the internet would cease to exist.

    Where else do you not have to cache everything you say in Politically Correct terms? Where else can you call a moron a moron and reduce his ego to the whimpering puddle of puke it should be?

    The internet is a haven from allusion, subtlety, inuendo and implication. A place where anyone can speak their mind without having to run it through the "PC" filter first.

    Now, kindly get the hell off my internet, you ignorant dweebs. ;)

     

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  15.  
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    HolaJohnny (profile), Oct 1st, 2009 @ 4:51pm

    Thank god!

    Its a good thing no one's interested. God forbid I have to be nice to you people! (For the slow ones that was sarcasm)

     

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  16.  
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    Rose M. Welch (profile), Oct 1st, 2009 @ 7:17pm

    Re:

    Where else do you not have to cache everything you say in Politically Correct terms? Where else can you call a moron a moron and reduce his ego to the whimpering puddle of puke it should be?

    The real world, for those of us with balls and an income that is not dependent on the morons in question. :)

     

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  17.  
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    Mr Big Content, Oct 1st, 2009 @ 7:30pm

    A Jerk-Free Internet

    Bring it on! That would get rid of all the rest of you, and leave just me.

    I can hardly wait...

     

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  18.  
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    giafly, Oct 2nd, 2009 @ 3:21am

    It's "couch everything you say", dammit.

    http://dictionary.cambridge.org/define.asp?key=17495&dict=CALD

    This is just the sort of sloppy mistake that causes me "substantial emotional distress".

     

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  19.  
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    another mike (profile), Oct 2nd, 2009 @ 4:43pm

    dealing with "cyberbullies"

    "Cyberbullying" is such a crock, but it has a real simple solution. You take the electronic gadget from the bully and shove it so far up his exhaust port he poops 3G connectivity.

     

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  20.  
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    Little Red, Oct 5th, 2009 @ 7:08pm

    cyberbullies

    Have you ever heard of the cyberbully/slander court case of Patrick Zidon vs. Linda Pickrell? Well, do a google search! This woman who formed a romantic relationship (1x was the charm) with a very upstanding married man in North Dakota being scorned put up a website www.patrickzidon.com with pictures of this man and his family. She intended to ruin his work and moral standing in his community. If you like to see the site go to the wayback machine. Unfortunately, for all the pain and suffering he went through he only could settle out of court for less than $8,000. If you like to read more go to her website at harusami.com. Cyberbully laws ought to been passed back in the early '80s. Oh and she is a psychic and if you read her blogs, her psychic skills ought to have told her this was illegal and cruel.

     

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  21.  
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    Rose M. Welch, Oct 14th, 2009 @ 11:56pm

    Re: cyberbullies

    What you're describing falls under harassment laws that are already on the books. It's like passing a law against talking on your cell while driving. They already have one. It's 'failure to devote full time and attention'. How are these news laws going to work any better than the exact same one that we already have in place? (The answer is that these 'new' laws are only being touted for political advertisement purposes, and the pols advertising them know that they are useless.)

     

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  22.  
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    Hester Prynne (profile), Dec 15th, 2009 @ 9:49am

    Re: cyberbullies

    hmmm...and what do you know of this case? Sounds interesting

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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