Rep. Kevin McCarthy Continues The Parade Of Stupid Anti-Internet Grandstanding

from the playing-to-a-dumb-base-is-dumb dept

In the last few months, we've seen a fairly astounding amount of idiotic grandstanding from both parties in Congress, basically trying to out stupid themselves in attacking internet companies. On the Democratic side, they've been peddling incomprehensible nonsense about how internet companies have to stop bad information from spreading (and also some misleading claims about antitrust). On the Republican side, they keep dragging internet companies up to Capitol Hill and making ridiculous and blatantly misleading claims about how they're "censoring" conservatives, which is a bunch of utter nonsense.

And here's the thing: most of the politicians spewing this stuff know it's pure nonsense. But, they also know that it's an effective money raising tactic. When Democrats and Republicans clash over an issue, all too frequently, it's really about riling up people for donations, rather than any actual policy agenda. And it appears it's not going away any time soon. Despite multiple hearings that have only served to make Congress look incredibly hypocritical and/or ignorant, House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy is now joining the fray, saying he wants Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey to testify about Twitter's made up censoring of conservative voices.

And while I'm not sure whether or not some other members of Congress grandstanding on this issue actually understand what's going on, McCarthy of all people should know better. He actually has at least some history of understanding tech issues better than many of his colleagues. But, apparently, these days, the way to raise money is to make blatantly false or misleading statements against tech companies, and thus, McCarthy feels the need to join in on this silly dog and pony show. I'm sure we'll get another stupid hearing out of it that demonstrates to anyone just how clueless Congress is, but I guess if it gets a bunch of ignorant people to kick in to his re-election campaign, that's all good, right?


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  • icon
    Thad (profile), 3 Aug 2018 @ 2:41pm

    Every time I hear "Kevin McCarthy" I think of the villain from UHF.

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    Anonymous Coward, 3 Aug 2018 @ 2:46pm

    YES, that'd be toward improvement: REGULATING GATEKEEPERS.

    if it gets a bunch of ignorant people to kick in to his re-election campaign, that's all good, right?

    Is three paragraphs of vague contextless ranting, without even a single quote, ALL you could come up with? -- Obviously so.

    You're down to 75-80% number of stories in, say, June. The END is in sight.

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    John Smith, 3 Aug 2018 @ 3:39pm

    Section 230 is the cancer that allows these tumors to grow.

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    Anonymous Coward, 3 Aug 2018 @ 4:03pm

    I am personally outside of US politics and the US left/right division, but looking in as an outsider it's painfully obvious that:

    1) US media companies (including "new wave" companies like Twitter or Facebook) are controlled by a very small number of people.
    2) Those people are overwhelmingly left-leaning and overwhelmingly hire (or retain) left-leaning employees.
    3) The organizations they control have both institutional and individual-driven bias against conservative and right-leaning individuals.
    4) Said organizations are capable of nearly unlimited manipulation of political, social, economic, and scientific discourse.
    5) They're both willing and able to turn their bias into direct action to suppress their perceived opponents.

    If you deny that Twitter is shadow-banning conservative users, then you haven't checked personally. It is, or was, easy to verify that it is happening. It is also easy to identify obvious abuses of moderation tools to silence less-prominent political individuals. It is easy to find highly public left-leaning counter-examples whose conduct is ignored even after being publicly reported upon numerous occasions. Facebook has similarly abused their position. The left-wing "outrage" over Cambridge Analytica is especially hypocritical given that they simply did a more limited version of what Obama's team did during 2008/12, except that Obama had Facebook's active cooperation while doing so. Most news publications are similarly biased. The public is equally hungry for scandal on both sides of the aisle, but it is very easy to find examples of left-leaning scandals being buried whenever possible, when exactly equivalent right-leaning scandals are heavily publicized.

    I can already hear the hand-flapping response: "But none of these activities are actually illegal!" - and you're right. It's not illegal (or even strictly unconstitutional) to abuse editorial power in this fashion. A large part of this is that the founding fathers had no exposure to American leftism and could never have imagined that standards of public discourse would be so flagrantly perverted; another part is that they didn't foresee the Internet.

    However, Techdirt regularly decries many legal activities which are clearly undesireable - provided they agree with Techdirt's agenda. Counter-examples are ignored. This means that your sole viewership is limited to people who enjoy a left-wing, anti-police echo chamber. You don't have any interest in unbiased or balanced reporting; at least I hope you don't, because if you do, then the degree of incompetence displayed by this publication is beyond astounding.

    I'm glad I quit reading this shithole of a site five years ago. I came back out of curiosity to see if you'd learnt your lesson, but apparently being a dead water publication in the forgotten corners of the 'net that never quite managed to sell out as effectively as e.g. Ars Technica was your goal all along, because you clearly haven't learned anything in that time.

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    • icon
      Stephen T. Stone (profile), 3 Aug 2018 @ 4:06pm

      Re:

      U mad, bro?

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      icon
      Sayonara Felicia-San (profile), 3 Aug 2018 @ 4:12pm

      Re:

      Literally, we just posted minutes apart, and I couldn't agree with you more.

      I think the problem is that Mike Masnick is in an increasingly more delusional self-created bubble. This would be fine if Mike's audience appealed to the Corporate-Democrat-Republican establishment scum bags who run these companies.

      He probably knows many of these people personally and thus can't properly look at topics objectively anymore.

      Also, Mike's friends at google and twitter and facebook, they couldn't give two shits about freedom of speech, the corrupt patents system in this country, or the corrupt increasingly unjust legal system.

      His virtue signalling has no payoff, since his topics run counter to their agendas.

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      • icon
        Stephen T. Stone (profile), 3 Aug 2018 @ 4:15pm

        Re: Re:

        FYI: “Virtue signalling” is an accusation that someone has conspicuously expressed a moral or ideological position only so they can improve their social standing. This accusation, however, attacks only the character of a person, not their viewpoint. The accusation could be true, but if the idea itself is sound, the reason someone has for expressing it is irrelevant.

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          Sayonara Felicia-San (profile), 3 Aug 2018 @ 4:16pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          Are you trying to be ironic? Or are you just a really advanced troll?

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          • icon
            Stephen T. Stone (profile), 3 Aug 2018 @ 4:18pm

            Nope, Chuck Testa.

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              Sayonara Felicia-San (profile), 3 Aug 2018 @ 4:21pm

              Re:

              Humor is in the eye of the beholder, but if you think your responses are witty, then you aren't very bright.

              You are literally a caricature, a leftist version of a right wing 'Bubba' poster, who says things like "is that a man or a woman" and thinks it's the funniest thing in the world.

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              • icon
                Stephen T. Stone (profile), 3 Aug 2018 @ 4:23pm

                Re: Re:

                You are literally a caricature

                Is it one of those funny ones like at theme parks, or is it one of the shitty racist ones like at 4chan?

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                  Sayonara Felicia-San (profile), 3 Aug 2018 @ 4:31pm

                  Re: Re: Re:

                  Hmmmm, how do I reference this in relative terms you will understand:

                  If you are elderly: Think MAD Magazine, or Family Circus comic strips

                  If you are youngish/millenial: Think Shane Dawson videos

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                  • icon
                    Stephen T. Stone (profile), 3 Aug 2018 @ 4:33pm

                    Re: Re: Re: Re:

                    MAD Magazine

                    Oh, nice, MAD does good caricatures. Thanks!

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                    • icon
                      Thad (profile), 3 Aug 2018 @ 5:15pm

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                      I haven't picked it up since they moved to Burbank. I hear the new guys are good, though. (And Aragones and Jaffee are still contributing, after 55 and 63 years, respectively!)

                      ...okay, actually I haven't picked it up since...probably 2000.

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        • icon
          The Wanderer (profile), 9 Aug 2018 @ 9:10am

          Re: Re: Re:

          Really?

          I always thought "virtue signalling" referred to things like "Now, I hate Nazis as much as the next guy, but" - the disclaimer that "despite what the rest of this may make it look like, I'm really one of the good guys, just like the rest of you", particularly in cases where that disclaimer is not actually honest.

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    • icon
      Mike Masnick (profile), 3 Aug 2018 @ 4:21pm

      Re:

      1) US media companies (including "new wave" companies like Twitter or Facebook) are controlled by a very small number of people.

      True.

      2) Those people are overwhelmingly left-leaning and overwhelmingly hire (or retain) left-leaning employees.

      If we're talking about those "top" people who control those firms, many of them would fall under a weird mix of Silicon Valley liberal/libertarianism, which is not at all "left leaning." This is why "left leaning" is such a stupid designation. It doesn't really mean anything useful.

      3) The organizations they control have both institutional and individual-driven bias against conservative and right-leaning individuals.

      Laughably false. Most of these organizations are not "left leaning" or "right leaning." They tend to focus on what can they do to bring in more users of all stripes. That's got nothing to do with left or right. Very few people in Silicon Valley care about blue team or red team nonsense.

      4) Said organizations are capable of nearly unlimited manipulation of political, social, economic, and scientific discourse.

      Laughably false. Unless you believe the average person is an idiot. You are VASTLY overestimating the power of these platforms.

      5) They're both willing and able to turn their bias into direct action to suppress their perceived opponents.

      Hysterically false. They are neither willing, nor able, to do any of those things. First off, most of these companies don't care one bit about "conservative" v. "liberal." They care about how their platforms get more usage. Second, because of the stupid false narrative that you continue to spew, these platforms now bend over backwards to appease idiot trolls who falsely claim that conservatives are being censored. You are contributing to that.

      Finally: moderating these platforms in any reasonable way is impossible. And trolls make it that much more difficult. These platforms CANNOT be competent at moderating content because it is impossible to be competent at the scales they deal with. They will catch all different people they shouldn't catch, and miss all kinds of people they shouldn't miss. But that should also help make it clear why this idea that they can and will tilt the scales is silly. They cannot. They also have no interest in doing so. Finally, even if they could and were willing to, it would flop.

      These guys aren't wizards.

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        Sayonara Felicia-San (profile), 3 Aug 2018 @ 4:26pm

        Re: Re:

        If we're talking about those "top" people who control those firms, many of them would fall under a weird mix of Silicon Valley liberal/libertarianism, which is not at all "left leaning." This is why "left leaning" is such a stupid designation. It doesn't really mean anything useful.

        Mike, you see, this is a very intelligent smart response. This is why it's so hard to figure out how someone who IS IN FACT aware and intelligent, able to arrive at such absurd conclusions.

        On the one hand you demonstrate the ability to discern that our simplistic left-right political spectrum is inadequate, yet at the end of the intellectual 'journey' you always end up at a black and white dead end?

        You are literally a paradox.

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        • icon
          Stephen T. Stone (profile), 3 Aug 2018 @ 4:30pm

          What makes his conclusions absurd?

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            Sayonara Felicia-San (profile), 3 Aug 2018 @ 5:07pm

            Re:

            Because Old Decrepit Congresspeople saying dumb things about technologies they don't understand doesn't prove shit.

            Just like when the Goddess of Light, Hillary Clinton, said "“What? Like with a cloth or something?” in response to a question about whether or not she wiped her server with BleachBit, doesn't mean she can't address technology issues if they are explained to her correctly.

            This is the same exact situation. These congresspeople are obviously getting complaints from their constituents, and trying to, however badly, address the issue while at the same time lacking the understanding and vocabulary to properly do it.

            (Incidentally....THIS IS THE EXACT SAME PROBLEM WITH THOUSANDS OF HUMAN CORPSES AKA JUDGES WHO ARE CREATING SHITTY PRECEDENTS about technologies and concepts they have no ability to analyze or comprehend, and which most of the articles here are about.)

            So just because the ridiculous Gerontocracy in Congress is trying to solve a problem they can't themselves comprehend, doesn't mean there is no problem at all.

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            • icon
              Stephen T. Stone (profile), 3 Aug 2018 @ 5:47pm

              Re: Re:

              Old Decrepit Congresspeople saying dumb things about technologies they don't understand doesn't prove shit.

              Well, it proves they lack an understanding of those technologies, so that is a hell of a self-own there.

              These congresspeople are obviously getting complaints from their constituents, and trying to, however badly, address the issue while at the same time lacking the understanding and vocabulary to properly do it.

              If they lack that understanding and vocabulary, they should either get it or outsource it from non-partisan groups. I would rather see our Congress critters avoid making laws about concepts and technology they do not understand.

              just because the ridiculous Gerontocracy in Congress is trying to solve a problem they can't themselves comprehend, doesn't mean there is no problem at all

              If the issue is “a privately-owned platform might be punishing people for speech in an arbitrary fashion”, the answer is not “the law should force that platform to host speech it does not want to and would not otherwise host”. I mean, if you want to apply that standard equally to all platforms (and why wouldn’t you?), you could literally force a platform that normally forbids racist rhetoric to host White supremacist propaganda because said propaganda comes from a right-wing political group.

              If you owned a platform, even if it were open to the public, would you want the government telling you what speech you absolutely must host, regardless of how you feel about it? Would you want the government to tell you that any speech intended to disparage, insult, and offend you must stay on your platform because it is legally protected by the First Amendment? If you answer “yes” to either question, you might want to have a long, sobering look at your own ideology.

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                Anonymous Coward, 5 Aug 2018 @ 7:04pm

                Re: Re: Re:

                What a strange argument to make. Would you want the government telling you to bake a cake for people with different beliefs than yours? The left argues that you should. Would you want the government telling you that your children have to accept opposite sex children into their toilets? The left argues that you should. If it’s a minority right, the left wants it. If it’s a majority right, it should be sacrificed at the alter of historical guilt. What a strange set of conflicting views. What views do you actually hold?

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                • icon
                  Stephen T. Stone (profile), 5 Aug 2018 @ 8:46pm

                  If it’s a minority right, the left wants it. If it’s a majority right, it should be sacrificed at the alter of historical guilt.

                  Rights enumerated and protected by the law should be created with compromise in mind. The majority compromises with the minority every day; Christians cannot force atheists to worship God, after all. A fair and just compromise would allow people to practice their rights without infringing upon the rights of others. Would you want the government telling gay people that they can go fuck themselves if no public-facing business will serve them?

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                    Anonymous Coward, 5 Aug 2018 @ 8:55pm

                    Re:

                    Would you want the “resistance” shouting down small ladies in their face and chasing families with young children from restaurants? Where is the outrage? So yes to hell with gays whining about non-existent threats while the left is creating real ones. Go fuck yourselves, exactly.

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                      Stephen T. Stone (profile), 5 Aug 2018 @ 9:43pm

                      Re: Re:

                      to hell with gays whining about non-existent threats

                      Anti-gay violence is still a thing, and it largely goes ignored by the federal government unless it is on the level of the Pulse shooting. Conversion therapy is still a thing, and while more states are looking to ban it, that abusive and scientifically unsound practice remains legal in many places. Less than half the states in the US have non-discrimination protections based on sexual orientation. The Supreme Court, under the control of conservative justices, could damn well roll back Obergefell and set the civil rights of gay people back a decade (not to mention the absolute carnage such a ruling would cause in re: the bureaucracy of deciding which same-sex marriages are still legal). The administration is in favor of federally funding and legally protecting adoption agencies that discriminate against gay couples. And Jeff Sessions' "religious liberty task force" is a smokescreen meant to help protect religious anti-gay discrimination in the public sphere.

                      A few administration flunkies seeing protests in public aimed towards them is nowhere near as “threatening” as the federal government not giving a damn about the civil rights of an entire subsection of the population. But go off, I guess.

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                        Anonymous Coward, 5 Aug 2018 @ 9:57pm

                        Re: Re: Re:

                        Children are the biggest and worst sort of sexually transmitted disease. Straight Christians are the biggest drain on our planet and economy. The sooner we start rounding them up in gladiatorial arenas and tossing them to the lions like we used to, the better.

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                          Anonymous Coward, 5 Aug 2018 @ 10:22pm

                          Re: Re: Re: Re:

                          “If you owned a platform, even if it were open to the public, would you want the government telling you what speech you absolutely must host, regardless of how you feel about it?”

                          Trust me, it is coming, Stephen, why do you think all this money is being spent on Techdirt? Do you really think I write for free? Or that appeals cases cost nothing? You just watch and see. We will use the same logic that you are using to force free speech into the digital marketplace.

                          Mark my words. Whether you want to host free speech or not, you will, or you will pay a price (a monetary price) for not doing so.

                          Think about your own argument, Stephen. Old white people are also an “entire subsection of the population”, albeit a rich and powerful one. Remember the “nuclear option” with SCOTUS? Where did we learn that?

                          You idiot liberals create these nasty weapons and then don’t think they will be used against you. Think again. Have you learned nothing from history?

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                          • icon
                            Stephen T. Stone (profile), 5 Aug 2018 @ 10:37pm

                            If you get paid to troll Techdirt, you should ask for more.

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                              Anonymous Coward, 5 Aug 2018 @ 11:24pm

                              Re:

                              Overtime and bonuses if my comments are censored.

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                              Anonymous Coward, 5 Aug 2018 @ 11:57pm

                              Re:

                              But Stephen you do “get” the irony in your argument, right? The left defends the rights of restaurants to refuse service to Trump’s administration, but decries refusal of service to gays. The left demands “lifelong” punishment for Sarah Sanders for doing her job, but openly supports convicted traitors pardoned by Obama. All the digital platforms deny censorship while actively censoring their critics (see this very thread). The level of nonsense is incredible, would you agree with that?

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                              • icon
                                PaulT (profile), 6 Aug 2018 @ 2:48am

                                Re: Re:

                                "The left defends the rights of restaurants to refuse service to Trump’s administration, but decries refusal of service to gays"'

                                Possibly because the left understands the law? "Gay" is a protected class and thus it is illegal to deny them service for that reason. "Being a hateful asshole with a job the restaurant owner despises" is not a protected classes, and therefore they can be legally refused service for that reason. Even if they happened to also be gay.

                                "The left demands “lifelong” punishment for Sarah Sanders for doing her job, but openly supports convicted traitors pardoned by Obama:"

                                The latter point, citation needed. The former? No, she can get service at any other restaurant she like, and I'm sure there's many that would do so. She just can't force one specific restaurant to serve her if they don't wish to. Which is their right, so long as they aren't violating otherr laws by doing so (like refusing service to a couple because they are gay). Again - "hateful asshole" and "working for the president" are not protected classes.

                                Anyway, I thought right-wingers were all about freedom of association and the rights of small business owners?

                                "The level of nonsense is incredible, would you agree with that?"

                                The level of nonsense you guys have to stoop to in order to protect that your negative behaviour is somehow acceptable, yes.

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                                  Anonymous Coward, 6 Aug 2018 @ 2:56am

                                  Re: Re: Re:

                                  You are hilarious, really. A “protected class” - who do you expect to “protect” them, you idiot? Law abiding Americans? Honorable American Police? The same Police that you constantly criticize and demean? The same Law Abiding Americans that you chase out of restaurants? Everything you fanatical leftists have done will come back to haunt you. Protect their “Negative Behavior”, wow, are you my dad? You don’t look or sound like my dad. In fact, I think it was my dad that taught me exactly what to do with pompous socialist idiots like you, should you ever lift one finger against a real American. Chase me out of a restaurant, asshole, and I’ll show you a little American Justice. We don’t talk the trash you assholes talk. We deliver. Watch the next election. We will vote you assholes into dust, scattered to the four winds.

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                                    Anonymous Coward, 6 Aug 2018 @ 4:24am

                                    Re: Re: Re: Re:

                                    should you ever lift one finger against a real American

                                    Coming from a guy whose used "Vote for a real Indian" as the rallying cry of his short-lived political career, this is hilarious. I didn't know the Ku Klux Klan allowed Shiva to be a part of their subsection of "old white people"!

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                                    PaulT (profile), 6 Aug 2018 @ 4:36am

                                    Re: Re: Re: Re:

                                    You can spend as much time - perhaps even less - using the internet to educate yourself as you do displaying your ignorance. Yet, you choose to be an idiot.

                                    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Protected_group

                                    "A “protected class” - who do you expect to “protect” them, you idiot? Law abiding Americans?"

                                    Yes, since the law states that they should be.

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                                      Anonymous Coward, 6 Aug 2018 @ 4:47am

                                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                                      “Yes, since the law states that they should be.”

                                      Wait, are you British? You remind me of some British asshole that I killed in my dreams. You sound British, and am feeling a little murderous. Maybe it’s a genetic memory. What do you think, Doctor?

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                                        Anonymous Coward, 6 Aug 2018 @ 4:54am

                                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                                        No, don’t murder him yet. But listen closely for the words Tax or Confiscation. If you hear those words from this asshole, have at him.

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                                        PaulT (profile), 6 Aug 2018 @ 5:24am

                                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                                        So, you can't handle that the American law I cited tells you that you are deluded, you now have to go straight for personal threats.

                                        Why are small minded people like you so angry all the time. I though ignorance was meant to be bliss?

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                                          Anonymous Coward, 6 Aug 2018 @ 6:47am

                                          Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                                          Ah, you ARE British, I knew it. Go ahead and try to quote American law to an American, you foreigner idiot.

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                                            Anonymous Coward, 6 Aug 2018 @ 6:58am

                                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                                            Didn’t we already kick those pompous British assholes the hell out of America? You want to come back for another Spanking, Brit? My god the whole British “let me quote you your own law and tell you how you must behave” is outlandishly ridiculous, given the history between us. Every study history? Americans don’t like lectures from pompous British assholes, didn’t like ‘em before, don’t like ‘em still.

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                                              Stephen T. Stone (profile), 6 Aug 2018 @ 7:04am

                                              My god the whole British “let me quote you your own law and tell you how you must behave” is outlandishly ridiculous, given the history between us.

                                              Then allow me, a born-and-raised American, to do the exact same job as that Brit:

                                              https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Protected_group

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                                                Anonymous Coward, 6 Aug 2018 @ 7:07pm

                                                Re:

                                                So let me share with you some American beliefs, Stephen, that may not be as familiar to you. We are one country under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all. That does not mean more justice for “protected groups”. For All. Maybe that was never made clear to you, but maybe if you consider it, you will understand my argument more clearly. That means if some mob chases gay people out of a restaurant, I would stand in defense of the gay people. If they chased Sarah Sanders and her family out, I would stand in defense of her. I would Stand Up as a Proud American and protect Liberty and Justice for All. That’s why the example you propose about “potential” refusal of service to Gays pales in comparison to actual refusal of service to the Duly Elected Government and their assignees. You do not have more rights than me, Gays do not have more rights than Sarah Sanders family, that is not how American works. We all stand up for each other. We all protect each other from mobs and fanatics and others who would interfere with our life, liberty and pursuit of happiness. What do you think Stephen, does this kind of make sense to you?

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                                                • identicon
                                                  Anonymous Coward, 6 Aug 2018 @ 9:55pm

                                                  Re: Re:

                                                  I would stand in defense of the gay people

                                                  Judging by your shitty track record, nobody would believe you. Maybe if you wrote some more Melania/Shiva fanfiction it might help!

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                                                  Anonymous Coward, 6 Aug 2018 @ 10:23pm

                                                  Re: Re:

                                                  Cool story bro.

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                                                  PaulT (profile), 7 Aug 2018 @ 1:16am

                                                  Re: Re:

                                                  "That does not mean more justice for “protected groups”"

                                                  Luckily that's not what the law does. It means that sexist, racist, xenophobic, homophobic people cannot reduce the access of rights to one group because they don't like them. It forces them to have the same rights as others, without discriminating against majority groups at the same time (unless you think "I can't an open bigot" is being discrimination)

                                                  "Gays do not have more rights than Sarah Sanders family"

                                                  No, they have the same. Sanders could not have been kicked out for being straight, while a gay person with the same hateful job could be kicked out just as easily for that reason. Neither group can be discriminated against for their sexuality, but they be for what the do. This is extraordinarily simple.

                                                  Again, why do you not understand your own laws as well as us foreigners? Rather embarrassing for you, surely?

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                                                • icon
                                                  Stephen T. Stone (profile), 7 Aug 2018 @ 6:46am

                                                  We are one country under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.

                                                  Oh, you sweet summer child. That was written by men—and only men, mind you—who owned slaves, condoned slavery, and made Black people count as three-fifths of a person under the law. You can call it “forward thinking”, but if you really think the Founding Fathers intended for everyone to have “liberty and justice” when several of them had no issue with owning people like property, you have deluded yourself.

                                                  That does not mean more justice for “protected groups”. For All.

                                                  Yeah, and if “protected groups” could get justice on a regular basis like the majority does, I could agree with you. Until then, we have laws like non-discrimination ordinances to help protect minorities of all kinds from the whims of the majority.

                                                  if some mob chases gay people out of a restaurant, I would stand in defense of the gay people

                                                  Considering how you said “to hell with gays whining about non-existent threats” a couple of days ago, I seriously doubt that.

                                                  If they chased Sarah Sanders and her family out, I would stand in defense of her.

                                                  No one “chased” her out of anything. The staff at the restaurant did not want to serve her because of her connection to the current presidential administration; she was asked to leave the restaurant as a result. You want to go on and on about “liberty and justice for all” and the rights of small business owners, but you apparently cannot comprehend that those concepts apply to people who disagree with you.

                                                  That’s why the example you propose about “potential” refusal of service to Gays pales in comparison to actual refusal of service to the Duly Elected Government and their assignees.

                                                  No. No, it does not. By the by, “potential” refusal of service is bullshit—after all, that court case with the baker was not about “potential” refusal.

                                                  You do not have more rights than me, Gays do not have more rights than Sarah Sanders family, that is not how American works.

                                                  Actually, America has worked in that way since its inception…only the “more rights” thing applies to the majority. Until certain Supreme Court decisions and the ratification of certain constitutional amendments, men had more rights than women, White people had more rights than people of color, and straight people had more rights than gay people. We enacted laws for the protection of certain classes of people so they could have access to those same rights, not to give them “more” rights. A law that prevents discrimination based on religious creed protects Muslims, Satanists, and atheists just as much as it protects Christians of all stripes; that the majority would only ever need to call upon such a law in exceptionally rare instances of actual discrimination does not diminish those protections.

                                                  We all stand up for each other. We all protect each other from mobs and fanatics and others who would interfere with our life, liberty and pursuit of happiness.

                                                  Again, your words, not mine: “to hell with gays whining about non-existent threats”.

                                                  What do you think Stephen, does this kind of make sense to you?

                                                  Nothing you say ever makes much sense, but that never seems to stop you from saying it anyway.

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                                                  • icon
                                                    The Wanderer (profile), 9 Aug 2018 @ 9:20am

                                                    Re:

                                                    Re that first point: Not to mention that, IIRC, one or both of "indivisible" and "under God" was inserted later on, as a way to push a particular political position.

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                                            • icon
                                              PaulT (profile), 6 Aug 2018 @ 7:06am

                                              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                                              “let me quote you your own law"

                                              The real question is why you find your own law so offensive.

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                                            • identicon
                                              Anonymous Coward, 6 Aug 2018 @ 5:37pm

                                              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                                              Pro tip cowboy. Replying to yourself makes you look crazier than you already are.

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                                          • icon
                                            PaulT (profile), 6 Aug 2018 @ 7:05am

                                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                                            What does it say when I know more about your own law than you do? I already linked you to the relevant laws.

                                            But, your inability to handle facts and instead going straight to xenophobia is noted.

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                                              identicon
                                              Anonymous Coward, 6 Aug 2018 @ 7:30am

                                              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                                              I love you, I do. Xenophobia. You are the poster boy for things to hate about foreigner socialists. Are you trying to be offensive and disgusting, or does it come naturally?

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                                              • icon
                                                PaulT (profile), 6 Aug 2018 @ 8:01am

                                                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                                                "You are the poster boy for things to hate about foreigner socialists"

                                                Yes, that's what I was talking about with regard to xenophobia (hint: "foreigner" isn't a bad thing unless you are xenophobic)

                                                "Are you trying to be offensive and disgusting, or does it come naturally?"

                                                I'm dealing with facts, but somebody doesn't like those so he started with personal attacks based on silly strawmen instead.

                                                If the facts about what your own laws say is disgusting, I'm not sure what else I can do other than point out how silly you appear.

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                                                  identicon
                                                  Anonymous Coward, 6 Aug 2018 @ 6:55pm

                                                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                                                  I was trying to make a literary point, imbecile. Do you remember the Boston Tea Party, and how much Americans cared what the British thought? That’s how much I care about what you think. I am not a globalist zombie and a “citizen of the world”. I am an American. I wish everyone in ever other country to find happiness of their own in their own way. I am not Xenophobic (this word was not even in much use when I was young) I am a Proud American. You are a globalist zombie, judging from your (extensive) writing.

                                                  Are you really British? Did you see that reporter on Tucker that was locked up for 2 months in London for the crime of publicly reading a published article about Muslims? So tell me, Mr. Brit, are you really British, and ready to condemn The British Government for locking up citizens for nothing more than reading in a public square, or are you a Globalist Zombie, unaware and uncaring of your own countrymen? I’m guessing the latter. Good luck to you, and I hope I never see you again.

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                                                  • identicon
                                                    Anonymous Coward, 6 Aug 2018 @ 9:54pm

                                                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                                                    and I hope I never see you again

                                                    Finally something we can all agree on, but it seems like you're just going to keep on disappointing everybody else, Hamilton.

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                                                  • identicon
                                                    Anonymous Coward, 6 Aug 2018 @ 10:24pm

                                                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                                                    You will be back for more because you get off on the abuse.

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                                                  • icon
                                                    PaulT (profile), 7 Aug 2018 @ 1:10am

                                                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                                                    "Do you remember the Boston Tea Party, and how much Americans cared what the British thought? "

                                                    Do you base everything on the world as it was several hundred years ago, or are you capable of admitting that some things may have changed somewhat? Also, does "American" count only before or after the immigrants you spawned from entered the country, and was that happening at the time?

                                                    "I am not Xenophobic (this word was not even in much use when I was young) I am a Proud American"

                                                    Meaning what? (difficulty - explain this without jingoistic xenobobic ranting)

                                                    "Did you see that reporter on Tucker that was locked up for 2 months in London for the crime of publicly reading a published article about Muslims?"

                                                    You might want to get some factual news sources if you think that was what actually happened.

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                          • identicon
                            Anonymous Coward, 6 Aug 2018 @ 4:22am

                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                            Do you really think I write for free?

                            Based on the garbage that you insisted in the months after Shiva first declared war? Apparently you were actually writing as a "concerned" "inventor", so thanks for finally admitting you were lying.

                            why do you think all this money is being spent on Techdirt

                            Because Shiva's too chickenshit to fight Ars Technica.

                            We will use the same logic that you are using to force free speech into the digital marketplace

                            By... demanding that a website shut down.

                            Genius move, dumbass!

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                            • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
                              identicon
                              Anonymous Coward, 6 Aug 2018 @ 6:51am

                              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                              Naw, actually I was just toying wit ya. Thanks for the entertainment, though.

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                              • icon
                                Stephen T. Stone (profile), 6 Aug 2018 @ 7:05am

                                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                                At least you admit you are a troll and can thus be safely flagged/ignored.

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                              • identicon
                                Anonymous Coward, 6 Aug 2018 @ 5:36pm

                                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                                No thank you. It’s fun watching a monkey fling poo at his own face and complain about it like you do.

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                              • identicon
                                Anonymous Coward, 6 Aug 2018 @ 10:29pm

                                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                                Well we know you are a fraud and you’ve admitted to being a liar so I suppose there’s nothing left for you but the cowards way out.

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                          • identicon
                            Anonymous Coward, 6 Aug 2018 @ 5:34pm

                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                            Hey numbnuts who is footing the bills for you? They would be better off buying psychiatric meds for your delusional ass.

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            • icon
              Anonymous Anonymous Coward (profile), 3 Aug 2018 @ 6:10pm

              Re: Re:

              Or, they have paid for agendas. Those paying might be corporations, they might be PAC's, or they might be their party leaders. I suspect you wouldn't find any of this rhetoric in their campaign speeches.

              Your suggestion that they are following their constituents wishes is just laughable. There are too many examples of them doing otherwise for it to be anything else. Besides, how could we be sure that they are listening to a majority of their constituents especially when what they are proposing is likely not Constitutional (First Amendment violations: "Congress shall make no law...").

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            • identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 5 Aug 2018 @ 4:36am

              Re: Re:

              Fuck me, you disappeared from this website for seven months?

              Why the hell hasn't out_of_the_blue called you a zombie yet? Oh, right - it's because you got downvoted.

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        • icon
          ladyattis (profile), 7 Aug 2018 @ 10:38am

          Re: Re: Re:

          The reality is that the Valley only cares about making money. Some may float semi-distributionist ideas like UBI or jobs guarantee but on the whole they're going where the money is and any politics is purely personal matters that rarely intersect their projects and businesses. The reality is that SV is only socially liberal because the US is becoming or has been socially liberal for a while now. Whatever social conservative values that exist now are vestigial or regional in flavor. Heck, there's rural towns that have gay pride parades now so times they are a-changing. And to subscribe this as some magical political agenda rather than a demographic shift (old folks dying off and young folks growing old and changing the norms as such).

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 3 Aug 2018 @ 6:26pm

      Re:

      Number 1) is correct
      Number 2) is an unsupported opinion
      Number 3) is an unsupported opinion
      Number 4) they are capable .. ok, but unlimited?
      Number 5) does not mean much

      and neither does the remainder of the post

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    • icon
      harbingerofdoom (profile), 5 Aug 2018 @ 9:36am

      Re:

      [snip]A large part of this is that the founding fathers had no exposure to American leftism [/snip]

      are you stupid?
      the founding fathers were raging leftists who overthrew the f'n government. the conservatives of the day were loyalists through and through.

      you really.... REALLY... need to understand (or in your case even LEARN) history before you open your trap.

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    icon
    Sayonara Felicia-San (profile), 3 Aug 2018 @ 4:04pm

    Another New Year's Resolution Down The Toilet...

    I promised myself that I would stop responding to your more nauseating self-referencing click bait articles, and well, here I am again:


    "...ridiculous and blatantly misleading claims about how they're "censoring" conservatives, which is a bunch of utter nonsense."

    So that time when Twitter censors admitted that the entire process involves a room with a bunch of uneducated a-holes who basically do what they want, and just happen to shadow ban folks they don't like, who all happen to be "conservatives" ...yup that never happened. "Jack Dorsey is a nice guy and he would never do such a thing, we met at SXSW and Burning Man once and he was awesome!"

    Project Veritas fillms Twitter staff undercover | Daily Mail Online http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5260111/Undercover-video-Twitter-staff-talking-censorship.ht ml


    Now, for your convenience, here is a list of knee-jerk cookie cutter responses for you to use:

    1. This is just one employee!
    2. Project Veritas!? That's not a credible news agency like CNN!
    3. Oh that Project Veritas guy is a known fake news peddler who cuts video scenes out of context.
    4. This article doesn't say what you think it says.
    5. They aren't banning conservatives, they are banning hate speech / trolls / toxic people / violators of TOS




    Carry On! Cognitive Dissonance is a helluva drug!

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

    • icon
      Stephen T. Stone (profile), 3 Aug 2018 @ 4:11pm

      1. Prove more than one employee is doing the same thing.
      2. They are provably lacking in credibility.
      3. Yes, he does—hence the “lacking in credibility” thing.
      4. Didn’t read it; can’t speak to this; don’t much care either way.
      5. And if conservatives are the ones who get dinged the most by such bans, well…I suppose that is entirely and provably coincidental, huh?

      Oh, and one more thing:

      I promised myself that I would stop responding to your more nauseating self-referencing click bait articles

      I guess that makes you a liar, then.

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

      • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
        icon
        Sayonara Felicia-San (profile), 3 Aug 2018 @ 4:15pm

        Re:

        Your post says more about your LACK level of intelligence and ability to grasp abstract concepts, than it does about anything I wrote.

        ----

        Oh, and one more thing:

        I promised myself that I would stop responding to your more nauseating self-referencing click bait articles

        I guess that makes you a liar, then.

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    • icon
      Mike Masnick (profile), 3 Aug 2018 @ 4:24pm

      Re: Another New Year's Resolution Down The Toilet...

      LOL. You're funny as shit.

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

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 3 Aug 2018 @ 4:39pm

      Re: Another New Year's Resolution Down The Toilet...

      You cited Project Veritas.

      Lol.

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

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 3 Aug 2018 @ 9:57pm

      Re: Another New Year's Resolution Down The Toilet...

      Good old project veritas, known for deceptive editing that entirely changes the meaning of conversations.

      Real good source there.

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

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 3 Aug 2018 @ 10:00pm

      Re: Another New Year's Resolution Down The Toilet...

      Also love how you think that listing the known issues with project veritas somehow invalidates the criticisms.

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

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 4 Aug 2018 @ 1:53am

      and you’re a fuckin addict...

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

    • icon
      Ninja (profile), 6 Aug 2018 @ 7:36am

      Re: Another New Year's Resolution Down The Toilet...

      Oh come on, The Onion has better journalistic coverage than The Daily Mail. Oh wait, you are doing comedy. Never mind.

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

  • identicon
    Whoathere, 3 Aug 2018 @ 6:25pm

    Political parties need to be abolished... End of discussion.

    Until the political party systems, while technically more than 2 exist, only 2 parties get 99.999999% of the media attention.

    Both parties are lead by incompetent buffoons who are clueless about anything that doesn't lead to them getting more power, more money or both simultaneously.

    What we need is a system that we take a list of hot topics, build a ballot from that, for, against, neutral, and every legal citizen, 18 years or older, gets to vote on.

    When tallied up, the people running for office's ballots are compared to the mass results.

    Those whose ballots closest matches their constituents get into office.

    Once cast, their stances on those topics cannot change, until or unless they decide to chance it, and re-cast their ballot to change, at which point their new ballot is compared to determine if they get to keep their office or get booted for the new closest match.

    Terms will be limited to one consecutive term at first, then one term length out, then can run for a second term.
    After that second term, they have to sit out for two terms before they can apply for a third, and after that, sit out for 3 terms.

    This will assist with bankrupting all those corporations that have to keep buying the politicians as they fly in and out of office. The funny part will be that even when bought, they cannot change their vote in a way that violates their constituents' voting. So if their constituents all voted, probably unanimously, that net neutrality needs to be implemented as a constitutional amendment, they cannot vote against net neutrality in any way, shape, or form.

    IF they do, the vote is invalidated and the politician is immediately evicted from office, can never throw their hat into the ring again and lose all health / retirement benefits.

    Same goes for the President/Vice President.
    They don't get to choose or change their minds, if they don't apply policy consistent with the majority mindset, boom, insta-boot, loss of all benefits and secret service protection.

    ie - The government will have NO CHOICE but to adhere to our wishes. The 1% will have NO say anymore because their 1% is outweighed by our 99%.

    That is the only way we can return to a true, by the people, for the people and of the people government.

    Oh, and yeah, one other thing. Corporations.. aren't people. And they lose their invulnerability shield for corporate shenanigans.

    If a corporation breaks the law, the executive officers of the corporation, as well as majority stock holders get to be held liable in court, and if convicted, they all get to spend time in prison, or even get sent to a gas-chamber or electric chair if a product kills someone.

    Why? Because it was their decisions that caused the company to release defective products, cut corners, all in the name of higher profits regardless of the damage done to the customers, the environment, etc....

    So why should they get off scott-free?

    If we as individuals chose to do something that hurts someone, we have to be held accountable.

    Corporations cannot have all the benefits of person-hood, with none of the responsibilities that those benefits entail.

    Would have loved to have seen senior executives being sent off to boot camp when their corporate "personhood" was drafted during the war.

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    • icon
      Anonymous Anonymous Coward (profile), 3 Aug 2018 @ 6:41pm

      Re: Political parties need to be abolished... End of discussion.

      Not bad, I have been advocating something similar for years. You should add, remove money from politics, sunset all laws every seven years, and limit lobbying to constituents rather than professional lobbyists. There are probably a few more reforms needed as well.

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

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 3 Aug 2018 @ 6:57pm

      Re: Political parties need to be abolished... End of discussion.

      This sounds like an idea a middle schooler came up with.

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

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 4 Aug 2018 @ 8:25am

      Re: Political parties need to be abolished... End of discussion.

      I agree that the 2 party system needs to go.

      The concept is that the elected officials from local to federal are supposed to do what the constituents want.

      Sadly this is not the case. For an example, not espousing anything just an example, the border wall. You would think that a bill proposed by the president would go though a congress of whom the majority belong to the same party. Uh no, obviously some of those same party members are not going to vote what their constituents want.

      We need to make it a lot easier to recall politicians who don't do what we want rather than have to wait for the next election.

      The way it really works now is that every election comes down to 1 or 2 hot button topics that the parties try to use to motivate their support. Which leaves a lot of hidden agendas waiting in the wings.

      Unfortunately most voters focus only on the buzz word topic and ignore anything else.

      What it comes down to is that voters need to really look at who it is they are voting for and what besides the hot topic that politician is working towards.

      Term limits are a good thing. I think you are too generous. Two terms and gone would be my idea.

      Blocking corporate lobbyists. Not sure how it could be enforced but a damn good idea.

      The idea that corporations are legal entities is ridiculous. There are real people making those decisions. Those real people should absolutely face real consequences for their actions.

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

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    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 3 Aug 2018 @ 7:27pm

    Idiotic stupid incomprehensible nonsense

    Wow, Mike, I find your article ridiculously and blatantly misleading and utter nonsense. Does my writing style sound familiar? If it doesn’t, then you are a bunch of clueless ignorant people. I think a 10 year old with a dictionary could have written this piece and would have had more to say.

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    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 3 Aug 2018 @ 7:41pm

    Maybe we could co-author one, Stephen - your writing is pretty good. Can you suggest a topic that we could agree on?

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

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      identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 3 Aug 2018 @ 8:17pm

      Re: Here is my idea Stephen

      How about this - an article about how to provide health care in the US? My dad was a career military man and a doctor, he used to talk about this stuff all the time. The basic idea is to “declare war” on health issues, and conscript the medical community into service. Basically, to regulate the industry and lower costs by compelling health care professionals to “donate” some of their time to the public good. That is, give more health care to low income people by limiting the income of rich health care professionals. An “army” to fight the “war” against poor health. The government can conscript people into the military, why not conscript them into “free” health care? I think you could support this, what do you think? Good idea? No huge tax bill, just a bit of a burden on doctors and such. They can still get rich, just a little more slowly.

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  • icon
    That Anonymous Coward (profile), 3 Aug 2018 @ 8:42pm

    You aren't entitled to the platform to spout your latest theory about how Trump is stopping the super pedo's.

    To pretend that a private business is somehow bound to give you a platform... well just bake the cake bucky.

    I was shocked, just shocked, when a super secret for getting around your shadowban was posted in the conservatives... turn off quality filter & we can get around the shadowbans!!!
    They are shadowbanning us, not noticing we parrot the same 3 things over and over and over and over that adds nothing so the quality filter (which is completely in the hands of the users to activate or deactivate) hides you from people who are interested in actual content & not the same ranting that there is a secret pedo cabal murdering millions of children every year. (And because I'm an ass I'll take a moment to point out these same idiots see nothing wrong with Trump locking the kids up, drugging them, leaving them to be abused by pedos with badges yelling well if they didn't want to be molested they shouldn't have broken the law).

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 3 Aug 2018 @ 9:26pm

      Re:

      Summary of your argument: I am not entitled to Free Speech here, but Here is entitled to claim Free Speech as a defense to accountability.

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

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 4 Aug 2018 @ 1:55am

        Re: Re:

        That’s fucking pathetic, even from you.

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

      • icon
        Stephen T. Stone (profile), 4 Aug 2018 @ 5:11am

        Section 230 does not shield a platform from liability if a platform operator knowingly and directly helps a third party break the law. That said, a platform violating Section 230—or any other law, for that matter—still does not give you the right to force a platform into hosting your speech.

        The second half of your summary is bullshit. The first half is a gotdamn fact.

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

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 4 Aug 2018 @ 8:21am

        Re: Re:

        As far as summaries go, yours is pathetic.

        (no free speech on TD)
        This topic has been beaten to death, and yet frankenstieen keeps reviving it. I guess pitch forks are no match for zombie fake outrage posts.

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  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 3 Aug 2018 @ 8:56pm

    Well, even you would admit he was right on that last part.

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

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 3 Aug 2018 @ 9:01pm

    Convinced

    Convinced "The Media" is a monobloc controlled by liberals and jews? And that anyone that can't see it is a fool? Or worse, out to get you?

    You might be a Nazi.

    Just saying.

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

  • identicon
    Al, 4 Aug 2018 @ 4:24am

    Threat of change

    Sometimes, nothing solicits more funds, than the mere threat of change. Those who wish to maintain the status quo, must then pony up to prevent change, those who want to change things, must overcome the donations of keeping the status quo. Quite the racket, and in most cases, the politicians could care less one way or the other. It's like being a lawyer, either way; guilty or innocent, they are going to make money.

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  • identicon
    Avideogameplayer, 4 Aug 2018 @ 6:15am

    Here's a new twist. Make your own Twitter service and only let people who you want to use it.

    Or is that too much sense?

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

    • icon
      Stephen T. Stone (profile), 4 Aug 2018 @ 7:16am

      Re:

      This is, in essence, one of the functions of the Mastodon protocol: Anyone can start an instance and let in only a select amount of people to use that instance. Some instances on the Fediverse right now are one-user instances.

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

      • icon
        Thad (profile), 4 Aug 2018 @ 9:54am

        Re: Re:

        I've never used Mastodon (when have you ever known me to keep a post under 500 characters?), but from what I've read I'm very impressed with its design. I think a series of smaller, (optionally) interlinked social networks makes a lot more sense than a single, large provider, and is a good solution to the moderation problem (good moderation doesn't scale; a single giant service with millions of users will never have effective moderation, but a series of smaller networks with their own individual rules and moderation teams can).

        And that's without even getting into the clear superiority of open platforms over proprietary ones. I've said this before, but it's been very frustrating watching people slowly transition from walled gardens AOL to the open internet and then slowly, voluntarily transition back to walled gardens like Twitter and (even moreso) Facebook.

        As usual, my advice to Blue is "Start your own blog." He's got the same option as anybody else: make your own platform; host your own content; put whatever you want on it. We live in a wonderful world of open-source software options like Wordpress that allow anybody to easily set up their own platform and run it however they see fit. Course, that's not what Blue wants; he wants to force other people to run their platforms however he sees fit.

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

    • icon
      PaulT (profile), 6 Aug 2018 @ 2:52am

      Re:

      They tried that with other services, and they all miserably failed. "Reaganbook", "Conservapedia", etc.

      Turns out, they're bad at this sort of thing and can't get a decent audience naturally, so they want to force the successful platforms to host them whether they want to or not.

      Then, without a hint of irony, they'll be demanding that businesses have the right to block customers for being gay, or whatever, and not see the hypocrisy.

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

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 4 Aug 2018 @ 7:08am

    Fun With Censorship

    "... ridiculous and blatantly misleading claims about how they're 'censoring' conservatives..."

    It's not illegal for sites to censor visitors. It could be fun, if some sites relegated their profit model to second place in some cases, promoting these claims from "ridiculous and blatantly misleading" to self-fulfilling prophecy.

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

    • icon
      ladyattis (profile), 7 Aug 2018 @ 10:43am

      Re: Fun With Censorship

      What makes it funnier for me is that Twitter has shadow banned more K-pop fans than conservatives. I've even been hit with the shadow ban stick for what I assume was retweeting too fast or too often. I didn't get a "your account is now limited" message. Frankly, if they throttle an account I do think they need to tell the account to slow down. Maybe indicate it with some icon or status notification but hiding it to obfuscate the action from bots isn't good design (just a personal developer gripe not really critical). Beyond that it's purely temporary and easy to get around: don't spam like a bot would.

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

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 4 Aug 2018 @ 7:43am

    Shadow Banning on a privately held platform is illegal? Interesting opinion, in which countries?.

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

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 4 Aug 2018 @ 7:51am

      Re:

      When it is done by a monopoly to the detriment of a political candidate who also happens to be a US Senator, and it is not reported to the Federal Election Commission as income to his opponent.

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

  • icon
    restless94110 (profile), 4 Aug 2018 @ 3:40pm

    Difficult

    It is difficult to understand how the numbskull who wrote this essay could say that shadow banning and other bullshit against so-called right-wing thought is bullshit. I guess this idiot didn't see the two black sisters, Diamond and Silk, testifiying before Congress that they have been censored.

    Only a willfully ignorant moron would not have taken note of the valid concerns of those who don't subscribe to the regressive view of the US and the world.

    Tech Dirt spits on its own legacy of such great work on copyright and other issues by hosting this utter garbage.

    Again, only a sub-moron would try to appear "even-handed" by denying what's been going on. I have first-hand experience with shadow banning on both FB and Twitter, as do many other more notable celebrities. To deny that? That's fake news.

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

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 4 Aug 2018 @ 5:27pm

      Re: Difficult

      How is refusing to bake a wedding cake for a gay couple any different than banning somebody who you don't want on your platform?

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

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 5 Aug 2018 @ 2:01am

        Lets have the right comparison...

        The bakers can refuse to serve anyone who is making racist comments, or trying to stir other people into violent action, or otherwise being obnoxious, and get them removed from the premises.

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

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 4 Aug 2018 @ 6:06pm

      Re: Difficult

      Or a well paid fraud and liar.

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

      • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
        identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 4 Aug 2018 @ 7:04pm

        Re: Re: Difficult

        IMHO, Mike is not a fraud and a liar, it’s just not Mike writing the articles. I think maybe he sold the Techdirt “brand” and is now allowing moronic writers to pen articles under his name. I don’t even think it is him replying the comments, he was never that idiotic before.

        Now the left (MM) seeming to be fighting their ideological “war” without any ideas. Instead, their battle is to redefine words. For example, Google does not “censor”, twitter does not “censor”, YouTube does not “censor”, Techdirt does not “censor”. Yes, they may “guide” viewers to certain materials, yes they may make comments or videos invisibile, they may make your name dissapear from a search (even when you are a Congressman), but they do not “censor”. It’s not Censorship! Say it enough times and the weak minded will bow to your wisdom because they heard it so many times.

        There was no FBI “spy” in the Trump campaign, there was only an “informant”, that’s usual and proper, nothing like a spy. Russia influenced our election, not the American Voters. Oh no, influence influence. It had nothing to do with the American People choosing the President. Russian Influence, and let’s make sure it NEVER happens again. OMG, what idiocy, repeated and repeated.

        Here’s a challenge to identify the Real Mike Masnick (RMM). The Real Mike Masnick had editorial standards and ethical standards. Spell out your standards for us, RMM, tell us what you really believe in and how you support your ideals with conviction and ethics. Show us some of that inspirational writing and you used to be well known for. That is, if you’re out there at all and “they” will let you speak, RMM.

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

        • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
          identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 4 Aug 2018 @ 8:29pm

          Re: Re: Re: Difficult

          Wow, kind of sad to think we may never hear from the Real Mike Masnick again - but that’s common in the left-wing socialist circles he hangs out in (Chelsea Manning, for example). People in that group may never speak without permission. And now that Mike has “sold out”, we may never, ever hear from him again (in his genuine voice), if his socialist masters so deem it. Too bad, he could write some interesting things, but that era has passed, and the new era of “Democratic Socialism” has emerged. I don’t blame him for not stepping “out of line”, imagine what would happen to Mike if his Democratic Socialist friends turned on him. They would all simultaneously denounce him, as they do so many others, on every social media platform, in a coordinated fashion. He would never survive. Bye, Mike, see you in some future where Democratic Socialism and the principles by which it operates are long past and distant (albeit disgusting) memories.

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

    • icon
      Thad (profile), 4 Aug 2018 @ 9:54pm

      Re: Difficult

      An argument is a connected series of statements intended to establish a proposition. It isn't just contradiction.

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

    • icon
      Mike Masnick (profile), 5 Aug 2018 @ 1:20am

      Re: Difficult

      It is difficult to understand how the numbskull who wrote this essay could say that shadow banning and other bullshit against so-called right-wing thought is bullshit. I guess this idiot didn't see the two black sisters, Diamond and Silk, testifiying before Congress that they have been censored.

      I saw them claim that. I also saw the details that suggested nothing even close to that claim was accurate. Indeed, they were very temporarily blocked by accident, which ended quickly with an apology. That was not them being censored. Indeed, in true Streisand Effect fashion, they got a LOT more attention, followers and money because of this.

      Only a willfully ignorant moron would not have taken note of the valid concerns of those who don't subscribe to the regressive view of the US and the world.

      Fascinating.

      Tech Dirt spits on its own legacy of such great work on copyright and other issues by hosting this utter garbage.

      Okay.

      Again, only a sub-moron would try to appear "even-handed" by denying what's been going on. I have first-hand experience with shadow banning on both FB and Twitter, as do many other more notable celebrities. To deny that? That's fake news.

      You don't know what you're talking about. You think you do, but you are wrong.

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

  • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 4 Aug 2018 @ 9:04pm

    I have a question for you “Democratic Socialists” out there

    New York recently voted to name a street after a man that said “we should use the skin of a white man as a parchment, his skull as an inkwell, his blood for ink, and a bayonet for a pen," Dessalines ordered the murder of virtually every white man, followed soon afterward by all white women and children, in the new nation. Between 3,000 and 5,000 people were butchered in a few months.

    Here is my question - liberals talk about “killing old white men” all the time, just look at the NYT recently and the tweets of their editors. Take a brief flight of fancy with me, just for literary purposes. This fantasy is based on the truth that while liberals say blah blah blah on the internet all the time, conservatives are different. Conservatives are mainly comprised of hardened and armed individuals including 99% of the active and retired Army, Navy, Air Force and Marines, as well as the Police, Fire Fighters, Emergency Workers, Reserve Forces and most of the Government Police, their families, churches, organizations and fellowships. These are real people in big numbers with a large number of weapons and have themselves (or their close relatives) killed people when they felt they needed to. Experienced, serious people, ready to act and with proven killing experience.

    Imagine for a moment that some future POTUS tweeted “Confront every radical leftist you know or can be reliably identified by others, tell them to swear off their beliefs, or shoot them between the eyes, and I will pardon you.”

    While this is a flight of fancy, bear with me for just one simple question: In the future, after this broad based bloody assasination, would New York City vote to name a street after the president who ordered it? Seems roughly equivalent to what they are doing now.

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

    • icon
      Stephen T. Stone (profile), 4 Aug 2018 @ 9:42pm

      You do not have ideas—you have intent.

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

      • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
        identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 4 Aug 2018 @ 10:00pm

        Re:

        Of course not. I am making a literary point, suggesting that empty threats are self defeating.

        Give me your opinion, Stephen, you are pretty good at expressing yourself. What do you think of Americans? I mean the "I'll give you my gun when you pry (or take) it from my cold, dead hands" Americans. The “Don’t Tread Of Me” rattlesnake Americans. The Americans with convictions that created America with their sweat, blood and lives. The Heroic Americans that have thrown themselves into death willingly (ref: Pence’s speech about the North Korean remains recently returned) on behalf of their beliefs, flying their wounded fighter jets (for example) into North Korean artillary in order to save their comrades. The Americans who crashed the hijacked plane and killed the terrorists once they understood the situation, even at knowing of their own demise. What do you think of these America Hero’s?

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

        • icon
          Stephen T. Stone (profile), 4 Aug 2018 @ 11:04pm

          Re: Re:

          What do you think of Americans?

          Meh.

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

          • identicon
            Anonymous Coward, 5 Aug 2018 @ 1:43am

            Re: Re: Re:

            Americans were founded as (extremely successful) murderous terrorists (from the “civilized” British view). We rebelled against the English laws that we did not agree with. We killed those who would rule us, sent them out of our country (which we defined), and then left our entire “army” (everyday citizens) armed and ready to expel the next invaders. We are proud of this, this murderous history, and ready to repeat it to anyone who would challenge our basic beliefs. We have our ideals, and we have our limits. God Bless America.

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

            • identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 5 Aug 2018 @ 3:33am

              Re: Re: Re: Re:

              Cool story bro.

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

            • icon
              Stephen T. Stone (profile), 5 Aug 2018 @ 4:26am

              We are proud of this, this murderous history, and ready to repeat it to anyone who would challenge our basic beliefs.

              The Founding Fathers oversaw the enslavement of Africans; the shitty treatment of Indigenous Americans (up to and including their deaths); and the creation of a Constitution that did nothing to help slaves, Indigenous peoples, or women escape their shitty lot in American life until many, many, many years after its drafting and adoption. You comin’ for my head, now, champ?

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

              • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
                identicon
                Anonymous Coward, 5 Aug 2018 @ 5:00am

                Re:

                Yes, as a documented Son of the American Revolution, I think I could say with some confidence and conviction that should you ever try to take away one of my American rights by force, you would be met with force in return. For example, if you tried to take my gun, I would shoot you right between the eyes, and feel absolutely fine about it. My grandfather thought me how to shoot straight. My father fought in 2 wars and had a military honor squad at his funeral. I have had a lot of good instruction about the way to deal with anything you might ever consider that falls outside American values and American Rights, like trying to take my gun. And I apologize for nothing and for no one, thanks for asking. Go shove your guilt trip up your own ass for all I care. That’s where it belongs.

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

                • icon
                  Stephen T. Stone (profile), 5 Aug 2018 @ 7:52am

                  Re: Re:

                  I apologize for nothing and for no one

                  Not even your crazy uncle Jeb with the gap tooth and the swastika tattoo and the Grand Wizard robes?

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

                  • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
                    identicon
                    Anonymous Coward, 5 Aug 2018 @ 8:00am

                    Re: Re: Re:

                    See Stephen - you are a legitimate creative writer. I especially like the “Grand Wizard robes”, I may use that in the future.

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

                  • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
                    identicon
                    Anonymous Coward, 5 Aug 2018 @ 8:14am

                    Re: Re: Re:

                    And just as a personal point, my father would not have tolerated any company in his house with a “swastika tattoo”. Do you remember Gny. Sgt. Hartman from Full Metal Jacket? That was my dad most of the time. The other time was filled with his imitation of Lt. Aldo Raine from Inglorious Bastards. You did not want to even mention “swastika tattoo”s around him. Really. Don’t even do it.

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

                    • icon
                      Stephen T. Stone (profile), 5 Aug 2018 @ 9:05am

                      And just as a personal point, my father would not have tolerated any company in his house with a “swastika tattoo”.

                      Did he strip search everyone for one before they entered his house? Did he strip search you for one? Did your father hurt you, Hamilton?

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

                    • identicon
                      Anonymous Coward, 5 Aug 2018 @ 7:17pm

                      Re: Re: Re: Re:

                      The swastika tattoos are funding your political allies, Hamilton. Get over it.

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

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 4 Aug 2018 @ 11:39pm

          Re: Re:

          Hey Hamilton did you make the last prostitute you had sex with wear the Melenia or the Donnie mask?

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

  • identicon
    Gary Mont, 5 Aug 2018 @ 4:29pm

    Om Money Padmai Humm

    I'm beginning to suspect that Hollywood is the directing force behind the American billionaire Fascist movement.

    It is extremely amazing and quite amusing how well the Fascist political actors can portray both the Democratic and Republican Parties at the same time, and still keep most of the public fooled completely...

    "You can fool most of the people all of the time and all of the people most of the time" is proving to be much more than an idle observation.

    It has become a major business model as well as a fascist mantra.

    ---

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

  • icon
    ladyattis (profile), 7 Aug 2018 @ 10:48am

    Shadow banning is overblown

    As my subject says, it's overblown and mostly it's due to Twitter's own algorithmic management of bots and spammers. I've been subject to it numerous times and so have many folks in the K-pop fanbase but on the whole it's not directed at any keywords or specific actions beyond constant retweeting or otherwise doing things that seem to be faster than the average person can do (I guess I'm one of those old farts that knows how to type without looking at the keyboard, lol). Heck, I've been hit with similar reactions from Google when I've been drilling down my searches with more keywords in quick succession. The fact so many folks are willfully ignorant as to how computers and software works just baffles me. It's not like it's magic, it's just called crappy automation.

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

  • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 7 Aug 2018 @ 10:00pm

    This article is laughable propaganda, but I expect nothing less from the left.

    Your pathetic attempts to defend the indefensible are only to be expected from the totalitarian fascist sub-human scum who pose as "progressives". This is why I regard everyone on the left as an enemy of the human race, and every word you say is, at best, an outright lie. You are uterly evil demons merely posing as humans.

    I suppose you think if you just keep denying the obvious that is right in fron of your face, and say it often enough, someone will believe you. After the events of the last few days, that ain't happening, and whatever shreds of credibility you may think you have are long gone- Mike Masnick, I'm talking to you, liar.

    So just keep pushing libtards, just don't be surprised when none of you survive the inevitable backlash that is building right now. You sowed the wind, now you will reap the whirlwind.

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

    • icon
      PaulT (profile), 7 Aug 2018 @ 11:31pm

      Re:

      This is what partisan idiocy gets you folks. Paragraphs of random hatred, aimed at preventing any kind of dialogue whatsoever, without even an attempt at stating *what* was wrong with the article. No attempt at understanding their point of view and differences in viewpoints. Just seething hatred against "the other".

      It's a sad, pathetic sight to witness.

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

      • icon
        ladyattis (profile), 9 Aug 2018 @ 8:42am

        Re: Re:

        My post is hateful? How is it hateful to point out that shadow banning has affected non-political Twitter users for months before folks like Scott Adams crowed above it? How is it hateful that I point out that I was personally hit with a shadow ban for retweeting too often and too fast which triggered their automated systems? How is it hateful to point out that it is not driven by any particular set of keywords but rather general behavior that seems bot-like or spamming which is a real problem on social media which firms from Twitter to Google's ad division have been dealing with since the days of click farms?

        How is any part of my post hateful? Where did I say I hate anyone for getting nicked by a broken automated process? It's posts like those of PaulT that get right wingers and reactionaries mocked and ignored. They literally call any criticism of their flawed arguments as "hate" when it's clear no emotive intention is part of my thesis. If anything it validates that automation of content moderation and curation isn't viable (or even scalable). So trying to do the whole 'wokewashing' by disclaiming my very plain statements as hate demonstrates dishonesty on your part, PaulT.

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

        • icon
          PaulT (profile), 9 Aug 2018 @ 8:52am

          Re: Re: Re:

          "My post is hateful?"

          That tends to be the impression when you refer to people as "totalitarian fascist sub-human scum", yes.

          The rest of your nonsense sounds like stuff you picked up off some other forums and accepted them with as much thought as you put into how you worded your original message.

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

    • icon
      Stephen T. Stone (profile), 8 Aug 2018 @ 2:58am

      Are you threatening violence against “leftists”?

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

      • icon
        ladyattis (profile), 9 Aug 2018 @ 8:45am

        Re:

        At what part did my post mention violence? All I mentioned was that I got nicked by a shadow ban just like K-pop fans on Twitter for variously random reasons (retweeting too fast/often or other assorted one off things). There's no violence in my post. This is why right wing trolls like you get ignored because you can't address the points of this article and your critics (me included).

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

      • icon
        ladyattis (profile), 9 Aug 2018 @ 9:25am

        Re:

        Disregard my last post I'm terrible at reading where another post below mine got flagged. Apologies.

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


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