If You Think Big Internet Companies Are Somehow To Blame For The New Zealand Massacre, You're Wrong

from the big-tech-derangement-syndrome dept

I know, I know, it's cool these days to hate on the big internet companies, but people keep getting carried away with accusations that don't reflect reality. We should be able to agree that there are problems with the big internet companies (and to suggest ways to deal with them), without falling prey to easy attacks on those companies that don't make sense once you understand the details. The latest example of this "Big Tech Derangement Syndrome" came in response to last week's absolutely horrific massacre in Christchurch, New Zealand. As many have noted, the attack was almost perfectly planned to play to a certain corner of the shitposting, trolltastic parts of the internet. Indeed, the use of social media by the attacker appeared to follow a very similar model to the one that had been perfected by ISIS a few years ago.

This has, of course, resulted in a lot of hand-wringing about the role of the internet in all of this. And I do think that there are many worthwhile conversations to be had about how internet platforms promote or highlight certain content over other content (though, of course, any attempt to really deal with that will almost certainly lead to more bogus accusations of "conservative bias" on these platforms).

But what was disturbing to me was how many people focused on the fact that the various internet platforms had a tough time getting rid of all of the copies of the livestream video that was posted of the attack. I saw multiple variations on the theme that "if the internet platforms really cared about it, they could block those videos," with the clear implication being that the platforms don't take this issue seriously. A particularly ill-informed variant on this was "if this video were covered by copyright, it would have been blocked." Of course, those of us who spend lots of time talking about the failures of using filters to try to block copyright-covered content know that's not even close to true.

What surprised and disappointed me was that this even came from people who should know better. The Washington Post's Drew Harwell lead the charge with a widely retweeted thread that lamented how many internet platforms carried aspects of the attack and questioned what "responsibility" the platforms had:

Harwell, along with multiple other Washington Post reporters, then put out an article entitled The New Zealand shooting shows how YouTube and Facebook spread hate and violent images -- yet again. It seems to lay the blame squarely on the feet of the tech platforms:

Friday’s slaughter in two New Zealand mosques played out as a dystopian reality show delivered by some of America’s biggest technology companies. YouTube, Facebook, Reddit and Twitter all had roles in publicizing the violence and, by extension, the hate-filled ideology behind it.

These companies — some of the richest, most technologically advanced in the world — failed to rapidly quell the spread of troubling content as it metastasized across platforms, bringing horrific images to internet users worldwide.

This is literally blaming the messenger, and distracting from those actually responsible (the horrible, despicable excuse for a human being who carried out the attack and the awful people who cheered him on), to instead blame the tools of communication that all of use. We use them because they are convenient and powerful. And that includes for horrific messages as well as nicer ones.

Harwell's colleague at the Washington Post, Margaret Sullivan, whose views I almost always find myself nodding in agreement to, also seemed strangely out of touch on this one, insisting the platforms need to "get serious."

Editorial judgment, often flawed, is not only possible. It’s necessary.

The scale and speed of the digital world obviously complicates that immensely. But saying, in essence, “we can’t help it” and “that’s not our job” are not acceptable answers.

Friday’s massacre should force the major platforms — which are really media companies, though they don’t want to admit it — to get serious.

As violence goes more and more viral, tech companies need to deal with the crisis that they have helped create.

They must figure out ways to be responsible global citizens as well as profitmaking machines.

Another tweet, from Alex Hern, a technology reporter at the Guardian literally suggested that YouTube and Facebook need to hire a single person to keep doing searches to delete videos:

If you can't read that, it says:

it is days like today that I just do not understand why YouTube and Facebook don't hire one person--just one--to sit there searching for "New Zealand terror attack" and just delete the obvious reposts that keep popping up on that search term.

There were probably a million tweets trying to make this point in a similar way. The general theme is that the internet platforms don't care about this stuff, and that they optimize for profits over the good of society. And, while that may have been an accurate description a decade ago, it has not been true in a long, long time. The problem, as we've been discussing here on Techdirt for a while, is that content moderation at scale is impossible to get right. It is not just "more difficult," it is difficult in the sense that it will never be acceptable to the people who are complaining.

Part of that is because human beings are flawed. And some humans are awful people. And they will do awful things. But we don't blame "radio" for Hitler (Godwin'd!) just because it was a tool the Nazis used. We recognize that, in every generation, there may be terrible people who do terrible things, using the technologies of the day.

But the bigger issue is that both the scale and challenges in moderating content like this presents a much more difficult question that most people (including, apparently, tech reporters) understand. Over the weekend, Facebook noted that it had removed 1.5 million copies of the video with 1.2 million being blocked from upload entirely. That means another 300,000 had to be found, reviewed and then a call made on whether to delete it.

One person hitting search over and over again is not going to track down over a million copies (or even 300,000) of a video. That's just not how it works. Also, think about this for a second: if there were 1.5 million attempts to upload the video (just on Facebook), think how many (despicable) people are out there trying to spread this content. It is a lot more than these companies could reasonably hire or should want to hire solely for the purpose of policing the speech of those despicable individuals.

And, even if they were doing the searching, it raises other challenges. Motherboard has a good overview of how Facebook handles moderation in these circumstances, which already shows how difficult some of the challenges are. But even more interesting is a piece by Julia Alexander at the Verge explaining that there's a lot more to deleting those videos than just flagging and deleting. Alexander specifically looks at YouTube and how it handles these things:

Exact re-uploads of the video will be banned by YouTube, but videos that contain clips of the footage have to be sent to human moderators for review, The Verge has learned. Part of that is to ensure that news videos that use a portion of the video for their segments aren’t removed in the process.

YouTube’s safety team thinks of it as a balancing act, according to sources familiar with their thinking. For major news events like yesterday’s shooting, YouTube’s team uses a system that’s similar to its copyright tool, Content ID, but not exactly the same. It searches re-uploaded versions of the original video for similar metadata and imagery. If it’s an unedited re-upload, it’s removed. If it’s edited, the tool flags it to a team of human moderators, both full-time employees at YouTube and contractors, who determine if the video violates the company’s policies.

This makes sense -- and it's something we talk about in the copyright context all the time. It's one thing to flag and block exact replica videos, but if they're somewhat edited, they need to be reviewed. They could be news reporting or commentary or some other perfectly reasonable use of the video. There are also, potentially, questions about if the videos are evidence or documentation of a crime that need to be considered before just deleting things willy nilly.

And, of course, today (many days after mocking YouTube for not taking down these videos) the Washington Post comes back with some actual reporting on how much effort YouTube actually put into stopping the video and how difficult it was. Suffice it to say, they had more than one person working on this.

[Neal] Mohan, YouTube’s chief product officer, had assembled his war room — a group of senior executives known internally as “incident commanders” who jump into crises, such as when footage of a suicide or shooting spreads online.

The team worked through the night, trying to identify and remove tens of thousands of videos — many repackaged or recut versions of the original footage that showed the horrific murders. As soon as the group took down one, another would appear, as quickly as one per second in the hours after the shooting, Mohan said in an interview.

As its efforts faltered, the team finally took unprecedented steps — including temporarily disabling several search functions and cutting off human review features to speed the removal of videos flagged by automated systems. Many of the new clips were altered in ways that outsmarted the company’s detection systems.

But, either way, contrary to the arguments that the companies don't care or don't prioritize this, they absolutely do. It's just that they are dealing with an incredible level of scale, with many of the videos (at least 300,000 in the case of Facebook and one per second in the case of YouTube) likely needing to be reviewed and a judgment call needing to be made whether or not that version should be kept up or taken down. The idea that either company could just snap their fingers and fix this is pure fantasy.

Alex Stamos, Facebook's former Chief Security Officer put together a thoughtful thread on how impossible this situation is for the companies:

There's more in the thread, which is worth reading, but the short version is that this is not nearly as easy a problem to solve as many people seem to think.

And, as Stamos hints at in his thread, even as everyone was complaining about this content showing up on internet platforms, people don't seem to have had the same reaction to the fact that many in the media were spreading the same stuff. Rupert Murdoch's Sky News aired the video. Or as media analyst Thomas Baekdal noted:

Baekdal later wrote a very good thread about how wrong this attack on social media has been. He highlights how many news orgs -- at the same time they were criticizing YouTube and Facebook -- were posting screenshots or snippets of the livestream themselves, and promoting the details of the attacker's mad rantings. The whole thread is worth reading, but the conclusion is the key. By focusing the blame on the messengers -- the internet platforms -- we distract from solving real problems:

I'm sorry media people. As a media analyst, I love you. I want the media to have the best future possible. But this constant one-sided and often completely distorted form of anti-tech lobbyism is simply dishonest. Worse, by making this all about YouTube and Facebook, we mislead people into thinking that this entire problem is something that is just easily solved by just having YouTube use their copyright algorithms ... and then all the terrorist and hate speech would go away. It won't. This makes people passive, because it allows them to think that this problem is just an external one by the tech companies, so we (in society or in the media) don't have to do anything ourselves. But we do. This *is* a societal problem. We all have to step up here. Stop this one-sided anti-tech lobbyism. It's incredibly dishonest. It misleads the public, it makes the problem much harder to solve, and it tries to hide our own role. It's so frustrating to look at every day. Yes, the tech companies need to do better, but...my god...so do we!

As for the arguments, such as Sullivan's, that the "answer" to this is that social media platforms need to retain "editorial control" and review content -- as demonstrated above, that's nonsense given the scale. It's difficult enough to try to block a single video, but imagine having to go through absolutely everything. As Aaron Ross Powell noted in another good thread, just because editing works for newspapers, that doesn't make sense when we're talking about platforms for communicating among billions of people.

The Washington Post exercises editorial control, yes. But how much does it publish? A hundred new things a day? Maybe? Compared to: "Every 60 seconds on Facebook: 510,000 comments are posted, 293,000 statuses are updated, and 136,000 photos are uploaded." If those numbers are correct, that's 422 *million* status updates alone every day. How many editors would it take to exercises the Washington Post's level of control over those? Facebook's big, but not that big. You can filter profanity, yes. And other key words. You can use machine learning to help. But bad actors are good at figuring out what gets through filters. The only way to be sure is to do what the Post does: Look at everything. And at 422 million posts a day, even if only a tiny fraction of those are ultimately violence promoting, and even if only a tiny fraction of *those* make it through editorial, you've still got more than enough to radicalize the occasional murderous madman.

Social media is not traditional media. It's so much bigger and more open that you can't analogize from one to the other. It would be impossible to run social media like the Washington Post.

No matter how much people who don't grasp the difference tell us "to get serious."

And that gets to one final point I'd like to make on this. Beyond the difficulty of taking down the video/madman rantings after the fact, a few complained that the content was even allowed to be posted in the first place. The attacker clearly planned a media strategy, and that meant releasing some of the content before the attack to eager followers who cheered him on live. But if you think it's easy to spot that content in real time, you haven't spent much time on the internet. And, all of this is made even worse by the fact that a lot of online behavior is performative, rather than serious. Lots of shitposting is just that: shitposting. Recognizing where it's going to cross over into real behavior is not nearly as easy as some seem to think.

And if you argue that it shouldn't matter and we should just start shutting down people saying crazy stuff online, well, I'd suggest listening to the latest episode of NPR's Invisibilia podcast called Post, Shoot, which focuses on violence in Wilmington, Delaware, and how some of it crossed over from kids trash talking each other on Instagram. But then the story goes further, and notes that, in response, police have basically started locking up black and brown kids, claiming evidence of gang activity, for merely posting Instagram photos with guns or money. In most cases, the kids are just showing off. It's kind of a thing kids do. They're not actually gangsters, they're just pretending to be gangsters, because kids do that. But they're being locked up for posing as gangsters. And that's not helping anyone.

Social media is a reflection of reality and reality is hellishly messy. People are flawed to varying degrees, and a certain percentage are despicable, horrible people. I'd like to believe it's a small percentage, but they do exist. And we shouldn't blame the technology they use.

Filed Under: attacker, blame, christchurch, massacre, mosque, new zealand, social media
Companies: facebook, google, reddit, youtube


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  • icon
    hij (profile), 18 Mar 2019 @ 10:45am

    Shifting Finite Resource

    When big tech has to shift resources to stamp out a widely known phenomena they make it easier for all the other nasty stuff to be posted and distributed. The effort to stop the NZ video helped some people spreading other kinds of low volume hate speech, when everybody should have been aware of the NZ event.

    At some point people need to learn that clicking on things is their own responsibility. Do not read the comments and do not click on the images if you do not want to know how awful people can be. If you only want unicorns and rainbows then stay on the My Little Ponies website. (Definitely stay away from techdirt. You people hurt my feelings all the time.)

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  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 18 Mar 2019 @ 10:52am

    of course they are NOT, but i'll bet there are those who are going to grandstand their politics using this as a means to an end, stifling and restricting internet companies, so as to stop ordinary people being able to find stuff out about those same grandstanding politicians!!

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    • identicon
      MathFox, 18 Mar 2019 @ 11:19am

      This affair shows how hard it is for Facebook, YouTube and the other big platforms to keep information off their platform that they want to keep off their platforms. Let's consider a government that can't stand even fair criticism... They would like to see all critical posts removed asap. This incident shows that it is not possible to keep information from the Internet if a sufficient group of internet users is willing to actively propagate it.

      The Internet is designed to route around censorship.

      I am sure that the video can be found on obscure platforms in the years to come.

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 23 Jun 2019 @ 9:02am

      Re:

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

  • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
    identicon
    Luke A. Skance, 18 Mar 2019 @ 11:00am

    As I've written: "social media" is basically a bad idea.

    "Good fences make good neighbors" applies, as does "familiarity (as in knowledge, not closeness) breeds contempt". Or something like G H W Bush supposedly said: "If the public knew what we've been actually doing, they'd hang us."

    Civilization is fragile and "social media" strains it in every way possible, not least that the giant corporations try to inflict their agenda and control everyone else.

    By the way, like all mass shootings, an agenda came out instantly. -- This one was to blame Trump and 2nd Amendment, for half the world away in a gun-control territory that the UK monarch owns? Sheesh. -- And obviously it was done by military trained person or persons, LOTS of odd points as always.

    And now Techdirt / Masnick tries to get spin in, by defending the multi-nationals as always does.

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    • icon
      Gary (profile), 18 Mar 2019 @ 11:07am

      Re: As I've written: "social media" is basically a bad idea.

      Well you are using the "social media" here at TD, so doesn't that make you a hypocrite?

      The only person I saw blame trump for NZ was actually Trump. Laughable persecution complex there.

      "Dedefing the multi-nationalists." we get it - you are a racist and hate the brown people. Anything else you want to make a wild claim about?

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    • icon
      Stephen T. Stone (profile), 18 Mar 2019 @ 11:10am

      Civilization is fragile and "social media" strains it in every way possible

      I am disgusted by the fact that I agree with this sentiment. The world was not ready for Twitter-style social media.

      This one was to blame Trump

      The manifesto written by the shooter referred to Donald Trump as “a symbol of renewed white identity and common purpose”. That the shooter saw Trump as a symbol of the “common purpose” outlined in said manifesto — i.e., White supremacy and the reversal of so-called “White genocide” — says a lot about how Trump’s rhetoric helped influence the ideology of the shooter.

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      • icon
        Gary (profile), 18 Mar 2019 @ 12:08pm

        Re:

        Stone, thank you for pointing out what I missed - the Shooter is the one that claimed Trump his influence first.
        Kinda makes it hard to say that is a wild, fabricated plot when he put it in his manifesto. Kelly Ann Conway did encourage everyone to read the shooter manifesto that praises Trump, I see.

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        • identicon
          David, 18 Mar 2019 @ 1:14pm

          Re: Re:

          As long as Trump does not distance himself in a reasonably clear manner from the message the murderous garbage considers itself following, they will continue to consider themselves as being in alignment with his agenda. And it's not clear that they aren't.

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 18 Mar 2019 @ 11:12am

      Re:

      Hey blue. From NZ. Go fuck yourself.

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

  • identicon
    Glenn, 18 Mar 2019 @ 11:22am

    "I just can't stand it that everyone else doesn't agree with me."

    --every reality-challenged person who has ever lived

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    • identicon
      Anon, 18 Mar 2019 @ 12:50pm

      Re:

      Well yes, one of the early tweets quotes said "and commented about on Reddit." OMG! And on CNN, BBC, ABC, NBC, NZ media, Twitter, NYTimes, and pretty much everywhere comments are allowed...

      Not sure what the alternative is... "Oh, did something happen? I hadn't heard."

      This kind of reminds me of the Backpages debate; or how Napster was replaced by torrents. If there's a way to do something, some nutbars will find a way to abuse it. Find a way to stop that, they'll find something else. and so on. Jeez, the Unabomber used the US Post. Imagine the US Post to blame for a bombing spree...

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    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 18 Mar 2019 @ 11:28am

    This from a site where multiple people have threatened the lives of EU government officials over their support for Article 13.

    To those who say law enforcement doesn't care, well...

    The internet companies are providing meeting places for terrorists and criminals. Many of these terrorists gave clear warnings online that they were going to act out, and few if any did anything, even when the postings were reported.

    Free speech absolutism no longer works.

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    • icon
      Stephen T. Stone (profile), 18 Mar 2019 @ 11:33am

      The internet companies are providing meeting places for terrorists and criminals.

      So are private residences.

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    • icon
      Gary (profile), 18 Mar 2019 @ 11:38am

      Re:

      This from a site where multiple people have threatened the lives of EU government officials over their support for Article 13.

      Please cite such a credible threat published here at TD? Keeping in mind, "He should die, "Someone should do something" and "Jesus will strike him down" are not credible threats.

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 18 Mar 2019 @ 11:41am

      Re:

      This from a site where multiple people have threatened the lives of EU government officials over their support for Article 13.

      Citation definitely needed.

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 18 Mar 2019 @ 11:55am

      Re:

      You got proof of that...of fucking course you don’t don’t.

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      • icon
        Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 19 Mar 2019 @ 7:25am

        Re: Re:

        "You got proof of that...of fucking course you don’t don’t."

        Easy enough to find, Techdirt is searchable.

        ...Strange. I find absolutely no such posts. Bobmail appears to be, as usual, redesigning reality around his own living incarnation of the dunning-kruger effect.

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 18 Mar 2019 @ 12:46pm

      Re:

      From the article:

      This has, of course, resulted in a lot of hand-wringing about the role of the internet in all of this.

      The internet's role is the same role telephones, email, snail mail, television and even yelling across a crowded room. It is a communication medium, nothing more, nothing less. You don't blame telephones when rumors about you spread. Well it's not the internet's fault either.

      Stop putting blame where it doesn't belong. Go after the perpetrators if there is a crime. But the communication medium is definitely not to blame.

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 18 Mar 2019 @ 2:58pm

      Re:

      The internet companies are providing meeting places for terrorists and criminals.

      So are public squares and town halls. Your point? Oh right, you don't have one.

      Many of these terrorists gave clear warnings online that they were going to act out, and few if any did anything

      So failing of law enforcement then.

      Free speech absolutism no longer works.

      It does, your brain is the thing not working here.

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 19 Mar 2019 @ 5:49am

      Re:

      The internet companies are providing meeting places for terrorists and criminals.

      Do you feel the same way about guns? Are guns just tools or are they responsible for violence people commit using them, like the "Internet companies" are?

      Just curious...

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      • icon
        Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 19 Mar 2019 @ 7:28am

        Re: Re:

        "Do you feel the same way about guns?"

        No need to go that far.

        A screwdriver is the hand tool most commonly used for shanking people, thus by Bobmail's argumentation screwdrivers no longer have a place in society and the hardware store owner needs to be hauled off in chains.

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  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 18 Mar 2019 @ 11:29am

    Steps can be taken

    While its not Facebook or Twitters fault, they do have policies/blind spots that make it easy for people to see things they don't want to see.

    Auto play video should be disabled by default on these platforms for example.

    I also don't understand why Twitter and Facebook still lack content warning filters like Mastodon has. Its are really simple way to share something without forcing it on people who don't want to see it. Also would be useful for hiding questionable/reported content from view until a moderator has a look at it without hiding or deleting the whole post.

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    • icon
      CrushU (profile), 18 Mar 2019 @ 1:22pm

      Re: Steps can be taken

      I also don't understand why Twitter and Facebook still lack content warning filters like Mastodon has.

      Twitter has one. You've just probably turned it off, because everyone turns it off.

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      • icon
        CrushU (profile), 18 Mar 2019 @ 1:24pm

        Re: Re: Steps can be taken

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      • icon
        Stephen T. Stone (profile), 18 Mar 2019 @ 2:15pm

        That’s not quite the same as what Mastodon has. Twitter has an all-purpose “this media may be sensitive” warning, it only applies to media that is attached to a tweet, not to the content of the tweet itself, and the warning applies to all media. Mastodon, on the other hand, has a “content warning” system that hides the text of a post behind a “read more” button, allows for marking media as sensitive independently of the text of a post, allows for a subject line about what lies behind the “read more” button, and lets people choose whether to apply those warnings on individual posts. (Mastodon also has a per-post privacy setting, whereas Twitter doesn’t.)

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  • icon
    REM(RND) (profile), 18 Mar 2019 @ 11:31am

    The Real Problem

    The real problem is that people are more pissed that videos of a massacre exists than that the massacre took place. Priorities, people!

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    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 18 Mar 2019 @ 11:33am

    "And if you argue that it shouldn't matter and we should just start shutting down people saying crazy stuff online, well, I'd suggest listening to the latest episode of NPR's Invisibilia podcast called Post, Shoot, which focuses on violence in Wilmington, Delaware, and how some of it crossed over from kids trash talking each other on Instagram. But then the story goes further, and notes that, in response, police have basically started locking up black and brown kids, claiming evidence of gang activity, for merely posting Instagram photos with guns or money. In most cases, the kids are just showing off. It's kind of a thing kids do. They're not actually gangsters, they're just pretending to be gangsters, because kids do that. But they're being locked up for posing as gangsters. And that's not helping anyone."

    Once again, some who post on this site have said things which might have repercussions now that the view is shifting. Like defending piracy, defending the rights of the clearly dangerous and the criminal is unsustainable. I've said before that verbal aggression is being politically bred out of our DNA, and it is.

    There will come a time where anyone who has been verbally aggressive or bigoted (such as by imputing mental illness on another) will be a pariah. This will also be enforced retroactively, as other thought crimes are now. It is not enough to do what is thought right now, as being on the wrong side of history is all it takes to destroy someone. That's actually good for the species, since those with foresight will be advantaged over those who just go along to get along.

    Presentism is dead.

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    • icon
      Stephen T. Stone (profile), 18 Mar 2019 @ 11:37am

      defending the rights of the clearly dangerous and the criminal is unsustainable

      This is when I like to break out some pertinent dialogue from A Man for All Seasons:

      William Roper: So, now you give the Devil the benefit of law!

      Sir Thomas More: Yes! What would you do? Cut a great road through the law to get after the Devil?

      Roper: Yes, I'd cut down every law in England to do that!

      More: Oh? And when the last law was down, and the Devil turned 'round on you, where would you hide, Roper, the laws all being flat? This country is planted thick with laws, from coast to coast — Man's laws, not God's! And if you cut them down — and you're just the man to do it — do you really think you could stand upright in the winds that would blow then? Yes, I'd give the Devil benefit of law, for my own safety's sake!

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 18 Mar 2019 @ 11:58am

      Re: king of projection.

      So tell us what mental illness you have been diagnosed with?

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

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 18 Mar 2019 @ 2:55pm

      Re:

      some who post on this site have said things which might have repercussions now that the view is shifting

      Like who and what? And if things are shifting in the direction you suggest (insinuation/jokes/hyperbole/thought crimes), then shouldn't we fight against it continuing to shift that way? Because, let's be honest, none of that is a good thing.

      Like defending piracy, defending the rights of the clearly dangerous and the criminal is unsustainable

      Who on this site has done this other than yourself?

      I've said before that verbal aggression is being politically bred out of our DNA, and it is.

      Upticks in white nationalism and racism would seem to suggest otherwise.

      There will come a time where anyone who has been verbally aggressive or bigoted (such as by imputing mental illness on another) will be a pariah.

      Like you?

      Just to make sure you understand what I'm saying, I'll spell it out:

      You are a moron and have a mental illness, perhaps multiples.

      I'll wait to be declared a pariah.

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    • icon
      Killercool (profile), 18 Mar 2019 @ 3:53pm

      Re:

      Your rhetoric is very telling - damning, even.

      Because "rights" are not "rights" unless even the criminals have them. Otherwise, they are privileges, to be taken away at the behest of Big Brother, for any "crime" that he pleases.

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    • icon
      Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 19 Mar 2019 @ 7:31am

      Re:

      "defending the rights of the clearly dangerous and the criminal is unsustainable. "

      A sentiment with which every dictator known and condemned through history will agree.

      But no one else.

      Congratulations, Baghdad Bob, you've just proven that you reject the concept of "civilization" as a whole, since it can't function in a paradigm where a right is arbitrary.

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    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 18 Mar 2019 @ 11:33am

    Section 230 also enables internet mobs who turn violent, as well as terrorists. One more reason that 230 is on its last legs.

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 18 Mar 2019 @ 11:59am

      Re:

      Do you think if you keep saying it. It will magically become true?

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

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 18 Mar 2019 @ 2:50pm

      Re:

      Shoes enable physical mobs who turn violent. Want to ban shoes next?

      One more reason that 230 is on its last legs.

      Multiple court cases in recent months/weeks where it has been upheld would suggest otherwise. But we already know you don't live in reality.

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  • icon
    Anonymous Anonymous Coward (profile), 18 Mar 2019 @ 11:37am

    Blame society for society, not the messengers

    I am still tying to get my head around the fact that there were 1.5+ million people in the world that thought it was a good idea to upload these videos.

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 18 Mar 2019 @ 11:52am

      Re: Blame society for society, not the messengers

      I doubt that's the case. I'd say 10,000 people making an average of 150 attempts each (with the help of automation) would be closer to the truth.

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  • identicon
    Max, 18 Mar 2019 @ 11:38am

    All I can say is I've spent the better part of today reading the relevant comments on two large tech news sites (with allegedly at least somewhat civilized readership), and frankly I find it horribly frightening - much, much more so than any shooting anywhere - that except for 2-3 voices all every one of them has to say is "MUST CENSOR ALL THE THINGS!!!"...

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  • icon
    Toom1275 (profile), 18 Mar 2019 @ 11:40am

    Wasn't there some hallucination-based new law in the EU that says "terroristic" contentent must be removed in one hour no matter what?

    Yet in the real world here, the process can take several hours even with knowing 100% that the content needs to go...

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    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 18 Mar 2019 @ 11:40am

    They deserve every single bit of criticism. They don't want to demonstrate that they are capable of moderating- that means hiring people and putting a dent in their bottom line.

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    • icon
      Gary (profile), 18 Mar 2019 @ 12:00pm

      Re:

      moderating- that means hiring people

      Lies. Care to back that assumption up with facts? Are there actually enough people in the world to moderate all the video uploaded to YouTube?

      All uploaded content, in the world, needs to be stopped and checked by a human with a law degree to achieve perfect filtering you are requesting.

      Posting boards like this would be inoperable. Where would you go for your fix of righteous misinformation then?

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        identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 18 Mar 2019 @ 2:31pm

        Re: Re:

        LOL at this being censored. You people are such a joke.

        And great comeback too: "Sorry, job's too big. (Throws up hands and walks away)."

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        • icon
          Gary (profile), 18 Mar 2019 @ 3:48pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          Throws up hands and walks away

          I've heard that promise before...

          If you don't want to explain how you plan would work without stopping all user generated content, then obviously your only goal is to stop user generated content. Because, defamation, copyright, yada yada.

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        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 18 Mar 2019 @ 7:58pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          How's that Paul Hansmeier defense fund coming along bro?

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        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 19 Mar 2019 @ 6:19am

          Re: Re: Re:

          You calling it censored still doesn't make it censored, moron.

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 18 Mar 2019 @ 12:01pm

      Re:

      Time for your nappie gramps.

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    • icon
      Toom1275 (profile), 18 Mar 2019 @ 12:01pm

      Re:

      [Asserts facts still not in evidence]

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    • identicon
      MathFox, 18 Mar 2019 @ 12:12pm

      Can you give an indication of the budget Facebook would need to moderate the 1200 million posts that are made to it daily? If you give each moderator 1 second/post it would require 14000 moderators that work 24/7. That is a team of 60000 moderators with 8 hour work days and vacation time.
      Find what your local minimum wage is and compute the yearly cost of this moderation staff. (Yes, Facebook might have the revenue to employ them.) Give the moderators a more decent time (10 seconds/post), count in time for staff meetings and it is even above Facebook's budget.

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      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 18 Mar 2019 @ 12:31pm

        Re:

        Don't forget that your team of 60000 moderators will need managers and they need higher pay. If you can manage at a ludicrous 100 employees per manager all the way to the top of the structure, you still need 6000 tier 1 managers, 600 tier 2 managers, 60 tier 3, 6 tier 4, and likely 1 tier 5 manager.

        If we're even if we offshore it at $1/hr base and no bonus for the managers you're looking at $112 million dollars a year to shit-tier moderate Facebook. And we still haven't touched Twitter or YouTube or Reddit.

        And we've made some ridiculous assumptions about cost and efficiency on top of that.

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        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 18 Mar 2019 @ 12:54pm

          Re: Re:

          Well, he did suggest 10 sec would be more reasonable, and that requires ten time as many workers, and even more layers of management.

          You also forgot Human resources and building need to be added to the costs, plus all the computers, and the IT staff to manage them. The costs just keep piling on.

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          • identicon
            MathFox, 18 Mar 2019 @ 2:10pm

            If Wikipedia may count as a reliable source: Facebook currently has about 30000 staff. If it would have to hire 60000 moderators, than the majority of its staff would be involved in deciding which speech would be appropriate or not. (If Facebook was government, we would call those people censors.)
            Is it American to ask American companies to regulate speech or should Americans ask for companies to support freedom of expression?

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            • identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 19 Mar 2019 @ 6:43am

              Re:

              Is it American to ask American companies to regulate speech or should Americans ask for companies to support freedom of expression?

              If Americans, as a group of people, ask for a company or government to do something, wouldn't that make what they're asking American by default?

              I get that what you're comparing against is some ideal of what America is supposed to be, and not what modern-day Americans actually want, but, if we're going with the original intentions for America, then it's American to own slaves, and to support the genocide of Native peoples, and un-American to support a nationalized military, which is (mostly) bass-ackwards from what is generally considered "American" today.

              You can't have it both ways: either "American" represents the will of the American people, in which case whatever Americans want is, by definition, American, or it represents the historical ideal of America, in which case you have to take the bad parts of what America was supposed to be along with the good.

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              • identicon
                Anonymous Coward, 19 Mar 2019 @ 8:08am

                Re: Re:

                Why can't you have it both ways?

                There are certain things (like freedom of speech, due process, murder being considered illegal, etc...) which are part of the historical ideal of America and are still held up as the "gold standard" for what American society should be. The fact that some people want to undermine those (however noble their motivations) is definitely un-American.

                By contrast, we have also learned that some things from back then are definitely not good or morally right, and so we have excised (or still working on it) those from what it means to be "American" (e.g. slavery, racism, sexism, etc...). Wanting to return to those things is also un-American.

                What is considered to be American is a mixture of historical ideals and changing times. Certainly everyone being able to say what they want in five seconds to everyone in the world was not what the founders were thinking of but the basic principle of freedom of speech in all contexts was.

                If Americans, as a group of people, ask for a company or government to do something, wouldn't that make what they're asking American by default?

                Not necessarily. It could, but not in all cases. They could ask the government to set up Trump as the first "emperor for life" and that would definitely not be considered American.

                There are certain ideals and standards that have been passed down through history that are widely recognized as "American" and generally are enshrined in the Constitution. These are much fewer than a lot of the day to day things we have to deal with and may decide to change our minds on.

                if we're going with the original intentions for America, then it's American to own slaves, and to support the genocide of Native peoples

                I'm unaware of any of those things being the intentions for America. I believe the intentions for America could likely be found in the Constitution and nowhere do I see it written "and American society shall be based upon a slave system and mass genocide". That doesn't mean people didn't make bad choices and do those things, but that wasn't the intention or driving force/motivation.

                un-American to support a nationalized military

                Huh? I don't understand how you got that out of American history.

                You can't have it both ways:

                Yes, you can. Because what it means to be something is neither just historical ideals nor just the will of the people. It's a mixture of both and neither all at the same time. What it means to be American today is a little different than it was in the 1800s because people have willed them to be so, but there are other things that are definitively American apart from the will of the people.

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                • identicon
                  Anonymous Coward, 19 Mar 2019 @ 8:55am

                  Re: Re: Re:

                  Let's start with the easy part:

                  > un-American to support a nationalized military

                  Huh? I don't understand how you got that out of American history.

                  First, I should have said "permanent nationalized army." As for where I got it, it's in the Constitution and the Bill of Rights: Article I, Section 8 limits appropriation to support a national army to a period of no longer than two years, and the Second Amendment makes it clear that state militias, not a national army, were to be the guarantors of security in the United States.

                  Of course, that idea was put to the test and failed horribly in the War of 1812, which is why, by the time of the Civil War, the United States had backtracked on the "we don't need an army, we have militias" idea.

                  Next,

                  I believe the intentions for America could likely be found in the Constitution and nowhere do I see it written "and American society shall be based upon a slave system and mass genocide".

                  The fingerprints of slavery are all over the Constitution. Article I, Section 2, Clause 3. Article I, Section 9, Clause 1 (and Article V to reinforce it). Article IV, Section 2, Clause 3. If the intentions for America are found in the Constitution, those intentions are that slavery was to be continued in whichever States so chose, and the fact that it took a war and a constitutional amendment to end it (although not for convicted felons) speaks to that.

                  For the mass genocide, I admit, you have to go back to the Declaration of Independence, which describes "the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions."

                  Yes, you can [have it both ways]. Because what it means to be something is neither just historical ideals nor just the will of the people. It's a mixture of both and neither all at the same time. What it means to be American today is a little different than it was in the 1800s because people have willed them to be so, but there are other things that are definitively American apart from the will of the people.

                  If what it means to be American means "Whatever I choose it to mean, drawing from what people believe now and what people enshrined when the country was founded," then it effectively means nothing to be American.

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                  • identicon
                    Anonymous Coward, 19 Mar 2019 @ 10:21am

                    Re: Re: Re: Re:

                    First, I should have said "permanent nationalized army."

                    Moving goal posts are we?

                    Article I, Section 8 limits appropriation to support a national army to a period of no longer than two years

                    Automatically. There is nothing that says they can't re-up it after the two years is done. So basically they are saying that the Army budget is on a two year cycle. Not the Army itself. Also, the very next two sentences in that section completely contradict your interpretation.

                    United States had backtracked on the "we don't need an army, we have militias" idea.

                    So what you're saying is that they had some wrong ideas and changed them. I believe I said the same thing.

                    The fingerprints of slavery are all over the Constitution. Article I, Section 2, Clause 3. Article I, Section 9, Clause 1 (and Article V to reinforce it). Article IV, Section 2, Clause 3.

                    Yes, and? People owned slaves at that point in history and there were certain things that had to be defined. That does not mean they intended America to be known for its slavery. That's just taking care of business, regardless of how wrong that business was.

                    If the intentions for America are found in the Constitution, those intentions are that slavery was to be continued in whichever States so chose, and the fact that it took a war and a constitutional amendment to end it (although not for convicted felons) speaks to that.

                    You forget that back then, slaves were not considered people/human in the same sense that white people were. Once they were, then the whole of the Constitution applied to them. Is it unfortunate that an amendment was needed to make that clear and enforceable law? Yes. But that doesn't prove your point.

                    For the mass genocide, I admit, you have to go back to the Declaration of Independence

                    Well then that's kind of irrelevant isn't it and doesn't support your argument.

                    If what it means to be American means "Whatever I choose it to mean, drawing from what people believe now and what people enshrined when the country was founded," then it effectively means nothing to be American.

                    I'm sorry you lack reading comprehension because nowhere is that what I said. Regardless, even your statement is contradictory. If you draw from undeniable and unchangeable facts, then there is, at minimum, a certain baseline of what it means to be American.

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                    • identicon
                      Anonymous Coward, 19 Mar 2019 @ 12:11pm

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                      Moving goal posts are we?

                      Admitting to, and correcting, a mistake.

                      Automatically. There is nothing that says they can't re-up it after the two years is done. So basically they are saying that the Army budget is on a two year cycle. Not the Army itself.

                      And yet they didn't put these same constraints on the Navy. It's almost as if they only wanted a national Army to exist in times of war.

                      Also, the very next two sentences in that section completely contradict your interpretation.

                      How so? The fact that they wanted a Navy, and that they wanted any Army and/or Navy that existed to be subject to federal regulation doesn't really say much about whether they wanted a permanent Army to exist; I'd say that the next two sentences after that (the power of Congress to call forth the Militia, organize it, arm it, and discipline it) confirm my interpretation.

                      So what you're saying is that they had some wrong ideas and changed them. I believe I said the same thing.

                      Wait, you're agreeing with me that they intended to defend the US with militias rather than a permanent army, only changing that after it was proven to be an objectively terrible idea, but not that that's what those lines in the Constitution mean? That it's entirely coincidental that the Constitution puts more emphasis on the role of militias and restricts the ability of Congress to fund an Army, despite that being the military tactic of the United States at the time?

                      It seems like the only reason you'd want to make that argument is if you wanted to maintain that "permanent national armies bad, militias good" is not one of the original intentions for America (and thus something "American"), without discarding the argument that the Constitution shows those same intentions.

                      People owned slaves at that point in history and there were certain things that had to be defined. That does not mean they intended America to be known for its slavery. That's just taking care of business, regardless of how wrong that business was.

                      If you say that "the intentions for America could likely be found in the Constitution," then I don't see how it's unfair to say that the among the intentions for America was the intention that any slaves who escaped to States where slavery was illegal to be returned to their masters. Because that's explicitly in the Constitution. The practice of slavery was explicitly entrenched into the Constitution. Either what was in your Constitution (e.g. slavery) when it was written is an indicator of what is American, or it's not. Choose.

                      You forget that back then, slaves were not considered people/human in the same sense that white people were. Once they were, then the whole of the Constitution applied to them. Is it unfortunate that an amendment was needed to make that clear and enforceable law? Yes. But that doesn't prove your point.

                      Again, you're the one arguing that what's in the Constitution is a good indicator of what's American. And what's in the Constitution is, "Slaves are just human enough that they count towards the number of congressional representatives and electoral votes that a State gets, but not as much as a white person would."

                      It's a hell of an argument to make, that someone counts as a person to raise your population total as the Constitution counts it, but not enough for that same constitution to actually apply to them.

                      Well then that's kind of irrelevant isn't it and doesn't support your argument.

                      I made the genocide argument before you made the "look at the Constitution" argument. Why I (or anyone) should restrict myself to what you think defines America continues to baffle me.

                      I'm sorry you lack reading comprehension because nowhere is that what I said.

                      You said...

                      what it means to be something is neither just historical ideals nor just the will of the people. It's a mixture of both and neither all at the same time. What it means to be American today is a little different than it was in the 1800s because people have willed them to be so, but there are other things that are definitively American apart from the will of the people.

                      ...without providing absolutely any method of determining how to distinguish what should be taken from historical ideals and what should be taken from the will of the people. Without any way of determining that, what other conclusion am I supposed to draw, other than that you're deciding yourself, on an entirely subjective basis?

                      If you draw from undeniable and unchangeable facts, then there is, at minimum, a certain baseline of what it means to be American.

                      Fine, then. Enlighten me.

                      What is the baseline of what it means to be American, and what undeniable and unchangeable facts is that baseline drawn from?

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                      • identicon
                        Anonymous Coward, 19 Mar 2019 @ 2:43pm

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

                        And yet they didn't put these same constraints on the Navy. It's almost as if they only wanted a national Army to exist in times of war.

                        And yet the Constitution doesn't say that and it never happened that way. It's almost as if they were just talking about money appropriations, as stated.

                        How so?

                        Perhaps the fact that they refer to "raising Armies" rather than "raising the Militia". You know, kind of like how the National Guard is basically the militia while we have a standing army that is separate? Also the fact that the standing army was established in 1789, shortly after the Constitution was ratified and long before the Civil War occurred.

                        Wait, you're agreeing with me that they intended to defend the US with militias rather than a permanent army

                        No, I'm agreeing with you that men realized they were wrong about something (doesn't matter what) and changed their minds. Please read my comment more carefully. As I pointed out just above, you're wrong in believing they didn't intend for a standing army. I was just using your "changing minds" argument to prove my point.

                        The practice of slavery was explicitly entrenched into the Constitution.

                        No it absolutely was not. It was recognized yes. It was in no way entrenched. The Bill of Rights is an example of something being entrenched. Notice there was no "right to own slaves" built in to that. In fact, the Constitution explicitly allowed slavery to be outlawed. Again, it was considered normal in that day to have slaves, that doesn't mean it was a pillar of what it was to be American. Many other countries owned slaves too and had laws governing it and the practice was in existence long before "America" existed. Should we just consider then that to be of any country then is to be in favor of slavery?

                        Either what was in your Constitution (e.g. slavery) when it was written is an indicator of what is American, or it's not. Choose.

                        The 13th Amendment is also in the Constitution. I stand by what I said. Just because the Constitution describes how to deal with slaves does not make it explicitly American, as I've explained ad hominem. Your dogmatic fixture of this "either/or" is tiring and untenable. I've told you exactly how it can be both. I'm sorry you can't see it. The old argument "If man were meant to fly, he'd have been born with wings" is basically what you are saying here.

                        Again, you're the one arguing that what's in the Constitution is a good indicator of what's American.

                        Yes, so? The freeing of slaves is also in the Constitution and overrides the portions relating to how to deal with slaves. There are two important distinctions here: 1) slavery was not enshrined as a right or privilege in the Constitution, in fact it was explicitly stated that there was a time when it could be outlawed; 2) the Constitution was amended to make slavery illegal and that IS enshrined in the Constitution. Dealing with day-to-day business is different than enshrining rights and values or what it means to be a part of something.

                        I made the genocide argument before you made the "look at the Constitution" argument.

                        No, actually you didn't:

                        if we're going with the original intentions for America, then it's American to own slaves, and to support the genocide of Native peoples, and un-American to support a nationalized military,

                        I'm sorry but where else can you find the "original intentions for America" but in its founding document? Other documents may help clarify it but I would say it's pretty clear even from those that no one intended to commit mass genocide. Oh and I looked up that section in the Declaration of Independence, nowhere does it advocate for mass genocide of the Native American peoples. That passage you quote doesn't say what you think it says. And if you know that and used it anyway, shame on you.

                        without providing absolutely any method of determining how to distinguish what should be taken from historical ideals and what should be taken from the will of the people. Without any way of determining that, what other conclusion am I supposed to draw, other than that you're deciding yourself, on an entirely subjective basis?

                        Well I would have thought it was obvious but apparently not. Try the Bill of Rights for starters. That is generally considered to be core to the American way of life.

                        Fine, then. Enlighten me.

                        I have pointed you to the Constitution, and specifically the Bill of Rights contained therein. Those are undeniable and unchangeable facts.

                        There, you have been enlightened.

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                        • identicon
                          Anonymous Coward, 20 Mar 2019 @ 6:22am

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

                          Try the Bill of Rights for starters. That is generally considered to be core to the American way of life.

                          I have pointed you to the Constitution, and specifically the Bill of Rights contained therein. Those are undeniable and unchangeable facts.

                          There, you have been enlightened.

                          Entirely on historical ideals then.

                          Thank you for finally answering the question.

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                          • identicon
                            Anonymous Coward, 20 Mar 2019 @ 6:32am

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

                            I'm sorry but please stop putting words in my mouth. That is NOT what you asked. Nowhere, in any form or context did I say that it is based solely on historical ideals. In fact I think I spent most of my posts saying it is a combination of things.

                            Here is your question, in it's original form, as posed by you:

                            What is the baseline of what it means to be American, and what undeniable and unchangeable facts is that baseline drawn from?

                            Which you posed in response to my comment:

                            If you draw from undeniable and unchangeable facts, then there is, at minimum, a certain baseline of what it means to be American.

                            So, at most, my answer to your question was enlightening you to the "baseline of undeniable unchangeable facts", not the entirety of what it means to be American.

                            If you cannot debate genuinely and honestly without goal post moving, lying, and continually putting words in other people's mouths, then you should leave now.

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                            • identicon
                              Anonymous Coward, 20 Mar 2019 @ 7:21am

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

                              I've tried to give you every opportunity to quantify what it means for something to be American, beyond historical ideals (the Constitution, including Amendments).

                              And every time I try to get you to nail that down, you retreat to the Constitution, refusing to provide anything more specific; no way of determining what is American beyond that (even to the point of rejecting the Declaration of Independence, which includes a list of grievances that America was being established in opposition to, as an indicator of what America was intended to be).

                              If you want me to believe that you believe that there is some quantifiable definition of "American" beyond that, one that incorporates what America wants but has not yet been able to amend into the Constitution: put up or shut up.

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                              • identicon
                                Anonymous Coward, 20 Mar 2019 @ 9:05am

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

                                I've tried to give you every opportunity to quantify what it means for something to be American, beyond historical ideals (the Constitution, including Amendments).

                                This is a blatant lie. You've done no such thing. Giving SPECIFIC examples outside of the Constitution was never part of our debate on what it is to be American, only that it can be both. You started off saying you couldn't have both, I said you could (and gave some reasons why), then you went off on a tangent about how if it was based on historical ideals then to be American was to be in favor of genocide. I proved you wrong and now you're moving the goal posts and lying again.

                                And every time I try to get you to nail that down, you retreat to the Constitution

                                Again, blatant lie. The times I brought up the Constitution were in response to your comments regarding the Constitution.

                                no way of determining what is American beyond that

                                Harder, perhaps, not impossible. For one example the "American Dream" is generally considered to be American. The idea, if not practice, of equal opportunity would be another. I think there are many others as well. Yes, some people may not agree with all of them but that in itself is also American, we can disagree about things.

                                (even to the point of rejecting the Declaration of Independence, which includes a list of grievances that America was being established in opposition to, as an indicator of what America was intended to be)

                                AGAIN, BLATANT LIE. You said it was American to support mass genocide of Native American people because it said so in the Declaration of Independence. I pointed out that is not what it said at all and that you either hadn't actually read it or were deliberately lying.

                                If you want me to believe that you believe that there is some quantifiable definition of "American" beyond that, one that incorporates what America wants but has not yet been able to amend into the Constitution: put up or shut up.

                                Ah I see now. You've already made up your mind that ONLY what is in the Constitution can be considered what it is to be American and are just lying to twist things so that you can "win" the debate. I'm sorry but I'm afraid I've lost all respect for your arguments at this point since you can no longer go one comment without blatantly lying at least once.

                                You're original point was that you can't have it both ways, American is either what the will of the people is or historical ideas from when the country was originally founded. I've proved to you many times it can be both. In part in some of the ideals and ideas generally associated with America and that over the years the Constitution has largely remained unchanged but has been amended (by the will of the people no less!) to adjust to changing times and when people realized they were wrong.

                                If you can't make your points without lying then why should I believe a word you say?

                                What was it you said? Ah yes, put up or shut up.

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                                • identicon
                                  Anonymous Coward, 20 Mar 2019 @ 3:45pm

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

                                  Oooh! We're at the point where we find out who's a liar and who isn't. Let's see.

                                  you went off on a tangent about how if it was based on historical ideals then to be American was to be in favor of genocide.

                                  Lie. That wasn't a tangent; that thread was present in my first post.

                                  The times I brought up the Constitution were in response to your comments regarding the Constitution.

                                  Lie.

                                  My first post again: zero references to the Constitution.

                                  In your reply:

                                  I believe the intentions for America could likely be found in the Constitution

                                  Next.

                                  You said it was American to support mass genocide of Native American people because it said so in the Declaration of Independence.

                                  Lie. I said that genocide was in the original intentions for America, and cited the language used to describe Native Americans in the Declaration of Independence (and, yes, that if you based your definition of America on those intentions, than that's something that your definition of America must include).

                                  Moving on.

                                  To this:

                                  (even to the point of rejecting the Declaration of Independence, which includes a list of grievances that America was being established in opposition to, as an indicator of what America was intended to be)

                                  You replied:

                                  AGAIN, BLATANT LIE. I pointed out that is not what it said at all and that you either hadn't actually read it or were deliberately lying.

                                  That's at least a half-lie, on your part. You dismissed the Declaration as irrelevant to the original intentions for America before you tried to defend it.

                                  Let's run the entire "Declaration of Independence" conversation here, to prove that.

                                  Me:

                                  I get that what you're comparing against is some ideal of what America is supposed to be, and not what modern-day Americans actually want, but, if we're going with the original intentions for America, then it's American to own slaves, and to support the genocide of Native peoples, and un-American to support a nationalized military, which is (mostly) bass-ackwards from what is generally considered "American" today.

                                  You:

                                  I believe the intentions for America could likely be found in the Constitution and nowhere do I see it written "and American society shall be based upon a slave system and mass genocide".

                                  Me:

                                  For the mass genocide, I admit, you have to go back to the Declaration of Independence, which describes "the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions."

                                  You:

                                  Well then that's kind of irrelevant isn't it and doesn't support your argument.

                                  THEN you again:

                                  Oh and I looked up that section in the Declaration of Independence, nowhere does it advocate for mass genocide of the Native American peoples. That passage you quote doesn't say what you think it says. And if you know that and used it anyway, shame on you.

                                  ...And if you can't see a clear connection between calling a people "merciless Indian Savages whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions," and the destruction of their people, their lands, and their cultures over the two-and-a-half centuries that followed (which, admittedly, started well before 1776), I can't help you.

                                  Ah I see now. You've already made up your mind that ONLY what is in the Constitution can be considered what it is to be American and are just lying to twist things so that you can "win" the debate.

                                  No, actually, I'm just trying to get you to nail down your definition of what it means to be American (which, you have, again, declined to do), so that I can see whether it (a) makes sense, and (b) would be useful in answering the question "Is it American to ask American companies to regulate speech or should Americans ask for companies to support freedom of expression?"

                                  If it seems that I'm trying to do that by pushing you towards simple Constitutionalism, it's because you've given me little else definitive to work with, and have provided that as the "baseline" for what an American is.

                                  If you can't make your points without lying then why should I believe a word you say?

                                  I shall turn that question back on you.

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                                  • identicon
                                    Anonymous Coward, 21 Mar 2019 @ 7:07am

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

                                    Lie. That wasn't a tangent; that thread was present in my first post.

                                    It being present in your first post doesn't change the fact that it was a tangent to the original discussion and factually incorrect. So you engaged in misdirection instead of a lie then? Either way, it's disingenuous on your part.

                                    Lie. My first post again: zero references to the Constitution.

                                    No you did not EXPLICITLY reference the Constitution but I addressed this already. Your words:

                                    if we're going with the original intentions for America

                                    What else am I supposed to assume you are talking about other than the founding document of America? If you meant anything BUT the Constitution, you should have stated such. Don't blame me for you, at best, being unclear, and at worst moving goal posts.

                                    Lie. I said that genocide was in the original intentions for America, and cited the language used to describe Native Americans in the Declaration of Independence

                                    No, you said it called for their genocide in the Declaration:

                                    For the mass genocide, I admit, you have to go back to the Declaration of Independence, which describes "the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions."

                                    The full text of which is:

                                    He has excited domestic Insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the Inhabitants of our Frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages, whose known Rule of Warfare, is an undistinguished Destruction, of all Ages, Sexes and Conditions.

                                    "He" being the king of England was trying to get Native Americans to attack the colonies, and the impression was that the NATIVE AMERICANS' way of waging war was mass genocide. Nowhere in that text does it call for, insinuate, or even remotely suggest Native Americans should be wiped off the face of the earth. I'm sorry you can't see your own lies when you tell them.

                                    That's at least a half-lie, on your part. You dismissed the Declaration as irrelevant to the original intentions for America before you tried to defend it.

                                    No, I dismissed it as irrelevant to the argument you were trying to make. Perhaps I could have been clearer on that point. Either way, it doesn't support your argument, therefore it's irrelevant for you to bring it up in discussion. And again, it doesn't support your statement that America was founded on principles of mass genocide.

                                    And if you can't see a clear connection between calling a people "merciless Indian Savages whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions," and the destruction of their people, their lands, and their cultures over the two-and-a-half centuries that followed (which, admittedly, started well before 1776), I can't help you.

                                    Which has jack all to do with America engaging in mass genocide. It merely describes how it was perceived Native Americans waged war, not a desire or intention to wipe them off the map. You are adding apples and oranges and coming up with steel. There is nothing to suggest or even link that statement with the oppression of Native Americans in the following years. Continuing to insist otherwise is either a reading comprehension fail or deliberate lying. Take your pick.

                                    No, actually, I'm just trying to get you to nail down your definition of what it means to be American

                                    Well you never said that until your last post. Instead you just insisted it has to be either historical ideals or the will of the people so I was arguing as such. I'm happy to provide MY definition if you want, and will do so shortly.

                                    (which, you have, again, declined to do)

                                    Because you never asked until the post before this one and I replied and did give you at least some general things regarding what my definition is. Sorry you can't read.

                                    so that I can see whether it (a) makes sense

                                    So in all honesty it doesn't matter what I say does it? You've already made up your mind.

                                    would be useful in answering the question "Is it American to ask American companies to regulate speech or should Americans ask for companies to support freedom of expression?"

                                    I believe that question has been answered many times over. My PERSONAL definition isn't going to help you in that regard.

                                    If it seems that I'm trying to do that by pushing you towards simple Constitutionalism, it's because you've given me little else definitive to work with, and have provided that as the "baseline" for what an American is.

                                    I'm sorry you fail at reading comprehension. But to reiterate, a baseline is just that, it is a starting point, it is in no way the entirety of a thing. Hopefully that clarifies things for you.

                                    I shall turn that question back on you.

                                    Sorry, I'm not the one lying here and deliberately stating false facts and contradicting their earlier statements.

                                    Actually, my opinion of what it is to be American, if you're curious, boils down mostly to "the rich screw over pretty much everyone else in their quest for more money."

                                    Well then why are we even debating this then? It's quite obvious by this statement you are a bigot and hate America and have no intention of changing your mind, nor are even interested in honest discourse on this or other subjects, and are forming your opinions based on your own personal bias and stereotypes. The "rich" of whom you speak in America, make up a very small minority of American population so I fail to see how you can generally ascribe that to the entirety of the country. And it is definitely not the "will of the people", nor is it in any "historical ideals", so obviously this entire conversation and debate up to this point has been entirely worthless. You've made up your mind and no amount of facts or reality will change your mind, so you resort to lying to keep your point of view intact.

                                    Now, to keep my end of the bargain, my PERSONAL definition of what it means to be American is a combination of the principles laid out in the Constitution (specifically the Bill of Rights) combined with more enlightened ways of living over time; equality for all people (any race or gender); the general humane treatment of all human beings; the idea that with hard work, you can be and achieve whatever you want; freedom; ingenuity; and the ability to make mistakes. There are other things I could add that are generally associated with America (baseball, the Superbowl, landing on the moon, etc...) but I feel those are associations not something that defines what it means to be American.

                                    That said, that is MY definition of what it means to be American. That doesn't mean that everyone in the country is all of those things all of the time (including myself). We aren't, we're human, we fail, we make mistakes, but I believe that, generally, that is what we're all striving towards. And that doesn't mean that everyone else in the country agrees with me.

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

                                    • identicon
                                      Anonymous Coward, 21 Mar 2019 @ 8:14am

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

                                      It being present in your first post doesn't change the fact that it was a tangent to the original discussion and factually incorrect. So you engaged in misdirection instead of a lie then? Either way, it's disingenuous on your part.

                                      No, no, no, that's not what you said at all. You gave a sequence of events:

                                      You started off saying you couldn't have both, I said you could (and gave some reasons why), then you went off on a tangent about how if it was based on historical ideals then to be American was to be in favor of genocide.

                                      You said that I made my original post, then you replied, then I started equating the original intentions of America with genocide. You're lying about the timeline, to try to make me look like I'm derailing our discussion, rather than having a specific direction to begin with that you just plain don't like.

                                      If you're going to start out your post by lying again (about something as easily checked as "what was said two posts up in the thread"), I'm not going to bother with the rest of it.

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

                                      • identicon
                                        Anonymous Coward, 21 Mar 2019 @ 8:58am

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

                                        You said that I made my original post, then you replied, then I started equating the original intentions of America with genocide.

                                        Nothing is at all false in that statement. The fact that you started equating it with genocide in your original statement as well, doesn't change the fact that you then continued to equate it with genocide. Besides, YOU are misrepresenting and/or lying about what that statement was all about, which was the fact that you changed goal posts on me about what exactly we were discussing and attempted to claim that I was lying as a result. Focusing on one word that potentially could have been interpreted as misconstruing the timeline is just further attempts to twist things to your own advantage.

                                        Yes you brought it up in your first post (which I suppose started the tangent), but you continued it well into the rest of our discussion when it wasn't the main thrust of the debate. It also doesn't change the fact that it was and is a tangent that has no basis in reality and you should have dropped it after I proved you were wrong/lying about it (multiple times I might add). Any confusion of timelines I may or may not have made are accidental, not purposeful.

                                        try to make me look like I'm derailing our discussion

                                        I don't need to lie about it. You are, and not just in regards to the timeline as previously explained.

                                        rather than having a specific direction to begin with that you just plain don't like.

                                        Because you keep changing the direction and making false statements. Like this one.

                                        If you're going to start out your post by lying again (about something as easily checked as "what was said two posts up in the thread"), I'm not going to bother with the rest of it.

                                        Well, I wasn't and have explained why not. If that's all you have left to claim a "gotcha!" on, I pity you. You still have not addressed why you falsely claim the Declaration of Independence is proof of American genocidal intent. But since you apparently can't be honest in anything you say, I expect I will never get an answer to that.

                                        Have a nice day.

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                                • identicon
                                  Anonymous Coward, 20 Mar 2019 @ 3:52pm

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

                                  Oh, and:

                                  You've already made up your mind that ONLY what is in the Constitution can be considered what it is to be American

                                  Actually, my opinion of what it is to be American, if you're curious, boils down mostly to "the rich screw over pretty much everyone else in their quest for more money."

                                  Which, to quote a Marvel villain, "may not be a uniquely American trait, but I must say, you do it better than anyone."

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

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 18 Mar 2019 @ 3:00pm

          Re: Re:

          Don't forget. This job will have an extremely high turnover rate. Can you image having to read every stupid post. You view of humanity would turn sour quickly.

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

      • icon
        Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 19 Mar 2019 @ 7:41am

        Re:

        "That is a team of 60000 moderators with 8 hour work days and vacation time."

        Don't bother showing Baghdad Bob/Bobmail/Blue the math. In his reality either Google and Facebook have more money than exists in the world, or the sum total of uploaded data on either platform could be carefully moderated by ten snot-nosed brats working 8 daily hours.

        Delusional claims like that are what has had me halfway wondering, for years now, if Bobmail is actually trying to astroturf against the copyright cult in order to show just how batshit insane they are. And that he just doesn't get Poe's Law.

        The alternative is sadly more likely - that he's a delusional sociopath bereft not only of basic morals and ethics, but also of third grade math and the concept of money.

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

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 18 Mar 2019 @ 12:04pm

    The New Zealand shooting shows how YouTube and Facebook spread hate and violent images

    And I thought that it was people who spread hate and violent images, and if it wasn't for them reposting and linking, the Video would have remained obscure.

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

  • icon
    Berenerd (profile), 18 Mar 2019 @ 12:57pm

    I tried...

    I tried to contact Comcast to vent about their part in the New Zealand attacks, but after 5 days, I am still on hold waiting for someone from Customer VIP support to pick up.

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

  • icon
    Benefacio (profile), 18 Mar 2019 @ 1:16pm

    Avoid the Long Con

    Please let science rule your reality. Techdirt has posted numerous articles about numerous studies that have repeatedly found the same results. Viewing violent content does NOT increase the likelihood of engaging in violent behavior.

    Content is content; it does not matter if it is print, audio, video or real life. When you are not inclined to commit violence then no amount of content* will convince you to do so. Content; violent, hateful or otherwise, does not influence behavior.

    Please do not let people running the long con to use your own emotions to brainwash you.

    Benefacio

    • Repeatedly viewing idiotic commentary from know-nothing talking heads and politicians might increase your tendency to engage in violence but no study has been reported as far as I know.

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  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 18 Mar 2019 @ 1:23pm

    If Facebook, Youtube, and anywhere with ContentID-type technology and identify three seconds of a Daft Punk song and block it on copyright grounds automatically, they can drop a yellow "awaiting moderation" flag on the sounds of gunshots and screaming. They're not to blame for the event "go ahead, click-bait that title harder" but they are responsible for content moderation. They are responsible for content moderation because they already moderate content.

    See, isn't it fun? Soon as you commit to moderate something you have to moderate everything.

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

    • icon
      CrushU (profile), 18 Mar 2019 @ 1:38pm

      Re:

      And then you have videos with the audio muted getting through. Good job!

      The correct response is to say they shouldn't be "responsible" for content moderation, they should just do it out of a desire to weed undesirable content out. Making them responsible for it is folly.

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

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 18 Mar 2019 @ 7:29pm

      Re:

      Congratulations - you just flagged every single action scene out there along with war footage, demonstrations of technology. Now the better question is why the hell you believe being the world nanny is a good idea aside from the idiotic trend-pushing?

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

  • icon
    That One Guy (profile), 18 Mar 2019 @ 1:30pm

    Active vs Passive

    Newspapers: YouTube and Facebook need to get their act together in moderating their content to prevent would-be terrorist to get inspired.

    Also newspapers: Here is the terrorist's manifesto. Here is who he was inspired by. Here is a profile of him. Here is a bunch of pictures. -Thomas Baekdal

    I'd say he exactly nailed it. The 'news' companies that were ragging on the likes of YT and FB for not being able to successfully moderate hundreds of thousands, if not a million plus copies of a video should perhaps look in a mirror first, because if that is bad, how much worse is it to do what the asshole wanted, give them fame and spread what they did and what they said deliberately?

    Unlike YT/FB which were trying to remove the video and were simply overwhelmed by the scope, they were intentionally posting bunches of stuff about it and the asshole that did it.

    This isn't the pot calling the kettle black so much as the pot calling the (slightly scuffed) silverware black.

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  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 18 Mar 2019 @ 1:33pm

    Disgusted with media

    Really the old media deserves to be shamed deeply for being such goddamn vultures. Before the final body count was in they were using it to promote censorship and attack rivals - all while being flagrant hypocrites.

    I would ask if they have any decency but the answer is clearly "no".

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  • icon
    Zof (profile), 18 Mar 2019 @ 1:48pm

    The guy wrote a 75 page manifesto. What I haven't seen yet is anybody talking about it. He makes it perfectly clear what his motivations and politics were. He even goes into exactly why he thought gun murder was a really good idea. You can walk right inside his broken head.

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

    • icon
      Mason Wheeler (profile), 18 Mar 2019 @ 2:25pm

      Re:

      Check the second link in the first paragraph. It explains how the "manifesto" is full of trollery and isn't particularly reliable as an indicator of the guy's actual beliefs or politics.

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

      • icon
        Stephen T. Stone (profile), 18 Mar 2019 @ 2:43pm

        Re: Re:

        Ironic racism is still racism.

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

        • icon
          That One Guy (profile), 18 Mar 2019 @ 2:48pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          Ken White's 'Goatfucker rule'? Sounds about right.

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

          • identicon
            Anonymous Coward, 18 Mar 2019 @ 5:02pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            I've seen that. A particularly disappointing piece of stupidity from a usually intelligent and admirable mind. It's a horrible "rule of thumb" designed to shut down intelligent thought and consideration of nuance and context, custom made for scenarios which require such thought and consideration the most!

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

            • icon
              Stephen T. Stone (profile), 18 Mar 2019 @ 5:56pm

              If you said something racist, and you tried to justify doing so with “I was just joking” or “it was just ironic racism”, you still said something racist. Ironic racism is still racism because “I was just joking” is not a punchline.

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

              • identicon
                Anonymous Coward, 18 Mar 2019 @ 7:42pm

                Re:

                If you said something racist, and you tried to justify doing so with “I was just joking” or “it was just ironic racism”, you still said something racist. Ironic racism is still racism because “I was just joking” is not a punchline.

                Ah, yes, the Rule of Goats.

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

            • icon
              That One Guy (profile), 18 Mar 2019 @ 5:56pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              That's almost impressive, you managed to type several sentences ragging on the 'rule' without actually saying what the problem with it is beyond uselessly vague 'it's bad' statements.

              Want to maybe try again?

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

    • icon
      nasch (profile), 19 Mar 2019 @ 9:29am

      Re:

      What I haven't seen yet is anybody talking about [the manifesto].

      I'm sure if you're actually interested you can find plenty of people talking about it. You might not like what you find though.

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

  • identicon
    JustSomeRandomDude, 18 Mar 2019 @ 2:30pm

    Size Matters

    I get that being a platform doesn't make the provider guilty of the content - yet if the provider were smaller it could very well be within the power of the platform, it's toolsets and moderators to recognize and remove disturbing content more quickly.

    At issue from my perspective is the scale of platforms and due to size, monitoring and moderating content is a problem.

    Not blaming reddit or facebook for being host to disturbing content simply pointing out that their size inherently means slow responses, not being to address problems quickly or effectively is in a very real sense based on how big the platform is.

    Let's talk about that... Size matters - bigger does not mean better, smaller in these cases means a better quality experience.

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

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 18 Mar 2019 @ 2:51pm

      Re: Size Matters

      bigger does not mean better, smaller in these cases means a better quality experience.

      In social media, critical mass is everything. People don't post online as a form of personal diary. They want exposure. They want to reach as many people as possible with their poorly-thought-out tripe which means going to the largest platforms you can find.

      Smaller might mean higher quality but it's higher quality silence.

      Also, the world is a messy place. Expecting perfection from these platforms or anything else for that matter is insanity.

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

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 18 Mar 2019 @ 3:14pm

      Re: Size Matters

      Size matters - bigger does not mean better, smaller in these cases means a better quality experience.

      Small also means keeping people in small cliches with little or no cross fertilization. Small means that cults and bigot organizations can fly under the radar for a long time. Small also makes it much easier for nation states to name other nation states a enemies. Small make it easier for politicians to do what they want because it makes it harder for people to organize.

      Big makes it easier for someone to spot warning signs and raise an alarm. Big makes it easier for people to see what the people of the other nations are really like. Big gives the people more power to influence politics.

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

  • identicon
    Agammamon, 18 Mar 2019 @ 2:40pm

    Look, big internet, politicians, politician's daughters, what's important is that *someone with lot's of money' is responsible.

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

  • icon
    btr1701 (profile), 18 Mar 2019 @ 3:10pm

    think how many (despicable) people are out there trying to spread this content. It is a lot more than these companies could reasonably hire or should want to hire solely for the purpose of policing the speech of those despicable individuals.

    There is nothing "despicable" about wanting to see what actually happened without it being censored, filtered, managed, and spun by the government and their media stenographers.

    When I watch something like that video, I don't want to watch the slaughter per se, but I do want to know what actually happens during incidents like this, as opposed to what the politicians and bureaucrats tell me after the fact.

    The first reaction of the politicians in cities where things like this occur is to clamp down on all access to reporting so they can spin things to put themselves in the best light.

    As TechDirt highlighted last week, we're already seeing this in Florida, where the state legislature is considering a bill to prohibit sharing a video like this, because the incompetence of the Broward Sheriff's Department really stung the government at all levels. So of course the natural reaction of politicians and bureaucrats is to make embarrassing them a crime.

    And then there's the Mandalay Bay incident, where the city of Las Vegas still continues to defy a series of court orders to turn over all the video footage they have of the attack to the media.

    [Neal] Mohan, YouTube's chief product officer, had assembled his war room-- a group of senior executives known internally as "incident commanders" who jump into crises, such as when footage of a suicide or shooting spreads online.

    I find it disturbing that YouTube (and presumably the other platforms as well) have "incident commanders" whose express job is to censor the news.

    1) What amount of video is okay for news reporting purposes? This seems to be one of the questions from last night, where excerpts of the video were allowed and also included in legitimate media footage

    A better question is who are they to decide for society what constitutes legitimate news in the first place?

    It's interesting that Masnick never once raises the issue of censorship in his article. He seems to be fine with governments and corporations censoring what the people see and hear and his only concern is that billion-dollar Wall Street tech corporations are getting unfairly criticized for not censoring effectively enough.

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

    • icon
      btr1701 (profile), 18 Mar 2019 @ 3:38pm

      Re:

      And this illustrates my point perfectly:

      New Zealand Threatens 10 Years In Prison For Citizens Possessing Mosque Shooting Video; Web Hosts Warned, 'Dissenter' Chat App Banned for Not Being 'Censorship Compliant'

      https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2019-03-16/nz-threatens-10-years-prison-possessing-mosque- shooting-video-web-hosts-warned

      New Zealand authorities have reminded citizens that they face up to 10 years in prison for "knowingly" possessing a copy of the New Zealand mosque shooting video - and up to 14 years in prison for sharing it. Corporations (such as web hosts) face an additional $200,000 ($137,000 US) fine under the same law.

      Popular New Zealand Facebook group Wellington Live notes that "NZ police would like to remind the public that it is an offence to share an objectional publication which includes the horrific video from yesterday's attack. If you see this video, report it immediately. Do not download it. Do not share it. If you are found to have a copy of the video or to have shared it, you face fines & potential imprisonment."

      Along with the censorship of online materials and investigation of content sharing platforms such as BitChute and 8chan - where the shooter posted a link to the livestream of his attack, social discussion service Dissenter has been blocked in New Zealand. Created by the people behind Twitter competitor Gab.ai - Dissenter is a browser extension which pops up a third-party comments section for any website where people can discuss content outside of the control of the website owner.

      On Saturday, Gab's official accounts (@gab and @getongab) reported that "New Zealand ISPs have banned dissenter.com until it is 'censorship compliant.'"

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

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 18 Mar 2019 @ 3:41pm

      Re:

      As long as the video doesn't violate the law, I think it should be left up, even if it does depict a violation of the law.

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

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 18 Mar 2019 @ 4:11pm

      Re:

      That’s a pretty weaksauce takeaway. New Zealands government isn’t a multinational corporation and dosent share the same rules and responsibilities. Fetch my fainting couch! Also here’s something that’s gonna blow your mind later. They don’t even have a first amendment there.

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

    • icon
      That One Guy (profile), 18 Mar 2019 @ 8:09pm

      Cleaning the blood but ignoring the cut

      I find it disturbing that YouTube (and presumably the other platforms as well) have "incident commanders" whose express job is to censor the news.

      It's troubling to be sure, however if I had to guess I'd say that they have those groups specifically because of stories like this one, where they'll get slammed for not 'doing enough' and as bad as it is when they try and fail, it would almost certainly be far worse for them to not even try at all, even if one could argue that they shouldn't be in the first place.

      It's interesting that Masnick never once raises the issue of censorship in his article.

      No more than the fact that he didn't mention their current stock prices. The focus of the article isn't that they are deciding what is 'newsworthy' and therefore gets to stay up(though that might be grounds for a future article), but that they are wrongly being accused of being to blame for the actions done by others and/or not doing 'enough' about them, and in a way that actually does address that idea, because people like those mentioned in the article are likely a large part of why companies like YT/FB are scrambling to pull content.

      People and groups insisting that platforms like them have an 'obligation' to keep 'bad stuff' out, and that if they aren't willing to do it themselves then the politicians should step up and 'persuade' them to do so with regulations and/or fines for non-compliance/failure to do the impossible are, I would say, almost certainly the motive behind YT/FB doing what's described in the article, such that if you wanted to reduce that a better target of concern would be those people/groups, rather than the companies responding to them.

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

    • icon
      Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 19 Mar 2019 @ 7:52am

      Re:

      "There is nothing "despicable" about wanting to see what actually happened without it being censored, filtered, managed, and spun by the government and their media stenographers."

      True. A crime was committed, there's photographic evidence of the fact...
      ...and the evidence of the crime, the how, why, government response, everything, is in itself considered so toxic we're all left relying on hearsay to know what happened.

      That in itself is problematic.

      Sure, Facebook and Youtube are private entities and so can moderate as they wish, but the bit where the government itself is involved in shutting down information feeds should ring more than just a few warning bells.

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

  • icon
    Richard Bennett (profile), 18 Mar 2019 @ 5:05pm

    Masnick being Masnick

    Here he goes: "Social media is a reflection of reality and reality is hellishly messy. People are flawed to varying degrees, and a certain percentage are despicable, horrible people. I'd like to believe it's a small percentage, but they do exist. And we shouldn't blame the technology they use."

    Umm, if despicable people were only a small percentage, it wouldn't be all that difficult for the platforms to cut them off. As we see from the re-uploads, there are actually quite a lot of them. So are UGC platforms a very bad idea from the get-go?

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

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 20 Mar 2019 @ 1:14am

      Re: Richard being dick

      “and a certain percentage are despicable, horrible people.”

      Is that a teeny tiny bit of self awareness peeking out from behind your diseased and corpulent ego?

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

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 20 Mar 2019 @ 6:25am

      Re: Masnick being Masnick

      Social media is a reflection of reality and reality is hellishly messy. People are flawed to varying degrees, and a certain percentage are despicable, horrible people. I'd like to believe it's a small percentage, but they do exist. And we shouldn't blame the technology they use.

      I'm sorry, what part of this do you not agree with? Seems fairly accurate, no one is a saint and some people especially are giant dicks. (wink, wink, nudge, nudge)

      Umm, if despicable people were only a small percentage, it wouldn't be all that difficult for the platforms to cut them off.

      Ah so you think despicable people are a large percentage then. Well your logic works in reverse then too. If despicable people are in the large majority, then it should be easy to build a platform just for the small percentage of good people. After all, if it's easy to identify and cut off a small number of people, it should also be easy to identify and ONLY allow a small number of people. So since it's EXTREMELY easy to do this, why has no one done it? Oh that's right, because you're an idiot and don't live in reality.

      Let me spell it out for you:

      It is one thing to acknowledge that bad people exist and get a rough estimate of their majority/minority, it is an entirely different matter to specifically identify them, especially based on uploaded content that is only infringing in certain contexts.

      As we see from the re-uploads, there are actually quite a lot of them.

      Oh really? Got numbers and sources to back that up? Because most of what I see on Youtube is not infringing at all.

      So are UGC platforms a very bad idea from the get-go?

      In a word, no. All you have to do is look at the sheer explosion in creativity because of sites like deviantart, soundcloud, patreon, newgrounds, kickstarter, reddit, twitch, and yes, youtube. In fact, especially youtube.

      Try again Richard.

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

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 21 Mar 2019 @ 12:15am

      Re: Masnick being Masnick

      Oh, hey, it's old Dick back from refusing to pay for scientific papers that prove him wrong.

      Did Pai remember to give you oxygen?

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

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 18 Mar 2019 @ 5:26pm

    Traumatising circumstances causing even those at the more informed and reasonable end of the spectrum to lose their heads a bit, put on a pair of Trump glasses and see the issue in simple terms with easy fixes. Also imagine there's a bit of a self-preservation element, sensing which way the wind is blowing and not wanting to challenge their audience in this situation.

    I note the Australian Prime Minster has jumped onto the bandwagon: https://www.9news.com.au/2019/03/19/08/00/christchurch-mosque-shooting-scott-morrison-calls-for-crac kdown-on-social-media

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

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 18 Mar 2019 @ 8:05pm

    50 people die in a tragedy and John Smith's only takeaway is that all this could have been prevented if only copyright was enforced the way he wants it.

    You know... just in case people needed more convincing that he's little more than a crusty old shitstain.

    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, 18 Mar 2019 @ 10:47pm

      Re:

      Wow, the mouth on this one. MICK knows where to find these pirates, don't you MICK?

      MICK's judgement is coming soon, I'm not worried.

      But you? You're going to learn what it's like to poke a bear. An old, potent, powerful, rich, accomplished bear. I'm going to fuck you up your Aspie ass so hard you'll beg for me to drop a SWAT team down your whore mouth.

      Article 13 is coming.

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

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 18 Mar 2019 @ 11:47pm

        Re: Re:

        Hi, Jhon.

        Your tears are delicious.

        One of these days you're going to give me hypertension. Okay, no, you're not. But unlike you I happen to have a conscience, so have a Pyrrhic victory over an Internet argument. Maybe you'll finally get it up tonight.

        Unless Hamilton holds the copyright on your erection, in which case you'll have to wait for 70 years after life of creator. Sucks, don't it?

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

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 19 Mar 2019 @ 2:26am

        Re: Re:

        You call yourself "Article 13" now?

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

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 19 Mar 2019 @ 3:04am

          Re: Re: Re:

          For someone who gets triggered from fantasies about Stephen T. Stone he seems bent on the idea of sexually identifying as intellectual property.

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

      • icon
        Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 19 Mar 2019 @ 8:01am

        Re: Re:

        "But you? You're going to learn what it's like to poke a bear. An old, potent, powerful, rich, accomplished bear. I'm going to fuck you up your Aspie ass so hard you'll beg for me to drop a SWAT team down your whore mouth."

        Careful there, Baghdad Bob, I hear someone called the feds down on Techdirt to take a closer look at people being mean, insulting, and threatening around here.
        No wonder we're not taking you seriously, Baghdad Bob.

        I should perhaps mention that writing about your wish fulfillment fetish may be therapeutic but there are places for that.

        And this ain't it.

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

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 19 Mar 2019 @ 8:13am

        Re: Re:

        You're going to learn what it's like to poke a bear. An old, potent, powerful, rich, accomplished bear.

        Bring it then. Moron.

        I'm going to fuck you up your Aspie ass so hard you'll beg for me to drop a SWAT team down your whore mouth.

        Tsk tsk, language. But again, bring it. Moron.

        I generally find that people who make threats like this rarely have the actual resources to back it up (in other words they are a pathetic liar) and even if they do, lack the courage and chutzpah to actually follow through on it.

        So consider this me "poking the bear" and calling your bluff. Moron.

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

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 19 Mar 2019 @ 4:12am

    Latest from Australia: our largest internet provider has imposed "temporary" blocking of access by their customers to the whole of Liveleak, Zero Hedge, 4chan, 8chan and Voat, citing "extreme circumstances". It began with the largest provider:

    https://twitter.com/Telstra_news/status/1107526963583844353

    The second-largest provider then caved (after initially stating they wouldn't be blocking sites unless required by law) citing "community expectations", followed by a couple of smaller providers.

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

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 19 Mar 2019 @ 6:39am

    Shared Blame

    As Joan Donovan, the director of the Technology and Social Change Research Project at Harvard, told me in the wake of the shooting, “if platform companies are going to provide the broadcast tools for sharing hateful ideologies, they are going to share the blame for normalizing them.”

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

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 19 Mar 2019 @ 8:30am

    I hate FB, but am on their side on this issue

    I have read so many different articles about this issue, but the one that has me posting a comment here is the one I just finished about New Zealands 2 biggest ISP's hand in hand with the NZ government demanding that the CEO's of Google/FB/Twitter provide answers and/or solutions to not allowing the spread of these kinds of videos.

    What really gets me is when you combine what most of these articles say; which is these companies are responsible for the content posted. They are no more liable than the ISP's that allow the traffic, so where is Vodafone in all this. As soon as they see this content on their network then they should shutdown the network. Let me guess, Vodafone doesn't have 'one guy' sitting around watching for bad content.

    Do I have the answer? Yes, don't be an asshole and think it is ok to slaughter people. FULL STOP.

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

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 23 Mar 2019 @ 12:19pm

    Censorship will not prevail

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


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