View Poll Results: Would you sign an Open Letter without knowing of other signees?

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  • Yes

    16 57.14%
  • Not Sure

    3 10.71%
  • No

    9 32.14%
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  1. #221
    Quote Originally Posted by Felya View Post
    I understand, but that’s populism. Populism can be left, such as in this case. It can also be from the right, like Trump’s attacks on “money, politics, culture, science, tech, etc”. What if the issue isn’t censorship, which this simply isn’t... and the real name for the public bitching about the elites... populism.

    Edit: I’m not saying that populism is inherently wrong... I just don’t like it. I also think people getting silenced due to public outcry, isn’t censorship... it’s populism in action.
    Saw your post more directly to me. But using this gets to my point better.
    I disagree here. Quite well.

    This isn't about what's popular. This is about who's doing the gatekeeping on messages. Before when it was only the editorial boards it was gated. It was limited. Even the lowest tier for the lowest level had reach. And if the editorial boards zeroed in on a message that was the only message that happened.

    Now there are no gate keepers / Everyone is a gatekeeper. And the old gate keepers are clutching at their pearls since if they take a message that is in bad faith, bad taste, or inherently false it'll now be unearthed, get to the surface, and make them look extremely bad for their takes.

    This has very little to do with fasism or populism. All about gate keeping.
    - Lars

  2. #222
    I Don't Work Here Endus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Muzjhath View Post
    Saw your post more directly to me. But using this gets to my point better.
    I disagree here. Quite well.

    This isn't about what's popular.
    "Populism" isn't really about what's "popular", either. It's a political movement that appeals to the interests of the disenfranchised and/or disregarded.

    This is about who's doing the gatekeeping on messages. Before when it was only the editorial boards it was gated. It was limited. Even the lowest tier for the lowest level had reach. And if the editorial boards zeroed in on a message that was the only message that happened.

    Now there are no gate keepers / Everyone is a gatekeeper. And the old gate keepers are clutching at their pearls since if they take a message that is in bad faith, bad taste, or inherently false it'll now be unearthed, get to the surface, and make them look extremely bad for their takes.

    This has very little to do with fasism or populism. All about gate keeping.
    Can be more readily summed up with the simple word "power". They used to have the power to control the narrative. They've lost that power, and want it back.

  3. #223
    Quote Originally Posted by Endus View Post
    "Populism" isn't really about what's "popular", either. It's a political movement that appeals to the interests of the disenfranchised and/or disregarded.



    Can be more readily summed up with the simple word "power". They used to have the power to control the narrative. They've lost that power, and want it back.
    This is true, but I feel that Felya is not applying it quite rightly here in this context.
    And yes, power is a very good summation. However at times you need to go more into specifics.
    - Lars

  4. #224
    Quote Originally Posted by downnola View Post
    "kill yourself" and "i hope you die" isn't criticism. That behavior might get you kicked off a platform (good luck when it takes minutes to create a Twitter account) but it's not easily rectified in a court of law. There are cases when people clutch their pearls at genuine criticism but anonymity on internet can be quite toxic. Anyone conveniently ignoring that fact and pretending the people that signed that letter are just worried about counter free speech are being disingenuous, intentional or not.
    I think there needs to be more accountability for what people say, and I think that's the way to go to root out comments like that. And better systems and protections to prevent burner accounts. Easier said than done, of course.

    I'm still skeptical of the signatories motives as I'm not sure about some of the premises of that letter (e.g. that free speech is under siege, or that intolerance needs to be tolerated). Granted Trump is trying, as are other world leaders, but generally speaking I think speech is, in the west, the freest it's ever been today.
    "In order to maintain a tolerant society, the society must be intolerant of intolerance." Paradox of tolerance

  5. #225
    Quote Originally Posted by downnola View Post
    "kill yourself" and "i hope you die" isn't criticism. That behavior might get you kicked off a platform (good luck when it takes minutes to create a Twitter account) but it's not easily rectified in a court of law. There are cases when people clutch their pearls at genuine criticism but anonymity on internet can be quite toxic. Anyone conveniently ignoring that fact and pretending the people that signed that letter are just worried about counter free speech are being disingenuous, intentional or not.
    The problem is, people like Bari and JK Rowling aren't specifically objecting to those death threats. Those are obviously beyond the pale. What they want to be is free from legitimate criticism and eye-rolling, and being deplatformed for their actual deplorable views. Rowling's transphobia is widely documented and her claims widely disproven, but she continues to play the victim as if she's being censored.......by being countered by actual people who know what the fuck they're talking about.

    Likewise, Bari's refusal to hear any criticism of Israel, coupled with immediately labeling any such criticism as anti-Semitism, is irrational and not based in anything. Criticizing Israel is not a criticism of Judaism or even Zionism, any more than criticizing Saudi Arabia is a criticism of Islam, any more than criticizing the U.S. is a criticism of Christianity. Yet she wails about how everyone hates Jews while only really caring and commenting on the (false) impression that the Left's criticism of Israel amounts to actual anti-Semitism that exists in the world. And to be fair to her, actual anti-Semiticism does exist on the Left, mostly in Labour in the UK, and in the black communities in the U.S. who subscribe to the whole Farrakhan "True Hebrews" type of rhetoric, which has been in the spotlight recently. But again, she falsely conflates criticism of Israel in that equation.

  6. #226
    The Lightbringer downnola's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Endus View Post
    If it isn't unlawful speech, like an actual threat or libel/slander or the like, then the reason it's "not easily rectified in a court of law" is because it's lawful, protected conduct. It might be rude and mean-spirited. It might be targeted at the individual rather than their work. Doesn't matter. Still free speech.

    If it is unlawful, I've been pretty clear in other threads that I have no patience for threats of violence over the Internet and don't think anonymity should be a protection; all such threats under a cloud of anonymity should be treated as potentially real, and that means they should be legally actionable. Charge the users doing this. I'm totally fine with that.

    But if it's not a legal issue? Then it's free speech. They're just being mean to you on the Internet. Does that suck? Sure. Could they get banned from that social media for acting that way? Probably. Is it "silencing" you, or in any way an attack on your own freedom of speech? No. Categorically not.

    You know when they say "counter speech with speech"? This is what that looks like. Freedom of speech isn't about restricting speech to polite discussion on topics all involved have agreed to. It's messy and dirty and . . . free.

    Hell, if that kind of shit could "silence" people, I wouldn't have 63,000 posts here.

    Edit: Because I can see a counter-argument coming, let me proactively state that I am not taking a stance of "it's technically legal now so should always be legal", where the current legality of a thing is circularly used to defend its legality. If you want to try and make a case that being mean on the Internet should literally be illegal, with legal penalties, whether civil or criminal, go nuts. I don't think you'll get far with that particular case, but unless you can make an argument that mean-spirited speech should be unlawful, I don't see how the letter writers have any kind of valid position; they're arguing to restrict free speech to protect their own speech, it's an argument to secure their own power and influence at the expense of their detractors.
    It might be free speech that should be protected, but it's not the sort of speech that deserves a response or real attention. If all you can muster to a bad argument (or argument you simply don't like) is a bunch of hateful gibberish then it's just trolling or verbal abuse. Platforms can deal with that how they wish and some deal with it better than others, but I don't think it needs to be dealt with legally. I wish Twitter took a harsher stance on that sort of thing because it's a toxic cesspool in it's current state, but it is what it is.

    Here's a grey area for you to think about, though: Some (could even be one or two, who knows) angry readers of the Stranger post things like "Katie Herzog is a TERF" in various spots near her home on a regular basis. Now, just saying she's a TERF or transphobe (setting aside if I agree with that charge or not) is free speech and even posting it in public is also free speech. But the act of doing it repeatedly in her neighborhood is obviously an intimidation tactic and a threat. There's a thin line between free speech and harassment/threats there. I certainly don't have a good answer on how to deal with that kind of thing.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by Dezerte View Post
    I think there needs to be more accountability for what people say, and I think that's the way to go to root out comments like that. And better systems and protections to prevent burner accounts. Easier said than done, of course.

    I'm still skeptical of the signatories motives as I'm not sure about some of the premises of that letter (e.g. that free speech is under siege, or that intolerance needs to be tolerated). Granted Trump is trying, as are other world leaders, but generally speaking I think speech is, in the west, the freest it's ever been today.
    I think the "problem" of people sticking their fingers in their ears and trying to shout down others they disagree with (and try to get them fired) is so overblown that I can't listen to certain podcasts or read certain writers anymore. The fringe cases don't justify all of the doomsday prophecies going around and I'm personally sick of hearing about it.

    I do agree that speech is as free as it's ever been. It's not that hard to be published or heard in the internet age and that's what really matters when it comes to free expression.
    I had become too accustomed to the pseudo-Left new style, whereby if your opponent thought he had identified your lowest possible motive, he was quite certain that he had isolated the only real one. This vulgar method, which is now the norm and the standard in much non-Left journalism as well, is designed to have the effect of making any noisy moron into a master analyst.
    - Christopher Hitchens

  7. #227
    I Don't Work Here Endus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by downnola View Post
    It might be free speech that should be protected, but it's not the sort of speech that deserves a response or real attention. If all you can muster to a bad argument (or argument you simply don't like) is a bunch of hateful gibberish then it's just trolling or verbal abuse. Platforms can deal with that how they wish and some deal with it better than others, but I don't think it needs to be dealt with legally. I wish Twitter took a harsher stance on that sort of thing because it's a toxic cesspool in it's current state, but it is what it is.
    Nobody was suggesting that you should engage with those people. They are owed neither consideration nor response.

    Just that;
    A> People telling you you're a shithead racist is literally what freedom of speech is about,
    B> Social media companies are free to choose not to do business with anyone, and
    C> Employers are entitled to fire staff for being racist; that's actual justifiable cause even in jurisdictions where you need to show cause.

    If you're speaking out against "cancel culture" because of Twitter mobs against people like the letter-writers, you necessarily take issue with at least one of those three statements.

    Here's a grey area for you to think about, though: Some (could even be one or two, who knows) angry readers of the Stranger post things like "Katie Herzog is a TERF" in various spots near her home on a regular basis. Now, just saying she's a TERF or transphobe (setting aside if I agree with that charge or not) is free speech and even posting it in public is also free speech. But the act of doing it repeatedly in her neighborhood is obviously an intimidation tactic and a threat. There's a thin line between free speech and harassment/threats there. I certainly don't have a good answer on how to deal with that kind of thing.
    There's already measures in place for criminal harassment, which would largely cover that.

    Here's Canada's criminal harassment law, for instance; https://laws-lois.justice.gc.ca/eng/...ction-264.html

    The prohibited conduct includes "repeatedly communicating with, either directly or indirectly, the other person or anyone known to them". So putting up posters in their neighbourhood could qualify, as their neighbours are clearly known to them, and the communication may be indirect but is the sole purpose of said posters.

    The real key word there is "repeatedly". Making a statement that they're a transphobic TERF a time or two wouldn't fall under that description.

    The other deciding factor is that there needs to be a safety concern by the one claiming to be the target of said harassment. In a lot of cases, pointing out someone's bigotry is itself an attempt to indicate an implicit danger to others from the subject, due to that bigotry; you point out someone's a racist to their employer because that racism can bleed into the conduct with clients or colleagues in ways that are harmful. So, for things like bigotry specifically, the courts are likely to rely on a "reasonable belief" standard kind of thing; does the accusation have justifiable merit, at least from what the speaker knew to be true? If "yes", then there's a counteracting factor.

    Which wouldn't be true if, for instance, you were doing the same kind of poster campaign to tell your neighbours about the "filthy Jew in their midst", that would be an anti-semitic hate crime. Because context matters a whole heck of a lot.

    I don't really agree that this is all that gray, really.

  8. #228
    The Lightbringer downnola's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by eschatological View Post
    The problem is, people like Bari and JK Rowling aren't specifically objecting to those death threats. Those are obviously beyond the pale. What they want to be is free from legitimate criticism and eye-rolling, and being deplatformed for their actual deplorable views. Rowling's transphobia is widely documented and her claims widely disproven, but she continues to play the victim as if she's being censored.......by being countered by actual people who know what the fuck they're talking about.

    Likewise, Bari's refusal to hear any criticism of Israel, coupled with immediately labeling any such criticism as anti-Semitism, is irrational and not based in anything. Criticizing Israel is not a criticism of Judaism or even Zionism, any more than criticizing Saudi Arabia is a criticism of Islam, any more than criticizing the U.S. is a criticism of Christianity. Yet she wails about how everyone hates Jews while only really caring and commenting on the (false) impression that the Left's criticism of Israel amounts to actual anti-Semitism that exists in the world. And to be fair to her, actual anti-Semiticism does exist on the Left, mostly in Labour in the UK, and in the black communities in the U.S. who subscribe to the whole Farrakhan "True Hebrews" type of rhetoric, which has been in the spotlight recently. But again, she falsely conflates criticism of Israel in that equation.
    I don't have a strong opinion on Rowling because I don't know enough about the subject to know if she deserves the backlash or not, but the amount of hate Bari gets in proportion to things she's said is a little much. It's OK to have bad takes and have them pointed out to you, but if even half of the shit she pointed out in her resignation letter is true then I don't believe she's just running from criticism: She left because she worked in a toxic and vindictive work environment.

    But I also wouldn't be surprised if she left in the manner that she did to cause a stir and promote her new ventures. That seems to be the IDW way. /shrug
    Last edited by downnola; 2020-07-17 at 06:14 PM.
    I had become too accustomed to the pseudo-Left new style, whereby if your opponent thought he had identified your lowest possible motive, he was quite certain that he had isolated the only real one. This vulgar method, which is now the norm and the standard in much non-Left journalism as well, is designed to have the effect of making any noisy moron into a master analyst.
    - Christopher Hitchens

  9. #229
    I Don't Work Here Endus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by downnola View Post
    I don't have a strong opinion on Rowling because I don't know enough about the subject to know if she deserves the backlash or not, but the amount of hate Bari gets in proportion to things she's said is a little much. It's OK to have bad takes and have them pointed out to you, but if even half of the shit she pointed out in her resignation letter is true then I don't believe she's just running from criticism: She left because she worked in a toxic and vindictive work environment.

    But I also wouldn't be surprised if she left in the manner that she did to cause a stir and promote her new ventures. That seems to be the IDW way. /shrug
    I mean, regarding the bold, a few points;

    1> Weiss provided precisely zero verifiable examples of anything. It's a claim without any basis in fact, at this point.
    2> If she really thought she was forced to quit because of a hostile work environment, and could demonstrate that this was true, she could have sued.
    3> And the first thing you do when filing such a suit is do not post anything about in public. It directly weakens your case.

    So her posting this to her blog makes it fairly clear she has no intent to sue for constructive discharge (i.e. that she was forced to quit because her employer refused to do anything about the hostile work environment). And given that she provided no verifiable examples, I'm fairly comfortable suggesting this is either all in her head, or she's deliberately making it up to play the victim.

  10. #230
    Not to mention a whole shit ton of NYT writers have come out and said it's bullshit, and that what she viewed as "harassment" was her colleagues disagreeing with her assessment (most recently over the Tom Cotton op-ed).

    Bari is cut from the same cloth that CNN suffers from - she insists "balanced" means invoking two viewpoints opposite of each other, even when there's no question about what the right side of the equation is. The motivations are what's different: CNN does it to generate views, having Trump supporters on their air making insane statements directly drives their revenue.....Bari, on the other hand, gets paid the same no matter what she writes, and she insists on having a factually indefensible position not to make money, but to muddy the waters and push an agenda. She's an ideological op-ed writer whose ideology is factually incorrect. It'd be like......well, a Senator publishing an op-ed about how federal authorities should be sent into American cities and destroy state sovereignty over a threat which is made up and largely inaccurate.

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