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Re: [libreplanet-discuss] helping newcomers start blogs - but where?

From: John Rooke
Subject: Re: [libreplanet-discuss] helping newcomers start blogs - but where?
Date: Sat, 19 Aug 2017 08:49:29 +0100

On Fri, 2017-08-18 at 15:07 -0500, J.B. Nicholson wrote:

> John Rooke wrote:
> > The example of Daily Stormer is not a good one.  The site was being used
> > to organise alleged criminal activity up to and including murder.
> I think the point stands: intermediaries and proprietors can "wake up in a 
> bad mood" and decide to "kick [someone or some group] off the Internet". 
> Also, if there's anything to learn from the recent Russophobic attacks by 
> the US government and commercial media, allegations aren't good enough to 
> support a claim.
> The point I'm making in the context of /this/ thread remains the same: one 
> shouldn't ignore the power of an intermediary or proprietor when one seeks 
> to publish with the intention of being read. Picking any third party to 
> handle one's blog is always a risky tradeoff. Today fights 
> the US government in their pursuit of access logs (per 
> ), tomorrow 
> could hand over such data to another party without telling 
> anyone they did so, or shut down a blog they host that has become (even 
> only temporarily) politically uncomfortable. Non-technical users are not 
> socially encouraged to think through the ramifications of hosting with 
> someone else's computers. I maintain that a right-minded effort to get 
> non-technical users their own Internet-based publishing setup should help 
> make them aware that no matter how friendly their current hoster appears to 
> be, that hoster has the power to cut them off, hand over access logs, and 
> domains. If this power is leveraged against some (particularly those whose 
> political messages are disagreeable) the same can be done to the rest of us.
> > It was hardly a case of 'waking up in a bad mood', subsequent to the
> > death of Heather Heyer.
> Then your complaint is properly lodged with CloudFlare's CEO who made the 
> glib "wake up in a bad mood" comment and acted apparently extrajudicially 
> to "kick them off the Internet" as he put it.
> > Incidentally, Chomsky is rather less of a libertarian when it comes to
> > criticisms of his own work.
> I'm unaware of Chomsky "kicking someone off the Internet" in reaction to a 
> disapproving review.
> _______________________________________________
> libreplanet-discuss mailing list

I am not, of course, arguing against the rather obvious point that a
host can take down a website if they so choose.  I think my point also
stands.  I have no complaint against Cloudflare on this matter.  However
they choose to characterise their decision, it was no doubt carefully
considered.  Furthermore, it was correct.  If the alt-right/neo-fascist
movement ever achieve power, dissenting voices will have far more to
worry about than having their websites closed down.

Anyone who visited the Daily Stormer prior to its takedown knows that
there is plenty of evidence to vindicate Cloudflare's decision.  Even
now, if you care to look, there is plenty of evidence of the intentions
and activities of the alt-right/neo-fascist movement.  As Heather Heyer
herself said just before her death "if you're not outraged, you're not
paying attention".

As for Chomsky, he may not have "kicked anyone off the internet", but he
has to my certain knowledge, used his power to silence critics.  See
As he himself has observed, methods of "thought control" are "subtle"
and "effective".  What use, the freedom to publish, if nobody reads what
you have written?  While self-hosting of websites may prove to be a
necessary condition of freedom, it will never prove sufficient.

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