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Please close the door and switch on the fun without fail.

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Strikethrough '07 update
yahoo spring
cleolinda
I'm actually just going to go ahead and post all this, because I have other, non-controversial things to discuss and the Strikethrough thing is eating up my post, y'all.

Strikethrough '07 hits Firefox news. And Digg. And Boing Boing. And CNET. (An interesting point on that last one: "For its part, LiveJournal's abuse staff has defended pulling the plug on the communities by saying: 'Material which can be interpreted as expressing interest in, soliciting or encouraging illegal activity places LiveJournal at considerable legal risk.' That led one user, femmequixotic, to reply: 'I list "gay marriage" among my interests--that is illegal in my state. With this wording my journal could be deleted, without warning, for the fact that I support equal rights of marriage for all.' "

Did Livejournal have a choice, given possible legal ramifications? On the other hand, why are they speaking to major media outlets before they're explaining their actions to their own customers? And did LJ ignore complaints about an actual pedophile/incest community and a convicted pedophile because advertisers were not, at the time, threatened?

"So we pay their bills but aren't good enough to sit at their table?"

Instigator "Warriors for Innocence"--or rather, the woman running the blog--supports the "Redneck Mafia," neo-Confederates, and dominionist militia groups? (Yes, I had to look up "dominionism" myself. It seems to be the basic idea that "society [should be] self-consciously defined as exclusively Christian." You can imagine how they feel about GLBT issues.)

Warren Ellis weighs in. "All that said: if you listed 'rape' as an interest on your LiveJournal user profile, you must have known that someday someone was coming to see you about that." (ETA: Ellis decides to pull blog content from LJ.)

Here's the thing about that, and the reason this whole thing isn't so easy: No, a lot of people aren't going to sympathize with fanfic writers posting stories about (fictional) incest or whatever who got booted. I would be inclined to warn them to take the content down before I suspended anyone entirely, but as people are (somewhat derisively) pointing out, if you're breaking the terms of service, you are not necessarily guaranteed or owed a warning. And no, Livejournal is not required to "protect the First Amendment"; it is a private company, not a government institution.

But here's the important thing: what about rape and incest survivors who listed that as one of their "interests" so that other survivors could find them? Here we're talking about "interests" in the sense of "key words designating things I write about frequently"? And I do know for a fact that at least one such survivor was, in fact, suspended. And then there's the issue that people writing about rape, incest or child abuse, even fictionally, might be writing about it in a thoughtful, non-promoting way. Example: A Spanish-language community devoted to discussing--wait for it--Lolita was suspended as well. So do we then go through and boot only the writers of incest/rape/abuse fiction, fan or otherwise, that isn't good? I mean, Lolita is literature; it can stay, right? So who decides whether it's good or not?

I can understand targeting the LJ equivalent of NAMBLA, a journal or community that advocates (at best) inappropriate relationships or (at worst) criminal behavior in real life. But as for fiction, I personally feel that if controversial fictional material is posted under a friends-lock in a community that's invitation-only--that is, protected from the eyes of minors--it ought to stand, however. A lot of people will write things that disgust you, and a lot of people won't even write those things well, but I defy you to find a single thing on the internet that does not offend someone. I mean, if you don't believe me, go to baaaaabyanimals and look for any of the entries with babies in addition to fluffy kittens and watch people bitch about having their day ruined by human spawn. Maybe this is just a writer's perspective, but I feel like the issue is putting up barriers between minors and legal, controversial material, not removing the material entirely. And communities that did put up those barriers are still being punished.

Anyway. If you're going to complain about the situation, I suggest you play up the literary/Lolita angle and the survivor angle. The last thing fandom and fanfiction need right now is the spotlight of the mainstream media.

Weirdly related: Fun With Pedophiles: NBC Willing To Do Pretty Much Whatever It Takes To Catch A Predator. I cannot deny that it really is "voyeuristic humilitainment," and that the methods they've been using may be sketchy, and that it really is wrong to torment suspects with rubber chickens (no, seriously, click the link), but I reckon that the time that a guy walked in and said, "I brought some vodka," and Chris Hansen strolled out and said, "Did you bring enough for me?" was one of the most awesome things I have seen on television ever. But then: To Catch a Predator's partner, Perverted Justice, interested in going after LJ?


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Ah yes, Dominionists, some of whom want to bring back public stoning for homosexuals and adulterers.

I've not done fandom since Babylon 5, which should tell you how long it's been, but this stuff is seriously concerning me. Mainly for the points you mention - the grabbag method that's nailed the Lolita book coms and the support groups is seriously worrying me.

I'm moving this weekend, but if things haven't smoothed by the time I'm back up, I may be bailing LJ. Like it matters, but I'd feel better.

I agree with Ellis' point about putting key words in one's LJ Interests that are, well, potentially controversial.

But.

I deleted all my Interests because next time it could be someone complaining to LJ/SA about people interested in "Oscar Wilde".

Meanwhile, I have a mirror journal at Greatest Journal, where I Friended your emergency-needs journal from one of the Great LJ Power-Outs.

such as "goofing off by waving rubber chickens in the faces of sting targets while forcing them to the ground and handcuffing them." Bartel says that when she "raised concerns" about controversial comments made by Perverted Justice's founder, David Corvo, executive producer of the newsmagazine "Dateline," responded, "We all know they're nuts."

I'm sorry, but I think that's hysterically funny. Awww, poor child predators, faced with a rubber chicken!

Given that the men on these shows are actually going out of their way to drive/walk/bike/whatever to a location specifically to meet with an underage person, and given that Chris Hansen always is waving around IM transcripts and reading direct quotes from said transcripts back to the pedophiles/ebophiles on camera, all I can say is: cry more, emo kid. I think that article is failing to mention that local law enforcement agencies would likely not open themselves up to repeated risk of charges of entrapment if it were actually entrapment. I think they get most of these guys dead to rights on that show.

The whole thing just strikes me as kind of senseless, especially in regards to the Lolita angle.

Also, much as I respect Warren Ellis for taking a stand and walking the walk, I think we'll survive just fine without him, and the vast multitudes of non-fandom people on LJ likely don't care. He left LJ in a huff last year and then came back three months later, IIRC. I doubt Six Apart oro their lawyers are frantic that Warren Ellis just stopped posting "original content" on LJ.

An actual link-edit question

The "I had to look up 'dominionism' myself" link (in the "WFI" paragraph) is a repeat of the link right above it.

I'm a proofer. Proofing's what I do. (And I don't yet know what I want to say about the situation...)

Re: An actual link-edit question

Like I said to someone yesterday: someday, I will manage to post an entry where all the links work. Today, however, is not that day.

And I thought Book 7 would cause the Intrapocalypse.


Seriously, though? Who is going to make the distinctions between what is appropriate and what is not? Innocent people are being affected by all of this, and some guilty people are escaping all of this persecution. Child predators are terrible and sick, and need to be stopped, but this is clearly not the way it's going to happen. Frankly, I think it's a couple steps backward to go through and suspend these journals.

I feel terrible for the survivor communities and the members of such comms. As if they haven't had to go through enough, and now they're robbed of their outlets? I mean, come one.


On a lighter note, people are calling for Frank the Goat's Head.

Is Strikethrough the official name now?

Anyway. If you're going to complain about the situation, I suggest you play up the literary/Lolita angle and the survivor angle.

That's really the only thing about this that bugs me. It just shows that LJ didn't put much research/thought into this before they did it; I get the sense that LJ has a history of doing that and it's going to come back and bite them in the ass at some point.

Six Apart definitely has a history of that, from what I'm hearing. My major problems are that 1) they bowed to pressure from a single militant with, uh, problematic interests 2) without checking her out first 3) or the journals themselves for context and content, and then 4) spoke to mainstream media before they bothered to say anything to their own customers.

P.S. I have always loved that icon.

SA CEO FINALLY speaks. It's not the way we all want him to, but at least we know he's out there somewhere

If folks were more specific with term use, rape victim survivor, or controversial modernist literature, there would be fewer problems. This illustrates why one needs to be clear and precise in language. Using general terms probably grouped them with the criminals on searches all along.
I know for a while SCA would turn up both the the medieval society and the satanists.
I know when I google too encompassing of a term I get plenty I wasn't looking for.

I have been and still am, frankly, way more concerned about the effect that this suddenly assembled "fandom army" could have when faced with mainstream media. I don't particularly want more attention drawn to whatever naughty fanfics I or my friends may or may not have.

I know who Fox news will side with.

PeeJ is very interested in targeting LJ. They have been for six months now. That's straight out of the founder's mouth.

You know, as long as they target actual pedophiles, I am all for it. Unfortunately, it doesn't seem to be going well so far.

This won't end well for anyone.

Except possibly LJ users who don't like incest.

I'd wager that members of incest-survivor support groups don't like incest very much, and those that have been banned probably aren't happy about it.

You know, I am all for deleting comms that host pedophiles, but this is ridiculous. A comm for discussion of Lolita? Gamers? They're going too far.

I just changed my interests down to "free speech". It's small, but maybe it will make an impact.

I have to wonder whether the Lolita community would've been shut down if it'd been in English :-(