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You Can't Say That On the Internet

samzenpus posted about 2 years ago | from the watch-what-you-say dept.

Censorship 432

hessian writes in with a story about the arbitrary and often outdated online decency standards being imposed by companies."A bastion of openness and counterculture, Silicon Valley imagines itself as the un-Chick-fil-A. But its hyper-tolerant facade often masks deeply conservative, outdated norms that digital culture discreetly imposes on billions of technology users worldwide. What is the vehicle for this new prudishness? Dour, one-dimensional algorithms, the mathematical constructs that automatically determine the limits of what is culturally acceptable. Consider just a few recent kerfuffles. In early September, The New Yorker found its Facebook page blocked for violating the site’s nudity and sex standards. Its offense: a cartoon of Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden. Eve’s bared nipples failed Facebook’s decency test."

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Sounds like a campus speech code (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42026169)

Must.

Not.

Offend.

Anyone.

(unless the target is white males)

Re:Sounds like a campus speech code (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42026195)

It's your white male privilege to withstand being offended by anything.

Re:Sounds like a campus speech code (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42026341)

It's your white male privilege to withstand being offended by anything.

ANYONE can learn to withstand being offended by anything. Why, after a time you get so good at it that the offended types look like a bunch of pathetic whiners who only cry about what somebody else said (that they didn't have to listen to) because they've never once faced a real problem.

By the way, who decides this shit? You can show almost all the breast, or lots of cleavage, but not the nipple, and that's okay. If you show the nipple but not most of the breast then that's indecent. But we see male nipples all the time seeing how they have no breasts and go shirtless if they want. Guess nipples aren't a problem there. Maybe being unable to nurse an infant is what makes them non-obscene? I'm confused.

Can the prudes at least learn a little consistency?

Re:Sounds like a campus speech code (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42026515)

This Toyota advertisement [queerty.com] clearly stars a woman walking as she strips off her clothing to reveal her bare breasts.

But "she" is really a man, hence why the panties stay on. Decency standards be damned, this is 100% legal to air.

Re:Sounds like a campus speech code (1, Funny)

C0R1D4N (970153) | about 2 years ago | (#42026713)

Hot

Thank you

Re:Sounds like a campus speech code (2)

theshowmecanuck (703852) | about 2 years ago | (#42026747)

It's your white male burden to be accused of offending everyone.

Re:Sounds like a campus speech code (0, Troll)

scottbomb (1290580) | about 2 years ago | (#42026251)

Must.

Not.

Offend.

Anyone.

(unless the target is conservative Christian white males)

FTFY.

Re:Sounds like a campus speech code (5, Funny)

trum4n (982031) | about 2 years ago | (#42026305)

Screw you, and the donkey your Savior rode in on!

Re:Sounds like a campus speech code (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42026531)

We'll see how long this comment stays a "2".

The longer it goes without being modded down, the more truth there is to Scott's post and the more Trum looks like a complete asshole.

Re:Sounds like a campus speech code (1, Insightful)

mwvdlee (775178) | about 2 years ago | (#42026329)

Must.

Not.

Offend.

Anyone.

(unless the target is conservative Christian white males)

FTFY.

You ever tried to offend a christian?
Trust me; you must not offend a christian. It's worse than offending a muslim.

Re:Sounds like a campus speech code (1)

characterZer0 (138196) | about 2 years ago | (#42026391)

Trust me; you must not offend a christian. It's worse than offending a muslim.

Explain.

Re:Sounds like a campus speech code (2, Informative)

Tsingi (870990) | about 2 years ago | (#42026469)

Trust me; you must not offend a christian. It's worse than offending a muslim.

Explain.

All you have to do to offend a Christian is question his God.

Re:Sounds like a campus speech code (5, Insightful)

sycodon (149926) | about 2 years ago | (#42026535)

At least he won't cut your throat.

Re:Sounds like a campus speech code (3, Insightful)

Tsingi (870990) | about 2 years ago | (#42026655)

At least he won't cut your throat.

And the government won't either. It's a struggle keeping church and state separate, but worth it. For the most part the west has gotten rid of ridiculous blasphemy laws.

Re:Sounds like a campus speech code (1)

sycodon (149926) | about 2 years ago | (#42026687)

Good pivot there.

Re:Sounds like a campus speech code (4, Interesting)

icebraining (1313345) | about 2 years ago | (#42026815)

No, but they might bomb you if you offend them by being in a nightclub for people with the wrong sexual orientation [religioustolerance.org] .

You may also offend them by being poor, in which case they might just steal your recently born baby [bbc.co.uk] .

Of course, these are exceptions. But so is your accusation.

Re:Sounds like a campus speech code (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42026541)

All you have to do to offend a muslim is draw a respectful picture of Mohammad, what's your point?

Re:Sounds like a campus speech code (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42026853)

Trust me; you must not offend a christian. It's worse than offending a muslim.

Explain.

All you have to do to offend a Christian is question his God.

All you have to do to offend a Muslim is drawing his Prophet (PBUH etc etc).

Re:Sounds like a campus speech code (3, Funny)

mwvdlee (775178) | about 2 years ago | (#42026809)

Just wait a few hours, then read the comments to see just how easy it is to offend a christian.

Re:Sounds like a campus speech code (2)

gnasher719 (869701) | about 2 years ago | (#42026393)

You ever tried to offend a christian?
Trust me; you must not offend a christian. It's worse than offending a muslim.

If that is your experience, then the offended person probably wasn't a Christian but only called himself or herself one. (Of course you need to consider that the Christian principle of "love your neighbour as you love yourself" may include teaching your neighbour that offending others may have consequences. But that is the limit of it. )

Re:Sounds like a campus speech code (5, Insightful)

AlecC (512609) | about 2 years ago | (#42026479)

And how is an outsider to distinguish between a Christian and someone just calling themselves one? Remember that the Crusaders, the Inquisition and Fred Phelps call themselves Christian. I am not concerned about the inward doctrine - many intolerant people claim the legal protection and public recognition of being Christian.

I an an atheist, but I honour the teachings of the Gospels (but not the rest of the Bible) as admirable and compassionate. But, in my opinion, nearly all southern republican politicians who claim to be Christian are in deep breach of that loving doctrine. I cannot recognise the teachings of Jesus in anyone, for example, who supports the death penalty. Nor in those who support lifetime benefit caps. But if I insult them, they will wrap their claimed Christianity around them and spit venom at me.

Re:Sounds like a campus speech code (2, Interesting)

sycodon (149926) | about 2 years ago | (#42026555)

Because you are intimately familiar with almost all southern Republican politicians.

How's the weather up there on your High Horse?

Re:Sounds like a campus speech code (0)

CohibaVancouver (864662) | about 2 years ago | (#42026603)

And how is an outsider to distinguish between a Christian and someone just calling themselves one?

They same way you distinguish anything else in life: Through observation.

If someone claims to be Christian yet fails to follow Christ's teachings then they're not Christian (now certainly there are grey areas in Christian behaviour ["turn the other cheek"] but by and large the rules of Christianity are pretty clear).

To be a Christian you also have to believe the words spoken in The Apostle's Creed, however that's harder to prove through observation - For this you have to take a Christian's word.

Re:Sounds like a campus speech code (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42026511)

You ever tried to offend a christian? Trust me; you must not offend a christian. It's worse than offending a muslim.

If that is your experience, then the offended person probably wasn't a Christian but only called himself or herself one. (Of course you need to consider that the Christian principle of "love your neighbour as you love yourself" may include teaching your neighbour that offending others may have consequences. But that is the limit of it. )

I'm glad a real Christian is here to tell us the difference.

Re:Sounds like a campus speech code (2, Insightful)

0a100b (456593) | about 2 years ago | (#42026529)

Right, then the offended person is no true Christian. Maybe a Scotsman?

Re:Sounds like a campus speech code (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42026563)

No it doesn't, it means treat your neighbor exactly how you would want them to treat you. So unless you want them plotting revenge on you, hitting you, screaming at you, the only consequence they should be learning from a "Christian" is that they know how to forgive. Unless you're a person who pretends to be "Christian" but is actually a follower through Christ of Judaism. The only people who talk about an eye for an eye are the Jewish people. No revenge in Christ's dialogue. You really should read them yourself. Not much of a "Christian" are you?

Re:Sounds like a campus speech code (3, Insightful)

DrgnDancer (137700) | about 2 years ago | (#42026601)

Not that I agree with your parent; I've met prickly people of almost every faith and creed who can become unreasonable at the least provocation. That said, your reply is a pretty poor counter. Such a "No True Scotsman" argument can be applied to almost anything: "No true Muslim would be so offended, after all Islam means "peace"", "No true liberal would be so offended, we're all about inclusiveness of ideas", "No true conservative would be so offended, we always argue from a position of logic", No true Buddhist..." etc.

"Love thy neighbor as thyself" is only one line from one Testament, from one half of the book. There's plenty of arguments in Christian scripture for being an asshole too, and lots of Christians use those to justify the very behavior you say they shouldn't engage in. There are lots of Christians in the world. There are lots of prickly easily offended people in the world. The intersection of those two sets is also quite large.

Re:Sounds like a campus speech code (1)

kilfarsnar (561956) | about 2 years ago | (#42026489)

Must.

Not.

Offend.

Anyone.

(unless the target is white males)

You mad!

Re:Sounds like a campus speech code (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42026621)

Fuck that. I offend everyone equally. If you are too emotionally weak to handle that, that's your problem.

more like a bad article (3, Interesting)

poetmatt (793785) | about 2 years ago | (#42026765)

I'm disappointed with the article headline: acting like you can't say something?
Chick Fil-gay can and absolutely did say what they said. Freedom of speech is still alive and well, even if people don't like it (add NYT to that list for willingly censoring at the behest of the government). They simply deserved what they got in response as the market correctly responded. It's one thing to be against rights (which is repulsive to many, but still free speech), but it's another entirely to do what Apple does and willingly censor.
Why do people start with bullshit headlines when the article is also crap?

filters (5, Insightful)

Custard Horse (1527495) | about 2 years ago | (#42026187)

Perhaps if we could set our own content filters this would solve the problem? I'm uncomfortable with others deciding whose nipples I can and can't see.

Re:filters (4, Funny)

Quakeulf (2650167) | about 2 years ago | (#42026227)

Yes, they might just have really bad taste in nipples too!

How about technical terms! (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42026445)

Perhaps if we could set our own content filters this would solve the problem? I'm uncomfortable with others deciding whose nipples I can and can't see.

I can't tell you how many times I have tried to post something only to have it marked "[Censored]"

Words like: "orifice", "petcock", and other words that are used everyday in polite company.

I don't know what software these websites are using (ericthecarguy.com, finehomebuilding.com) but their forums block the most innocuous shit. And it's not like automechanics and construction workers are known for their delicate sensibilities!

And if anyone is offended buy words like that, they really need to get a grip.

Re:filters (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42026517)

Y-you mean control our own lives?!

What madness do you speak of?!

The man has to control everything!

Re:filters (1)

Dr. Manhattan (29720) | about 2 years ago | (#42026827)

That's part of it. But it's not like Facebook is obligated to carry stuff they don't like. They have a perfect right to be stupid and intolerant laughingstocks.

Obligatory XKCD (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42026197)

http://xkcd.com/137/

Re:Obligatory XKCD (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42026473)

ob goatkcd> [goatkcd.com]


everytime you link to goatse, an angel screams

The Internet is for porn! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42026207)

Those prudes better be thankful they're allowed to host non-porn content at all, ungrateful lot.

Facebook is not "online culture" (4, Interesting)

vlm (69642) | about 2 years ago | (#42026213)

Silicon Valley imagines itself as the un-Chick-fil-A

Eve’s bared nipples failed Facebook’s decency test

LOL facebook is for middle aged women to check every 15 seconds for new pixs of their friends kids or pix of their "fur babies" aka over pampered dogs, and teenage girls to sling insults at each other and compete about friend counts. Guys mostly post "blackmail pixs" for fun of their buddies throwing up, getting high, or getting it on with a landwhale.

"tits or GTFO" is not going to work on FB. Its middle aged woman / teen girl culture not online or whatever.

Now if you posted a nice rack on a "internet culture" area like 4chan or maybe a link here on /., that would more or less work.

Re:Facebook is not "online culture" (3, Insightful)

jnelson4765 (845296) | about 2 years ago | (#42026657)

Um, it's not just that. Me and my friends use FB for organizing social events - parties, performances, etc. The fire performance troupe I'm involved with does most of our organizing on Facebook too - we have jobs, and kids, and school, and live all over the area, so having quick discussions there makes life much easier.

Look, I go to Burning Man. I've seen more people naked than anyone short of a doctor or a nudist tour guide, and I have to say the ban on nudity on Facebook is a good thing. There are creepers out there who post pictures of people having a nude stroll. Without the subject's consent.

Being able to complain about it means that they get taken down.

Facebook is for real life, and some people (myself included) like having an area where there isn't soft-core porn all over the place. See, if I had to deal with that, I'd return fire with some of the better pictures from /r/gaybears - not everyone is into the same thing, and you get rather tired of being shown something you're NOT IN TO.

Re:Facebook is not "online culture" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42026705)

Because, clearly, women (whether middle-aged or adolescent) cannot deal with seeing... a woman's bare nipples.

Where is that content filter when one needs it, in the shower, in front of the mirror, while dressing. We need action! NOW!!!

Re:Facebook is not "online culture" (1)

Sanoj (149435) | about 2 years ago | (#42026873)

Are you one of those "bro-grammers" we keep hearing about? I was convinced they did not exist but after reading your post I am not so sure.

If you don't like it... (5, Insightful)

aicrules (819392) | about 2 years ago | (#42026231)

go use some other internets! Oh wait, you mean to say it's not the internets that is being censored? It's actually company or privately-owned websites that are accessed using the internet? And these companies and people who own these sites are able to set the bar for what is allowed on their site? There are many wonderfully open sites out there that will gladly let you post whatever you want despite you not being owed anything by them. Why is this a problem? And kerfuffle? Seriously?

Re:If you don't like it... (1)

Chrisq (894406) | about 2 years ago | (#42026307)

go use some other internets! Oh wait, you mean to say it's not the internets that is being censored? It's actually company or privately-owned websites that are accessed using the internet? And these companies and people who own these sites are able to set the bar for what is allowed on their site? There are many wonderfully open sites out there that will gladly let you post whatever you want despite you not being owed anything by them. Why is this a problem? And kerfuffle? Seriously?

Because everyone knows that there are no alternatives to Facebook .... at least where your 1010 friends can discuss "Big Brother" and "Pop Idol" (but not "Big Brothel" and "Pop your blow-up doll")

Re:If you don't like it... (1, Insightful)

joaommp (685612) | about 2 years ago | (#42026389)

Only ten friends? How sad :(

Wait, you have friends?!? Good for you!

Re:If you don't like it... (1)

aicrules (819392) | about 2 years ago | (#42026547)

Random "oops i took that number as binary because it only has 1 and 0 in it" joke...

Re:If you don't like it... (1)

Hatta (162192) | about 2 years ago | (#42026591)

Why are these companies censoring their sites? Because they don't want to offend their customers. But I find censorship offensive, and I might want to be their customer. If they care about avoiding offense to their customers, shouldn't I at least let them know?

Yes, they're well within their rights to censor anything they want on their websites. That doesn't mean it makes sense for them to do so, and it doesn't mean we can't complain about it.

Re:If you don't like it... (5, Insightful)

DrgnDancer (137700) | about 2 years ago | (#42026803)

This guy isn't saying that these companies are violating the law, or that they should be somehow forced to change their algorithms. He's simply pointing out the hypocrisy of their advocating for free access to information while simultaneously directly and indirectly censoring the content they present. Whether the hypocrisy is a problem or not probably depends on who your are, what your goals are, and what level of censorship the company is presenting you with. Google for instance doesn't censor its results (except in rare cases where it's required to by law), but does censor indirectly through blocking certain search terms in auto-complete. Arguably that's a pretty mild and indirect form of censorship (you can after all simply type the your search terms out completely), and it may not bother many people. Facebook is more explicit in its censorship, but also arguably has a greater legal compliance requirement.

It's a discussion that's worth having, even if the most we can do about it is avoid or support companies that either support or reject our own opinions on the matter. It's certainly not as important a subject as some others, but it's not trivial either. It's worth looking at.

Interesting (4, Insightful)

Chrisq (894406) | about 2 years ago | (#42026233)

Some Google autocompletes are almost comical. Enter "peni" and you get "penicillin", "peninsular", and "panistone paramount". Who would have known that a small town cinema would appear to be more important to Google than the male organ!

Re:Interesting (4, Funny)

Aqualung812 (959532) | about 2 years ago | (#42026303)

That's because digital wang comes along free with most searches. It is like the parsley of Internet search results.

Who orders parsley?

Re:Interesting (4, Funny)

Chrisq (894406) | about 2 years ago | (#42026347)

That's because digital wang comes along free with most searches. It is like the parsley of Internet search results.

Who orders parsley?

For more conjectures on the Parsley/Wang metaphor please ask Parsley Wang [facebook.com] .

don't really or she'll be justifiably pissed at Slashdot

Re:Interesting (1)

L4t3r4lu5 (1216702) | about 2 years ago | (#42026671)

The scent of parsley is more pleasing on the breath than the meal you've just eaten, especially after garlic or onion dishes. Treat it like a mint.

Re:Interesting (1)

TheSpoom (715771) | about 2 years ago | (#42026559)

Google knows the bad PR that would come with a kid looking up information on penicillin being presented with penis as a possibility. Of course, it wouldn't offend the kid (who would probably see it as reasonable), it would offend their PTA office-holding parents (who would probably just see dollar signs).

Simple (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42026241)

You can show any type of violence. You can't show any kind of nudity. And it's not the "digital culture" in general that imposes anything. It's the religious fundamentalists of the USA who are responsible. I think the world would be a better place if we allowed children to watch porn and didn't allow them to watch violence.

Captcha: morale

Re:Simple (3, Interesting)

BVis (267028) | about 2 years ago | (#42026499)

Logged in to say this. The 'moral majority' (which is neither) has decided that they know what's best for the rest of us. They terrorize politicians into implementing 'decency' rules that reinforce this belief. They pay hordes of lawyers to sue media companies that don't toe their line.

They're a bunch of fundamentally insecure white males (and their chattel) that are so terrified of the concept of female sexuality that they move to oppress any expression of it outside of... well, actually, any expression of it at all.

Fundamentalist Evangelical "Christians" are a plague on the United States. Hopefully the drubbing their meat puppets took in the last election will disarm them a bit; if the politicians know they can no longer win elections just by pandering to the fundies, they'll stop doing it.

NIPPLES HAVE NO BUSINESS BEING SEEN !! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42026259)

They are for sucking !! PERIOD !!

Re:NIPPLES HAVE NO BUSINESS BEING SEEN !! (2)

joaommp (685612) | about 2 years ago | (#42026427)

nipples should be allowed on the grounds that their images are teaching materials in interface design learning.
"The only intuitive interface is the nipple. Everything else is learned"

Eve's bared nipples (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42026263)

Here's all I wanted to see: http://www.newyorker.com/online/blogs/cartoonists/stevens-cartoon%201.jpg

Re:Eve's bared nipples (1)

somersault (912633) | about 2 years ago | (#42026317)

... *facepalm*

Re:Eve's bared nipples (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42026353)

What the first thing Adam said to Eve? "Stand back. I'm not sure how big this thing is gonna get!"

The world today... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42026265)

It seems like the world took a wrong turn somewhere:
Showing violent acts, blood, gore, murder and suffering is totally acceptable (movies, tabloids etc.), but
if half a butt, boob or nipple is visible, it's deemed unmoral, wrong, destructive, offensive and so on...

I'd rather have my children gaze upon some exposed skin, or two (or more) people in a loving embrace/sexual situation, rather than a orgy of dismembered bodies, blood and gore.

Re:The world today... (1)

kilfarsnar (561956) | about 2 years ago | (#42026583)

It seems like the world took a wrong turn somewhere: Showing violent acts, blood, gore, murder and suffering is totally acceptable (movies, tabloids etc.), but if half a butt, boob or nipple is visible, it's deemed unmoral, wrong, destructive, offensive and so on...

I'd rather have my children gaze upon some exposed skin, or two (or more) people in a loving embrace/sexual situation, rather than a orgy of dismembered bodies, blood and gore.

It's an upside-down world we live in, isn't it?

Re:The world today... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42026667)

More like inside-out...

You think this is new? (4, Insightful)

L4t3r4lu5 (1216702) | about 2 years ago | (#42026271)

"We train young men to drop fire on people, but their commanders won't allow them to write "fuck" on their airplanes because it's obscene."
- Colonel Walter E. Kurtz, Francis Ford Copolla's Apocalypse Now!

What about sexualised imagery (not just the videos; Some of the lyrics are plainly obscene) in pop music, when showing just a boob gets a show an adult cert in the US. Not a problem seeing real boobs at the beach, though!

Re:You think this is new? (3)

ATMAvatar (648864) | about 2 years ago | (#42026339)

"If you suck on a tit the movie gets an R rating. If you hack the tit off with an axe it will be PG." Jack Nicholson

What's particularly disturbing is that the prudism is getting worse over time. A good example is the original Andromeda Strain. It has a G rating on it, but features (briefly) a naked woman in it. Were it to come out today, it would get an instant R rating for that scene alone.

Re:You think this is new? (1)

MozeeToby (1163751) | about 2 years ago | (#42026615)

The rating system was wildly different when the first Andromeda Strain was released. The film was released to theaters in 1971, but I'd be willing to bet that the MPAA applied its 'G' rating the year before in 1970 when the only choices were G(eneral audiences), M(ature audiences), R(estricted), X. And the nudity in Andromeda Strain is fleeting and utterly non-sexual, even today it wouldn't force the movie out a PG rating. At absolute worst Andromeda Strain would land a PG13 rating today (a rating that simply didn't exist at the time).

Re:You think this is new? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42026539)

if a president is responsible for the deaths of 1000 of people, is fine... if he fucks his staff... whoo hold on

Yet everyone likes to look at boobies (1)

cod3r_ (2031620) | about 2 years ago | (#42026279)

While it's censored on one site most people have at least 2 other tabs open with boobies..

Chick-fil-A is pro-censorship? Since when? (5, Informative)

sco08y (615665) | about 2 years ago | (#42026281)

A bastion of openness and counterculture, Silicon Valley imagines itself as the un-Chick-fil-A.

When has Chick-fil-A ever called for censorship? Last I checked, progressives were abusing government power [washingtonpost.com] to silence Chick-fil-A, not the other way around.

Re:Chick-fil-A is pro-censorship? Since when? (4, Insightful)

aicrules (819392) | about 2 years ago | (#42026421)

Summary writer is clearly a progressive bomb thrower. Maybe not actually a progressive him/herself, but the whole summary is meant to be pot shot after pot shot at conservative ideals while trying lamely to appear as a real discussion on the topic. The use of the term kerfuffle sealed this assessment for me. Tries to sound like a terminally serious issue that evil people like Chik-Fil-A are on the wrong side of and then uses the term kerfuffle which, RIGHTLY, puts the topic back in the "no one really gives a shit about this because it's not actually an issue" category.

Re:Chick-fil-A is pro-censorship? Since when? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42026629)

When has Chick-fil-A ever called for censorship?

Directly? Probably never. It does support Religious Right groups that have called for censorship and have boycotted things that they disagree with. Turn around sure is a hell of a bitch, no?

Go tell that to 4chan. (1)

Noryungi (70322) | about 2 years ago | (#42026293)

Go ahead. I'll wait right here.

Related webcomics [duelinganalogs.com]

The "un-Chick-fil-A" (4, Funny)

Revotron (1115029) | about 2 years ago | (#42026315)

Sorry, I just can't approve of a company that doesn't support delicious chicken sandwiches.

But no, really - I see what's going on here. "We're tolerant of everything - unless it's something we don't find culturally acceptable." Yep, that passes liberal scrutiny.

We the People killed free speech. (4, Insightful)

concealment (2447304) | about 2 years ago | (#42026319)

We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

The original idea behind free speech was that no one could prevent you from making a political statement.

Then, by popular demand, free speech got cheesed out to mean "any public statement," whether relevant or not.

This blurred the line between important speech and everyday raging around with emotions through words.

Now, we the people see all speech as a matter of flavor. Don't harsh my buzz with your unkind words, man.

As a result, the free markets are responding and are removing words that generate expensive customer complaints.

They're removing them whether there's validity to them or not.

Good work, We the People.

Re:We the People killed free speech. (1)

dkleinsc (563838) | about 2 years ago | (#42026641)

The original idea behind free speech was that no one could prevent you from making a political statement.

Actually, it seems like the basic goal of the anti-Federalist faction (led by Thomas Jefferson, although James Madison was also involved) was to prevent a government from attempting to control thought. Of any kind. That's why freedom of religion, press, speech, and assembly go together: The idea is that a free person should be able to think what they will, believe what they will, and spread their ideas around by written word or speaking privately and publicly.

Then, by popular demand, free speech got cheesed out to mean "any public statement," whether relevant or not.

Who gets to decide what kind of statement qualifies as "relevant"?

Re:We the People killed free speech. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42026735)

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishmentof religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof;or abridging the freedom of speech,or of the press; or theright of the people peaceably to assemble, and topetition the Government for a redress of grievances.

Well if we are quoting things lets do it right (hehe see what I did there :)).

'Congress shall make no law.' Meaning the US gov can not suppress it. It says no where in there about other people. Also 'we the people' was a public letter to a king.

It is pretty clear. Usually those who hold up 'I am just using free speech' on the internet are trying to be offensive in some way. While amusing for them and some others there will be people who are *not* amused. While posting on another board I saw an an admin who brought down the ban-hammer on a small group of people they were screaming free speech he put it perfectly. "Sure you have free speech go do it somewhere else and get the hell off my board. Want to continue this? Pay for your own hosting and servers.". Those 3 people were making it so no one else wanted to even look at the board anymore. They sucked the fun out of it for everyone else but themselves. Unfortunately these trolls make it hard to find real instances where freedom of speech is being impugned (hint: chick-fil-a is a good example of it).

Large businesses are looking not to be embarrassed in some way. For example even chick-filet-a back peddled on its stance (but that is left out of the summary because it can be snarky and get a few extra 'views').

This sort of thing pops up once and awhile. "you are all being hypocrites" Which usually translates I want to post something I know for 100% certain will tick someone off. But I want to do it anyway for the 'luz' but you are not letting me.

It all comes down to know your audience. For example the 'un-Chick-fil-A' comment. He knows who his audience is (hint: a bunch of uptight internet crusaders).

Re:We the People killed free speech. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42026805)

That's a pretty shitty and restrictive definition of free speech you have there. I want no part in it.

Interesting cultural bias issue (5, Insightful)

dkleinsc (563838) | about 2 years ago | (#42026343)

In parts of the Middle East, a woman showing her hair is considered harlotry, while in parts of Polynesia a woman going topless is not. In some areas of sub-Saharan Africa, women going topless is ok, but showing her thighs is obscene. If you're operating globally, who's cultural norms do you use for censorship? Because about the only pictures of women that are universally acceptable would have everyone in burqas.

It gets even more complicated than that: Do you allow Eve topless, but not the Virgin Mary? Do you allow Venus de Milo or Michaelangelo's David, but not modern nude art? If you allow nude sculptures or paintings, do you censor nude photographs? If you allow nude photographs, what's the line between works of art and porn?

Re:Interesting cultural bias issue (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42026413)

what's the line between works of art and porn?

That's easy. - If she is wearing high heels, it's porn.

Re:Interesting cultural bias issue (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42026459)

Personally I find burqas obscene.

Re:Interesting cultural bias issue (1)

ceoyoyo (59147) | about 2 years ago | (#42026569)

Everyone here seems to think this is a bad thing. I disagree. Facebook et. al. are just applying what the majority THINK is their moral code, strictly. Most parents don't want pictures of boobies posted where their children can see them. Fine - no pictures of topless women, drawings of Adam and Eve, or the Venus de Milo ( Aphrodite de Milos). Oh wait, that's not what you meant?

The summary says the policies are arbitrary. They're not. Just the opposite. And it exposes the ridiculousness of our double standards.

Re:Interesting cultural bias issue (1)

kilfarsnar (561956) | about 2 years ago | (#42026649)

Kinda shows you how arbitrary it all is, eh?

Not algorithmic (4, Insightful)

Ronin441 (89631) | about 2 years ago | (#42026371)

That bared nipple in a cartoon thing? Not an algorithm (at least not one implemented on a computer) -- that was censored by a plain ol' minimum-wage human.

"Water" and "I don't know" (4, Funny)

cerebralpayne (96960) | about 2 years ago | (#42026373)

Those are the things you can't say. Not without getting soaked, anyway.

Re:"Water" and "I don't know" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42026465)

Those are the things you can't say. Not without getting soaked, anyway.

DUH, I HEARD THAT!

Re:"Water" and "I don't know" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42026581)

wow, you're O L D

Cost (3, Insightful)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | about 2 years ago | (#42026381)

Many more people will complain about offences to their Victorian sensibilities than will complain about removing cartoon nipples. So, these policies keep their administrative costs lower. If you want this to change, attack their cost assumptions. Complain about their intolerance. I'm not typically one to advocate for being a complainer, but if these companies are putting in systems based on complainers, then those are the rules as constructed. Worst case: the rules about complainers are decommissioned.

The main problem with that strategy is that tolerant people tend to not be complainers. You won't find a Million Moms against Intolerance marching on the Capitol. But as the saying goes, "only be intolerant of intolerance."

The other approach is to accept that these services will reflect the Xth percentile opinion and the only way to change that is to change the X position in society. I can't see kids raised on today's Internet being particularly offended by cartoon nipples when they're in their 50's.

My hope is that we can move to a society where posting a war photo of a blown up baby isn't more socially acceptable than posting a picture a baby being born.

The world doesn't revolve around the geek. (4, Insightful)

westlake (615356) | about 2 years ago | (#42026403)

Silicon Valley imagines itself as the un-Chick-fil-A. But its hyper-tolerant facade often masks deeply conservative, outdated norms that digital culture discreetly imposes on billions of technology users worldwide.

Silicon Valley is tech. It enables. But it is not in control. There is no such thing as a unified "digital culture."

Online communities --- like any other --- form around people who share the same interests and values. The geek is not always going to like what he finds out there.

Solution could be worse than the problem/ (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42026417)

From the article:

After several disasters caused by algorithmic trading earlier this year, authorities in Hong Kong and Australia drafted proposals to establish regular independent audits of the design, development and modifications of computer systems used in such trades. Why couldn’t auditors do the same to Google?

Silicon Valley wouldn’t have to disclose its proprietary algorithms, only share them with the auditors. A drastic measure? Perhaps. But it’s one that is proportional to the growing clout technology companies have in reshaping not only our economy but also our culture.

Be careful what you ask - if such auditors would be installed, all kind of organisations, churches and "orgs" would try to put their people in it.

BTW, I read the article in Dutch over here [demorgen.be] .

Re:Solution could be worse than the problem/ (1)

Thud457 (234763) | about 2 years ago | (#42026685)

I'm pretty sure the "algorithm" in question is to forward any reported post to human reviewer outsourced to Elbonia or wherever is absolutely dirt cheapest.
Who then applies their local norms.

Yes We Can (1)

rossdee (243626) | about 2 years ago | (#42026419)

That

There I just did.

un Chick-fil-A? (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42026593)

The un- Chick-fil-A?? Who did that company try to silence? No one at all.

Here you go. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42026635)

For Tesla's sake say it already :

Fuck. Fucking fuck. Dick. Tits. Asshole. Vagina. Shit. Cock.

There you go. 1st Amendment served.
Anything important forgotten?

"Digital Culture" has nothing to do with it... (1)

wildstoo (835450) | about 2 years ago | (#42026643)

The example in TFS is stupid. In what sense is technology or Silicon Valley responsible for the way in which information or opinion is suppressed?

Individual companies set their own content standards, tune their own algorithms and make their own bad decisions. There's no digital conspiracy here.

TFA complains about Google's selective autocomplete. What's the big deal? It doesn't actually stop you from searching for terms that will potentially turn up material that some people might find offensive. It simply makes you type the whole term yourself.

Basically, the article seems to insinuate that the companies implementing these filters are maneuvering to become our de facto moral guardians, deciding for society what is "good" and "safe" to read or search for. This is backwards. The companies are merely responding to the demands of an already easily-offended society.

wtf is ... (1)

Martin S. (98249) | about 2 years ago | (#42026645)

wtf is un-Chick-fil-A some American cultural assumption and why is it so un-American?

Pasties? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42026661)

Why couldn't they just put pasties on Eve that had nice and respectable tassels?

How old is Eve? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42026673)

If, in the picture, Eve is supposed to be even one minute short of exactly 18 then it would also be instant Child Porn. They would be instantly dragged off to jail and have their lives taken away from them.

They got off lucky only having their page blocked.

Chick-fil-a in San Jose is packed (1)

CQDX (2720013) | about 2 years ago | (#42026843)

We have on Chick-fil-a here in Silicon Valley, just recently opened. Last time I went it was packed. Same with the ones I went to in L.A. this past Fall. People here didn't buy into the "lets villify and boycott Chick-fil-a thing". If anything, the boycott only increased business. Despite this being a very blue state, most people around here generally have the same morals and tolerances as the rest of the nation.

Silicon Vally is not problem ... (3, Insightful)

Infernal Device (865066) | about 2 years ago | (#42026855)

The New York Times got caught in the same filter that catches everyone else while posting in corporate forum. Their problem is that, for some misguided reason, they, being the NYT, believe that they have some sort of free speech rights in a private space. Facebook is not a public space - it's corporate-owned and controlled. It's private space, open to some members of the public to post in, but with whatever restrictions FB feels like applying.

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