Censorship should exist in a free and open society?

  1. What are the conditions under which censorship should exist in a free and open society? I cannot believe that the Political Correctness & Freedom of Speech thread has been closed twice. I can see the case for a misunderstanding in the first thread, but what was the problem with the second thread?

    But lets get back to the discussion again - unless we get closed again and I get banned from PF.
  2. jcsd
  3. Evo

    Staff: Mentor

    The first thread was closed because it was nothing but a flame war and personal attacks, it had deteriorated to the point that it had to be closed.

    The second thread was closed because you do not have the right to re-open a thread once it has been closed. If you wish to discuss why a thread was closed and if it can be reopened, you need to pm the mentor to discuss.

    I have no objection to the thread topic. I have been way too lenient in this forum for too long it seems.
  4. Really? Are you bringing in some Patriot Act type measures? I wonder what other members think of this change of attitude.
  5. SOS2008

    SOS2008 1,523
    Gold Member

    I agree there needs to be rules in the forum. I didn't know you couldn't re-open a thread, even though you added II to it, but I can understand the purpose for this rule. Perhaps we all need to read the basic guidelines again (the ones you agree to when you register?), which I would be happy to do. Otherwise, #42, I feel this has been a timely and worthwhile topic! I believe we can carry on under this new heading.
  6. Evo

    Staff: Mentor

    No, you can't carry on under this new heading.

    Threads can be locked or deleted for any reason. Number 42 showed a lack of judgement in reopening the thread. It was clear from my post that the thread was closed because of flaming.

    If people wish a topic reopened they can discuss it with the mentor. If people can control themselves, it's possible it might be reopened. Unfortunately based on the number 42's childish outburst, I have my doubts.
  7. I 100% agree that this is a worthwhile topic. I can't believe that the second thread got closed - a much tamer thread - just because it continued the discussion we were having - against the rules :rolleyes:

    Let it go, Evo. Don't go banning the Freedom of Speech and Censorship threads unless you want us to think we are posting on the USSR forum.
  8. Evo

    Staff: Mentor

    Tantrums won't get threads reopened, only a mature, responsible attitude will.
  9. Moonbear

    Moonbear 11,955
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    If they stayed on the topic of freedom of speech and censorship rather than degrading into (or in the case of the second one and this one, beginning as) attacks on other posters and board policy, this wouldn't have become an issue. There are board rules here that you agreed to when signing up, and I'm surprised that first thread was allowed to remain open as long as it did. I thought Evo was rather reasonable in her approach, she stepped in before closing it and cautioned folks about the flaming going on when she could have promptly locked it then.

    Topics allowed here are at the discretion of the mentors. There is no suppression of your freedom of speech as you are perfectly allowed to start up your own site where you can say anything you want to say. As long as you post topics here, it is Greg's and the mentors' discretion whether they stay open or get locked or deleted. You've been around here long enough to know the board rules and to see how they are enforced.
  10. Reread the 'attacks' and see if you can recognise the clear use of irony. And I was questioning the application of board policy, not the policy itself. Is questioning board policy against board policy?

    Aren't free speech zones just another form of censorship?
    "When Bush travels around the United States, the Secret Service visits the location ahead of time and orders local police to set up “free speech zones” or “protest zones” where people opposed to Bush policies (and sometimes sign-carrying supporters) are quarantined. These zones routinely succeed in keeping protesters out of presidential sight and outside the view of media covering the event".
  11. russ_watters

    Staff: Mentor

    This has nothing to do with free speech zones. The correct analogy is that you went to a party at someone's house and insulted the host and harassed the other guests. The host told you to can it or get out. You're perfectly free to have your own party where you do/say whatever you want - just not in our house. What you don't get is that its not your freedom being infringed on: its you who is infringing on the freedom of others.

    This is a manifestation of the problem outlined in the entitlement thread: you think you're entitled to something you're not.
    Last edited: Mar 7, 2005
  12. It has everything to do with political correctness Vs free speech, in that for some people to say anything that goes their against their views is unacceptable, and find the least comment insulting. People who oppose freedom of speech are notoriously humourless. Anyway, who are you to say who I am insulting or harassing - get off your high horse and let people speak for themselves.

    As for the 'its my party and I'll cry if I want to' analogy, I started the thread. Like TV, if you don't like what you see or hear, change channel. Don't go whining about your entitlement not to be insulted, and don't expect a public forum for adults to discuss political issuesto show only the views that you agree with.

    You think you are entitled to dictate what people say, and gag anyone who says things you don't like.
  13. SOS2008

    SOS2008 1,523
    Gold Member

    Not to beat a dead horse, but it takes at least two members to have a debate. Personally, I did not feel the hostility began with #42, though I don't believe it was a good thing to escalate the situation either. In any event, I vote for being more mindful of guidelines, and movin' on.
  14. loseyourname

    loseyourname 3,345
    Staff Emeritus
    Gold Member

    The point, 42, is that this is not a public forum. It is privately owned and maintained, and as the private property of a single individual, it is not open to free discussion per se. It is open to whatever the owner decides to let it be open to, just as you decide the rules of your own house. If you were paying for the bandwidth and maintaining the site, then you could set the rules.

    42, that isn't what was being done. Evo just took the flaming the wrong way, and thought that you and franz were being serious. Had you been, it would have been a violation and been rightfully suppressed. The threads are as much the property of Greg as is the site itself. He makes the rules and allows the mentors to enforce them as they see fit. Either way, this is not the proper place to question the mentor's judgements. Do so either in the feedback forum or through PM. You are only escalating the situation and I fear that you will end up banned for no good reason. Don't go falling into martyr syndrome.
  15. Evo

    Staff: Mentor

    The locked thread had nothing to do with censorship of the topic, it was locked because of the constant stream of insulting behavior particularly towards one of the members who repeatedly asked the other posters to stop the insults and get back on topic, you know that, so stop trying to pretend the thread was "censored".

    The guidelines state "Direct or indirect personal attacks are strictly not permitted. Insults and negative attitudes are not allowed."

    You violated this rule when you opened the second thread - Contact Guidelines:
    When contacting me or a specific mentor please make use of our Private Message system or email us. Do not post a topic in a forum regarding your situation.

    If you don't want to accept the rules, please feel free to excersize your right to stop posting here.
    Last edited: Mar 7, 2005
  16. Moonbear

    Moonbear 11,955
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    There was nothing in the closing of the thread that placed blame on any one person. You were not the only one posting in it.

    It is if you bring it up in places other than forum feedback or via private messages.

    Russ already answered that one to my satisfaction. This forum (servers and bandwidth) is private property.

    I don't see how this thread has any chance of being a productive discussion either when there is already so much hostility being displayed.
  17. dextercioby

    dextercioby 12,328
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper

    Funny YOU should mention that.To quote & paraphrase you "if you don't like what you see or hear, change FORUM"... :wink: And yes,irony (e.g. underlined) is accepted only in General Discussion.It's pointless (read "absurd") in threads in which serious subjects are debated...

  18. russ_watters

    Staff: Mentor

    Need you really ask? It says so in the green banner under my name.
    I know: You're complaining, but it ain't your party. Get over it or go have your own party.
    Again, you misunderstand. This is not a public forum, it is a private forum owned and operated by/at the whim of Greg Bernhardt. He owns it, he makes the rules.
    I (we) have done nothing of the sort. Our rules are pretty simple and exist for the reason of keeping the forum civil. It is not about popularity of ideas and you know it. You are being childish. If you don't believe me, compare Greg's forum to others. Most politics forums and against-the-mainstream science forums, in particular, are just one big flame-fest. Ours is not, precisely for that reason.
    Last edited: Mar 7, 2005
  19. Evo

    Staff: Mentor

    I believe the reason the original thread was locked has been made clear.
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