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You might be aware of Vox Media's problem with Steven Crowder. They are trying  to convince YouTube to crack down on Crowder and everyone else who engages in "hate speech," particularly against "marginalized groups." Vox claims to support free speech, but by that they mean speech that doesn't include "slurs" or "harassment" of certain people. They connect Crowder's slurs of Maza to his fans harassing Maza. I suppose they consider Crowder to be a Manson-like cult leader who's responsible for the actions of his followers. This might be true, if Crowder told his audience to harm or harass Maza, but I don't see how he's done that. No, it appears that the crusaders at Vox simply hate being hated, and instead of dealing with the actual harassers, they've decided to whine about being called names, like a bunch of little children.

Crowder is mostly a goofball with regurgitated conservative talking points, which is why he resorts to base name-calling for cheap laughs on his show. Vox is exploiting this situation to push their agenda of identity politics and "hate speech" codes, and to compel YouTube to pick a side in this culture war.

Edited by MisterSwig

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3 hours ago, MisterSwig said:

No, it appears that the crusaders at Vox simply hate being hated, and instead of dealing with the actual harassers, they've decided to whine about being called names, like a bunch of little children.

Seems reasonable to me. In social settings, it makes sense to kick out people who engage in toxic behavior. It doesn't have to be identity politics to stand against hate speech.

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17 hours ago, Eiuol said:

Seems reasonable to me. In social settings, it makes sense to kick out people who engage in toxic behavior. It doesn't have to be identity politics to stand against hate speech.

Those are two of the critical issues. They get at the basic problem. What is a social setting? Should someone's YouTube channel, or online show, be considered a social setting? I say, no. First, at best it's a recording or live broadcast of a social setting. Often it's only one person speaking into a camera. It's not the real-life setting itself. And second, the video is viewed voluntarily. You have to choose to watch it. So it's not something imposed upon you in real life, like protesters who show up outside your place of work or in the restaurant where you're eating dinner. People mistake YouTube, the platform itself, as a social setting. Some refer to it as "the new public square." It's not a public square. It's a private communication platform open to the public for viewing, but not necessarily for publishing content if you break the rules. I don't challenge YouTube's right to kick people off their platform. But that right doesn't come from being a social setting. It comes from being a private business.

Also, is there a relationship between "hate speech" and identity politics? If I say that I "hate" someone because he's a "bad person," and I leave it at that, is that "hate speech"? It's speech expressing my hatred. But I haven't yet given a reason based on a "protected class." So would that violate the typical "hate speech" code? I don't think so. But if I do refer to that someone by a "protected class" to which he belongs, then suddenly my hatred becomes associated with "hate speech," even if my hatred is actually based on some other characteristic about the person. It seems that hateful speech doesn't become "hate speech" until it involves a "protected class," which is a concept of identity politics.   

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On 6/9/2019 at 1:03 PM, MisterSwig said:

You might be aware of Vox Media's problem with Steven Crowder. They are trying  to convince YouTube to crack down on Crowder and everyone else who engages in "hate speech," particularly against "marginalized groups." Vox claims to support free speech, but by that they mean speech that doesn't include "slurs" or "harassment" of certain people. They connect Crowder's slurs of Maza to his fans harassing Maza. I suppose they consider Crowder to be a Manson-like cult leader who's responsible for the actions of his followers. This might be true, if Crowder told his audience to harm or harass Maza, but I don't see how he's done that. No, it appears that the crusaders at Vox simply hate being hated, and instead of dealing with the actual harassers, they've decided to whine about being called names, like a bunch of little children.

Crowder is mostly a goofball with regurgitated conservative talking points, which is why he resorts to base name-calling for cheap laughs on his show. Vox is exploiting this situation to push their agenda of identity politics and "hate speech" codes, and to compel YouTube to pick a side in this culture war.

Not sure why you are quoting "hate speech" and "marginalized groups" - are you implying that calling someone a "lispy queer" is not hate speech and that gays aren't a marginalized group?

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Let's remember a few things about Free Speech:

http://aynrandlexicon.com/lexicon/free_speech.html

1.  Freedom is speech is not a positive right to any platform, microphone, radio station, or social media account.

2.  Only government can commit censorship which presupposes force.

 

A few things about tribalism:

http://aynrandlexicon.com/lexicon/tribalism.html

1. Tribalism is irrationalism and collectivism

 

Insofar as Vox has tribalistic goals it supports irrationalism and collectivism, even if it correctly identifies and supports fully the principles of free speech.

From what has been posted here, there is no evidence Vox does not correctly identify and support fully the principles of free speech, however, their use of the terms "hate speech" indicates tribalistic collectivist errors of motivation. [It is entirely possible that they advocate suppression and censorship by the State of what they call "hate speech"... but the YouTube affair is not an issue of government censorship]

Youtube, as a private business has an interest in providing an environment for viewers which is engaging, comfortable, and pleasant to them individually... which attracts the most viewers and which attracts the most advertising.  Is it in the self-interest of YouTube to pander to any side of an identity politics war?  Is it in YouTube's interest to be impartial and agnostic to it?  Should Youtube try to suppress such online fighting or IF viewership would increase thereby, should it ENCOURAGE online fighting?

I think, in general, a civil society is where any rational individual or business to thrives and flourishes best.  Insofar as that is true, whatever YouTube does which undermines civil society undermines its own self interest, long range.  

Youtube should recognize that it is not government, it has complete prerogative and right to exclude from their services any one or group it deems inimical to its own flourishing.  In the end, it must police its content and users on the basis of its own standards of civility and the kind of site it wishes to present to the world.  Since, YouTube is literally "letting" people post things using its equipment/network, it has to be cognizant of the fact that people are aware of this, when thinking of their bottom line and the decision of who to allow to post what.

Edited by StrictlyLogical

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13 hours ago, thenelli01 said:

Not sure why you are quoting "hate speech" and "marginalized groups" - are you implying that calling someone a "lispy queer" is not hate speech and that gays aren't a marginalized group?

I use scare quotes to indicate other people's terms that I believe to be problematic or invalid. Since YouTube is the one with a "hate speech" policy, let's look at how they judge Crowder's comments.

Quote

In the case of Crowder’s channel, a thorough review over the weekend found that individually, the flagged videos did not violate our Community Guidelines.

These social media sites have slightly different "hate speech" policies. So YouTube might not hit Crowder for "hate speech," even if some other sites do. But I'm talking about the situation on YouTube right now. Frankly, I could care less about Facebook and Twitter.

YouTube has tried to appease Vox by modifying the rules and demonetizing Crowder's channel for "harming the YouTube community."

Quote

However, in the subsequent days, we saw the widespread harm to the YouTube community resulting from the ongoing pattern of egregious behavior, took a deeper look, and made the decision to suspend monetization.

They aren't satisfied with thinking of themselves as "the new public square." They also believe they are "a community." Well, it's this sort of delusional attitude which will help convince government to step in and police YouTube's chaotic "community." After all, people are getting harmed in there!

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On 6/10/2019 at 11:12 AM, MisterSwig said:

What is a social setting?

It's a social setting because it is used to communicate to many people at a time, and to create interaction with that community of people. This would mean YouTube is a privately owned, social communication platform.

On 6/10/2019 at 11:12 AM, MisterSwig said:

But that right doesn't come from being a social setting. It comes from being a private business

No, but the moral reasons to kick someone from such a platform is because it is a social setting. That's why the voluntary nature of viewing videos is irrelevant.

On 6/10/2019 at 11:12 AM, MisterSwig said:

It seems that hateful speech doesn't become "hate speech" until it involves a "protected class," which is a concept of identity politics.   

That might be the case sometimes. Pointing out that a marginalized group of people are being further marginalized makes perfect sense. It only becomes identity politics when people start to talk about what's right and wrong in terms of collective identity, like emphasizing harm done to perception of a culture, rather than harm done to individuals. I'm using harm in a loose sense, as in cruelty and bullying, not initiation of force. 

What would you do if you owned YouTube? Would you really want to leave it as "just don't listen if you don't like it"? We aren't talking about vaguely offensive jokes, we are talking about overt and clear cruelty and bullying, more along the lines of racism. 

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On 6/11/2019 at 6:08 AM, StrictlyLogical said:

Youtube, as a private business has an interest in providing an environment for viewers which is engaging, comfortable, and pleasant to them individually... which attracts the most viewers and which attracts the most advertising. 

This isn't reflected in YouTube's mission statement. They want "to give everyone a voice and show them the world." In practice, though, it's more like they want to give only some people a voice and show them only part of the world. YouTube believes in letting people "speak freely," except for the times when they don't. YouTube believes that "people, not gatekeepers, should decide what's popular," except for when they don't like who the people watch. YouTube believes in helping people "find communities" based on "shared interests," except in those cases where your interests are considered taboo.

I don't claim to know what YouTube wants to accomplish, and so I can't say what's in their interest. My guess is that their original interests are increasingly being subordinated to Google/Alphabet's interests. Rather than providing creators the freedoms and opportunities they were promised, YouTube has shifted focus to serving "social justice" and longer ads.

Edited by MisterSwig

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26 minutes ago, MisterSwig said:

This isn't reflected in YouTube's mission statement. They want "to give everyone a voice and show them the world." In practice, though, it's more like they want to give only some people a voice and show them only part of the world. YouTube believes in letting people "speak freely," except for the times when they don't. YouTube believes that "people, not gatekeepers, should decide what's popular," except for when they don't like who the people watch. YouTube believes in helping people "find communities" based on "shared interests," except in those cases where your interests are considered taboo.

I don't claim to know what YouTube wants to accomplish, and so I can't say what's in their interest. My guess is that their original interests are increasingly being subordinated to Google/Alphabet's interests. Rather than providing creators the freedoms and opportunities they were promised, YouTube has shifted focus to serving "social justice" and longer ads.

Like persons, businesses can misidentify values, i.e. what leads to flourishing.  They also can have the erroneous belief that misleading others of anything (including what they think are their own values) can be a value, hence the possibility that they think they can gain value by pandering to the public whim, in a similar fashion as Gail Wynand.  If social justice is "all the rage" perhaps they think they can cash in, over the short term...  but values are objective and A is A... and it just wont be worth it long range.

Edited by StrictlyLogical

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45 minutes ago, MisterSwig said:

YouTube believes in letting people "speak freely," except for the times when they don't.

You were talking about hate speech. Leaving aside whether that's the best term, you weren't talking about varied political opinions. I don't see why anyone who can oversee content would allow people to freely express hatred and vitriol. It sounds like you are trying to justify permitting bullying behavior in a social setting, meaning that YouTube would be acting immorally to prevent this behavior on their platform.

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On 6/11/2019 at 10:01 AM, Eiuol said:

What would you do if you owned YouTube? Would you really want to leave it as "just don't listen if you don't like it"? We aren't talking about vaguely offensive jokes, we are talking about overt and clear cruelty and bullying, more along the lines of racism. 

If I owned YouTube, I would probably allow all legal content. But there would be a clear standard for offensive material, which would be separated from the main site. YouTube would generally distance itself from policing creators. It would focus on finding ways to monetize all legal content.

2 hours ago, Eiuol said:

I don't see why anyone who can oversee content would allow people to freely express hatred and vitriol.

Because it's roughly half of our moral lives. We love good things and hate bad things. But sometimes we're wrong about what's what. People need to express hatred and discuss it, in order to reach a valid understanding of the values that bind us together as a society. If a platform's goal is to let everyone speak freely, then it needs to do that on principle. Anything less is a move toward an echo chamber, where lone voices get shouted down and tossed out. Such "safe zones" breed safe ideas, not rational ones.

3 hours ago, Eiuol said:

It sounds like you are trying to justify permitting bullying behavior in a social setting, meaning that YouTube would be acting immorally to prevent this behavior on their platform.

No, I'm suggesting that YouTube's actions contradict its mission statement. If you're equating Crowder's behavior to bullying, then you'll have to spell it out for me. It's not like he's attacking some private person. He's going after a public personality on the opposing side of the culture war.

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8 hours ago, MisterSwig said:

No, I'm suggesting that YouTube's actions contradict its mission statement. If you're equating Crowder's behavior to bullying, then you'll have to spell it out for me. It's not like he's attacking some private person. He's going after a public personality on the opposing side of the culture war.

I don’t know if calling someone a “Lispy sprite” and a “little queer” is by itself bullying, but it certainly is cruel and has the potential to encourage the behavior to be continued, especially when done by someone of Crowder’s popularity.

As someone who is gay, growing up I had to listen to my parents, brothers, classmates, society in general, insult, dismiss people for being gay - calling them f*ggots, queers, homos - people would say how disgusting it is and how sick those people make them. It probably had an enormous effect on my sense of worth as a person growing up and certainly led me to want to stay guarded and not open up about who I was because of it. Even the other week when I heard a relative say the word “f*ggot”, it made me cringe, except now I feel comfortable calling him out on it because I’m aware of my value as a person independent of other people’s opinion of me.

However, children/teens, by their nature, are dependent on their parents and to some extent their environment to understand their inherent value as a person. Psychologically speaking, at this stage of development and less so as they get older, they need to rely on external stimuli to understand that they matter. If you have society telling you are disgusting, worthless and less than just because you are you, it can be very damaging to your sense of dignity. Many have committed suicide because of it, and it’s absolutely tragic.

Any cruel speech directed at someone for an aspect of themselves that they cannot control doesn’t deserve a platform and giving it a platform has the ability to encourage the bullying behavior and damage people psychologically (those who see it or are victimized by other people who are encouraged by the content).

In this respect, I would be okay with YouTube taking down any content of this type on moral grounds. It’s below the standard that should be set for public dialog. I don’t think they have to set the standard, but if that is the standard they want to set, I think that is appropriate.

With that said, I agree it’s a slippery slope, not well defined and they open themselves up to having to navigate through ALL of the content to monitor for expression of that nature if they want to be consistent.

It’s actually a fairly tricky topic, as I see both sides. 

Sorry for any typos - on my phone.

 

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10 hours ago, thenelli01 said:

Any cruel speech directed at someone for an aspect of themselves that they cannot control doesn’t deserve a platform...

Is it possible that Crowder is a political comedian and Maza isn't worth defending?

522052457_Screenshot_20190613-0646132.thumb.png.649f78b00f6b626352a1131efc2bd9b8.png

Maza's Twitter handle (@gaywonk) imposes his sexual preference on everyone who simply sees the name. Kind of annoying. I mean, I'd think the same of some professional who called himself "@heterolawyer." Do I really have to think of your sex life every time we interact online? Shouldn't that violate some social etiquette? Also, Maza calls himself a "Marxist pig." I guess that means he's a Marxist with a sense of humor, or a Marxist with greedy capitalist desires? I don't know, it sounds like some joke at his own collectivist expense. Then he falsely attacks Tucker Carlson and YouTube in his own bio space. (Carlson does not identify as a white supremacist, and YouTube operates at a loss and has a policy against "hate speech.") Remember, this is the same man who has tried to burn down Crowder's channel because Crowder accurately describes him in a mocking manner. Maza is upset because he's losing the roast battle. So now he's trying to burn down the entire stage, which isn't surprising, since he's been fantasizing about social media on fire for many months now.

This is what Marxists do. They project their own extreme hatred of individual liberty onto the rest of the world. To them the world is a giant "dumpster fire." But in reality, it is their own soul that is fiery garbage.

Edited by MisterSwig

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1 hour ago, MisterSwig said:

Is it possible that Crowder is a political comedian and Maza isn't worth defending?

I don't think that is the relevant question if the issue is properly understood. The issue isn't about Maza or Crowder, the issue is about speech that violates or attacks a person's dignity qua speech.

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2 hours ago, MisterSwig said:

Maza's Twitter handle (@gaywonk) imposes his sexual preference on everyone who simply sees the name. Kind of annoying. I mean, I'd think the same of some professional who called himself "@heterolawyer." Do I really have to think of your sex life every time we interact online?

I'm hoping this is a bad attempt at ironic humor. This is completely different though, because names like that are not implied hatred or cruelty toward someone. The hate speech we are talking about is cruelty and hatred towards people. 

21 hours ago, MisterSwig said:

But there would be a clear standard for offensive material, which would be separated from the main site. YouTube would generally distance itself from policing creators. It would focus on finding ways to monetize all legal content.

How can you have a standard without a way to enforce it? You mean if someone broke those standards, you would do nothing at all? Another way to read what you wrote: "YouTube would generally distance itself from policing creators, including those with racist content. It would focus on finding ways to monetize all legal racist content." 

21 hours ago, MisterSwig said:

People need to express hatred and discuss it, in order to reach a valid understanding of the values that bind us together as a society.

You seem to be conflating legal rights with moral principles. I agree that people should be able to express their thoughts and beliefs, even their hateful thoughts and beliefs, and the way they see fit - given that it does not involve an imminent threat of force or overt force. This is important because it allows for a further discussion and analysis of values. In fact, I believe this conflict breeds a stable society, rather than a principle of harmony. People can express their autonomy fully.

But it doesn't follow that if I create a space or platform for expressing ideas, all ideas should be permitted on that platform. Conflict can be healthy. The problem is when there is no way to decide who is right or wrong, or to judge when someone is more likely to be right than another person. You forget that toxic behavior makes the environment worse than otherwise. Echo chambers can do the same thing. I don't see any justification of avoiding an echo chamber by permitting a toxic environment. What you wrote sounds like an apathetic American libertarian: "who am I to judge what is good or bad, who am I to judge someone if they don't initiate force".

You can broadly allow someone to say just about anything they want, from the perspective of government, while cultivating a healthy environment by removing some people from your immediate surroundings. I'm fine with allowing a KKK rally, I'm not fine with allowing a KKK rally if I owned Madison Square Gardens. Do you see the difference? If anything, part of the conflict you are talking about is even better if we have disagreements like this - kicking someone off a platform. 

I don't know enough about Crowder to say anything substantive about him. In the article I saw that you linked, if I controlled YouTube, I'd ask if it was a one-off statement in the heat of the moment, or something more pervasive. The same would go for Maza ("Marxist pig", what does that even mean?). If you want me to comment more about Crowder vs. Maza specifically, I need more background on their dispute. 

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40 minutes ago, Eiuol said:

How can you have a standard without a way to enforce it? You mean if someone broke those standards, you would do nothing at all?

I said I would not put them on the main site. They would be published on sub-sites buried under appropriate descriptions and warnings. You would run YouTube differently, that's fine. Given YouTube's mission, I think it should be neutral, similar to Google's search engine. Should Google Search not include racist websites? Google's mission is to "organize the world's information and make it universally accessible and useful." Information comes from people. Once you start excluding whole categories of people, you exclude categories of information. This information can be useful not only for its entertainment value, but also for research. If I want to study white supremacists or conspiracy theories, I can search for their literature on Google and watch their videos on YouTube. As long as these resourceful sites remain neutral, I have no reason to assume that they approve of white supremacy or conspiracy theories. They're merely organizing this information and making it easily accessible to me, like the greatest library ever. But once Google and YouTube start excluding and suppressing information that they don't like, then I begin to wonder about their motives. I trust them less as a source for information.

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2 hours ago, Eiuol said:

I'm hoping this is a bad attempt at ironic humor. This is completely different though, because names like that are not implied hatred or cruelty toward someone. The hate speech we are talking about is cruelty and hatred towards people. 

The point is that Maza made his sexual orientation a matter for public discourse. He throws it in his audience's face. He should therefore expect comedians to mock him for that, because it's ridiculous. Now, Crowder is not a very clever comedian, so his mockery comes across poorly. Better comedians have made the same point without crude name-calling. This reminds me of the classic Phil Hendrie bit with Doug Dannger, the "gay journalist."

 

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9 hours ago, MisterSwig said:

Given YouTube's mission, I think it should be neutral, similar to Google's search engine.

But it's nothing like a search engine. Not even a little bit. YouTube hosts videos, and is a social platform (communication primarily). A search engine simply finds information for you to look at. Looking at information available in the world is a completely different purpose than communicating specific ideas.

The standards I'm talking about are those that involve discussion and communication, a forum just like this. That's when judging people is relevant. Information is passive. Its existence doesn't do anything, so universal access makes sense for a search engine. When we deal with using information though for specific ends, everything changes. 

I don't think these nuances can be communicated with a mission statement. So I'm only thinking about how YouTube should work, given the product and its popularity.

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