The current – and frankly bizarre even by recent standards – Guardian campaign “the web we want” seems to be driven by two main agendas. The first, and probably the major one is the long-simmering plan to “regulate” (i.e. control and censor) free speech on the Web. That the Graun’s effort is part of a co-ordinated new offensive in that department is pretty conclusively illustrated by the fact the ex minister for “equality”, Maria Miller delivered her own diatribe agains the “problem” of internet “abuse” just days after the Guardian’s new campaign took off. The similarity between her invective and that employed by the Guardian’s tame journos puts it beyond question that this is an Establishment-wide move. A concerted plan to use exaggerated claims of “abuse” and its alleged impact on minorities, to mobilise well-meaning liberals in support of internet censorship.
In fact, unlike the feeble Apologists at Graun HQ, Miller at least has the guts to pretty much say so out loud:
“We need better laws and we need better enforcement. Government needs to stop allowing internet providers from(sic) hiding behind arguments about the protection of free speech,”
Right there we have it. The plan they formulated in their focus groups and policy committees. The best way to get the internet censorship they have wanted for so long is to pretend it isn’t censorship at all, but protection! And most particularly protection of those sections of society we all know need it most. The ethnic minorities, the LGBT communities – and women. The mere mention of these groups will be enough to rally many well-meaning but naive liberals to support their own gagging. “I’m happy to have my right to anonymity abolished if it helps stamp out racial abuse” they’ll say. “I’m happy to see comments sections closed if it helps women columnists avoid harassment”, they’ll say. There’ll probably be a social media campaign with a catchy soundbite and the same soft focus unthreatening images of “diversity” they pull up at the Graun. And people will sign up to be silenced.
But of course it won’t end racism or sexism or homophobia. Because it’s not intended to. The people behind this couldn’t give a flying feck for the wellbeing of minorities or anyone else beyond their own narrow class of super-privilege. That’s just window dressing. A lure for the gullible. It’s the Child Catcher prancing about in borrowed gaudy, his cage draped in pictures of candy.
The truth is they want to kill the internet and all its unparalleled power to monitor them and their variously greedy, stupid, paranoid antics. And they know they can’t do that unless they can persuade most ordinary people it’s a good idea.
This is why over the coming weeks and months you’ll see Owen Jones and other unscrupulous hacks (yes, we’re sorry, but Jones deserves no better descriptor after his recent ghastly display), trying to repackage free speech as “elitist” and using tortured pseudo-logic to “prove” that censorship is the only way to have truly open debate.
* * *
The second part of the Guardian agenda is to try to roll back the massive damage being done to its reputation by the current CiF debacle.
Since its inception in 2006, CiF (“Comment is Free”) was hailed as the Guardian’s flagship of credibility, their pledge of openness and inclusiveness. And for a while it was. Most stories were open for discussion. Moderation was decorous. If it was politically motivated sometimes, it was discreet enough to have only minimal impact (mostly on stories about Israel). By and large CiF at that time was a real place for the sharing of information and opinion. All was reasonably well.
But somewhere around 2012-13 things began to change. Did the Government losing the Syria vote and the widespread opposition to a war against Assad signal to the PTB that open discussion of vital news stories was beginning to have unexpected consequences for their control of the narrative? Did the Snowden issue persuade people they’d rather get inline than risk their pension plans?
In any event moderation became more insistent. Not – whatever the official line may be – because the trolls were more prolific or persistent. They weren’t. Trolls are to the internet what rats are to cities. They are always there, but their impact on most of us is minimal. Civilised discussion proceeds above and around them. Trolls are trolls and never really change. No, what changed was that for maybe the first time there was a noticeable tendency to censor for opinion. Not racist opinion, or sexist opinion. Just anti-government opinion. Or minority opinion. At first it was relatively minor. – But then in February 2014 the West decided to go insane and provoke WW3 in Ukraine and everything changed forever.
News outlets like the Guardian and the BBC stood by and vaguely cheered this act of insanity, as if too lobotomised to even understand what was going on. We saw Shaun Walker making facile jokes about vodka and potatoes. Luke Harding, off his meds and off his leash squealing Russophobic paranoia. We saw crazed old NATO generals foaming at the mouth for war, and slick intelligence types citing reams of easily disproven statistics to “prove” Russia was the problem. What we didn’t see – anywhere – in the Establishment media was any voice of sanity, warning that this was a new Cuban Missile crisis and that more was required of us than xenophobia and soundbites.
The CiF sections – naturally – erupted in shock and incredulity that the Guardian – the Guardian – could possibly be fielding such stupid, dangerous, and low-grade propaganda. The comments were something like 10-1, if not more, in opposition to the hardline editorial stance and pleading for some realisation of what madness our governments were engaged in. And that’s when the Great Cull began.
As the official Western narrative on Ukraine unraveled in the face of the Odessa massacre, the black farce of the ATO and multiple revelations of how close the new government’s ties to neo-nazis really were, so the Guardian’s own line became increasingly nakedly propagandist. It set up a network with publications such as the Kiev Post and Radio Free Europe, and disseminated their dishonest hit pieces and fake propaganda stories without question or demur. In a matter of months it had become unrecognisable to those who had formerly respected it. Either it fundamentally changed at this time, or, maybe more likely, it simply stopped pretending. Either way, it stopped being the Guardian in any sense that meant anything.
At the same time moderation in CiF became for the first time overtly politicised, if not draconian. As people reacted more and more to the changing tone ATL, so more and more censorship was required BTL to keep that reaction in check. Comments that asserted a Russian perspective, or that simply called for some sort of middle ground were many times more likely to be blocked than those that supported the NATO position. Extreme racism toward Russians became more and more acceptable both ATL and BTL, while even minor critique of the Guardian’s own authors became punishable by not just blocking but outright banning.
But even the most intense efforts to control the debate proved futile. Whenever they opened a story for comments on Ukraine, Syria, or any other NATO war zone, it would be flooded with people opposing the warmongering of our governments, or questioning the veracity of the article, or linking to different versions of the story or to other stories the Guardian was choosing not to run. Try as they might to take down links, block comments, ban accounts, they couldn’t stop this tide.
And worse, people were now commenting on the censorship of comments, requiring even more censorship in turn. They developed zero tolerance for anyone questioning why a given comment had been taken down. if you dared ask why you were blocked or banned. They began pre-emptively banning certain accounts for a given period when sensitive news stories were broken, un-blocking them again after a decent interval. They seem to have added certain websites (including this one) to lists of URLS that would be immediately removed whatever content they contained.
But the more they censored, the more they were called on for their censorship, and the harder it became to pretend – even to themselves – that they were still the lovely liberal Guardian embracing free speech. They might tell each other they were censoring “trolls” or “Putinbots”, but in their hearts they knew, and knew that their readers all knew, what was really going on.
CiF is now one of their major problems. They need to preserve it – their once proud flagship – in order to cling to the remnants of their self-image as leaders of free thought. They can rename it “Opinion”, as if that makes the absence of Free Comment somehow less real. They can censor it to the point of destruction. But they can’t close it down. Because that would be admitting what they are and admitting defeat.
“The web we want” is their own, strangely pathetic, attempt at squaring that circle. You can look at it almost like the inner dialogue of a deeply troubled psyche. Self-soothing with repetition and over-assertion.
Those bizarre and strained attempts at “explaining” their comment policy with graphs and “research” so openly bogus it proves nothing beyond their own desperation. Those weird photoshoots of confused but smiling “Best CiF Commenters” (chosen by “cross-referencing a list of the commenters who had the highest average of “recommends per comment” with a list of those with the highest percentage of “staff picks”), designed to show how comfortable they really are with their own readership, but being about as convincing as a kidnap victim reading a scrawled note to camera about how well he is being treated.
Hysterical. Hopeless. And deeply sad. Because even if this new agenda of cuddly censorship to help minorities does get enough of a claw hold to make a difference, and even if we all do lose our remaining freedoms, the Guardian is dead to most of its old readers. Its moral base has been destroyed, its reputation is irreparably shredded. It’s now just a glorified mag for clickbait and badly written agitprop. Its readership is shrinking, its income is vanishing. It’s propped up now by its bosses in Washington and London, existing on their life support until it’s been drained of all possible use, when they will turn off the machines and let it die.
The “journalists” who work for it won’t much care when that happens of course. If they cared about such things they wouldn’t be doing what they do. They’ll just be paid off and move on to different positions, where they can enjoy expense account lunches and spurious feelings of security while it lasts. But many old readers will care quite a lot. Even though it will also feel like putting a suffering animal out of its misery.
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I’m a bit late to the party, but can only mourn at the fact that any semblance of Free Speech and counter-argument on CIF, was indeed lost when the paper came out at the 2010 election in favour of the LibDem’s, from that moment forward many who opposed the new austerity, who detailed the hypocrisy of the ConDem’s and their reactionary legislative agenda was silenced.
Now as a political animal, and a bloody proud working class troll, I held no fear in attacking those who were supportive of policies that were detrimental to my class, namely the working class, and many others not lucky enough to be earning six figure salaries. Further, I never ceased in trying to balance blatant propaganda and pro-Establishment coverage The Guardian was engaged in on a whole host of its overseas coverage, be it South America, the Middle East, North Africa and of course Israel/Palestine.
Now, for many years, up until 2010, only a few posts I ever made, some containing the flowery language we use daily in South Wales was removed, suddenly though, after a number of rightist commentators began to infest CIF, it was we Lefties who were being culled, whilst pro-Blairite, pro-Tory posters seemed immune from the lies they spread about both Labour and the Left – alas, I quite enjoyed the combative nature of the discourse, whilst also trying to point out some facts, some alternatives or suggest perhaps the authors/posters themselves had taken a wrong turn.
Having began my CIF life under a ‘user name’, and having used but two of these until 2010 – one ban and one pre-mod in 4 years not being too bad, the longest I’ve managed, which as with this post under my real identity, was approx. 9 months. In total, and after 2012 I’ve been banned or modded to hell about 15 times, again mostly on threads concerned directly with politics, or its awful overseas coverage.
Since Viner’s arrival, matters are no w but a joke and one hardly bothers, which is strange for someone who accumulated approx. 20,000 posts in a ten year timeline, and in doing so made many new friends, and of course enemies, but that’s the nature of free speech, which now The Guardian and our master wish to curtail by closing down any outlet that exposes them for what they are, allegedly done in our names.
How can we improve the Guardian comments? Share your views
So I did😛
I suggest you do likewise
Tell us about your commenting experience on the guardian
I get moderated now and again. I try not to say anything that might offend people but I have found that if I dare even question third wave feminism,( bearing in mind 3rd wave feminism is not “women”) it’s just another ideology and one I and a majority of people find highly divisive, therefore arguing against it should be permitted. However it’s rarely permitted on CIF, as you know full well. Most of the articles on this topic are militant and sectarian and bear nothing in common with the feminism I was brought up with.
The vast bulk of your 3rd wave articles are written by female feminists and not male feminists, so it is obvious that lots of comments will be moderated, especially as lots of average men do feel like they are being attacked in the pages of the guardian with this topic, in particular “white men”.
So you know full bloody well that your statistics on comments modded under female written articles is really and absolutely concerning the subject matter of those highly divisive and incendiary articles.
Why not do a word search for the phrase “click bait” and see how many hits come up and how many peaks you get on specific articles. Because I’m a genius, I can tell you in advance that the articles with the peak “click bait” comments are the articles that magically also happen to be your most moderated articles, low and behold it turns out my spider sense tells me they turn out to be predominantly articles on THIRD WAVE FEMINISM, who would have ever guessed it! How about everyone, as we are not as bloody stupid as your trying to play us for being.
I had wondered why the guardian were trying to pander to such a small market segment with the continual third wave BS you print, as I knew it couldn’t just be for “click bate”..but now it’s apparent. It was so you could churn out these statistics, that on the face of it are accurate…but we all know there are lies, damned lies and statistics, don’t we guardian. And your using your rigged statistics to tar large portions of your readers as mysoginist and even racists. And because there are so many ugly minds out here, that the population needs “protecting” from their “hate speech”.
Of course we both know this is about as much about protecting people as the patriot act was..and it’s being conducted in a very similar manner to boot. We will protect you by censoring the web..and killing your free speech. Clever, but not really, your actually really easy to see through..but I never bought Assange or Snowden either, so Im ahead of the curve somewhat…but even your hardcore guardian loyalists smell the bullshit totalitarianism…especially after the repeated and relentless attacks on Corbyn (he probably read this paper his entire life and personified its readership), you really showed your true totalitarian colours, no doubt because your pay masters in the states have no real clue about what the guardian was or how to dupe it’s loyal readership. Well to be fair you had most of the people most of the time…not anymore.
How would you like to change comments on the guardian?
Close them. Your agenda is blatantly clear, you don’t open comments on tons of interesting stories anyhow..like the Panama papers, no suprise as to why though. And whilst your closing CIF please just shut down the guardian too, it was always a paper, like all the others, that had a political agenda, a centre left or progressive left one, in the guardians case. These days the agenda is something all together different, something more like propaganda from soviet era east Germany or 1984.
Please do a search on your comments for anything mentioning “1984” or “Orwellian” and I’m sure you’ll find lots of hits too.
How do we achieve constructive discussion for all?
You don’t, because you don’t want that. You want bias storylines and a cheerleading CIF. So why the fuck are you asking? Oh to make it appear your listening.
Some will fall for this but not as many as you would think.
Anything else you’d like to add?
Yes, seeing as this paper is obviously a social engineering and propaghanda wing of atleast one western intelligence agency…I am currently unemployed and I could do a better job peddling complete horse shit…but I don’t get out of bed for less than a 5 grand a day. Seriously you need someone that knows how to talk absolute bollocks and actually convince the sheeple.
are you fucking serious
Remember Jack Monroe, the Guardian’s supposed poverty chef on benefits, (also transexual) who posted useless recipes involving a lot of tinned stuff and often quite expensive to make?
That was a laugh. Where is she (or he) now?
I remember she claimed tins of herring roe were super cheap and recommended herring roe on toast as a poverty meal. I went to Sainsburys and it was over a quid for a miniscule tin a fraction of the size of a can of Basics tuna for 30p less.
I’m obliged to comment here in defense of J. Monroe.* She doesn’t deserve this treatment. The likely answer to the qudstion, “What happened to Jack ?” is that she saw where the paper was going, got fed up and, recognizing her principles couldn’t be reconciled with the Graun’s direction, got going herself.
Her recipes came straight from her kitchen tested experience. Their costs were itemized in full detail. If you found her 60p item costing £1, then either the price was raised or, more likely, you didn’t go to the places she shops.
The Guardian had–and still has– one or two respectable writers. They’ll probably be leaving before long, too–George Monbiot & Gary Younge, for example. I’m wondering when Tim Dowling will reach the limit of his moral patience.
Tarring Monroe as typical if what’s wrong with the paper is bizarre. She was always exceptional, always one of the better things about that crap newspaper. That she seldom or no longer appears In it shows this.
I accidentally promoted your comment in trying to type the “reply” button.
Interestingly, the Guardian almost reveals the truth about its ‘community standards’ when it cops to deleting comments because they are ‘insulting to the author or to other commenters’. Therefore, about the most aggressive criticism you can get away with is, “I think you might be mistaken about a few things”, without going so far as to point out exactly what they are or rebut them with references. The kind of comment the one to whom it was directed can easily bat aside, not to put too fine a point on it, as they freely admit “Do you get paid for writing this?” is grounds for removal.
Wild-eyed foam-spewer Annie Applebaum – wife of the disgraced former Polish Foreign Minister Radek Sikorski – went there first with a denunciation of commenters who have the nerve to shape popular opinion with commentary which disagrees with the author of the article, way back in November 2014.
Why, she said in shocked tones, you might find yourself changing your mind completely about what you were told if you read some of the comments. And that would be a shame, because the government would never, never use the media to tell you something that was not true.
“Like it or not, this matters: Multiple experiments have shown that perceptions of an article, its writer, or its subject can be profoundly shaped by anonymous online commentary, especially if it is harsh. One group of researchers found that rude comments “not only polarized readers, but they often changed a participant’s interpretation of the news story itself.” A digital analyst at Atlantic Media also discovered that people who read negative comments were more likely to judge that an article was of low quality and, regardless of the content, to doubt the truth of what it stated.”
This hampers the media’s ability to spoon-feed you bullshit all day long.
I came across that on the ‘anti-war.com’ website. Apparently, her solution to trolling is the removal of anonymity, and the infiltration of offending websites by government agents (I suspect they already thought of the second option.)
From: We will look back at cyber-harassment as a disgrace – if we act now
It looks like they have found their perfect btl commenter:
DirkBentley Danielle Citron
RealID wouldn’t work. But requiring a person to have a license to use the internet, and for that person to register each device with a central authority would. Same as a vehicle license and registration. You’re anonymous to other road users, but if you do something illegal, then the cops can find you from your license and registration in the HTTP headers your device provided when you sent the abuse
Yes, this deluge of propaganda was obviously going somewhere. And here it is, a licence to use the internet under your real name.
Hi everyone, didn’t the change start with the Georgia/Russia “war”? I’m sure at the time thinking the coverage was, erm, biased and selective, and this is long before the Rusbridger HD jobby.
Also, as the Indy has followed pretty much the same path it seems clear there is an overarching plan of action
Yes, the South Ossetia war was presented by the Guardian’s Moscow correspondent as an out of the blue invasion of Georgia by Russia.
Reblogged this on Zero Hour and commented:
A brilliant repost to the Graun’s hand wringing analysis of what it seems to regard as it’s own Frankenstein’s monster.
One of the more bizarre aspects to the Guardian’s silly ‘The dark side of Guardian Comments’ article (ironically not open for comments itself!) was that after claiming that they had commissioned an analysis of moderated comments that the only conclusion they apparently reached as a result of this massive audit was that comments were more likely to be moderated if the authors of the articles to which Te comments related happened to be female, gay or belong to some other minority.
The same article claimed that the ONLY reason guardian moderators blocked comments was because they breached community standards or for legal reasons and that “the Guardian’s moderators don’t block comments simply because they don’t agree with them.” As most of us know here that last claim is utterly false. Too many of us have been moderated simply for holding views the moderator disagreed with for their assertion that this never happens to be believed.
The implication of the article was that the commenters were reaction to the gender, sexual orientation or other monority status of the author and were more likely to post abusive comments that breached community standards if the author happened to belong to one of those groups.
The invitation in the article was to “explore the data” but the body of the article was very short on detail in relation to the “data” and very big on unsubstantiated, untestable assertions.
Because the detailed data on which the Guardian’s conclusion was based (that authors who belonged to minorities were more likely to generate abusive comments) was not shared with us we have no way of knowing for sure whether the reason for the censorship is in fact due to abusive comments that breach the community guidelines/legal reasons or whether some other factor is at play (such as General a use such as “you are stupid” is unlikely to be moderated if the author of the article is a white male but more likely to be moderated away if the moderator happens to k ow the author is a woman, gay or a black male for example.) But we DO know that generally comments are NOT always moderated when they DO clearly breach the community guidelines (apparently so long as the target of the abuse is one the moderators do not happen to like) whilst comments that clearly objectively do NOT breach the Guardian’s stated community guidelines are sometimes moderated away apparently because the moderators simply do not like the view itself, despite the Guardian’s denial that this ever happens. (You only need one example of something happening to prove the falsehood of any claim that something “never” happens, and I have personally had several comments moderated away for no other reason than the moderator didn’t agree with the view expressed or it contained an ‘inconvenient truth.’ Does anyone truly believe that this comment would get past the Guardian’s moderators for example?)
Where is the analysis telling us what proportion of the moderated views were truly abusive versus how many were moderated away for other reasons for example? Where is the analysis showing the proportion of comments that technically DID breach community guidelines that went unmoderated in response to articles written by white Anglo Saxon males versus those that went unmoderated that were written by anybody else? Are comments hostile towards articles written by white Anglo Saxon males much less likely to be moderated away than those which disagree with something written by a “minority” author for example? We will never know the answer because the Graun is not sharing the raw data despite their invitation to “explore the data.” No detailed analysis has been shared with us of the reasons for comment deletion/moderation so all we really know is that comments are supposedly more likely to be moderated if the article was not written by a white Anglo Saxon male. From this the Guardian makes the huge leap of questionable logic to implying that the moderarors are doing a sterling job “protecting minorities” through continued censorship of comments .
The original bizarre and silly article to which I am referring can still be viewed at https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2016/apr/12/the-dark-side-of-guardian-comments
If you do choose to read the silly article and have personally had perfectly reasonable and civil comments moderated away by the Guardian (as I have) you will most probably be shaking your head by the end of it. Bizarre. I don’t know about you but I rarely even notice the gender of an author much less even have any knowledge whatsoever of their sexual orientation when posting a comment on an article they have written. When I post a comment I am responding to the content of the article and not basing my response on the personal attributes of the author (which I either don’t know or don’t care about.) Either I am highly unusual amongst Guardian readers in this regard (way to go Guardian – insulting your readership again) or there is something seriously wrong with the Guardian’s so-called “analysis.”
Yes indeed – good post – in fact we just published our own response to the Graun’s ridiculous and embarrassing “research.”
Hey, great post. And great article! I have literally been Googling “whats happened to the guardian” lately because my mind has been so blown at just how flagrant and obtuse the disinformation has become. And, as a minority, I feel kinda insulted that I am being patronized by a cynical, power obsessed bunch of fruitcakes for the means of stifling any form of dissenting opinion.
I see black guys on YouTube saying it exactly how it is, but the guardian doesn’t give a flying fuck about the black community or any other community. They simply use the minoroty communities to achieve their own cynical agenda. I mean it’s useful to have black lives matter and run story after story on how it’s now racist to say “all lives matter” because the guardian and rest of the allegedly liberal MSM want to enrage black and white society and polarise black against white. This has nothing to do with tackling the American police state which also kills whites and Mexicans etc..or tackling the long standing decline in the black community due to successive governments that didn’t give a fuck about it…it’s about polarising blacks against whites and an attempt to strike long standing fault lines. The same shit with their turd wave feminism crap, designed to brainwash young women into fucking sociopaths and again have men and women split.
Divide and conquer.
I see black guys on YouTube saying it exactly how it is
That’s one of the most ironic things about the whole situation — the demographics most out of alignment with the Guardian’s views on feminism and a few other topics are muslim men and black men. Who are in the same time supposed to be sacred cows not to be touched because of how oppressed they are.
Yet if the “harassment” policies they are pushing for right now are to be implemented, black men would probably be the group hit the hardest. Upper middle class white men are a lot more in line with the party line on these issues as they have been living in a PC culture for a long time.
As a relatively trivial example, how long will it be before they start pushing for a ban on hip-hop because it’s misogynist?
It has never been about protecting marginalized groups, it has always been about using those groups to elevate the status of the group doing the “protecting”, in this case white upper middle class women and a few men in the same category, who put represent the liberal elite and put together the Guardian.
Sad but true.
…a ban on hip-hop, because it’s misogynist…
On the other hand, some people think the pimp/drug-dealer/gangsta anti-hero image of rap/hip-hop artists has been promoted by the ‘Establishment’ to undermine black culture, with less subversive acts being dropped by ‘The Industry.’ Also, some argue that the cocaine that was used as currency during the Iran/Contra scandal, was dumped into black communities, in the form of crack, via the Crips/Bloods and similar gangs. Whenever black Americans have tried to organise themselves, those organisations have been infiltrated and controlled. Many black media stars are members of the Freemasonic Boule society, which doesn’t serve black people’s interests.
In my experience, The Guardian arts section has been happy to promote the ‘authentic voice of street culture’, but I wouldn’t rule out a change, if they decide to further demoralise blacks using ‘Gloria Steinem’ divide and rule tactics (ie. turning black women against black men)
Talking of ‘street culture’, I find the plugs for ‘Banksy’ amusing. He does do a good job promoting identity politics type stuff. They’ve also started to promote an ‘artist’ who does giant murals of the Kardashians. Even graffiti artists…
I don’t think one needs to invoke a conspiracy to explain the dominance of ignorant hip-hop over the last 20 years — the nature of the industry and the tastes of the public are sufficient for that. Most people are idiots and as a result over time entertainment converges to the lowest common denominator, because that’s what sells. The deregulation of the media market in the mid-90s played a big role too, but that was not specifically targeting hip-hop. The same thing has happened to other genres too — just look at the pop music of today and compare it the admittedly already low standards of several decades ago.
Also, I am very well familiar with the works of the more enlightened acts in the genre, and I can definitely say they were:
1) not feminists
2) not particularly LGBT friendly
3) would still be subjected to the full SJW Twitter mob lynching treatment were they to say the same things one can find in their lyrics in a different context.
I any case, why ignorant rap became the norm is besides the point, what matters is that modern hip-hop culture is only surpassed by Muslims in being as far from the SJW idea of what culture should be as possible (and in places like France, the two overlap significantly anyway).
So it’s a matter of time before they seriously come after it.
Articles such as this one are already quite common:
For a very long time, The Guardian’s readers’ comments censorship practices have shown that censors cannot and will distinguish between a criticism made toward someone who, on the one hand, happens to be one the various specially oppressed minorities it holds dear from those criticisms which, on the other hand, are made toward one of them solely because he is believed to belong to one of these protected minorities.
This business of their ingrained confirmation-bias observed in their idiotic “The Web We Want” is merely another example of this pernicious tendency.
Both highlight the fact that these well-paid writers and editors can’t reason effectively– but, somehow, this deficiency proved no bar to their comfy employment at The Guardian.
Others, who can easily expose the shitty standard of thinking skills at The Guardian, are without work, pounding the pavement. This epitomizes our times: morons enjoy well-paying jobs while others, much smarter–such as the people who’ve organized and who run this site–have to scramble to improvise something which just sees them getting by.
Well, in the US, for example, the Non-Hispanic whites constitute 62% of the population.
Women are roughly 50%.
The gay population is around 4-5%.
Let’s assume we have equal numbers of homosexual males and females.
That means we have:
2.5% gay males
19% non-white males
Some of the non-white males are gay, but that’s half a percent at most
So in total >70% of the population belongs to one of the oppressed minorities. That’s a lot of potential for taking offence. Although to their credit, the culture of a good portion of the 19% non-white males tends to be very non-PC.
Most experienced readers of The Guardian know exacrly which minority groups they must not criticise without a preliminary and convincing disclaimer which typically goes. “I’m not anti- ____ but…”
For example. any criticism pf a woman who is a feminist will be automatically supposed to be motivated by a “hatred” of women or, at the least, of feminists. any criticism of a person or a group which is Jewish, is, similarly, automatically dismissed as anti-semitic; add Muslims, people with a physical handicap, gays, lesbians, transsexuals, bisexuals. You mustn’t ever criticise anyone who belongs to any of these protected groups because, if you do, your criticisms shall be immediately assumed to be motvated by an irrational prejudice against all of that goup’s type–even if one is himself or herself a ,member of the group.
There are of course, people in all these minorities who neither want nor seek such ring-fenced protection of their minority from any and all criticisms, however valid or motivated by a unbiased intent.
Congratulations Catte, you nailed it!
Your article also answers the question as to why the Guardian no longer opens comments for most major articles, whilst often allowing comments for the less serious articles. The people running the Guardian are obviously not in favour of “free speech” at all and their claim that comments are only deleted for breach of “community standards” is patently false. Too many people have been moderated for posting reasonable, well thought out comments which did not breach the official “community standards” and the Vuardian had been forced to attempt damage control with yet more calls for censorship and silly propaganda articles like their recent ‘the dark side of Guardian comments’ article, telling yet more lies to justify continued censorship of opinions that run contrary to those officially sanctioned by the writers.
J.S. Mill, the famous British philosopher, said it best in one of his essays on Liberty with words to the effect of (I’m paraphrasing) “We should not censor opinions even if we find them objectionable, unpopular or if we think they are wrong. The reason is that the view, whilst unpopular may be correct and if we censor it we will never learn the truth. Second, the view whilst wrong may better enable us to see the reasons why our own views are correct by seeing their collision with error.”
The moderators over at the Guardian have obviously either never read J.S. Mill or believe that they are better qualified than he is to know whether or not it is appropriate to resort to censorship in public discourse and then lie about it and pretend that the censorship is to “protect minorities.”
Well, I think you’ve outdone yourself with this analysis of the Guardian’s CIF ‘dilemma’. This is precisely how I feel about how the Guardian has degenerated over the last few years. I see the decline and fall starting, at least symbolically, with the ritualized castration of the Guardian when the security services turned up and demanded that they destroy the Snowden hard-drives in the basement. Rushbridger could have simply told them to ‘fuck off’ and waited for the courts to decide the legality of the state’s demands, but he chose not to. This was a golden opportunity to go down in history for Rusbridger, the gift of ‘immortality’, the chance of going to prison for his journalistic principles; only he didn’t take that route, he chose to buckle under pressure instead.
Agree. I’ve long regarded the ‘hard drive smashing’ incident as a watershed. Though in truth the Graun was on a slow downward spiral that began with Rusbridger’s tenure.
You are astute in your observation, as a reader of the Guardian from 1983 I can attest to that fact, alas at least CIF offered hope and an ability to counter official MSM narratives, which we bloody well utilised, its closure, which is more or less complete, means the buggers can propagandise away or speak to its Blaire echo chamber, given those supportive of Blairism never seem to get banned – and I can name and shame many.
The security services turning up at the guardian to destroy Snowden’s hard drives blah blah..reported all over the MSM, was most certainly a dog and pony show to legitimise Snowden as a genuine whistle blower. Just like how Assange was left to his own devices for months on end down in his rich friends country pile, in the South of England…the whole time the USA supposedly wanted hold of him. It got so utterly and literally unbelievable that the guardian and it’s tv equivalent C4 news..told us all about 2 Swedish women having made rape allegations against Assange…but of corse these allegations were framed in the liberal British media as a Washington smear against Assange and C4 news immediately knew magically that one of the accusers was a former CIA asset. All done to give credibility to assange as his loyal public were beginning to ask questions about him and smell his bullshit.
This was what led assange to seek asylum in the Peruvian or is it Bolivian embassy?? Regardless we all know if the USA really wanted to extradite Julian they would have no problem booting in an embassy door and the UK would either sit back and let them or do it for them.
Since when did international law apply to the USA? Yet people fall for this shit.
Snowden has never even been smeared and instead his back story has more holes than Swiss cheese. The media made him look like a glamorous man with a huge salary with a pole dancer girlfriend living the life in Hawaii…how heroic to give all that up? sound like the image the MSM apply to enemies of the state?
He has been designed to be the peoples hero and all his is is a limited hangout pushing bullshit from the start.
Please start looking at the facts and stop thinking the guardian was not pulling shit for years, they are just sloppier and more complainant now.
“The security services turning up at the guardian to destroy Snowden’s hard drives blah blah..reported all over the MSM, was most certainly a dog and pony show to legitimise Snowden as a genuine whistle blower. “…
Even as paranoid nonsense goes, that is ridiculous and embarrassingly silly.
The established powers really do have principled opponents who are genuine and sincere. Snowden Is the current leading example. You might as well denounce this site as a clever charade mounted by the all-powerful conspiracy of evil.
You can go back a bit further and include wikileaks and Snowden with the bullshit the guardian has been peddling. Obviously being a mainstream media outlet the guardian will have always been owned and controlled by the elite…of corse it was always marketed towards the socially conscious market segment of the British population. These were mostly your middle class students with socialist and leftist leanings…like most students who want the freedom of adolescence to continue permanently (and who can blame them).
Of corse if you catch people whilst they are young you’ll have a good chance of influencing the next generation of society and this is what the guardian has always been used for…it’s what created the so called social justice warrior.
Of corse we need people to demonstrate against draconian laws but that’s not what the guardian prep the masses for. If the guardian have its way you’ll see protests over toilets and transsexuals…
And look at Snowden he supports the “USA freedom act” Snowden still a full time CIA employee and always was, it is quite obvious from his behaviour and his back story (or lack of it) Assange is something similar.
What your seeing is a guardian that is now fit for the incredibly dumbed down Generation Y. It looks glaringly obvious to lots of generation X, as bullshit, social engineering and propaghanda dressed up as a dissident voice for the socially aware “youth”. And Owen Jones looks about 15 years old and like most journalists he has to pay his rent and isn’t going to rock any boat in any serious manner.
The only honest journalist is one that already has enough money outside of being paid to write horse manure.
I encourage all the pissed off ex guardian posters to get back in CIF and repeatedly fight the bullshit narratives there and to continually change your email addresses and screen names every time you get banned. Also continually throw in links to this site any any other sites that counter the toxic brainwashing in the guardian.
For a start third wave feminism needs to be ridiculed and shamed for the vile and devicive brainwashing it is. The same thing with the continually pro black lives matter pollution..designed to again divide and conquer the masses. The continual war against all white males and the purposeful distraction from the actual real puppet masters, who happen to be white males but have more in common with reptiles than the average white man.
You can’t link to off-gaurdian – it gets instantly deleted and you get instantly banned
Sorry, I’m not buying it. Snowden is CIA? Then why did the Russians take him in? To help Uncle Scam with his psy-op? Very doubtful.
And Assange? All that time he spent cooped up in the Ecuadoran embassy was just a ruse? Or maybe they were letting him out at night, to go clubbing or something. And I suppose the imprisonment of Chelsea (Bradly) Manning was also part of the deception too, right?
Color me skeptical.
This is an excellent example right here of the way that an open debate in a comments section between commenters expressing widely differing views can help to inform the reader’s own views and their reasons for holding them. The value of this and the compelling case against censorship which it implies are apparently lost on the current management and moderators at the Guardian. It’s not about whether I agree with a particular view or not. It’s the value of being exposed to the whole spectrum of views and not only those that I may initially happen to agree with.
Bradley manning was a useful idiot and is the modern day Lee Harvey Oswald.
Have you even bothered, in all seriousness looking into Assanges background or that of Snowdens? You have the Internet at your disposal so before you go off disputing me based primarily on what what guardian and BBC and C4 news fed you (remember your here because you had your fill of the bullshit in the guardian! Right?) do some bloody research.
As far as “why did the Russians take him” I am pretty sure you’ll find he was’t originally planning on staying in Russia but if you look at the games America is currently playing with Putin it’s more likely Russia decided to keep hold of him for their own propaghanda goals. You know to show themselves as the current “guardians” of free speech.
Keeping hold of Snowden has worked out very well for Putins image and it’s given Snowden credibility…however I suspect whatever crappy goals the CIA had planned on using Snowden for against Russia and China have now been neutralised…at least for the moment.
Ask yourself a very basic question. Why would a guy like Snowden support the USA freedom act, which is nothing more an tinkering around the edges of the patriot act. Why would so,some who supposedly endangered their life and gave up all that good stuff in Hawaii, do a virtual uturn?
Sorry bout the typos. Always pissed me off on CIF, the lack of an edit tab. Put that in the suggestion box
I suspect you’re right (for what it’s worth.) I haven’t looked into Bradley Manning, particularly, but the fact he’s a ‘transsexual in prison’ seems to fit one of the MSM’s narratives a little too conveniently. The revolution will not be televised, and you won’t read about it in ‘The Guardian.’
Think about wikileaks too. A website set up for whistle blowers. Sound like a honey trap, much! I mean didn’t whistleblowers always go to the media anyway and didn’t journalists have a well known reputation for protecting their confidential sources at all costs. So why the need for Wikileaks? Which coincidentally couldn’t or didn’t fucking protect manning, suprise suprise.
See it falls apart when you step away from the horse manure that is the guardian and the rest of the MSM.
And your on to something with all the deluge of transsexual crap being churned out of that dung pile and and rest of the MSM . Ooh ooh boycott North Carolina because of a law that asks people born as men to use the men’s toilet…we all know any half convincing transsexual isn’t going to be stopped for using the “wrong” toilet. What? do they have the TSA conducting sexual assaults…I mean body searches, outside public toilets checking everyone’s sex now??? No, not as yet anyhow, give it time I suppose. But maybe a 6.5ft dude in lipstick and heels might weird out some women? No shit. Corse on the BBC today they show as an example a 17 year old girl that is the most convincing boy your going probably ever see…as if anyone would notice or bloody care in her/his case.
Seriously fuck the fucking guardian and the BBC etc etc etc
Wonder if I can get away with sticking this repeatedly all over CIF tonight?
Feel free to copy and past everyfuckingwhere haha.
I’m not convinced. It seems really convoluted and there are too many variables that would interfere with such a plan going smoothly. One, maybe. But all three? Also, if this article is correct, traditional media outlets probably aren’t as good at upholding their principles then first thought.
This article isn’t only about the Guardian — it tracks the change, with Obama’s second term in the White House starting in 2012, when he (and the Western aristocracies that he as the U.S. President was now politically free and able to serve 100%) initiated full-force against Russia’s two key allies, Assad and Yanukovych: the ‘new Cold War’, which is really the Western aristocracies’ increasingly hot war aimed at ultimately taking over Russia. Though this article deals with only one of the international aristocrats’ propaganda-vehicles, I’ve noticed the same changes occurring at them all.
And unfortunately, the short answer to “will anyone really fall for this?”, as you well attest and for the reasons you lay out, is “yes.”
You are far too nice dear BlackCatte. There is one minority only behind this further step forward into fascism. One minority with the most powerful lobby in the world. The only minority that counts.
Can you be a bit more specific? I am not sure I am understanding correctly.
Is it Morris dancers?
Don’t be a simpleton. She said “the only minority that counts”. She obviously meant abacus users.
Thanks. I asked just to be sure.
I am impressed with the powerful lobby of the Union of Abacus Users.
Do they have something we do not? Why such a fear (of them)?