...it's not dark yet, but it's gettin' there...

September 10, 2005

Just One More Reason i'm Glad To Be A Munuvian

Blogger has instituted a quasi-censorship program.

When a person visiting a blog clicks the "Flag?" button in the Blogger Navbar, it means they believe the content of the blog may be potentially offensive or illegal. We track the number of times a blog has been flagged as objectionable and use this information to determine what action is needed. This feature allows the blogging community as a whole to identify content they deem objectionable.
This disturbing development is totally separate from their policy regarding spam blogs. This is much more big brotherish.

Blogger excuses this quasi-censorship by referring to the "Wisdom of Crowds" concept. That's complete bullshit. They might have an argument if they gave readers the option to designate a blog as "unobjectionable." But even that would be problematic, because it's always more likely that a offended person would be motivated to click on a flag than someone who's not offended by content. You're going to see a situation where hypersensitive people or those with intolerant political viewpoints will have a kind of "hecklers veto" on blog content.

This is a bad idea, and totally goes against what i thought was Blogger's most important asset, the total freedom it gave to its users. It's also an unnecessary idea. Blog readers have always had a remedy for objectionable content they might happen upon. It's called the back button. Blogger's "Flag Button" is the blogging equivalent of yelling "Mom!" everytime your brother calls you a ninny.

If someone doesn't like what i write for instance, they can always leave a comment, or email me, and then never visit again. If i want to post a picture of my left tit, i'm glad i have the freedom to do so without becoming some kind of second class blog-citizen.

Posted by annika, Sep. 10, 2005 | TrackBack (1)
Rubric: On The Blogosphere


I think I've finally figured out your picture. You're holding a handgun with both hands.

Posted by: Victor on Sep. 10, 2005

Remember, Blogger is owned by Google.

Posted by: David Foster on Sep. 10, 2005

As much as I agree with your sound reasoning, you might change your mind a bit if you were to go to www.smithantics.blogspot.com.

(I am my blog buds at www.sixhertz.blogspot.com refer to it as "shitantics."

I suspect you would be clicking the "Flag" button, too, but maybe I'm wrong.

Posted by: Mark on Sep. 10, 2005

Of course I looked. That's how you seperate the goats from the goatblowers.

You ARE aware that Cal is thumping the shit out of the Huskys? Isn't it about time for some football posts? In case you've forgotten, the Buckeyes are going to have the Longhorns for dinner tonight, after which I plan on being more insufferable than usual for the remainder of the season.

Posted by: Casca on Sep. 10, 2005

Casca, that's got to hurt.

Posted by: MarkD on Sep. 10, 2005

And I have the freedom to ask you what film is this from:

"Oh, I've been to Prague. Well, I haven't "been to Prague" been to Prague, but I know that thing, that, "Stop shaving your armpits, read the Unbearable Lightness of Being, date a sculptor"

Posted by: Jake on Sep. 10, 2005

I guess it depends upon how Blogger uses its power...and how the flag is used. If Blogs For Bush or moveon.org orchestrates campaigns to flag blogs with particular political views, or if Hamas or Focus on the Family orchestrates campaigns to flag blogs with particular religious views, then hopefully Blogger will detect the scam and ignore it. However, if true grass roots flagging occurs (can true grass roots flagging be statistically identified?), then perhaps a few "induce sexually abused children to make nuclear bombs and target people of color" blogs will disappear.

I do wish, however, that the "Flag" button wasn't so prominent. In addition, the purpose is not intuitively apparent - if I hadn't read the fine print, I would have thought that "Flag" could be used to mark blogs that I *like*.

Posted by: Ontario Emperor on Sep. 10, 2005

Yeah, Casca, loooks like someone else's Ox got gored.

Texas will be in Pasadena on January 4. Then they wil find out what the QB-less wonders of Strawberry Canyon will learn on November 12, and Oklahoma learned last January.

There is only one # 1 in College Football.

Learn the word: "THREEPEAT"

Posted by: shelly on Sep. 11, 2005

i don't know who's more insufferable, SC fans or Buckeye fans. Sheesh.

Posted by: annika on Sep. 11, 2005

Anyone who watched the game KNOWS who dominated. If there was a Heisman player on the field, it was AJ Hawk. Vince Young got his ass beat, and the TD that kept them alive was the product of an officiating fraud call of non-existant pass interference. Texas benefited from bringing their officials all night.

All-in-all, Tressel's misplaced confidence in the choke-meister Justin Zwick fundimentally cost us the game.

In keeping with the freedom of speech subject: USC sucks horsecock.

Posted by: Casca on Sep. 11, 2005

Heisman, you want to talk Heisman? Go back to Strawberry Canyon on November 12 and you can see Heisman. Already one winner plus one nominee will be on the field that day; most likely two more future winners will be there as well. (Keep your eye on John David Booty)

As for the horsecock stuff, I guess you are starting to retrogress already, getting ready to take off your shirt and put on your blue paint. That sounds pretty sophomoric.

I was in Miami in January, watching all the Sooners and Boomers file out of the stadium starting at halftime; by the time the fourth quarter started, most were gone, looking for something to do in Miami that would give them relief from pain.

If I were a Bear, I'd be looking for something else to root for; Women's soccer and volleyball might be a good place to start.

As my eleven year old grandson would say "Trojans rule; Bears drool".

Posted by: shelly on Sep. 12, 2005

Its not being insufferable when you are correct about being best....

Posted by: Mythilt on Sep. 12, 2005

Doesn't anyone care how annika's fantasy baseball team is doing?

Posted by: Victor on Sep. 12, 2005

blogspot is free to most users. They do you delete the blog, just delist it from their own personal advertisments.

Though it could eventually be delisted from google, though I do not think that is happening now.

Posted by: cube on Sep. 12, 2005

Shelly needs his meds adjusted.

Posted by: Casca on Sep. 12, 2005

There is a fairly simple corrective measure, if you're a Blogspot blogger: turn off the nav bar in the template. Then there's no "Flag" button to press.

Posted by: Kevin Baker on Sep. 12, 2005

When I see posts about the Bears wiinning and Texas losing, I figure someone needs his eyes corrected.

No matter; we have several quarterbacks, maybe you guys can buy one, kind of like buying a vowel?

Note to Ah-nika; please, do not take that as an invitation to sponsor another stupid game. I have work to do.

Posted by: shelly on Sep. 12, 2005

When I see posts about the Bears winning and Texas losing, I figure someone needs his eyes corrected. Texas won't lose until January 4, 2006. Cal will be lucky to be undefeated before November 10.

No matter; we have several quarterbacks, maybe you guys can buy one, kind of like buying a vowel?

Note to Ah-nika; please, do not take that as an invitation to sponsor another stupid game. I have work to do.

P.S. Casca, why not watch Saturday night; does ABC-TV reach to where you live?

Posted by: shelly on Sep. 12, 2005

You sir, are clearly, waaaaaaay out there. Take a breath and pray that those chuckleheads make it through an undefeated season.

If the Bears, Irish, or the Bruins grow some gonads, you could see your beloved Trojans getting a good assfucking before they get to the Rose Bowl. We happen to have two extremely good QB's, but only one of them played Saturday, and only sporadicly.

I have no reason to believe that someone won't humble Texas before we reach December. An undefeated season requires more than weak sisters, it requires luck. Texas can't take their officials with them everywhere.

Posted by: Casca on Sep. 13, 2005

Why not? We do.

Posted by: shelly on Sep. 14, 2005

Wasn't there something about a tit...?

Posted by: Telesonic on Sep. 19, 2005

I was hoping the "left tit" link would be a picture of a bird.

Text is no fun!

Posted by: Sigivald on Sep. 19, 2005