rollingrock55 52M
3 posts
4/17/2005 4:57 am

Last Read:
3/5/2006 9:27 pm


I responded to a discussion thread in the Magazine area tonight that had many incidences of the word "Censorship" among the comments.

I hope my post *will* appear there some day. I understand now that such once-free forms of expression have come, of late and on this site, under a closer scrutiny.

It seems many members are complaining that their perfectly lucid and well-argued points are being declined as unfit for publication. This seems to coincide with a counter-balancing tendency to permit, what AdultFriendFinder members are forced to describe as excesses of vulgarity, obscenity and insult.

Is it a trend? I dunno. What does it mean? I dunno. We'll just have to wait and see what gives.

Meanwhile here is my post from earlier tonight (plus a few edits for this context):

I think barbfun came closest to the crux of the matter when she wrote:

"It happend to me too. When I used nice language and didn't offend anyone - my response was denied. But when I used vulgar language like --they fuck, spread her cunt etc...everything was fine....I think there is something wrong with this site."

You're abslutely right -- there IS something very wrong here, it seems.

It used to be that AdultFriendFinder was a place of progressive thinking, where the principles of openness, tolerance and self-responsibility (both as regards sex, and otherwise) set a tone throughout the site you could FEEL.

NOW, it FEELS to me like priorities have changed somehow, like the attention of management has shifted away from the great member-empathy that once made AdultFriendFinder so special and, instead, in the direction of the myriad soulless tasks of profit optimization and liability reduction, that a company of this size could not be expected to ignore.

John2525 said: "I have made a number of reply postings and a couple were refused despite being harmless. I think there is some spam protection which may block repeated responses or something else of a technical nature."

dakranz said: "Yes, there does seem to be a "new" attitude by management on this advice column. I have been writing here for years now, and have had more rejected postings in the last couple of months than in all the years before!"


Well, there's sex and then there's SEX -- in one case, we're talking about healthy, inter-human exploration and discovery -- the sort that depends so vulnerably on the presence of encouragement and acceptance and an inclusive attitude towards discourse, in all its rational forms.

In the second case, we're simply talking about business and about the cold, often disturbing circumstances that can arise when the requirements of business (profit and asset securitization, essentialy) are placed above all others.

I join you in concern.

I'm worried that shifts and changes may already by underway (and unstoppable) that are going to render this site simply inhospitable to many of us who hoped and thought ourselves a part of and contributors to something WE BELIEVE in, an insitution where we felt our most sacred ideologies were understood and reciprocated.

One of the comments above mentioned that there is a feeling that no one is "moderating" -- moderating in the involved, participatory sense -- and that, increasingly, there is a weird feeling of BAD s>h>i>f>t making its way into the user experience.

So far, the feeling has only been conveyed via un-confirmable signs and indications -- but people are sure talking -- and that's where the concerns regarding censorship come into the picture.

For, it seems, if there REALLY has been censorship at work here, that it has NOT been aimed at the things you'd expect might become troublesome on a sex personals site.

Based on what I have read here and in the Magazine section, it looks like smart, eloquent people are having their submissions rejected, for, essentially, reasons of "political controversy" and/or for being of "of an incendiary nature."

Likeminded others whose posts I have read on the site have speculated that, perhaps, some sort of electronic filtration system has been put into place, and therefore accounts for the inexplicable increase in the rate of good ideas being muzzled.

Whether there is any such "filter" in place, I couldn't begin to fathom from where I'm sitting. Clearly, to have real people review submissions would be an enormous (perhaps impossible) undertaking. But, for there being arguably "sufficient signs" to make one wonder beyond the HOW of censorship, and compel one, instead to wonder about the WHY of censorship, there are now certain questions that MUST be asked and certain answers that must be demanded.

What next?

Well, there are gestures to read and meanings to decipher in some of the experiences reported by other members.

Almost universally, they describe an inability to fathom the editorial/censorial policies that might be guiding the things they see happening.

CountryLover56 said: "I've been denied posts too a couple times, for no discernable reason. I think their software is flipping out, personally."

Think about it. It's not the first occasion in history or commerce where we've observe that freedoms of expression and the rights to engage IMPORTANT IDEAS in civil, public debate were sacrificed to the pursuit of a lower (and safer) common-denominator.

If the allegations of inexplicable permissiveness towards certain submissions the other members have described as (to paraphrase them and summarize) offensive, misogynistic and obscene prove true, we shall have to form our own opinions regarding the apparent (effective) censorship of other types of "speech" -- types that are, perhaps, inconsistent with the objectives of management today (whether those objectives be new or simply newly revealed)

I'll give the last word to TechSteve, but I'm gonna hope he's wrong:

"There is no 'freedom of speech' here.."

keithcancook 61M
18138 posts
4/17/2005 12:16 pm

I just posted a rant on this in my blog earlier. Grr, I wish I knew the "rules".

expatbrit49 64M

4/17/2005 1:22 pm

I think you are correct that there is something amiss in the software have you tried reporting that to customer service the couple of times it happened to me I reported (not complained) and the next thing bingo everything is fine.

Thank You for Your Time and Attention

rm_affbreak 47M
287 posts
6/15/2005 3:17 pm

atm some of my blog entries are censored aka not published since half a week - for reasons i cant see. Search for 'censorship' in the blog search does reveal numerous entries - no idea how many more don't pop up because they are censored.

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