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Free Speech & First Amednment

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Free Speech & First Amednment

Post by I REALLY HATE POKEMON! » Sat Mar 11, 2017 5:48 am

There's a bit of cursing sprinkled in the article: http://www.agonybooth.com/free-speech-d ... ment-23710

What do you think of free speech? Some people seem to think they're clever when discussing the limits of free speech but don't actually understand the nuances involved in such a discussion, and certainly can't appreciate the notion itself (especially when actively crusading against it); I've come into contact with many people like that. Conflating the concept of free speech and the law of the First Amendment is a mistake that only a dishonest American can make when assuming such a person is of at least average intelligence, especially if they're educated. So, I think it's important for people to talk about free speech sometimes, what we think about it, what its limits may be.

I've included the article as a discussion point but it doesn't need to be the focus. However, I think it brings up some good points, personally. One especially disgusting thing is rallying on social media to get people fired because of what they say on the Internet. I have to wonder if they know they're hurting people in a real and tangible way over something trivial (or even if it's not trivial in their opinion they can't think it's worth ruining people over). Another thing it brought to my attention was companies fining people for negative reviews, I didn't even know that was possible. Terrible.

TL;DR: Freedom of speech does not only apply to the government. That's dumb and wrong.

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Post by The Amazing Tazy Ten » Sat Mar 11, 2017 6:12 am

Legally, that is correct. However, free speech is also the best practice in every other sense and trying to stifle it, well it's never ended well.

Allow me to modify a quote from George R.R. "Never Gonna Finish The Next Book" Martin. "When you tear out a man's tongue, you are not proving him a liar and you're not proving yourself correct, you're only telling the world that you fear what he might say."

When companies, individuals, or anyone silence a certain opinion, be afraid. Because the worm can always turn and do you really want anyone to have full control on where that worm turns? Think of anyone you know, and of all the times they've disagreed with you. Would you trust one person with everything you need?

As for the "rally to get someone fired" tactic, it also never works. The intention is probably to send a message but really you're not changing any minds. You're just making everyone angrier and that does nothing other than stroke your ego.

Free Speech is a good policy. It's what this site lives by and we've been around for 15 years. It works because we're not afraid to make it work.

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Post by CaptHayfever » Sat Mar 11, 2017 1:54 pm

I have 3 things to say here:

1) Oh, for the love of crap.

2) "Freedom of speech" is the exact wording used in the 1st Amendment itself, as well as in most official documents regarding it. To criticize people for conflating "freedom of speech" as defined by the 1st Amendment with "free speech" is oblivious at best, but most likely malicious.

3) Free speech outside of government-regulated platforms is important, yes, & the whole "get people we disagree with fired so they starve to death" thing is obnoxious & played-out. None of that, however, means that you are free from consequence for being a horrible person, even if your horribleness is only expressed in speech. It may not be "best practice", but the owners of private property still do & should have the right to stifle speech they find needlessly inflammatory, obnoxious, or disruptive.
If I work for AT&T, & I go to work every day & spend 8 hours reciting the Communist Manifesto aloud in an operatic baritone for my entire cubicle sea to hear, my boss would not be in the wrong for stopping me, even if I'm doing my work whilst I recite, because my recitation is offensive & distracting to my coworkers.
If I go to a web forum about pet care & post the complete text of HMS Pinafore multiple times a day, then the moderation staff is not in the wrong for deleting it, because my posts are irrelevant to the focus of the forum & crash the server.
Et cetera. Sometimes the person exercising their free speech is still in the wrong, not because they don't have freedom of speech, but because they are abusing that freedom to hurt others. To claim that those in a non-government role have to put up with that crap, or have to concede every venue to such douchebags, is asinine at best, but most likely malicious.

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Post by I am nobody » Sat Mar 11, 2017 3:21 pm

The author actually had a decent point, even they didn't make it the main focus:
So clearly, it’s not just the government that can limit free speech in ways that could be considered unfair or unreasonable. Admittedly, the odds that Drunk Uncle is going to lose his job over yelling about Obummer and socialism and “the gays” on a blog are pretty slim. But when he complains about his free speech being violated, he’s actually right to some extent: when his comments are deleted or he’s banned from a discussion forum or he’s intimidated into never posting again, that’s a form of censorship. It’s just not legally prohibited censorship.

On larger sites with readership in the hundreds of thousands or millions, however, weeding out unpopular voices so that only the approved groupthink opinion remains can leave a lot of readers with a lopsided understanding of the issues being discussed. Also, booting trolls with unpopular viewpoints off mainstream sites only forces them underground, where they inevitably regroup on Chan sites and start coming up with dumb ideas like #GamerGate. I’m not suggesting private websites should be forced to allow people to post anything they want, but I believe there’s some value to sites (especially the larger social media sites) allowing more leeway for offensive ideas to be expressed.
You're obviously within your rights ban him anyway, but it's worth remembering that the act of inflicting the consequences of Drunk Uncle's unpleasant speech may themselves have consequences if his next forum is, say, Stormfront. You might be forever free of him on your forum, but you're still stuck sharing reality.

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Post by I REALLY HATE POKEMON! » Sat Mar 11, 2017 3:28 pm

CaptHayfever, post: 1624610, member: 25169 wrote:I have 3 things to say here:

1) Oh, for the love of crap.
Open disdain for dissenting opinions and the mere mention of free speech says a lot about people.
CaptHayfever]2) wrote:at best[/i], but most likely malicious.
I guess you didn't read the article or already know this then, but the concept of free speech wasn't invented with the 1st Amendment and exists outside of it. With or without it we have free speech, that law only guarantees it. Our basic freedoms are not dependent on it or any other law. I realize this may difficult to understand for people who want to silence others, but it's the truth. I won't assume malice for anyone's lack of understanding though, I'll only attribute it to willful ignorance.
CaptHayfever]3) Free speech outside of government-regulated platforms is important wrote:is[/i] obnoxious & played-out. None of that, however, means that you are free from consequence for being a horrible person, even if your horribleness is only expressed in speech. It may not be "best practice", but the owners of private property still do & should have the right to stifle speech they find needlessly inflammatory, obnoxious, or disruptive.
If I work for AT&T, & I go to work every day & spend 8 hours reciting the Communist Manifesto aloud in an operatic baritone for my entire cubicle sea to hear, my boss would not be in the wrong for stopping me, even if I'm doing my work whilst I recite, because my recitation is offensive & distracting to my coworkers.
If I go to a web forum about pet care & post the complete text of HMS Pinafore multiple times a day, then the moderation staff is not in the wrong for deleting it, because my posts are irrelevant to the focus of the forum & crash the server.
Et cetera. Sometimes the person exercising their free speech is still in the wrong, not because they don't have freedom of speech, but because they are abusing that freedom to hurt others. To claim that those in a non-government role have to put up with that crap, or have to concede every venue to such douchebags, is asinine at best, but most likely malicious.

And remember, "I'm-a Luigi, number one!"
You say in passing that free speech is important, but then go on to list extreme examples for why any contrary opinions should be silenced. Maybe you should consider reevaluating what you think free speech means, which is the purpose of this topic. Just a suggestion.

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Post by CaptHayfever » Sat Mar 11, 2017 3:43 pm

1) I am not blind. I can see timestamps on posts, including posts on other boards of this website, & including this very thread. Don't insult me by pretending you don't know what I'm talking about, or by pretending this thread wasn't inspired by another one.

2) You explicitly said the article doesn't need to be the focus of this discussion; I was just discussing your ideas But yeah, I already knew that; the drafters of the Bill of Rights had to have heard of the concept somewhere, after all. And honestly, at this point in society, willful ignorance basically IS malice.

As for the article:
Hell, I wouldn’t even call it very troublesome censorship, especially for smaller sites. I’ve deleted plenty of obnoxious comments here in my role as site admin (though I tend to reserve deletes and bannings for people who are actually being abusive, not idiots expressing stupid opinions).
...leads me to...

3) Yeah, I don't support banning people for being wrong or for disagreeing, or even for being offensive. I'm talking abuse. I'm talking about picking fights. Claiming I think "any contrary opinions should be silenced", for example, is putting words into my mouth, which is picking a freaking fight you don't wanna freaking pick.
If we banned idiots for expressing stupid opinions, a hell of a lot of people (including both you & me) would've been banned a hell of a long time ago (probably within days of registering).

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Post by X-3 » Sat Mar 11, 2017 3:49 pm

Man Who Constantly Whines When Other People Use Their Free Speech and Labels Them Demands His Speech be Invincible

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Post by ScottyMcGee » Sat Mar 11, 2017 4:27 pm

You can say whatever you want to say.

DISCLAIMER: This doesn't mean you're always right.
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Post by I REALLY HATE POKEMON! » Sat Mar 11, 2017 4:34 pm

CaptHayfever, post: 1624624, member: 25169 wrote:1) I am not blind. I can see timestamps on posts, including posts on other boards of this website, & including this very thread. Don't insult me by pretending you don't know what I'm talking about, or by pretending this thread wasn't inspired by another one.
Yes, you are not blind. You only see what you want to see, that's my opinion, you can have it removed if you want to. Also, when did I deny that this topic was inspired by another? Should I hide that? If it's openly revealed is it a good excuse for more silencing? I think it's a good topic and I'm genuinely sorry that it seems to offend you.
CaptHeyfever]2) You explicitly said the article doesn't need to be the focus of this discussion; I was just discussing your ideas But yeah wrote:willful[/i] ignorance basically IS malice.
That is true, I did say that the article doesn't need to be the focus of the discussion, which is also why I added "or you didn't already know." Since you did then my assumption was wrong, sorry. I don't agree that willful ignorance is malice by default but maybe in some cases it could be. I think it would need to be an extreme case for that to be true, there's weight to words like "malice."
CaptHeyfever]As for the article: ...leads me to... 3) Yeah wrote:days[/i] of registering).

And remember, "I'm-a Luigi, number one!"
As I read what I wrote I thought that I worded it incorrectly. I didn't want to edit it because it would seem dishonest. Rather than saying that I should've said I think you want to silence opinions you find offensive, not any opinions you disagree with. I think the difference is significant, I regret not proofreading well enough.

Also, I'm not picking fights with you or abusing you, sorry if you feel that way. I was just letting you know how I perceived what you said and I worded it badly. It's not as if I'm arguing for tolerance for people hurling insults or abusing others, it infringes people's rights. We don't, however, have the right not to be offended by other people's opinions. I guess that's not true in practice on the Internet, however.
X-3, post: 1624625, member: 27765 wrote:Man Who Constantly Whines When Other People Use Their Free Speech and Labels Them Demands His Speech be Invincible
Nobody has to like how others use their free speech, whining about it is fine. Actively silencing people is something entirely different, wouldn't you agree? I whine about Westboro Baptists, for example, I think they're a disgrace. I wouldn't silence them anywhere though, even if I could. Would you?

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Post by X-3 » Sat Mar 11, 2017 4:55 pm

[QUOTE="I REALLY HATE POKEMON!, post: 1624634, member: 18119"]Actively silencing people is something entirely different, wouldn't you agree? [/QUOTE]

Yes, I agree that sending death threats and leaking people addresses and phone numbers is b- oh wait, you're not bothering to touch on that at all. What a strange omission.

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Post by I REALLY HATE POKEMON! » Sat Mar 11, 2017 5:07 pm

[QUOTE="X-3, post: 1624635, member: 27765"]Yes, I agree that sending death threats and leaking people addresses and phone numbers is b- oh wait, you're not bothering to touch on that at all. What a strange omission.[/QUOTE]

What are you talking about? Anyway, what's more strange is you avoiding my questions. I guess I am free to speculate...

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Post by X-3 » Sat Mar 11, 2017 5:21 pm

I'm talking about people using their free speech to purposefully silence or discourage the speech of others. You know, that thing that has been happening for...I dunno, probably more than a century. It's strange how you completely ignore that and think the real menace is people getting fired for Twitter behavior.

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Post by I REALLY HATE POKEMON! » Sat Mar 11, 2017 5:26 pm

I didn't ignore it, that just didn't seem relevant. Now that you explicitly mention it, sure, harassment is bad. You seem to be implying that I support discouraging the speech of others but I don't know where that's coming from.

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Post by Bomby » Sat Mar 11, 2017 6:24 pm

Just wanna drop one comment:
"Free speech isn't here to protect the speech you like, it's here to protect the speech you don't like."

Obviously if someone is making violent threats, that's something that really needs to be looked into, but yeah.

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Post by CaptHayfever » Sat Mar 11, 2017 7:42 pm

I REALLY HATE POKEMON!, post: 1624634, member: 18119 wrote:You only see what you want to see, that's my opinion, you can have it removed if you want to.
I don't want to, since...
Also, when did I deny that this topic was inspired by another?
...my disdain was not for the topic of conversation; it was for the motive behind bringing up the topic.
I don't agree that willful ignorance is malice by default but maybe in some cases it could be. I think it would need to be an extreme case for that to be true, there's weight to words like "malice."
You're right--it is a weighted word, & for good reason. Choosing to participate in a society where our words & actions can travel around the world in seconds requires a certain level of responsibility & awareness regarding the repercussions of said words/actions. When one is willfully ignorant, one is refusing to accept that responsibility or become aware of those repercussions, & that means one is indifferent towards the damage they could cause. That's malicious to me.
I didn't want to edit it because it would seem dishonest.
It would only have seemed dishonest if you'd edited it after I'd responded to it, which you didn't. :)
Rather than saying that I should've said I think you want to silence opinions you find offensive, not any opinions you disagree with. I think the difference is significant, I regret not proofreading well enough.
The difference is very significant, yes. It's still not true, though; I don't want to silence opinions I find offensive either.
Also, I'm not picking fights with you or abusing you, sorry if you feel that way. I was just letting you know how I perceived what you said and I worded it badly.
Apology accepted. Thank you.
I whine about Westboro Baptists, for example, I think they're a disgrace. I wouldn't silence them anywhere though, even if I could. Would you?
I mean, I wouldn't, but it'd be glorious if we could get God to intervene on that one.... ;)

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Post by The Missing Link » Mon Mar 13, 2017 7:55 am

After reading the article (admittedly skimming the last few paragraphs):

Provided we separate the term "freedom of speech" (First Amendment) and "free speech."

1. Truly, universally free speech doesn't exist. It never has existed. The author acknowledges this (and even says that this isn't necessarily a bad thing). Speech (just as actions) has consequences.
2. I concur that it's a good idea™ to make speech as free as possible with the proviso that no-one should have to deal with hate speech/violent threats/you name the thing. For everything that is said that does cross the line could be easily rewritten in a more kind/naïve/neutral language that engages debate and discussion. And really, that's the key: promote debate and discussion, not diatribes and demolition.
3. The article seems to be attempting to score points for a game that isn't being played. The point is, "Please don't say only that 'freedom of speech' is only guaranteed by the government." The problem is that this is a follow on from "Whatever happened to free speech?" Most times when this gets posted, the person is mislabelling "free speech" as the First Amendment and therefore a proper response should be the former quote. Of course, I would concur that saying as much isn't as helpful as engaging the person about the errancy of his/her points, but neither is the theoretical remedy of "He's not talking about 'freedom of speech' but 'free speech'? In short, it feels like the effectiveness of the points is negligible at best.
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Post by Random User » Mon Mar 13, 2017 8:09 am

Hate speech is tricky. I think it should be allowed, as long as it doesn't become threats of violence, harassment, or inciting violence. Even if I don't agree with it, what is considered "hateful" is highly subjective. Too subjective for it to be criminalized, imo. If that was what you were saying, TML. If not, my bad, I misinterpreted.

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Post by The Missing Link » Mon Mar 13, 2017 6:21 pm

It's tricky. There are obvious limitations on the freedom of speech; the main issue with hate speech in the US is that it hasn't been properly tested in court to really get a feeling on it. In Australia, there are hate speech laws. I don't have a problem with them.
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Post by е и ժ е я » Tue Mar 14, 2017 9:33 am

- libel
- slander
- defamation
- verbal threat
- perjury
- false advertising

Neverminding that you can eject anyone from private property for no particular reason, so long as it is not a service or business open to the general public, which obviously extends to somebody you don't like who said something rude. You can't tell your boss to **** off and die and expect to keep your job, nor should you. Keep on smoking that pipe dream. If you knowingly say anything untrue which can cause harm to others, you're breaking the law.
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Post by Bomby » Wed Mar 15, 2017 6:03 am

Okay, this is really bothering me.

"Amendment" is spelled incorrectly in the title.

Damn free speech, letting spelling errors go unchecked.

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