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Attention: Secret agents need to update Notepad++
Aaron Bolyard
Member #7,537
July 2006
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Snowden wanted to seek asylum in South America but his passport was revoked while in Russia. He didn't go to Russia to seek asylum, just like you wouldn't say you're visiting France when you have a layover in France (or whatever; just an example).

But what do I know. :)

The narrative "Snowden gave Russia/China/etc national secrets for protection" is bullshit.

Gideon Weems
Member #3,925
October 2003

If nothing else, this thread has put me in the mood to watch Citizenfour, one of my favorite films. If anyone has not seen it, consider it recommended--if for no other reason than being able to watch actual footage from the inside, as events unfurl to historical proportions. And if you have seen it, let's hug, man!

Chris Katko
Member #1,881
January 2002
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A related good one.

The Internet's Own Boy: The Story of Aaron Swartz.

video

He was the one cool guy behind Reddit--originally not apart of it until the Y-combinator start-up guy made them work together. He actually cared about civil liberties and when Reddit staff moved to San Fransisco all the others basically all sat around and goofed off instead of working. He hated working there and said, "I can't get anything done in this noisy environment." So he basically forced them to fire him so he could do better things. He would have crapped himself if he saw what Reddit has become... a huge censorship hugfest.

I'll never forget Reddit censoring the Orlando Pulse nightclub shooting. Apparently, a bunch of gays being mowed down by a Muslim--one of the worst shootings in US history--isn't "news." They even deleted a post directing people where to donate blood. I know too many gay people to let that slide.

http://www.vocativ.com/328593/orlando-shooting-reddit-exodus-censorship/

https://www.reddit.com/r/conspiracy/comments/4ntim1/rnews_mod_tells_user_to_kill_yourself/

-----sig:
“Programs should be written for people to read, and only incidentally for machines to execute.” - Structure and Interpretation of Computer Programs

Aaron Bolyard
Member #7,537
July 2006
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Are you confusing subreddit mods (users) with Reddit (the company)?

Chris Katko
Member #1,881
January 2002
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AHAHAHHAH. I literally had a section that said "I know someone is going to say, omg, that's the mods not the admins!" but I removed it.

Anyone who looks deeper into Reddit, will find a clear line of admin support for toxic, harassing subreddits that push staff supported political ideologies, and a hypocritical clamp down of the opposite. In other words, "The rules are what we say they are, and only apply when we say they do."

Additionally, Reddit has done things like kick people off their user accounts so celebrities can have their proper name. Like /u/presidentobama. Or, when /u/spez (the CEO) edited people's comments without their consent. But those are all childish compared to the clear narrative setting, and hypocritical application of community guidelines while intentionally never actually clarifying "what the rules actually are"--which is demanded every month for years now to no reply.

For example, every year they say they're getting rid of Shadowbanning (making it so your account and comments can't actually be SEEN by anyone but you don't know). But after 5+ years of saying it, they still haven't.

[edit] For another great example. /r/exmuslim users are STALKED by active Muslims, and phished to find their identity. A young woman was beaten by her family because they found her identity and contacted her parents. Reddit has taken no action to protect them, or even acknowledge the problem. Meanwhile, people on /r/the_donald make "mean memes!" (oh god, not the memes!) and Reddit has consistently threatened and clamped down on them saying "If you so much as link to another sub, we'll ban you." Rules that other subreddits do not have to follow.

My political affiliation doesn't matter. If a conservative company was crapping on liberals, I'd care just as much--and my post history proves as much. So don't write this off as some sort of partisanship.

-----sig:
“Programs should be written for people to read, and only incidentally for machines to execute.” - Structure and Interpretation of Computer Programs

Aaron Bolyard
Member #7,537
July 2006
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Reddit (the website) is a 'Choose Your Echochamber' adventure, nothing more, nothing less. Yes, there is a bias towards liberal views, but that's because most users are, you know, liberal and thus most subreddits are also liberal.

Reddit (the company) benefits from removing the most hateful of communities for monetary reasons. (It also benefits from removing illegal communities, too. Of course).

I mean, you're welcome to try and bring up liberal-leaning subreddits as hateful as the various far-right subreddits that have been banned (like /r/altright), but to be frank, I've never seen any.

(Look, I do agree Reddit sucks, and it does apply its rules selectively, but it's primarily a financial issue--e.g., a narrative guided by money--not some partisan issue. If Reddit profited from benefiting conservative views at the expense of liberal views, you'd be arguing the reverse right now.)

edit: ok I should be done with edits.

Gideon Weems
Member #3,925
October 2003

The Internet's Own Boy: The Story of Aaron Swartz.

This has been on my list for a while! I know of Aaron Swartz mostly for his contributions to RSS, though... Never heard of Reddit before.

Neil Roy
Member #2,229
April 2002
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Meanwhile, protests are going on RIGHT NOW in over 100 cities across Russia over corruption, and the assassination of the anti-putin leader.

Really?! You mean... you can protest in Russia and not get machine gunned down? You realize the fact that there are protests in Russia speaks volumes against what you have said against them?

Also, the fact that they are the ONE safe haven people who are threatened in t he USA is a HUGE PLUS in my books! They are the ONE nation the United states hasn't got their filthy tentacles into. I can see why an American might not like that... well... until the USA threatens THEM anyhow.

--
Deluxe Pacman (website now gone)
"I am not ashamed of my belief in God."

Aaron Bolyard
Member #7,537
July 2006
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[edit] For another great example. /r/exmuslim users are STALKED by active Muslims, and phished to find their identity. A young woman was beaten by her family because they found her identity and contacted her parents. Reddit has taken no action to protect them, or even acknowledge the problem. Meanwhile, people on /r/the_donald make "mean memes!" (oh god, not the memes!) and Reddit has consistently threatened and clamped down on them saying "If you so much as link to another sub, we'll ban you." Rules that other subreddits do not have to follow.

Well I have something fun! A moderator of a leftist sub banned from Reddit for refusing to censor "bash the fash" comments.

Bruce Perry
Member #270
April 2000

Wow, this thread took a poisonous turn :-X

--
Bruce "entheh" Perry [ Web site | DUMB | Set Up Us The Bomb !!! | Balls ]
Programming should be fun. That's why I hate C and C++.
The brxybrytl has you.

Aaron Bolyard
Member #7,537
July 2006
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Wow, this thread took a poisonous turn

Well it is an anarchy subreddit. ;D

(Personally, I don't browse it. The only reason I mentioned it was because it's a leftist being censored by Reddit admins, not a rightist [?]. Exceptions to the rule, yada, yada, whatever, it was just a poke.)

edit: Completely misread what you wrote. Thought you said "that thread took a poisonous turn." Woops.

Chris Katko
Member #1,881
January 2002
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We should definitely relax and not touch hot button issues so much.

I think abortion is murder, but I don't like women having agency over their bodies. So I think all babies should be aborted.

-----sig:
“Programs should be written for people to read, and only incidentally for machines to execute.” - Structure and Interpretation of Computer Programs

bamccaig
Member #7,536
July 2006
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Chris Katko
Member #1,881
January 2002
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Oh, back on the Reddit train:

It turns out /r/the_donald has SIX MILLION SUBSCRIBERS but Reddit has been capping both their votes and their subscriber count. Why... I have no freakin' idea. Whether it's pettiness or some sort of "half clever" attempt to reduce their footprint. They have 6 million subscribers yet only report 385,000 and have been capping it for months at that number... even though the subreddit keeps growing every time Reddit mods censor an important event like the Pulse Nightclub shooting.

Go ahead, check for yourself.

https://www.reddit.com/r/The_Donald/

It'll show 385,000 subscribers. Oh wait, it looks like they forgot to censor/change that number in their advertiser page:

https://www.reddit.com/r/The_Donald/comments/62lh2b/can_confirm_the_donald_has_over_6_million/

Oops.

That, or they're inflating their subscriber numbers to potential advertisers. Which sounds a lot like fraud. ;)

[edit] Looks like they're doing it to other subs! Have the toxic, sexist, misogynistic virgins at /r/the_donald uncovered site-wide advertising shenannigans? ::grabs popcorn:: This goin' be good.

[edit]

https://archive.fo/UkycK

Here's an article about it. Apparently they undercut the_donald numbers by >1400%, while other subs are cut by orders of a magnitude less.

http://archive.fo/UkycK/6b3be0c7cd2bd69c453d3bd4e8e3b6141f0abce0.png

(Archive doesn't support direct linking I think.)

-----sig:
“Programs should be written for people to read, and only incidentally for machines to execute.” - Structure and Interpretation of Computer Programs

Aaron Bolyard
Member #7,537
July 2006
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But do we know if Reddit only counts 'active' users among the subscriber count?

In other words, if 5 million accounts are created solely to upvote/downvote and inflate subscriber count, and these accounts never actually participate in discussion or post content, are they excluded from subscriber counts? If so, could it be that The_Donald has a high number of accounts that don't actually participate, and instead are only used for brigading?

Companies already offer services for this very purpose, it wouldn't be surprising to find some subreddits are guilty of using them.

bamccaig
Member #7,536
July 2006
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It's ridiculous for anybody to care either way. It's ridiculous for advertisers to pay on such an arbitrary metric, and it's ridiculous for a particular forum within a site to attempt to fake the number for any reason. Regardless of what is true or what isn't true, it's ridiculous to care in this case. If Reddit is a shitty host for free discussion there's a simple answer: stop fucking using it.

Chris, you've been complaining about this for a while now, and I can't help wonder why you still go there. Find a better medium for discussions you're interested in, or create one if you can. You cannot control what "Reddit" decides to do, and unfortunately you're in the minority so no amount of backlash is going to sway them. They do not even feel your temper tantrums, or even the collective tantrums of the movements you're interested in. The opposing side is much bigger and stronger. Merit does not matter in this world, irrespective of who is merited in this or any other debate. The "witch" trials did not occur because people collectively got together and surmised that surely there are witches based upon the evidence. They occurred because people are stupid, gullible, destructive animals. The majority follow, and the few that lead are aware of their power and rarely or never does that lead to righteousness or good.

Neil Roy
Member #2,229
April 2002
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Chris, yeah, typical media shenaigans. Purposely trying to deflate the numbers to make it appear like support is much less than it is.

We should be used to this by now. The liberal media simply does not have an honest bone in their collective bodies. Thankfully, artificially changing the numbers does not alter the reality. ;D 6 million is hardly a minority. ;D

--
Deluxe Pacman (website now gone)
"I am not ashamed of my belief in God."

bamccaig
Member #7,536
July 2006
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9 billion people can be wrong. It wouldn't make a single right person any less right. The number of people that believe something doesn't influence its validity, for the better or worse. Good ideas are good regardless of how many people think so. Bad ideas are bad regardless of how many people don't.

Neil Roy
Member #2,229
April 2002
avatar

And yet, you thought the numbers were important enough to accuse Chris of being in the "minority". Hypocrite!

--
Deluxe Pacman (website now gone)
"I am not ashamed of my belief in God."

bamccaig
Member #7,536
July 2006
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I don't think "minority" or "majority" are overly important, other than steering us away from useless avenues. All I meant by it was that a small group's noise is muffled by the larger group. The "Feminist" platform in particular is PC-central right now. A woman will automatically get much more attention than a man, and automatically much more credibility, even if she's a complete moron. Men are the enemy to PC culture, which is in control. White men in particular are the enemy. Like I said, merit doesn't matter. No matter how good your ideas are, the rules are already laid out. Women always were and are "oppressed" apparently. And as sick as it is, the "gender card" is more powerful than the "race card", even though women haven't suffered nearly as much as some other "minority" groups (how is a group that comprises approximately 50% of the population a "minority" anyway?!).

The only point that I aim to make is to direct your energy where it has a chance in Hell of winning because you'll never convince "Reddit" to support you with merit. There's too much money, or at least they believe so, in supporting the other side. They're probably right.

I've come to the same conclusion. Although I support the general direction of a few political movements, such as "OpenMedia" and the Green Party of Canada, I've recognized that they're trying to win a fixed game (think casino), and they're trying to do it on my dime. Many of their ideas are good (though not all), but they believe that if they just collect enough money that they can fight against million and billion dollar industries. The worst part, they brag about superficial victories and beg for more money implying that they'll be able to go all the way. It's infuriating how ignorant they are. Years and years of losing at every turn and they somehow think it's going to change in their favor all by itself any day now. As if the system is perfectly fair and all they need is another $10 and they can make the public aware of the problem and everything will revert.

Activist money is never going to win that fight for the underdog against political and corporate interests. And every time they ask for just a little bit more (weekly according to my inbox) all they accomplish is robbing honest people of their earnings to employ these activists in a futile fight. I'd much rather the time and energy and money was spent researching the topics, improving upon reliable studies, and educating the public. More would be accomplished that way than saying "60 thousand people said they don't like this, please stop", or even "6 million people said they don't like this, please stop". That's fantastic, but all anyone understands is that "35 million people didn't oppose this" or "324 million didn't oppose this". Which brings us back to my previous point. If we want to win the fight we need to strip money of its power and instead empower good ideas.

Who gives a shit what the majority of people believe? A significant proportion of the planet believes in some kind of magic man in the sky for which there is no concrete evidence. People are idiots. What should matter is what the science says, and what the science says is actually what the majority of scientists in a particular field can agree best explains a particular idea. This creates a bit of a paradox for state-funded research. And at the same time, state-funded research is probably the only research that has any hope of being unbiased. Likely, we need policies that force state-funded research, if not research in general, to support the scientific community as a whole. Don't ask me how we can fairly and legally define or quantify it. It's not a simple problem. Perhaps some kind of peer-to-peer cryptographic system akin to Bitcoin is the answer. I'm just rambling.

Probably a good start is making all scientific research public by definition. No more corporations hording ideas, or universities and other interest groups requiring a financial contribution to see the findings of a study. I don't think that is valuable, and it probably hurts the system in general. Maybe it's idealist of me, but I think something more open would force good ideas to persevere and would defeat bad ideas before they got off the ground.

Chris Katko
Member #1,881
January 2002
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bamccaig said:

Chris, you've been complaining about this for a while now, and I can't help wonder why you still go there.

It's an abusive relationship. I've been there for almost ten years, and posted well over... 30,000... 50,000 comments... maybe more. I still remember how great it "once was" and how great it was to discuss ideas and learn from people with a diverse range of viewpoints.

Now it's consolidated into one view point. The new liberal "Agree with me or die." viewpoint.

And I find that genuinely sad. It's one of those things you never realize how great and unique it was, until it's gone.

I used to hang with all the international kids at college. I loved learning from my friends about their home countries of China and India (the BEST DAMN COFFEE that you can't even buy in the USA), South Sudan (as they were declaring independence!) and Bangladesh. But now I'm long away from college, and Reddit likewise has gone to censorship mode. So I've got very few venues for open discussion of ideas from people genuinely interesting in learning and growing.

I haven't changed. I still love ideas. But the world seems to have moved on.

[edit] Oh, and on the topic of "Companies only censor to make money, not for one specific ideology."

Naming your character after the current president is apparently too offensive for Overwatch. ;D

video

Think about that. Does anyone recall getting banned or fired for supporting Obama the last two elections? When I was a teen, I used to play Ravenshield with the nickname Teddy Ron Paul.

I've got an awesome GIF somewhere that really highlights what's going on. The distributions of "left" and "right" used to have much much more overlap, but the leftists have gone more left, and the rightists have gone more right and nobody is talking to anybody anymore.

Moreover, with tech being almost completely consolidated to San Francisco, these "private companies can do whatever they want" just so happens to be almost always liberals banning conservatives. And that's very dangerous when media/information channels are so consolidated these days (and getting worse every year). Because when everything is pro-liberal, you get zero accountability for the bad liberals, and make it super easy to censor specific topics that get in the way of a political agenda.

If 99% of websites were conservative and banning any mention of global warming (including Google search results), you'd sure as hell care. Well, I'm a hardcore moderate and I'm trying to care about both sides--whoever the underdog is that year.

[edit]

BINGO, here it is. Notice the last ~4 years, things went INSANE.

http://i.imgur.com/SISLwcJ.gif

(Not sure why Allegro.cc is failing to embed this. Direct link.)

(And as someone who voted for Obama, I have to say, WTF was he doing? He single-handedly helped divide Americans with his extremely divisive us-verses-them speeches. He had a GREAT opportunity to bring us closer together... the FIRST black President! And then he used his platform to separate us further. What a dickhole.)

-----sig:
“Programs should be written for people to read, and only incidentally for machines to execute.” - Structure and Interpretation of Computer Programs

Bruce Perry
Member #270
April 2000

That gif just proves that people want to see more boobies :)

--
Bruce "entheh" Perry [ Web site | DUMB | Set Up Us The Bomb !!! | Balls ]
Programming should be fun. That's why I hate C and C++.
The brxybrytl has you.

Chris Katko
Member #1,881
January 2002
avatar

That's hilarious. =D I should edit all of the links in my posts later on to be graphs of boobs and make future readers wonder why everyone is so casually discussing our topics while I post boob graphs. ;)

-----sig:
“Programs should be written for people to read, and only incidentally for machines to execute.” - Structure and Interpretation of Computer Programs

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