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Philantrop
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2006 6:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Let's see what's being discussed tomorrow when it is tomorrow.

I ask you, my fellow Germans, again: Did the law against Nazi propaganda set a precedent for other subjects during the last 60 years here?

If 82 million people can live with that one subject restricted, why shouldn't a few thousand be able to cope with that? Precedent? Hardly.
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2006 6:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Philantrop,

Philantrop wrote:
Quote:
1) ... We do not discuss forbidding arbitratry symbols.


Thats exactly what the Nazi flag is to most people alive in the world today - an arbitary symbol.
The further away you travel from Germany, the less significance it has too.
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yabbadabbadont
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2006 6:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Perhaps we all just need to act like adults and agree to disagree and go about our merry way.
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think4urs11
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2006 6:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Philantrop wrote:
Let's see what's being discussed tomorrow when it is tomorrow.
I ask you, my fellow Germans, again: Did the law against Nazi propaganda set a precedent for other subjects during the last 60 years here?
If 82 million people can live with that one subject restricted, why shouldn't a few thousand be able to cope with that? Precedent? Hardly.

Well...
lets turn this the other way around - can you give any _hard facts_ that 'we, the germans' do really benefit from this nazi ban?
Couldn't it be that nobody from the german youth would care about nazi crap if it would not be forbidden?
Did you ask the germans whether or not they really do care about this stuff/this ban? I know a lot of people who don't care at all - and they are not even 'right wing'.
Censorship is _very_ problematic for a community, no matter the issues, no matter if it is 'just' an online forum or a nation as a whole. If at all then i'd propose to follow the UN carta as beeing the only 'source' most parts of the world have agreed on.
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2006 6:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

philantrop, if you insist on real-life examples, here is one:

i am not allowed to have an antifa sticker (broken swastika dropped in a wastebin) on my car. why? because i am not allowed to show swastika in public.

now this is what i call a restriction that hits the wrong party.
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2006 7:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Anti Nazi laws work well for Germany/Austria because the Nazis are probably the worst evil there. However, people from different cultures are in this forum, and they may have different opinions what is the worst thing (tm).
As a consequence, they may favour censoring other symbols over Nazi symbols, resulting in the ban of all kinds of symbols.
As administrator, how can i explain to
  • An isreali why we don't censor the Hisbollah flag
  • A palestinian why we don't censor the isrealy flag
  • A muslim why we don't censor images of Mohammed
  • An atheist why we don't censor the cross
  • An american why we don't censor images of the WTC falling apart
  • ....

while we do that for Nazi related avatars?

I think each of them has (in his point of view) valid reasons to ask for such a thing, and applying it only to Nazi symbols would be a double standard, and plainly unfair.

If you want to break it down by numbers, yes, the Nazis did kill a lot of people. Is that a criterium? If so, how many people need to be killed in the name of $WHATEVER before we start censoring it as we should do with Nazi emblems?

And again, just because we don't have a policy that explicitely states Nazi related avatars are not allowed (while everything else is), doesn't mean we don't do anything about it.
We do try to solve these problems, intervene with users and try to convince them to change them. Avatars that clearly violate common sense (e.g. goatse.cx stuff) gets removed even if the user disagrees. If there is a problem with a user (in general as well), let us know and we will try our best to deal with the situation, but please don't expect us to come up with new policies that only suffice your needs.
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Philantrop
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2006 7:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Think4UrS11, no, I can't provide evidence for the benefits, of course, because I wasn't even alive when the ban was installed. Therefor, we can only speculate about the factual benefit.

Well, actually, there maybe one: How do you think visitors from all over the world would feel if we greeted them with Nazi banners? Would they visit us as often as they do now? Would they spend their money here?

The excitement of doing the forbidden may incite some to provoke the rest of us, yes, but the core of neo-nazism is not motivated by that. I don't want to go into the (off-topic) details but the high unemployment rate, etc. does much more to drive people into extremist groups.

I, too, know people who don't care about the German Nazi history as well. Most of them don't care about anything but themselves.

Censorship in nations and in forums are completely different things, btw: Isn't it censorship when the moderators lock threads that contain instructions for copyright infringement? Isn't it censorship if "Make money fast" threads get dumped into the "Dust Bin"? Isn't it censorship when people get banned from here? Or are these possibly just the rules? Rules that I have to abide by if I get and want to keep an account here?
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Philantrop
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2006 7:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

amne wrote:
We do try to solve these problems, intervene with users and try to convince them to change them. Avatars that clearly violate common sense (e.g. goatse.cx stuff) gets removed even if the user disagrees.


Don't let lefsha hear that.

Oh, and btw: Whose "common sense" exactly? Isn't that plain egomaniacal censorship? Isn't goatse.cx exactly the precedent so many here are afraid of? What's the difference to Nazi stuff? Doesn't Nazi stuff offend enough people but goatse.cx does? And who defines "common sense" here? Who's "big brother" here and thinks for us? That's not only censorship but dictatorship!

Don't get me wrong, I don't mean to critisize what you're actually doing but so many here are discussing about pure principles without questioning them ever so where are those principles when it comes to goatse.cx? Could it be that principles are great in theory but have their inherent problems in real life?
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2006 7:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Philantrop wrote:
btw: Isn't it censorship when the moderators lock threads that contain instructions for copyright infringement? Isn't it censorship if "Make money fast" threads get dumped into the "Dust Bin"? Isn't it censorship when people get banned from here? Or are these possibly just the rules? Rules that I have to abide by if I get and want to keep an account here?

No, thats just because 'not related to Gentoo' - we are a technical discussion platform with its focus beeing Gentoo. The same dustbining would happen to nazi propaganda threads - but we're talking about a single avatar at the moment - i.e. one little (80x80 px) symbol, don't we?
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2006 7:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Philantrop wrote:
Oh, and btw: Whose "common sense" exactly?


The problem with common sense is that it's hard or even impossible to define. However we can not set up a list of all good and bad things, so we can't avoid refering to it every once in a while.

Philantrop wrote:
Isn't that plain egomaniacal censorship? Isn't goatse.cx exactly the precedent so many here are afraid of? What's the difference to Nazi stuff? Doesn't Nazi stuff offend enough people but goatse.cx does? And who defines "common sense" here? Who's "big brother" here and thinks for us? That's not only censorship but dictatorship!

Basically, the moderators. However we are bound to the policies of these forums as well, so if someone of us goes on a power trip and starts doing stuff the others disagree with, they should be able to stop him.
As for your goatse.cx example, it sometimes is easier to define what isn't common sense. If people from Germany, Austria, Brazil, USA, Sweden, UK, Australia, the Netherlands and Greece (note: quite a selection of western countries) agree that something isn't common sense like goatse.cx, it isn't (per definition).
Of course there always is the chance the moderators are wrong, and it's up to the users to point out errors in their reasoning, but i think we do a quite good job in general.
Situations like that on the other hand are a lose/lose scenario though, whatever we do will upset some people for sure anyway. ;)
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Philantrop
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2006 7:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

So if we're a technical platform about Gentoo - why do we have OTW? And if I asked about copyright infringement using Gentoo? Wouldn't that thread be locked or dustbinned? And if it would: Wouldn't that be censorship?


Another thought from a private conversation. Let's see avatars as a class of toys for a moment.

I don't care about those toys. I tolerate them but I don't play with them. Some of them, I like. Now imagine one of those toys that's especially and only made with the intent to hurt others with. Should we let our companions play and hurt others with it or would it be better to take that one toy away from them?

What happens now when more and more toys of this dangerous, hurting kind are produced? Will the caring parents run after every single child that carries such a toy? Can they even or will they stop at some point and just take all toys of that class away from all of us because some argued that their individual right to play with any toy they like is more important than the well-being of the group as a whole?
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2006 7:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

amne wrote:
And again, just because we don't have a policy that explicitely states Nazi related avatars are not allowed (while everything else is), doesn't mean we don't do anything about it.
We do try to solve these problems, intervene with users and try to convince them to change them. Avatars that clearly violate common sense (e.g. goatse.cx stuff) gets removed even if the user disagrees. If there is a problem with a user (in general as well), let us know and we will try our best to deal with the situation, but please don't expect us to come up with new policies that only suffice your needs.

Any user that chooses something like that as their symbol whether intended or not says something about theirself and as a fellow user I have a choice over how much I want to help them. Although I live in North America and wasn't alive during WWII, I do understand that this symbol is negative to many people. (Including younger people) Out of respect for them, I would chose not to use it, not whether I thought it was right or wrong. So from my point of view I might conclude someone that would chose that symbol doesn't have much respect for other people and probably wouldn't give that extra effort to help than I would for others.

Should they be banned, no, but like anything their are consequences to all choices.

No different than yelling something about a bomb on a plane, sure you have the right to say, but the consequences of that action will no doubt land you in jail. Freedom of speech doesn't mean there you can say anything anywhere without consequences.

In regards to this forum or any forum in general, I think the administrator has the right to censor whatever they want. Just because it is a public forum doesn't imply no censorship. (We're censored all the time in everyday life.) Now if the rules of the forums explicitly state that all comments will not be censored/altered and you post under this assumption, that is a different story.

Frankly I think these forums have more pressing issues to deal with than worrying about avatars and censorship which I think are pretty minor issues here in forums.gentoo.org.
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2006 7:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Philantrop wrote:

Censorship in nations and in forums are completely different things, btw: Isn't it censorship when the moderators lock threads that contain instructions for copyright infringement? Isn't it censorship if "Make money fast" threads get dumped into the "Dust Bin"? Isn't it censorship when people get banned from here? Or are these possibly just the rules? Rules that I have to abide by if I get and want to keep an account here?


No, none of those things are censorship.

Locking - Not censorship. We don't delete or edit the posts in any way. We simply lock the thread from further posting. You are still free to start new threads.

SPAM - We don't delete those posts. We move them to the dustbin where they are clearly visible to anyone who cares to look.

Banning - There are minimum rules of behaviour as outlined in the Guidelines (see my sig for link). We only ban people for calling each other names. We are a community of adults, if you can't stop acting like a child then you have no place here. We usually only ban from OTW for a week or two and we usually give 3 chances before it is permanent. More than fair IMHO.

Yes, you do have to follow the rules just like everyone else (including me and the other mods/admins). The only basic rules are: Don't call each other names like little children and Don't post spam. Pretty simple really. Other than that you can discuss any subject under the sun until your fingers fall off.
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2006 8:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Philantrop wrote:
So if we're a technical platform about Gentoo - why do we have OTW? And if I asked about copyright infringement using Gentoo? Wouldn't that thread be locked or dustbinned? And if it would: Wouldn't that be censorship?


Another thought from a private conversation. Let's see avatars as a class of toys for a moment.

I don't care about those toys. I tolerate them but I don't play with them. Some of them, I like. Now imagine one of those toys that's especially and only made with the intent to hurt others with. Should we let our companions play and hurt others with it or would it be better to take that one toy away from them?

What happens now when more and more toys of this dangerous, hurting kind are produced? Will the caring parents run after every single child that carries such a toy? Can they even or will they stop at some point and just take all toys of that class away from all of us because some argued that their individual right to play with any toy they like is more important than the well-being of the group as a whole?



As has been said two or three times already, you have the ability to turn off avatars in your profile. You don't have to read posts in OTW. We already sanitize the tehnical parts of the forum so you have nothing to worry about. You won't find discussions about Hitler in Kernel and Hardware.

This thread has been fully answered by the moderation team. Turn off avatars in your profile and don't come to OTW. Problem solved.
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Philantrop
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2006 8:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

amne wrote:
Philantrop wrote:
Oh, and btw: Whose "common sense" exactly?


The problem with common sense is that it's hard or even impossible to define. However we can not set up a list of all good and bad things, so we can't avoid refering to it every once in a while.


So you decide for us what's "common sense"? What does your common sense say about the current conflict in the Middle East? Who's the only one to blame? Oops...

amne wrote:
Philantrop wrote:
Isn't that plain egomaniacal censorship? Isn't goatse.cx exactly the precedent so many here are afraid of? What's the difference to Nazi stuff? Doesn't Nazi stuff offend enough people but goatse.cx does? And who defines "common sense" here? Who's "big brother" here and thinks for us? That's not only censorship but dictatorship!

Basically, the moderators.


So the moderators are the dictators here? If we asked all the Gentoo Forums staff to define "common sense" how many different answers do you think we would get?

Where are those principles now? If freedom (of speech) is an absolute value in itself, how can we accept moderators here? Seen from the point of view of absolute and pure principles the moderators are dictators. Benevolent dictators maybe but still.

amne wrote:
As for your goatse.cx example, it sometimes is easier to define what isn't common sense. If people from Germany, Austria, Brazil, USA, Sweden, UK, Australia, the Netherlands and Greece (note: quite a selection of western countries) agree that something isn't common sense like goatse.cx, it isn't (per definition).


So, if enough people of that selection of western countries agreed that it was fine and just to murder others for profit that would be common sense, too? Common sense is defined by quantities only, right?

"Eat shit. Millions of flies can't be wrong."

A minority cannot have common sense if the majority disagrees?

I've learned here that freedom is an absolute value, no matter what. Now I hear about the dictatorship of the few and shortly after about the dictatorship of the masses. What's right?

amne wrote:
Of course there always is the chance the moderators are wrong, and it's up to the users to point out errors in their reasoning, but i think we do a quite good job in general.


Please, admins and moderators here, I want to make one thing very clear: I agree that you do a very good job here. I don't mean to attack any of you or all of you.

What I do critisize, though, is the perception that principles are absolute values to which there must not be any exceptions.

To get back from philosophy to the matter at hand: Yes, free speech is extremely valuable. To have exceptions doesn't diminish its value, though, but emphasizes it.
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2006 8:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

curtis119 wrote:
This thread has been fully answered by the moderation team. Turn off avatars in your profile and don't come to OTW. Problem solved.


Hurrah :)

Philantrop wrote:
To get back from philosophy to the matter at hand: Yes, free speech is extremely valuable. To have exceptions doesn't diminish its value, though, but emphasizes it.


Nope, completely disagree. As a pagan, I'll use the swastika as I please. Along with any other symbol I choose. Also the christian church murdered more pagans than the nazi's did jews, & I wouldn't even choose to censor them.

[edit] Intention was to show the cultural differences in what was considered offensive, apologies to anyone taking the above as a flame[/edit]
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2006 9:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

drwook wrote:
Nope, completely disagree. As a pagan, I'll use the swastika as I please. Along with any other symbol I choose. Also the christian church murdered more pagans than the nazi's did jews, & I wouldn't even choose to censor them.

[edit] Intention was to show the cultural differences in what was considered offensive, apologies to anyone taking the above as a flame[/edit]

I've never believed the justification for a symbol is whether there was a worse group or the validity of what many thought the symbol meant or didn't mean.
That I knew it offended a fair amount of people would be enough for me to chose another. Not that I couldn't, I just chose not too.
Many would argue that the majority of people who do chose these types of avatars or post said comments are doing so for the explicit reason to get others riled up.

Like the admins have said, you can turn avatars off and most of these type of threads are kept in OTW.
(Although turning off avatars to avoid a few potential annoying ones isn't much of a option, why not just ignore them.)
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2006 9:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well... let's see

- We have 118230 registered User.
- two or three of them (couldn't make it out) have an avatar that offends mostly YOU.
- I am not offended about such avatars of these two or three users.

So what should the Admins do now? Should they agree to your demands an ban these two Avatars? Making me and people that think like me angry? Or shouldn't they do annything and make you and your fellows angry?

Well, here is the best solution for us both. It is called "self-determination".

Not the admins have to decide if users should see the avatars. Every one of us has to do so. Not you, not me. Everyone for himself has to take that decision. And if the one has taken it's decision, he can either turn avatars on or turn them off.

Any other dicussion in here is nothing else than a big waste of time!

Just my 2 Cents
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2006 10:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

STiGMaTa_ch wrote:
Not the admins have to decide if users should see the avatars. Every one of us has to do so. Not you, not me. Everyone for himself has to take that decision. And if the one has taken it's decision, he can either turn avatars on or turn them off.


You're completly wrong on this one. Admins/Mods have the duty to make these forums a nice place to be for everyone whose interest is focusing on Gentoo in the first place. If I have to turn off signatures and avatars, then something is wrong! They either have to turn those functions completly off or moderate it to a level that meets the common sense. Yeah I know that common sense changes from culture to culture, but it should be still doable to meet in the middle. I'd say that this mentioned middle/compromise is where everybody agrees to avoid any pictures and slogans in avatars/sigs that may hurt the feelings/attitudes of others on a selfcontrol basis, assumed that this decision is taken with a clear conscience of course. Everything that happens from that point should be the Admins/Mods choice (meaning a rather take it away, than leave it attitude). Since everybody seems to talk of that huge goal of freedom of speech here, this should be a easy thing to do. In a perfect world it would work, just like freedom of speech! Sad, but true.

Anyway, let me now start with my first thought on this. I'd feel very disturbed if I'd see any Nazi symbols on this forum. And this probably for the particular reason that I live in germany. So I pretty much understand that people from russia, sweden, america or whatever don't really relate Nazi signs and it's wrong glorification with any kind of trouble, since they never experienced or probably even barely heard of it. But I can tell you that this matter isn't done at all. It's been 60 years since the nazi-regime and yeah, the soccer worldchampionship was great and all, but I still saw those Neo-Nazi groups provoking people on the train- and busstations and frigthen me and my fellow citizens everytime I was going into the city to have a nice world cup party and of course I also had some major trouble with those kind of groups and let me assure you that I'm not the only one. Don't get me wrong here, I'm not limiting this on the last couple of weeks, I'm talking from everyday life.

So basically what I'm trying to say is that if people got some background that is influencing them negatively, why should those people get confronted with that shit (whatever it may be) in a linux forum, just because some people that may don't have such issues and are speaking of their freedom of speech want to add some titties into their avatars??? Naw, I don't think so.
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2006 10:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

toskala wrote:

i am not allowed to have an antifa sticker (broken swastika dropped in a wastebin) on my car. why? because i am not allowed to show swastika in public.


wrong,
you can do that. Its allowed in the german law, because you through it into a trashcan. (Entstellung)
But to be honnest, who wants to do that? :wink:
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2006 11:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

amne wrote:
Philantrop wrote:

2) If there was open Nazi propaganda on these forums: Yes, I'd love to see it forbidden and the author banned. Again: This is not about any opinions but about Nazi propaganda.
Nazi stuff is all we're discussing here. Please remember that.

No it isn't. The moment you abolish Nazi symbols you may as well abolish other symbols and opinions as well. That's the problem.

amne is right. This is just the start, not the end.
You keep trying to convince us that this is a separate discussion and the right discussion. I'm sorry, but that in itself denotes arrogance: why do you think that your concerns are more important than anyone else's? The posts on this thread should at least prove that your concern doesn't seem to be shared by many users of the forums.

philantrop wrote:
amne wrote:
Philantrop wrote:
Oh, and btw: Whose "common sense" exactly?

The problem with common sense is that it's hard or even impossible to define. However we can not set up a list of all good and bad things, so we can't avoid refering to it every once in a while.

So you decide for us what's "common sense"?

One of the tasks of the moderation team is to moderate the forums. That implies using their common sense to apply the Forums Guidelines. As amne told you, if a moderator or admin were to have an arbitrary behaviour, he himself would be subject to the same guidelines every user has to follow. More importantly, moderators and admins are expected to be an example, so they have even less leeway than other users.

About your question of the relative morality, I think it's best if you take that to another thread. On my part, I can say that I truly believe that only relative morality can explain the death sentence in the US and the Guantanamo prison. I, for one, am no supporter of a relative interpretation of the right for life! Getting back on topic, freedom of speech only exists when it's possible for someone to present ideas that go against what others think. Being able to agree with public opinion denotes no freedom of speech. In case there's any doubt, I not only do not support National Socialism, as I strongly disagree with it.

Finally, about your point on the ban on Nazi symbols on Germany and Austria, I have an observation. I find curious and worrying that Germans, Austrians and for the most part Europeans, are more than ready to accept humour on their beliefs, but are still very upset to see humour on Judaism. I think there's something extremely wrong, when we're ready to hear jokes on the Pope, read comics provoking Priests or watch movies that attack the church, but we're offended or shocked by any humour on Israel or the Judaism.
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 18, 2006 12:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

http://forums.gentoo.org/images/avatars/67070979642b8b0f7a2b0e.lam

ps: changed .jpg to .lam to be sure the image won't show up
Anyone can say anything, but this kind of avatar is clearly an offense imo.
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Kensai
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 18, 2006 1:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

For respect of the people that suffered there, which people I care for where there I choose not to use it and not support anyone that does. Just think about this: if you were tortured by a new group with a new logo and your family also suffers torture because of them would you want other people to sport those logos? would you feel comfortable if somebody near you is using it?
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i92guboj
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 18, 2006 1:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Kensai wrote:
For respect of the people that suffered there, which people I care for where there I choose not to use it and not support anyone that does. Just think about this: if you were tortured by a new group with a new logo and your family also suffers torture because of them would you want other people to sport those logos? would you feel comfortable if somebody near you is using it?


Mmmmm, what?

The catholic church supported thousand of murders in Spain when the civil war was here. And they did support Francisco Franco, the dictator, and the were happy with him. Franco died less than 30 years ago, that is much actual that the WWII.

I can put many more example if you want.

So, lets ban anything having to do with christianity, cause some people in my family died within that alliance between the church and Franco.

Im sure each one has his/her own story, please, learn that. It has been repeated a lot of times in this thread. I never said "ban the cross", and have a reason too as well, so, leave this topic die.
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curtis119
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 18, 2006 1:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

krinn wrote:
http://forums.gentoo.org/images/avatars/67070979642b8b0f7a2b0e.lam

ps: changed .jpg to .lam to be sure the image won't show up
Anyone can say anything, but this kind of avatar is clearly an offense imo.


So are we supposed to just forget that Hitler ever even lived? Are we supposed to wipe his memory from our collective conscience? Should we revise the history books and wipe him from our past? I'm sorry but the best way to stop the past from repeating is to study it closely. Not to deny it ever happend in the first place......
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