Melon Farmers Original Version

Political Correctness vs. Free Speech


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Offsite Article: Suppressing unPC Speech on Social Media Drives Users to New Platforms...


Link Here 27th December 2020
The more that big social media companies act like they can control what people say, the more competition they encourage.

See article from reason.com

 

 

Kneeling in Church...

The BBC offends with preachy sermonising in the Vicar of Dibley


Link Here24th December 2020
The BBC has received 266 complaints about a scene in The Vicar Of Dibley , referencing the Black Lives Matter movement.

In last week's Christmas episode, Dawn French's character, Reverend Geraldine Granger, kneeled to Black Lives Matter and delivered a sermon preaching about racism.

The BBC said in a statement it was in keeping with the character and the theme of the show. French's character is shown being filmed by parishioner and farmer Owen Newitt as she tells the audience she has been preoccupied with the horror show of the death of George Floyd. In the scene, the vicar noted that Dibley, the fictional Oxfordshire village, is not the most diverse community, and encouraged its residents to get behind the anti-racism campaign.

 

 

Offsite Article: Where can you speak your mind?...


Link Here18th December 2020
While social networks are strictly censoring right leaning contet, podcasting is giving it a largely unmoderated platform

See article from theguardian.com

 

 

Appeal court judges grow some balls...

A court conviction for a misgendering insult overturned by appeals court


Link Here16th December 2020
It seems a fundamental character of political correctness that minor transgressions are subject to totally disproportionate and extreme penalties. A total loss of a livelihood and career is the standard punishment for a minor and often unintended infraction. And of course the rules are totally unfair and one sided. It is a commonplace insult to accuse a man/boy of being a girl and nobody would think that such an insult would deserve any more of a reprimand than a telling off. Yet the same 'misgendering' insult seems to qualify for being locked up by the police should the recipient be trans.

And such an insult has now been considered by an appeals court.

A British woman Kate Scottow has managed to lodge a successful appeal against a disgraceful court verdict that found her guilty of causing annoyance and anxiety to a transgender woman during an online Twitter exchange.

Scottow was accused by trans activist Stephanie Hayden for a 'misgenderig' insult that was termed as significant online abuse taking place on Twitter, and then in late 2018 arrested in her home and then being detained in a cell for seven hours before being questioned.

The appeals court overturned the guilty verdict but its legal explanation has been reserved until a later date.

Scottow announced the outcome of the appeals of Twitter, saying her record had been cleared of a conviction and that she is a free person now.

 

 

An end to denying banking services to the morally incorrect...

US financial regulator proposes a new rule to end the policing of morality by denying banking services


Link Here 8th December 2020
US moralist institutions, including the government, have found that a great way to censor people is to control their financial access.

The best example is Operation Chokepoint , a Department of Justice (DOJ) effort that put pressure on the banking system to cut off financial access for politically disfavored industries, such as sex work or porn production.

Under the Obama administration, regulators such as the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) and Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) issued threatening letters to financial institutions that processed payments for industries such as payday lenders, gun and ammunition firms, and cryptocurrency companies. The message was clear: cut back on business with these industries, or else. Banks got the hint, and affected firms found it harder and harder to find banking partners.

Bullying banks into doing the government's dirty work was a quick and easy way to get the job done. Even better: it was an extralegal method to get rid of businesses the feds didn't like too much anyway. But of course, if something works, then why not extend it to ever more pet peeves.

For example, NY Gov. Andrew Cuomo directed his Department of Financial Services to issue Operation Chokepoint-style warning letters to financial institutions which provided services to the National Rifle Association. Climate change activists have turned similar tactics towards banks who process payments for oil and gas companies .

But help may now be coming from some unexpected quarters: the OCC, which less than a decade ago had led the charge with Operation Chokepoint. Under the leadership of acting director Brian Brooks, the OCC has proposed a rule change that would make government-supported financial suppression much harder legally.

The Dodd-Frank Act was a sweeping financial reform that, among many other things , authorized the OCC to ensure that nationally chartered banks provide fair access to financial services, and fair treatment of customers. The intention was that minority customers be evaluated for creditworthiness on her or her own individual merits rather than the attributes of their broader group. In other words, a creditworthy individual shouldn't be punished because they belong to some group that is considered high risk in the aggregate.

The OCC would like to apply this thinking to industries through the proposed Fair Access to Financial Services rule. The largest banks in the country--those with more than $100 billion in assets--would be prohibited from red-lining politically disfavored industries just as they are prohibited from red-lining politically oppressed populations. Rather, a gun manufacturer or pornography company or payday lender must be evaluated on the terms of their individual creditworthiness.

The rule does not require that all large banks must do business with all, say, fossil fuel companies, just like banks are not required to extend credit to every single member of a protected class who applies for a loan. Rather, it is a nondiscrimination requirement. Large banks will not be allowed to cut off financial access for disfavored industries just because the government or some other powerful group leans on them to do so.

See more details in article from reason.com

 

 

Taking the knee to the gods of PC...

Chinese cinema goers take offence at 'Chi-knees' joke in Monster Hunters


Link Here8th December 2020
Monster Hunter is a 2020 China / Germany / Japan / USA action fantasy by Paul WS Anderson.
Starring Milla Jovovich, Meagan Good and Ron Perlman. IMDb

When Lt. Artemis and her loyal soldiers are transported to a new world, they engage in a desperate battle for survival against enormous enemies with incredible powers. Feature film based on the video game by Capcom.

Soon after opening the Hollywood film Monster Hunter has been withdrawn from Chinese cinemas over reports of cinema goers taking offence at a throwaway joke.

The film is a video game inspired action film by Paul W.S. Anderson. This low-brow genre seems to play better in Asia than in the west, so this is a serious problem for the producers

Monster Hunter enjoyed midnight screenings in the small hours of Friday local time, and officially debuted in Chinese cinemas on Friday, Dec. 4, ahead of its planned Dec. 25 U.S. release. It grossed $5.19 million on day one, good enough for third place in box office charts, and then the trouble emerged.

In one scene, a white male character and an Asian character played by rapper MC Jin are driving together at high speed. What? says the former. Look at my knees! shouts Jin. What kind of knees are these? asks his companion. Chi-nese! jokes Jin, punning on the word's last syllable.

Chinese viewers were apparently incensed after the exchange was interpreted as a reference to an old, racist schoolyard rhyme insulting Asians. Chi-nese, Jap-a-nese, dir-ty knees, look at these.

To localize the joke, subtitle 'translators' made the dialogue a reference to a Chinese colloquialism about how men must have dignity and not kneel down easily. Men have gold under their knees, and only kneel to the heavens and their mother, the saying goes in rough translation, implying that any time a man kneels, it should be an occasion precious as gold.

It wasn't long before cinemas received an urgent notice to cancel all upcoming screenings and issue refunds for shows already sold. The distributors promised some rapid scissorwork to remove the joke.

But that didn't seem to be enough to solve the issue and the movie screening remains suspended for the moment.

 

 

Modern censorship...

Tate Britain has seemingly 'cancelled' an important Whistler artwork decorating the walls of its restaurant


Link Here7th December 2020
Tate Britain is expected to permanently close its restaurant because of a controversy over an historic artwork created nearly a century ago.

Rex Whistler's mural The Expedition in Pursuit of Rare Meats , which was painted specifically for the restaurant in 1927, has recently been criticised because of its politically incorrect portrayal of non-Europeans.

Moya Greene, until last month a Tate trustee and chair of its 'Ethics' Committee, reported back to the gallery's board. She told fellow trustees that committee members were unequivocal in their view that the imagery of the work is offensive. In addition, they claim the offence is compounded by the use of the room as a restaurant.

Tate trustees were also advised that the Rex Whistler mural is an important work of art in the care of trustees and that it should not be altered or removed. Although not a formally accessioned work, it forms part of a Grade I-listed interior.

Following the committee's advice, it seems almost certain that the restaurant will never reopen. It was closed in March because of Covid-19, but did not reopen with the gallery displays last week.

The mural includes two small figures of bound black children who are probably enslaved and also depicts caricatured Chinese people.

A Tate spokesman said:

We are taking this time to consult internally and externally on the future of the room and the mural, and we will keep the public informed of future plans. The external consultation is expected to be launched early in the new year.

 

 

Prejudiced censorship...

Facebook is working on a divisive system to censor comments according to a pecking order of political 'correctness'


Link Here6th December 2020
Full story: Facebook Censorship since 2020...Left wing bias, prudery and multiple 'mistakes'
Facebook is to start policing anti-Black hate speech more aggressively than anti-White comments.

The Wadhington Post is reporting that the the company is overhauling its algorithms that detect hate speech and deprioritizing hateful comments against whites, men and Americans.

Internal documents reveal that Facebook's WoW Project is in its early stages and involves re-engineering automated moderation systems to get better at detecting and automatically deleting hateful language that is considered the 'worst of the worst'. The 'worst of the worst' includes slurs directed at Blacks, Muslims, people of more than one race, the LGBTQ community and Jews, according to the documents. The Wahington POst adds:

In the first phase of the project, which was announced internally to a small group in October, engineers said they had changed the company's systems to deprioritize policing contemptuous comments about Whites, men and Americans. Facebook still considers such attacks to be hate speech, and users can still report it to the company. However, the company's technology now treats them as low-sensitivity -- or less likely to be harmful -- so that they are no longer automatically deleted by the company's algorithms. That means roughly 10,000 fewer posts are now being deleted each day, according to the documents.

 

 

Offsite Article: The Scottish Government has made the Hate Crime Bill controversial...


Link Here 6th December 2020
Full story: Scotland stifles free speech...Hate Crime & Public Order (Scot) Bill Hate Crime & Public Order (Scot) Bill
Controversial is probably not an adjective that governments wish to have associated with legislation they are trying to pass, but it is certainly an appropriate description of the Scottish Government's Hate Crime Bill.

See article from holyrood.com

 

 

Sensitive comments...

YouTube announces that it will step up the censorship of viewer comments specifically for the black community


Link Here4th December 2020
Full story: YouTube Censorship...YouTube censor videos by restricting their reach
YouTube has announced that it will increase the censorship of comments specifically for the black community. YouTube writes in a block post:

We're committed to supporting the diverse creator communities on YouTube and their continued success. As our CEO, Susan Wojcicki, wrote in June, we're examining how our policies and products are working for everyone -- and specifically for the Black community -- and working to close any gaps.

We know that comments play a key role in helping creators connect with their community, but issues with the quality of comments is also one of the most consistent pieces of feedback we receive from creators. We have been focused on improving comments with the goal of driving healthier conversations on YouTube. Over the last few years, we launched new features to help creators engage with their community and shape the tone of conversations on their channels.

We've heard from creators that while these changes helped them better manage comments and connect with their audience, there's more we can do to prevent them from seeing hurtful comments in the first place. To address that, we'll be testing a new filter in YouTube Studio for potentially inappropriate and hurtful comments that have been automatically held for review, so that creators don't ever need to read them if they don't want to.

To encourage respectful conversations on YouTube, we're launching a new feature that will warn users when their comment may be offensive to others, giving them the option to reflect before posting.

In addition, we've also invested in technology that helps our systems better detect and remove hateful comments by taking into account the topic of the video and the context of a comment.

These efforts are making an impact. Since early 2019, we've increased the number of daily hate speech comment removals by 46x. And in the last quarter, of the more than 1.8 million channels we terminated for violating our policies, more than 54,000 terminations were for hate speech. This is the most hate speech terminations in a single quarter and 3x more than the previous high from Q2 2019 when we updated our hate speech policy.

 

 

Parler...

Speak of hardcore free speech at the alt-right Twitter alternative


Link Here3rd December 2020
Parler is an alt-right version of Twitter that launched in 2020 with a free speech ethos. Parler's CEO spoke of high ideals at the tiime:

We're a community town square, an open town square, with no censorship... If you can say it on the street of New York, you can say it on Parler.

Maybe easier said than done though, it wasn't long before the wrong type of free speech somehow required censorship. Parler started deleting accounts of left-wing members and then it banned pornography (which Twitter allows). Eventually, it became more censorious than Twitter, with the exception of allowing the kind alt-right speech that is generally banned on mainstream social media.

However is seems that Parler has recognised the seeming hypocrisy and steered back towards free speech. It revised its terms of service to allow things that Twitter already allows, including pornography. As you might expect, Parler is now a bastion of right leaning speech and ads for hardcore pornography websites.

The Washington Post's reviewed Parler under its revised rules and found that searches for sexually explicit terms surfaced extensive troves of graphic content, including videos of sex acts that began playing automatically without any label or warning. Terms such as #porn, #naked and #sex each had hundreds or thousands of posts on Parler, many of them graphic. Some pornographic images and videos had been viewed tens of thousands of times on the platform.

Sounds promising!

 

 

Offsite Article: A hate-filled war on press freedom...


Link Here28th November 2020
UK lawmakers are set on purging media outlets of dangerous ideas. By Andrew Tettenborn

See article from spiked-online.com


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