moderated Re: Non-permitted groups

Barbara Byers

Mark’s list, Mark’s rules.  Thank you, Mark!

Barb B

On Dec 28, 2019, at 10:26 AM, Stephen Cowley via Groups.Io <stephen.cowley@...> wrote:

The list of groups that are not permitted under the "Help" section is as follows on 28 Dec 2019:

"We do not permit the following types of groups and content:

  1. Pornography, adult content or nudity.
  2. Harassment of any kind.
  3. Groups that share media or content whose distribution would be in violation of copyright law.
  4. Groups dedicated to the promotion of extreme, hateful, or exclusionary ideas, including but not limited to, the alt-right.
  5. Groups dedicated to the promotion of conspiracy theories, including, but not limited to: Gamergate, Pizzagate, and Qanon.
  6. Groups dedicated to the promotion of anti-vaccination ideologies.
  7. Groups that are designed strictly to use our directory as an advertisement for something other than the group itself."
I object to the limits 4 and 5 place on political discourse. The central terms are undefined, subjective and even self-contradictory. To cut to the chase, "Alt-Right" ideas (e.g. immigration restriction, retention of ethnic majorities) are majority positions in much of the world. The elected governments of India (BJP), Japan and South Korea for example enjoy majority support, as do the elected governments of Hungary and Poland. Why should ideas with 70% popular support be branded "extreme"? The category of "hateful" is subjective, as one person may like what another person hates. Any immigration policy is "exclusionary", as it excludes people who do not meet the immigration criteria, but the remaining position of open borders is itself "extreme", as virtually all countries have immigration and citizenship tests. If "Alt-Right" ideas are beyond the pale, why not communism, or socialism, or deep ecology, or liberalism, or conservatism? 

The classic texts of liberalism (Joseph Priestley's Essay on the First Principles of Government, John Stuart Mill's On Liberty)  advocate for free discussion as a means of getting to the truth of a matter. The internet flourished on this in its early days. I would like to see these principles applied on this site.

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