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Censorship

Webster's defines censorship as "the institution, system, or practice of censoring." It defines censoring as "to subject to censorship." You have got to love that circular thinking.

However, censor, besides the first meaning dealing with Roman magistrates, goes on to the second definition of "one who supervises conduct and morals" (hmm ... perhaps we should change the term on our SlowTalk forum from Moderator to Censor?). It also defines censor as "an official who examines materials ... for objectionable materials." And finally, "an official ... who reads communications ... and deletes material considered harmful to the interests of his organization."

So reading that, it seems that the administration of Slow Travel Talk does censor. But here's my question, "What's wrong with that???"

Seriously, do you think the New York Times prints every letter to the editor they receive let alone in its original form? Must the American Cancer Society publish a rebuttal from Big Tobacco in every mailing they send out? Does Consumer Reports have to print every manufacturer's point of view in every single magazine they publish? No!!!

Why?

Because it's their sandbox and they get to decide the rules! They get to decide what is "harmful to the interests of 'their' organization."

Think of it this way, you can scream all you want in the street in front of my house about something I totally disagree with, but the minute you step on my property and do it, I have a right to tell you to stop. As my father was very fond of saying, "My house. My rules."

Slow Travel Talk is the same way, we even state it on our website, we have the right to remove any content from the message board deemed "unworthy." We're not covert in this. We don't hide this fact. In the Terms of Service every member agrees to before posting on the message board it clearly states, "Any postings that are deemed unacceptable by any moderator may be deleted or edited." So why the big surprise when it happens? Why the moral indignation?

And if you think we're really "evil" for censoring, let me ask how many people have seen negative feedback in the testimonials section on a business's website? Do you think when people fill out those guest feedback sections, if they pan the business, the business posts it? Give me a break.

Oh, and I'll finish my rant on one final note. Feel free to comment all you want, but if you post a comment I don't agree with. I will censor it. And that's okay.

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Other Thinks (5)

Donna:

What happened that caused this post?

Hats off to you, Kim!

Your comments on this topic here and on ST say everything that I've been thinking.

Some people who posted have their own axes to grind ($/€ flying out of their pockets for negative consumer comments), but I think their motives are clear to everyone.

... I have a coffee cup with a graphic of Cinderella on it - the other side says, "My castle ... my rules." :D

Kim:

Donna, just the usual stuff when someone doesn't get to post what they want on the message board - cries of censorship and all that.

Thank you Colleen. I want that mug. :D

Hi Kim - it isn't censorship that bugs me on the board. I agree - you make the rules and we'll live with them.

What bugs me more than anything else is the notion that certain views are more important than others. This isn't censorship but favouritism.

I also think that some folk have an 'agenda'. My only agenda is to gather information, share information, and to have a laugh on the way. It's a message board kids - NOT life!

As always, thinks for all that you and the rest of the mods do!

Kim [TypeKey Profile Page]:

Yep Jerry - I think sometimes we (I) lose sight of the fact that this isn't for real; it's supposed to be for fun.

And I agree everyone's voice should count but there are one or two individuals out there, who like to cause trouble; they'll get into enough hot water that they either realize it and leave on their own or are asked to leave, but then they come back using different names and think we don't "recognize" them. I never get that mentality - don't scream at us for "censorship" when you're not even brave enough to use the same (or real) identity - does that make sense.

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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on October 23, 2007 7:24 AM.

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