miss_s_b: (Who: Dalek Pest Control)
Waaaaaaaay back in the mists of time I was very active in Harry Potter fandom. Bear with me, because there is a point to this. The official Harry Potter website forums had a very active mod team and a very restrictive policy on what was suitable for posting on a forum aimed at children*. After some degree of protest about this, a quite large group of us went and set up our own forums. I did most of the building and running of those forums. Some time after that, and after much growth of the site I was running, a group of people decided they didn't like how I was running that website. You know what they did? They went off and set up their own.

Not one of us at any point in any of those processes had their free speech infringed: the WB were perfectly within their rights to decide that babies are not a fit topic for children to possibly stumble on a conversation about**. I was perfectly within my rights to decide the policies for my site, and the people who moved on from it were perfectly within their rights to decide the policies on their site.

You see, the thing is, if a person, or a set of people, have made the effort to build something - be that a house, a blog, a website, or anything else - those people have the right to decide what they will and will not put up with within that place. If you want to build a website or set up a blog where people can come and shout obscenities at you, you can do so, just as if you wanted to let people into your house to shout at you you could do so. In a lot of cases it won't even cost you any money.

The thing is, whatever you decide to do in terms of comments on a website, there is going to be someone who doesn't like it. So you have to decide which people you want to make unhappy. In my view, the vast majority of websites - including lib dem voice - are far too nice to the sort of arseholes who make everybody who just wants a civil discussion unhappy. And that makes the people who just want a civil discussion unhappy, and when they're unhappy they go away. And then the only people you have commenting on your website are the arseholes. There is lots and lots of research out there on this, but even without the research it's perfectly blindingly obvious that websites with incredibly "free" comment policies quickly become cesspits of bile.

To be specific about Tony Greaves: a peer of the realm does not have his free speech infringed by being banned from a private website when he has been repeatedly told that his behaviour towards other people on the website is unacceptable and he needs to tone it down. He is perfectly free to be published elsewhere, or even set up his own website, as are any of the rest of us who don't like the way lib dem voice run their comments and/or forum. As, indeed, I don't, and therefore I have.

In my view it would do Lib Dem Voice good to have some competition. I am a Liberal, and I don't like monocultures and overcentralisation. Lib Dem Voice was set up by and is run by volunteers. There is nothing to stop other people doing what they did, and making a success of it. All it would take would be time and effort. Admittedly, quite a lot of time and effort, but the people who run lib dem voice have already put that time and effort in, and therefore it is their site and they can decide what they will accept people doing on it. I personally think that the Liberator Collective are best placed to set up a site in competition to lib dem voice at the moment, and I'd actually quite like to read such a website. Tony Greaves is a member of the Liberator collective regular contributor to Liberator and I'm sure would be welcome to contribute to any website they might build***.

So, liberator people: instead of being whiny entitled idiots and complaining about censorship when someone won't let you abuse them on their own website, how about putting some effort in yourselves and building your own?



* I got banned from it for tlking about being pregnant with my now 12 year old daughter, which I personally think is a little censorious.
** stupid and wrong, but within their rights.
*** corrected after being contacted by someone who IS a member of the Liberator Collective.
miss_s_b: (Mood: Kill me)
Trump is genteel British slang for fart. So when he says "Trump for a stronger America", we all think you guys are going to be forcefed beans. I mean, you lot thought it was bad when we giggled like schoolchildren at Randy BumGardener (sp?) because Randy means sexually voracious over here and BumGardener... well, it's not entirely the most heterosexual name, and we Brits are very childish.

Basically, what I'm saying here is, if you elect Donald, expect to hear gales of laughter wafting across the Atlantic every five minutes for his entire tenure, and all the horrific fart jokes you've ever considered to be levelled at your commander in chief.

And yes, I know we nearly ended up with a chancellor called Balls. Don't worry, we'd have taken the same attitude to him (and did).
miss_s_b: (Fangirling: Don Warrington)
1, Vengeance on Varos
2, Attack of the Cybermen
3, the Colin Baker Dalek one that begins with R that's all Waughy and has the Stengos cliffhanger in that properly freaked me out when I was 8
4, The Horns of Nimon
5, The Sylvester McCoy Dalek one that begins with R with Unlimited Rice Pudding
6, The Daemons
7, The Green Death
8, The Invasion (with the animated episodes, obvs)
9, The Mind Robber (AKA The one with Zoe's Arse)
10, Battlefield because Brigadier Bambera is made of aweome
miss_s_b: (Mood: Brain Hurts)
50/50 sounds so seductive, doesn't it? It sounds so fair. But it's not fair, and in fact makes marginalisation worse.

I have a lot of friends who are genderqueer, or intersex, or otherwise outside of the narrow gender binary represented by 50/50 campaigns. You probably have friends who fall outside the gender binary - it's nothing like a rare as we are traditionally led to think. If you follow a 50/50 gender campaign you are reinforcing the false gender binary, and locking out of power anyone who does not adhere to that false gender binary. That's not just illiberal, it's morally wrong, and discriminatory against a group of people whom our society already treats like crap.

Please stop doing it, fellow lib dems. Please? Because every time you do your lack n of consideration for those who do not conform to an extremely narrow view of what humanity is becomes painfully obvious, and I for one thought we were better than that.
miss_s_b: (Mood: Laughter)
So I'm registering on a website (I'm not going to tell you which one) and it asks me to pick a question for security for in case I forget my password. And all the usual ones are either public knowledge and therefore googlealbe, or debatable and therefore I would forget which answer I had put. But I don't have to pick from the usual ones. I can make up my own.

Problem is, all that's coming into my head is "What was your mother's maiden name?" which EVERYONE knows (or can easily find out) or "what was your first pet's name?" (it depends - Shadow was in the house when I was born, but was she technically MY pet or my brothers'? And then there was Minstrel the rabbit, but he didn't last very long. It could be Sheba... Of course my first pet that I bought for myself with my own money and when living in my own house was Byron mayherestinpeace... you can see how I tie myself in knots with these things, right?)

Then inspiration struck.

So my Top Sekrit Security Question on this website is "Upon whose grave did you swear to Charlotte that you were not a spy?"

Those who know me may well be able to guess, which is why I'm not telling you which website, although it might take a couple of goes. The people who were in the room when it happened will know. But anyone trying identity theft will just find the question confusing... (please, no guessing games in the comments, though ;)).
miss_s_b: (Fangirling: Books)
tl;dr version: all the puppy stuff went below no award, as did some of the non-puppy stuff. Things I particularly hated that were non-puppy included The Day The World Turned Upside Down by Thomas Olde Heuvelt and Sex Criminals Volume 1: One Weird Trick, by Matt Fraction and Chip Zdarsky. If I could have given like an overall Hugo for the best thing of all on the ballot, it would have gone to Ms Marvel, no question, that was fantastic.

If you want more detail than that, you'll find it below the cut... )
miss_s_b: (Politics: Democracy)
Here are some things that are facts:
  1. Most people either don't care about or actively despise most politicians

  2. Everyone in the Westminster bubble - politicians, journos, everyone* - is completely out of touch with actual public opinion, which is both more right wing** and more left wing*** than the Westminster consensus.

  3. The intellectual incoherence of the average voter's views and the fact that they can be both horrifically right wing and horrifically left wing at the same time has, since the early eighties, mostly benefited the right wing of the Westminster bubble.

  4. There is absolutely no guarantee that this is a natural law, it's just how it's fallen so far

  5. People detest those they perceive to be airbrushed, polished politicians much more than those they perceive to be genuine, even if they disagree with them.****

  6. Only one of the candidates for the labour leadership fits this mould.

  7. Proper lefties haven't had someone to vote for who has a chance of winning in decades. That does not mean that proper lefties don't exist any more, it just means they've either held their noses and voted without enthusiasm or stayed home.

  8. We don't know how many of those people there are. There could be, as the right wing media would like us to believe, hardly any. Equally, there could be loads. We simply do not know.

  9. However many of them there are, there is only one candidate for the Labour leadership who can enthuse them.

  10. Lib Dems celebrating that Labour are "abandoning the centre ground" are forgetting two things about recent history: firstly, that our time of greatest success in recent years was when we were explicitly to the left of Labour, under Kennedy, and secondly that trying to make ourselves equidistant from the two Labservative parties in the last election did not lead to much success
Now, I'm not saying that it's absolutely certain that Corbyn will win the Labour leadership, and go on to enthuse a country sick of austerity and being told we must bail out the bankers while minimum wage workers have to shoulder their share of the pain, far from it. But I think those who laughingly dismiss it as a possibility are hopelessly naive. Surely the one thing we can all, on all sides of the political divides, agree on after the last election is that none of us knows what the electorate will do? We were all so sure it was going to be a hung parliament, we believed the polls, and now look at us.

So maybe Corbyn is a leftwing dinosaur, a blast from the past, and completely unelectable, and will destroy the Labour party. Or maybe lefties under the age of 40 have NEVER had someone they can vote for, and Corbyn looks refereshingly unairbrushed and says what he thinks, and anyway retro is trendy these days. I'm just saying that perhaps those of us who aren't in Labour ought to be just a little bit more circumspect and a little less sneering, lest it all come back to bite us in the arse?




* and yes, I do include myself in this
** criminals and benefit scroungers should be hanged and flogged, immigrants should all be sent back where they came from
*** railways should be renationalised, pensions and tax credits should all be raised massively because working people on tax credits are not benefit scroungers
**** Even those embedded in politics, like me. For instance, Ann Widdecombe's political views are a foul stain on humanity, but I can't help but have a grudging respect for her because she at least seems to have a consistent philosophy and applies it with intellectual rigour.
miss_s_b: (Default)

About This Blog

picture of Jennie Rigg

Hello! I'm Jennie (known to many as SB, due to my handle, or The Yorksher Gob because of my old blog's name). This blog is my public face; click here for a list of all the other places you can find me on t'interwebs.






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