You’re On a List

It’s not often you see your name in lights, and seldom can you see it in shadow -LS

Recognition should be celebrated and it’s humbling when a story you post is received in a positive manner. It’s an affirmation of the hard work and research you put into it, and it’s reflected in the people who follow and respect you.

This blog over the last four years has been recognized nationally on more than a few occasions and I’m truly proud of that. It’s an honor to have a story with one’s name on it be linked, liked, shared across social media and mentioned by respected news sites.

Every journalist should want that type of exposure, however, what if the motives for your name being highlighted are dubious and the reasons discriminatory? This question has been on my mind since it was brought to my attention that my Twitter handle @iamlibertyspeaks is on a list circulating online.

In case you’re wondering, I’m in the 3rd column towards the bottom and according to the disclaimer one of 124 “notorious accounts“.

As of today there is no proof of where this partial list and the alleged 82 other pages (yet to surface) originated from. I can not confirm its authenticity, nor legitimacy. I reached out to the individual who posted the tweet as to why my handle appears on it and have yet to receive a reply. There are more than a few questions I have regarding this issue. Did it come from someone with in the Twitter ranks or a hack? Is it an accurate list of accounts being targeted or is it just plain made up crap? Either way it’s now floating in the ether of cyberspace.

Let’s discuss some of Twitters latest actions to give some context. When the social media platform rolled out its newest update on Feb 7th, to combat harassment and trolling, many people including myself considered it a form of censorship and silencing of a particular view or opinion. Thousands on-line voiced their dislike, and even the stock market took notice.

 

The update was reported on by Buzzfeed, Business Insider, The Verge, and others as a “safety feature” but a rose by any other name just wouldn’t sound as ominous as Shadow Banning.

The Verge explained the term in its article on Twitters Anti-abuse measure as the “oldest trick in the book”

Users have begun getting notices that their tweets are on a kind of time-out. These users are being told that “only your followers can see your activity on Twitter for the amount of time shown below,” followed by a number of hours — the examples seen so far are all 12 hours. It starts when the user clicks a button to “Continue to Twitter.”

Allowing a user to continue to post to a forum but limiting who can actually see those posts is commonly known as a shadow ban or a stealth ban. But it has other names, and it’s one of the oldest moderation tricks in the forum book. In its earlier iterations, vBulletin forum software called it “tachy goes to coventry.”

It wouldn’t be the first time one of Jack Dorsey’s ideas upset those who use his platform. Remember the Trust and Safety Council? YEP, that was a winner. The Council proved to be nothing more than an updated version of the Orwellian Thought Police and Brendan O’Neill explained it best in his Spectator article “Twitters New Safety Council Makes a Mockery of Free Speech”

We’re witnessing the beginning of the end of the glorious experiment in human intellectual exchange that was the Wild West Web.

So who or what is deciding an account should be “shadow banned” for lack of a better term? Is it an algorithm that searches for keywords? Is it based on user reports? Followers? Interactions? TOS violations? Twitter after all is notorious for suspending accounts for TOS violations, yet other accounts doing the exact same thing remain unscathed. I really could go on, but I digress.

So whats the connection between the 124 accounts on the one page released? Are ALL the accounts Conservative, Pro-Trump, Republican, or Verified? Are they ALL seditious, conspiratorial, abusive or nefarious in nature? Do they ALL share the same views, opinions and sentiment? Are they ALL posting violent images, using vulgarity, making threats, or violating Twitters TOS?

The perception online is that ALL these accounts are connected. The perception is we are all the same, and pardon the expression, but perception can be a very fickle bitch. Some are calling the list the ultimate #FF or Friday Follow, a badge of honor, while others are calling it a one stop shop on who to target and report. On a personal level what connection do I have to the other accounts? Many on the list I respect, and was lucky enough to meet during BlogCon 2013. There are award-winning journalists on that list and being counted among them, this notorious group, is a very humbling experience. To be perceived as influential is an honor, but I’ve always striven to just be fair-minded and diplomatic. I try to keep the faith through my writing and my online presence.

Perhaps I should be flattered and not so inflamed, but I went through it once before with Facebook’s “Real Name” policy. Something I can say greatly effected my ability to have a voice in the game.

If this list is 1 of 82 and proves to be legitimate, then perhaps Twitter should be reminded of a 2011 blog post by its co-founder Biz Stone called “The Tweets Must Flow“. The first paragraph says it all.

Our goal is to instantly connect people everywhere to what is most meaningful to them. For this to happen, freedom of expression is essential. Some Tweets may facilitate positive change in a repressed country, some make us laugh, some make us think, some downright anger a vast majority of users. We don’t always agree with the things people choose to tweet, but we keep the information flowing irrespective of any view we may have about the content.

A final note:  If society refuses to acknowledge that its a collection of individuals, then it ceases to be a haven for thought and becomes a collective. Our dreams & ideas can’t survive the echo chambers of such a prison, so don’t be surprised when individual thought starts planning it’s escape. -LS

Side Note:

Mike Cernovich of Danger & Play (also on the list) has some interesting insights and quantitative data regarding his own “ShadowBan” on Twitter.  Check it out for further reading.

*As new information comes in, the Updates will be posted here.

Thank you to Wow Magazine  for linking

Thank you to Grumpy Opinions for linking

Thank you to for linking the story on Gab

 

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About Liberty Speaks

A few things about me... I'm a strong-minded Conservatarian with the following opinion's: 1A & 2A are blood brothers, Individualism is better than Collectivism, and the truth will always win over blind rhetoric. My friend, A. P. Dillon, founder of LadyLiberty1885.com, calls me "Digger" for good reason. -LS
This entry was posted in Err What?, EXCLUSIVE, Free Speech, Issues, Liberty Speaks, Media Bias, Narratives, New Civility, New Media, Orwellian, Patriotism, Poltical Correctness, Reactions, Really?, Say What?, Shutuppery, Social Justice, Social Media, Twitter, wait what? and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to You’re On a List

  1. Pingback: You’re On a List - Watcher of Weasels

  2. bydesign001 says:

    Thank you for doing this post. McCarthyism is alive and kicking up a storm in the 21st century.

    As far as the shadow banning, The Mad Jewess and many others have been shadow banned as well. That being said, I suspect that I too am on the list somewhere being that my tweets containing post contents tend to show up “hours later.”

    Hate Twitter. Have since moved over to Gab.ai but most of my traffic remains on twitter.

    Then there’s Facebook. A few weeks back, I deleted my “personal” Facebook page because of FB’s real name policy and some really pissed off Clinton supporters who shortly before the inauguration decided to make life difficult for me.

    Went to access my personal FB page one day only to find the account locked. Rather than meet FB’s demands, I deleted my account. I now use my other FB page, for blog posts.

    Brace yourself, Liberty Speaks, we have only just begun to fight. This is about silencing the truth tellers.

    [Re-posting at Wow! and Grumpy’s]

    P.S. Check this out: http://www.shtfplan.com/headline-news/red-alert-the-fbi-is-now-investigating-the-alternative-media-for-exposing-hillary-clinton_03212017

    • Liberty Speaks says:

      Believe it or not, it wasn’t until I published the piece that I found out my Twitter account was not showing up in others feeds. Twitter is slowly strangling itself, and it really is only a matter of time before the only accounts left on it are bots and spam. I also went through the Facebook Real name policy nightmare and wrote about that as well. I am prepared to deal with the shenanigans that Twitter throws at me,however, I wish I didn’t have to deal with it. Though I hate the saying…it is what it is. https://ladyliberty1885.com/2015/01/21/facebook-papers-please/

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