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...a sweatshop of moxie

Monday, June 30, 2008

Blogger Banning Anti-Obama Sites

Blogger.com/Google is shutting down anti-Obama sites. (Via JSU)

Whilst that doesn't describe my blog (I think beloved Sundries reader, Jose Aguirre, described it best when he said it's a Seinfeldian blog -- it's about nothing), I have stuck to my pledge to speak mostly about politics in 2008. Then, it'll be back to business as usual.

But Blogger.com just may define my blog otherwise:

It looks like Google has officially joined the Barack Obama campaign and decided that its contribution would be to shut down any blog on the Google owned Blogspot.com blogging system that has an anti-Obama message. Yes, it sure seems that Google has begun to go through its many thousands of blogs to lock out the owners of anti-Obama blogs so that the noObama message is effectively squelched. Thus far, Google has terminated the access by blog owners to 7 such sites and the list may be growing. Boy, it must be nice for Barack Obama to have an ally powerful enough to silence his opponents like that!

Remember all that palavah about George Bush being the second coming of Hitler? Of reinstituting the draft? Of declaring himself dictator, since 2 terms would never be enough for him and his evil Patriot Act cadre?

None of that came true.

Instead of looking to politicians you dislike for nefarious motives, you should've kept your eye on the guys who refuse to celebrate Memorial Day, and who allow China to censor anything they don't want their people to read.

But somehow I doubt that will happen since vigilance is the first casualty of agreement.

And I respectfully disagree.

IN THE COMMENTS: JSU updates with news that the sites have been reinstated.

Madcynic points out those who have a beef with a blog, can shut it down by a concerted "spam blog" attack.

Digg is also prey to "digging down" attacks if you happen to disagree with their readers (it's long been a leftist stronghold; "freedom of speech" being a complete joke on Digg), so this seems to be their reaction on Blogger.

Let's hope that's all that was.

And please alert me if anti-McCain sites are undergoing the same treatment by Republican supporters.

Because if spamming alerts is what happened earlier, ask yourself why it's happening only to one candidate. That's the real problem in a nutshell.

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  • If you click through, you'll note that the sites seem to be back.

    Whether it was a co-ordinated flagging attack by the Obamites (outside abuse of the system), an intentional willingness on Google's part to go along with the squashing (aid), or neither, and whether the restoration was faster (due to possible embarrassment) or slower (due to ill will) than the norm are unknown. Also the odds of it recurring.

    But the fact that neither of us would be surprised by the very worst possibilities is a sign of the unpleasant times. I'm glad I just write about opera. ;)

    By Blogger JSU, at Mon Jun 30, 03:30:00 am GMT-4  

  • If I may quote from here: "The problem with blogger is that a group of people with an ax to grind can report any blog as spam and after enough complaints, it’s automatically suspended until a real live human being can get around to examining it. If enough complaints are registered with blogger, you might get a response within 5 days but it takes a concerted effort. This is a huge problem with blogger and something google needs to get a handle on."

    By Anonymous madcynic, at Mon Jun 30, 04:34:00 am GMT-4  

  • Victoria, thanks for the special mention! It's great to see you blogging again!

    By Blogger Jose Aguirre, at Mon Jun 30, 07:57:00 am GMT-4  

  • It's probably exactly what we think it is: Obama supporters flagging anti-Obama sites. It ain't hard to do. I saw on a blog that Obama recently put out a call for computer-savvy people. Might that have been the reason?

    I think we can expect more of this against pro-McCain blogs after the Conventions.

    By Blogger benning, at Wed Jul 02, 02:04:00 pm GMT-4  

  • Because if spamming alerts is what happened earlier, ask yourself why it's happening only to one candidate.
    I'm not sure what you're saying here. It certainly is not a nice thing to do, if Obama supporters are responsible for that. But what does that mean in a greater context? Are they bad people? Are they generally just evil or are they misguided?
    Is it so terrible because McCain supporters would never in their wildest dreams think of something like that because it's so wrong? Or is it just that Obama supporters were a tad faster, is that Obama supporters (esp. the diehard ones) are, I'm talking averages here, more tech-savvy and McCain supporters are not?
    What conclusions can you draw from a minority abusing a feature on blogger.com, a teensy-tiny part of the web, to the general mindset of Obama supporters - and can you pin the blame on Obama, for having such support and not doing anything about that?

    Coz if that's what's going on, the Obama is evil because his supporters are bad people, then I'm sure I can show you a minority of McCain supporters who aren't exactly good and honest people too. But maybe I'm getting a bit ahead of myself.

    By Anonymous madcynic, at Wed Jul 02, 03:36:00 pm GMT-4  

  • What's McCain got to do with it? The affected blogs were pro-Hillary.

    By Blogger JSU, at Wed Jul 02, 04:22:00 pm GMT-4  

  • right, I apologize. However, if you do a substitution "McCain" - "Clinton"...and of course do the same with GOP and Democrats...the point is still valid, I think.

    By Anonymous madcynic, at Thu Jul 03, 07:27:00 am GMT-4  

  • My blog has had the same kind of thing happen to it today...when I have written several anti-Obama posts over the past few days.

    I have appealed, and we will see if it's cleared up. I don't know if it's because the robots think it's a spamblog, or because I'm anti-Obama. It didn't even occur to me the problem could be political till I started googling a bit.

    I find it curious that I've been blogging for four years, over 1,000 posts, clearly not spam, and have never run into this...then I say something anti-Obama enough and BAM.

    Blogger can do what it wants -- they provide the medium. If it doesn't clear up, I'll go elsewhere. But it is curious.

    By Blogger El Jefe Maximo, at Fri Aug 01, 12:13:00 pm GMT-4  

  • El Jefe Maximo, hang in there. Same thing with me, today.

    And yes, it's because of the critical of Obama posts.

    I think blogs which are targetted this way, should form a coalition to bring this matter more out into the open. Maybe even give it news coverage.

    Let me know if you want to do something along those lines.


    By Blogger vbspurs, at Fri Aug 01, 12:19:00 pm GMT-4  

  • Followup:

    I've just apprised some of the bigger fish of the Blogosphere about our collective situations.

    This kind of intimidation, through using convenient loophole on Blogger, should not be allowed to go unnoticed.

    I think the Senator attracts a very cultish following, who does things in his name, which will only harm him in the end.

    You can be sure I will followup on this, later.


    By Blogger vbspurs, at Fri Aug 01, 12:50:00 pm GMT-4  

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