I posted an acerbic comment last night at EmptyWheel. I warned months ago that there would be an attempt to apply the laws of war to the internet. I warned even earlier that the freedoms people take for granted on the internet were poorly secured and that civil rights lawyers should focus on securing them. That would be the freedoms of speech, religion, the press, assembly, and lobbying, as well as the right not to have military ‘quartered’ in our homes in the form of viruses planted on our machines, and 4th amendment rights to privacy not to be watched. Some of those rights are already lost in hacker laws, some in corporate interpretations of data, some in data placement, some because of failure to write opinions and public documents. Customary international law depends on ‘publicists’ to write opinions and public documents in its early stages, international standards depend on such documents as source material where experts don’t attend conferences and meetings. The corporate and governmental machine that churns forward creating the internet depends on legislation to regulate it to keep it from becoming a place where people can be controlled.
Acerbic comments are never taken well at emptywheel. The “moderator” there, bmaz, first said my comment was a steaming pile, when I defended it, he called me a “whiny petulant liar” for my claims that the data warehousing shown in the SJC rollback provisions argument in the FISA debate had been ignored and that only pow wow had noticed Scott Macintosh’s treatment of people as disk drives, claiming that he and Marcy had been at the forefront of these issues.
I did a google search and presented him with rebuttal that neither had been covered. Specifically, google rollbacks or “Scott Macintosh” site:emptywheel.firedoglake.com and you will not produce said posts by either bmaz or Marcy. Unfortunately, at this point bmaz began deleting my rebuttals.
If you call someone a liar, that is defamatory. You had better be right, and the person you’ve called a liar has the right to rebut, if you delete the rebuttals and make sure your accusation is the last word, you are defaming, and you are misusing your privilege as a moderator.
If you go to the “Contact Us” tab at EmptyWheel, the message is “Sorry!” It’s unimplemented, but invites you to contact firedoglake. If you go to the “Contact Us” tab at FireDogLake” you contact firedoglake. I did so, demanding that bmaz’s privileges be publicly reviewed. I pointed out that just two days ago, another commenter had written a post also complaining about the moderator at EmptyWheel deleting comments there and not allowing a rebuttal.
I got a response from Jane Hamsher saying that EmptyWheel is a separate site that is under its own management. And apparently not able to be contacted or reviewed or accountable to anyone. Quite a statement about a watchdog site that demands accountability of others.