I miss Linfar!

I miss Linfar.  She is one of those who have been banned and purged in the last day or two.  Last night, I went through Google Cache to look for the diaries she has written, which have been purged, along with her comments, from this site.  Fortunately, on the internet, nothing is ever really gone for good.

For those of you who miss her, here is the link to her cached User Page here at MyDD.  Linfar MyDD User Page

Linfar is absolutely a beautiful writer.  I was exceptionally impressed with her last diary "Typical White People"

Some of you may think that is controversial.  I don't think so.  She didn't come up with that title from thin air.  She was parroting something Sen. Obama said.  In any event, I believe that it represents a powerful statement from a woman who lived the values that everyone is calling for these days, and points out, through the title, that there is no such thing as a "Typical White Person." Read the article if you haven't read it before, and if you have read it, its worth a second read. Here is the link. Typical White People

You may not like what Linfar has to say, but as Democrats/Liberals/Progressives you should all be willing to listen to her. Disagree loudly if you must, but don't push out people with opinions who are different than yours. We all lose when that happens.

Please bring Linfar back!

Tags: free speech, Linfar (all tags)

Comments

46 Comments

Re: I miss Linfar!

I believe everybody has the right to say their opinion when it's conduct in a proper manner and based on fact.  And I believe Linfar has never done anything that cross the boundary.

I loved her dairy At Sun Rise.  And I miss reading what she has to stay about our current stage of affair.

by JoeySky18 2008-04-02 04:27PM | 0 recs
Re: Very strange

There may have been a lot more purging than we thought.

by cjbardy 2008-04-02 04:29PM | 0 recs
Re: I miss Linfar!

And I miss being compared to the Hitler Youth!

Oh wait, I don't.

by Johnny Gentle Famous Crooner 2008-04-02 04:40PM | 0 recs
Re: I miss Linfar!

Linfar's writings are insightful and thought provoking.  

Kerry Brock of the Freedom Forum said, "To hear one voice clearly, we must have freedom to hear them all."

We must never forget that one advantage Americans have had is to express ideas and feelings freely in private and in public. Censoring  speech is the erosion of the fundamental rights of our Constitution and Nation and the very fabric of democracy.  

Linfar, I hope to hear your voice clearly again soon.

by Athena2 2008-04-02 04:56PM | 0 recs
Re: I miss Linfar!

Seriously, what is thoughtful about being compared to Hitler?  That comment is alone worth the banning.

by mefck 2008-04-02 04:59PM | 0 recs
Re: I miss Linfar!

It's unfortunate the conversation cannot go beyond personal issues and get back to a dialogue of the issues.

Unfortunately,  there has been name calling on both sides.  

You may want to help both sides by guiding the conversation to a more positive tone rather than reiterating the same issue.

by Athena2 2008-04-02 05:06PM | 0 recs
Re: I miss Linfar!

You may want to help both sides by guiding the conversation to a more positive tone rather than reiterating the same issue.

Wait, this is mefck's fault? This diary asks that Linfar be reinstated, and the diarist doesn't appear to know why Linfar was even banned. But as soon as we point out the reason, we're accused of "reiterating the same issue" and making things negative. Don't ask the question if you're going to get angry when we answer!

But yes, I fully agree with you that thing here have gotten very off-track. I'm sure some disruptive Obama supporters got banned along with Linfar and the others, so hopefully the tone will improve--not just because certain people are gone, but because it shows everyone that banning can really happen.

by Johnny Gentle Famous Crooner 2008-04-02 06:19PM | 0 recs
Re: I miss Linfar!

And why the 0 rating?  That is an abuse of the rules here.  I was simply reiterating why I thought she should have been banned in response to the three diaries on the same subject.

by mefck 2008-04-03 07:34AM | 0 recs
Oh, just try it!

by cjbardy 2008-04-02 05:00PM | 0 recs
Re: I miss Linfar!

I miss Linfar too and to have her "purged"...love the word - without warning...well...I call that censorship and that is unconstitutional..Isn't that what the First Amendment is all about?

Her diary was a story that she shared with all of us..I went back and re-read it again and quite frankly, I saw no reason for her to be "purged"..it waw her story, part of her history and well told...If an aritcle such as this gets you knocked off...God help us all...

by Patriot2008 2008-04-02 05:03PM | 0 recs
Re: I miss Linfar!

The first amendment does not give you the right to be published wherever you want whenever you want saying whatever you want.  

If you want to publish an op-ed in the NYTimes or your local paper, the first amendment doesn't require that it be published.  The party with the first amendment right is whoever has editorial control over the paper (or blog or magazine, etc.).

by politicsmatters 2008-04-02 05:08PM | 0 recs
Re: I miss Linfar!

No, but these blogs have become a quasi-public place, the modern equivalent of a soapbox, if you will.

Moderating for bad language etc. is one thing, but discarding ideas is another.

In any event, regardless of that, why should  a liberal place want to do the modern day equivalent of book-burning.

The end result, if the movement is in that direction, is that these sites will wither on the vine and die.

by cjbardy 2008-04-02 05:15PM | 0 recs
Re: I miss Linfar!

The First Amendment doesn't apply, period. The Logan Valley rationale isn't widely applicable, especially not to a private website. There's certainly no jurisprudence holding that the proprietor of a website is required to publish anything and everything simply because the site features a comment board.

And frankly, I'd like to keep it that way. We don't need to hear from republican trolls, crackpots, neo-nazis and lord knows whom else would swarm the place if there was no moderation whatsoever. (And if you've ever given any comment a zero, you've helped censor the place yourself.)

by Johnny Gentle Famous Crooner 2008-04-02 06:25PM | 0 recs
Re: I miss Linfar!

I found linfar's diaries offbase. But I agree with the above poster you replied to on the fact that this is a quasi public place. Sure, MYDD has a right to ban people for whatever reason, but is that the path they want to go on? How about facilitating some free speech to make us feel more welcome? I don't mind suspensions and then a ban for repeated trollworthy postings and lack of discipline in clogging up diary space disrupting the experience of following different topics.

Linfar could have used a temporary cooling off period, but no way she should have been banned. And I find it worse that they purge diaries.

by Pravin 2008-04-02 06:42PM | 0 recs
Re: I miss Linfar!

Argh! Listen, it's not a "quasi public place" because we say so. Hell, Logan Valley Plaza itself has been almost limited down to nothing in the 40 years since the ruling. "Quasi public place" isn't some magical term that's merely a synonym for "place where people discuss."

ALL websites censor. They ALL have moderators or admins, or even community-run tools like our handy little zero-rating.

This is insane! Everyone seemed to be perfectly fine with MyDD's policies when it was just Obama-trolls being banned. People grow bold and overconfident in their right to lob offensive attacks at others here, they get banned, and all of the sudden everyone's a free speech advocate!

by Johnny Gentle Famous Crooner 2008-04-02 06:51PM | 0 recs
Re: I miss Linfar!

Indeed.  What would the implications of this novel theory even be?  That an anonymous blogger would have the right to remain on a third party's website indefinitely?  For that matter, why would one define a particular website as a "quasi-public space" and not the whole Internet itself?  A park is a quasi-public space, but that does not mean that I can run onto the stage of a play that is performing in the park and cause a disturbance.

by rfahey22 2008-04-02 07:00PM | 0 recs
Re: I miss Linfar!

You do realize I am nbiot a Hillary supporter. Also, we said Quasi. We understand this is not a real public space. But it will; be nice if a progressive site encourages free speech even if outrageous as long as a poster is not interrupting other conversations with way too many diaries or repeated tangential comments that disrupt the flow.

We are expressing what we want a progressive site to be. Of course, it is the right of MYDD to do whatever they want. It is also our right to tell MYDD what kind of site it should be for us to come here more often. It's called reader feedback.

by Pravin 2008-04-02 07:04PM | 0 recs
Re: I miss Linfar!

Read the Pruneyard case, which talks about the broader holdings of the California constitution.

You sound like you are an attorney also, so just think about it.  The other point I would make is there is a difference when the site is a moderated one as opposed to one where the diarists self-publish.

That being said, remember, the initial point of this diary was not a legal challenge.  That has sort of evolved as these posts went on.

by cjbardy 2008-04-02 09:36PM | 0 recs
Re: I miss Linfar!

Here is where I see the difference.  In a newspaper, the editorial board considers whether they want to publish your article.  In a moderated blog on the internet, the same evaluation takes place.  

On sites like MyDD, once you have a user ID and password, you are, in essence, your own publisher.  The two situations are different.

Based on this, I have a hard time concluding that your analogy is more applicable than my analogy to a shopping mall or other quasi-public space.

by cjbardy 2008-04-02 08:58PM | 0 recs
Re: I miss Linfar!

To be precise, the U.S. Constitution generally protects only against government action, not actions by private parties.  As a "patriot," perhaps you should read that document.

by rfahey22 2008-04-02 05:14PM | 0 recs
Re: I miss Linfar!

I understand that.  I am a lawyer, however, I think we are verging onto new ground, constitutionally, with sites like this.

by cjbardy 2008-04-02 05:16PM | 0 recs
Re: I miss Linfar!

So am I, but where is the government activity?

by rfahey22 2008-04-02 05:21PM | 0 recs
Re: I miss Linfar!

There is none and the site managers are those exercising freedom of the press. They decide what goes on their site, within the parameters they have set.

by politicsmatters 2008-04-02 05:44PM | 0 recs
Re: I miss Linfar!

Exactly.  I'm all for the reasoned expansion of constitutional rights, but to argue that one has a constitutional right to remain indefinitely on the private website of his/her choice is a big stretch.

by rfahey22 2008-04-02 05:58PM | 0 recs
I realize this is a stretch but consider this.

This site's owners are in California, therefore the constitution of California is applicable to its actions as well.  I direct your attention to PRUNEYARD SHOPPING CENTER v. ROBINS, 447 U.S. 74 (1980), which affirmed a decision of the California Supreme Court holding that the California Constitution protects speech and petitioning, reasonably exercised, in shopping centers even when the center is privately owned, and that such result does not infringe appellants' property rights protected by the Federal Constitution.

I contend that this site and sites like it are the modern equivalent of a shopping center.  It certainly is something that is being discussed in law journals etc., but I think it is something that the owner's of this site should take into consideration.

Then, course, there is the fact that I didn't raise the First Amendment in this diary.  I said, "as Democrats/Liberals/Progressives you should all be willing to listen."

by cjbardy 2008-04-02 07:44PM | 0 recs
Re: I realize this is a stretch but consider this.

Doesn't posting on the site carry with it a tacit acceptance of the posted and easily found rules?

by freedom78 2008-04-02 09:03PM | 0 recs
Re: I realize this is a stretch but consider this.

Yes,  but the rules are somewhat vague.  For instance, it precludes "excessively bashing the Democratic Party".  What is "excessively bashing"? Do we know if this is being applied on both sides?  I don't know.  I don't know who else may have been banned or what other diaries and comments have been purged.

by cjbardy 2008-04-02 09:10PM | 0 recs
Re: I realize this is a stretch but consider this.

I agree that the rules are somewhat vague, and I've no knowledge of who has been banned (other than the obvious absences).  

I don't have the answers, honestly.  But I know that I've deleted MANY posts that I considered over the line, or that I wrote in anger, just for the sake of getting it in writing.  I guess my point is that we have a pretty good idea about what is over the line.  The infighting was pretty bad a few days ago, and seemed to be particularly concentrated in a few diaries.

But my comment was more about the legal aspects than whether the banning was justified, which I'll do in response to your OTHER comment.

by freedom78 2008-04-02 09:52PM | 0 recs
Re: I realize this is a stretch but consider this.

Doesn't that also mean that a contract arises with rules of fair dealing and reasonableness, or should the site owners be able to do things by fiat?

As I said before, my major point is that the censorship of ideas is not consistent with our liberal/progressive ideals, but the more I thought about it, but the more I thought about it, the more it dawned on me that there are legal issues at play.

Part of the problem is that we are just now in the process of trying to figure out how the internet fits in to our system of laws.  It is a rapidly developing area of the law which I want to look into more when I have some time to devote to research.

by cjbardy 2008-04-02 09:16PM | 0 recs
Re: I realize this is a stretch but consider this.

I agree that we should minimize censorship, and am disappointed that anyone got banned.  And I'm glad that some have been allowed to return.

I think this site might be better served to have some mode of self-censorship.  We can't edit or delete our comments.  It might be better if we could.  I'm sure a lot of people say things in the heat of the moment and then wish they could delete those comments.  I can think of a couple of my own I'd like to delete, whether they were noticed or not.      

Returning to the legal issues, and I'm NOT a lawyer, I'd say that the privately operated sites on the net are much like newspapers.  They have the right to include (or not) certain viewpoints, and if they think that something might hurt their ability to get ad revenue, I can see why they might want to do so.  

So I guess my position is this: the right to censor one's own site should exist, though the exercise of censorship should be minimal.

by freedom78 2008-04-02 10:00PM | 0 recs
Re: I realize this is a stretch but consider this.

There is really nothing that you said that I disagree with.  I am just in the process of sorting out my own thoughts on the issue.

I wholeheartedly agree that we should be able to self-censor our comments.  We can delete diaries so why can't we delete comments?

I agree that there is a certain minimal amount of censorship that needs to be done. Eliminating profanity is one example (although I see plenty of it here and that doesn't seem to be a problem on this site.)

I still think that the blogosphere is closer to the public square/shopping mall than it is to a newspaper, because of the fact that there is no preliminary editorial review.

I think, however, that guidelines need to be a little clearer, and when someone is banned, the owners should be prepared to say why that person was banned.

As I understand it, at least some of the banned people did not get such notice, or at least did not get any examples of what they did which violated the guidelines.

There is something about the banning and purging that just strikes me as being unfair, and I am not quite sure how to get at it, other than through the ideas I have expressed here.

by cjbardy 2008-04-02 10:15PM | 0 recs
Re: I miss Linfar!

If those who are banned want to be on line, they can start their own blog.  If enough people like it, they will attract a lot of reader and they can set their own rules about what will go on the blog.

The Supreme Court has always held that newspapers publishers have the constitutional right to decide what to publish, whether that's news, letters from readers, ads or opinion pieces. The same logic applies to blogs.

by politicsmatters 2008-04-02 05:06PM | 0 recs
Re: I miss Linfar!

As I recall a State Supreme Court also decreed that it was legal for a newspaper not to provide all the correct facts about news but that does not make it ethical.

There are fundamental issues and rights  at stake.  Certainly if a website choses to identify with certain philosophies and publishes only those ideas, it has shown partisanship and is not being objective.

Eventually, its readership understands the partiality and decides to stay or go elsewhere.

by Athena2 2008-04-02 05:30PM | 0 recs
Re: I miss Linfar!

"Eventually, its readership understands the partiality and decides to stay or go elsewhere."

Absolutely!  That is part of having a free press. You are free to publish and the public is free to read it or not.

By the way, the idea that the press should be objective is relatively recent in American history. it used to be that every newspaper had a very, very clear stand. And that's why there were so many papers with the world Republican or Democrat in the title. They used to be clearly associated with a party.  Many blogs are in the same tradition.

by politicsmatters 2008-04-02 05:42PM | 0 recs
by kevin22262 2008-04-02 05:08PM | 0 recs
That is really strange.

That was the original link I had, and it worked earlier today.  When I went and checked my link now, it only showed the second page.

Do you think the administrators went in and changed the link?

I am going back now to fix it.

by cjbardy 2008-04-02 07:09PM | 0 recs
Re: That is really strange.

Nobody changed it.

What happens is when you click on the link or the cached page in Google, it links it to your IP address. Notice in the address area how it will add your IP address to any google cache link.

by kevin22262 2008-04-03 09:43AM | 0 recs
Re: I miss Linfar!

The diary in question was about 90% well-written, but then devolved into absurdist reasoning.  "Controversial" is not the proper word, because it implies that people found it offensive because it challenged their ideas.  Actually, the diary was an extremely rare variant of the guilt-by-association diary in which the diarist devoted numerous paragraphs to praising an individual and then, in about a sentence, dismissed Obama and claimed that he was somehow against the first person, manipulating the reader into concluding that Obama was "bad."  It was quite a feat.

by rfahey22 2008-04-02 05:11PM | 0 recs
Thank you.

Thank you for providing links to the banned diaries.  I agree that site owners can ban anyone they want to ban.  OTOH, I suggest that they may not recognize the readership and participation they are risking by banning good, truthful, and thoughtful writers like Linfar.  I had email exchanges with a couple of the site administraters yesterday and I agree with them that anything that is not truthful or backed by facts should not be tolerated if it is just mud slinging; however, I believe that the site is strengthened by allowing good writers who write with integrity to voice opinions even if those opinions are harsh.  A free exchange of ideas is good for everyone.

I miss Linfar, also.  

Recommended!

by macmcd 2008-04-02 06:08PM | 0 recs
Re: I miss Linfar!

Beautiful diary! Just splendid!!!

Yes, Bring Linfar Back.

by Fleaflicker 2008-04-02 06:34PM | 0 recs
Re: I miss Linfar!

What the admins should do is just delete diaries that repeat the same topic without adding anything new. Kind of like some of the multiple "Oh linfar is gone. I am so sad " diaries.

by Pravin 2008-04-02 06:44PM | 0 recs
Re: I miss Linfar!

Yes, bring linfar back! I miss her, too. She makes very good points, and her writing is clear and informative. Loved the "from the heart" typical white person diary. Excellent work!

by susanclare 2008-04-02 07:51PM | 0 recs
Re: I miss Linfar!

Linfar should be here.  She wrote unique diaries, which is so critical to democratic free speech.  If we all said the same thing in the same way...well, how scary.

by TexasDarlin 2008-04-02 08:22PM | 0 recs
Re: I miss Linfar!

Me too.

by ellend818 2008-04-02 08:48PM | 0 recs
Re: I miss Linfar!

I do hope Linfar can return. I read again her "Typical White People"  diary and found it poignant, reflective, yes, even a little self-pitying, but an honest expression of the nuances of race that no one wants to talk about. She had the courage to fill in those bubble thoughts that silently pop up in people's heads. I also quickly scanned her diaries and was impressed by her breadth of interests from Tibet to the odd but interesting links made in her "Wright, Hamas, Obama" diary. She's not a bomb thrower so far as I can tell, she has always sought to explain, to reason her way through even the most controversial of her arguments. She is a good writer too. I hope she gets a second chance.

by superetendar 2008-04-03 06:51AM | 0 recs
Re: I miss Linfar!

The author of this diary asked me to post this update as a comment, as she is unable to make any posts at this time.  Hopefully this technical glitch will be resolved very soon.  Here is cjbardy's update:

[UPDATE] Great News! Linfar is back! Thanks to all of your support on all three of the diaries that discussed this issue, and to the power of peaceful protest, Linfar was reinstated to MyDD. On behalf of Linfar, I would like to extend my gratitude to the owners of this site.

For those of you who had negative things to say, or negative opinions of Linfar, I ask you to remain part of the dialogue, and be williing to listen to things that you may disagree with or find unfortable to read, just as we must read things that are difficult and uncomfortable for us.

I think it is a mistake to call out commentary that points out weaknesses of a candidate as "negative", because rational decision-
making process must include consideration of both the negative and positive attributes of the candidates. True strengh comes from
the ability to see both sides.

Once again, thank you to everyone!


by TexasDarlin 2008-04-03 10:13AM | 0 recs

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