Friday, July 28, 2006

Virginia Progressive Begins Censorship, (Excuse Me) Moderation, Of Comments

In what has been a non scandal in relating to Tom Davis, I have noted a new form of corruption in the blogging world. James Martin of Virginia Progressive has now begun to censor comments for his own site. Instead of allowing people’s opinions be heard, he will remove them or keep it quiet until called on it. Once that happens, he will allow the post to be placed back onto his site.

In an email sent to me by James, he explained that his was not censorship, but rather "moderating" on his webite. There is a filter working in the site that apparently pulls comments out from the posts. I first noticed this the other day when Mason Conservative's comment was "moderated" for a brief period of time, but not put up in the comments until after I brought it to light. Not Gretchen Bulova as also expressed concerns about her comments being "moderated" from the site.

Fact of the Matter

The fact of the matter on this that James claimed to have learned tolerance while in high school. As Mason Conservative points out on more than one occasion to me, he is still young and has much to learn. Not Gretchen Bulova also points out how James wishes to press his morals onto the internet world. As for me, I do question how "progressive" his site is if he needs "moderating" for the comments.

Indeed, all views should be heard. There have been comments with foul language on his site before. Yet those aren't moderated. We know liberal s now being called progressive. Does this mean censorship is now being called "moderated."

At this site, all are welcomed to say what they wish. I do say that it is better to use vocabulary and not foul language in your comments. But I can assure all there is no "moderating" on my part.


James has assured me that his site deals with a great deal of spam. However, considering my original post was on his site for about an hour before it disappearred, as I told him, it does make one wonder. Now this has got him puzzled. Whether or not there are errors on his site is something to be investigated.


Melissa said...

That's a really great policy on your part, BDM. I always tried to be tolerant although I wasn't always very good at it. But I took a (Business) English course with the most wonderful professor this summer, and we discussed pretty much everything- politics, racism, religion, government structures, media, advertising, etc. Her only request was that we be tolerant- that we respect the fact that we're not always right, and that while we may not agree with other people, they surely have a right to voice thier opinions. Latitudinarianism, she said, was the only "ism" we should strive to be, because many times, we get wrapped up in our own beliefs and what the groups we choose to associate with prescribe, and we do not see truly what others are saying, even when they may have a pertentint point.

I think a great example of this was our final paper- we had to choose anything up to debate (as long as it was not hackneyed or a hot button topic) and write a paper for it and a paper against it. She was supposed to be unable to tell which side we actually stood for. It was a real learning experience- to be able to put aside one's beliefs to see and argue for the other side convincingly. I think that we learn the most from the people that we disagree with, if we are capable of listening to them without projecting our prejudices or our disagreement onto thier arguement. It is difficult and takes a long time to learn. I'm so glad that I had the opportunity to begin to do so this summer, and I hope that James will have some similar professor at Mary Washington.

BDM said...

Well said, Melissa. Well said.

Alice Marshall said...

What evidence do you have that this is politically motivated? All comments on GOTV blog are moderated because spammers found a way around the alphabetic validation on blogger. Any actual human is welcome at GOTV blog, only spambots are rejected.

If you comment on GOTV while I am busy and not online, your comment could wait hours, even days in que.

Melissa said...

Alice- I don't think BDM has a problem with comment moderation. I think what BDM is upset with is the fact that his comment appeared on VAProgressive, stayed up on the blog for an hour and then was deleted- not that it did not appear at all or that he got a message, like you have, saying that the comment will be moderated.