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eliminating porn blogs from top posts, top blogs, fastest growing blogs

  1. Lets's start at what was the beginning for me. I happen to know two Moldavian sex slave escapees who are really upset that their photos taken when they were 13 and 14 years old are still on the net. They were sold into sexual slavery by their uncle and told they were going to be nannies in the UK. Both are trying to establish a normal life and are going to highschool. One has been recognized due to the photos and videos on the net. Some boys at the highschool don't believe that the girls were having sex against their will and the girls are both being propositioned due to this. The boys at school have written the url on the washroom wall several times and the janitors are repeatedly removing it. There are lawyers involved in a process to get their photos and videos removed from the net.

    (1) I assumed that anyone who bothered to post a comment on ccoyotes and take me on about the contents of the article pertaining to advertising sex slaves on the internet might be sex addicted. If you think that's a stretch of the imagination then you have a right to your opinion just as I have a right to mine.

    (2) I believe that it is possible and even likely that the sex spam I got was directly related to the article I posted on coyotes. Also note that my "nick" on this forum is linked to coyotes and not to timethief. I could be wrong. It's possible that sex spammers are so prolific that they hit on environmental and political sites and that it was coincidental that mine was hit when it was.

    (3) Thus far it seems to me that because pornography is so deeply rooted in the internet and in all cultures the world over it has become acceptable for viewing by people of any age. This is not to mention that there is no effective means of limiting internet viewing to any age group. However, I was not specifically relating 1 and 2 to age assumptions. I simply combined two subjects into one posting when responding to wank's posting on parental permission and LIfe Journal's requirements. {It's my experience that women frequently ramble all over the place in their conversations with each other and that they are far less likely to stick rigidly to the point in the way men do. Perhaps your experience is different.}

    (4) On this point we are definately in agreement: "unsolicited advertising is innappropriate, no matter the content."

    Lastly, I observe that if we do not keep this thread rising to the top then those who are feeling uncomfortable can simply enter their comfort zone again as though this thread never happened. I'm okay with that.

  2. I'm uncomfortable with the idea that mature people who post on mature topics are automatically and as a matter of policy thrown out of contention for Top Blogs, etc.

    Posting about sex, nudity, or using profanity of however vulgar a nature is not the same as supporting sex slavery. With all due respect to the many horror stories out there, I am the author of a book on Vancouver's Missing Women case, I have interviewed Willy Pickton twice, and have conducted interviews with over 100 prostitutes.

    I believe that there is a difference between blogging adult content and sexual oppression and I believe in the responsibility of parents to ensure that their children are looked after.

    What about a SEPARATE category of BOTD & POTD, for sexual topics? That way, if a kid posts a link to PornoTube he may get in "POTD Adult" but not in POTD the open division.

    Is that a decent workaround?
    Full disclosure: I sometimes post on what others would call adult topics, and at this very moment my latest post is titled "Beaver Shots." It's photographs of a beaver. Swimming. I'm a sucker for a dirty joke.

  3. @raincoaster -
    the problem with having XXXOTD.wordpress.com, is that it encourages posting porn, which is not something that we really want. BOTD is not the only way to find popular articles, but it is the only one officially condoned by automattic, inc. i don't think we'll see an adult section in that particular bookstore.

  4. I have read, but up to now purposely avoided posting. However, raincoaster's post forced me to say something.

    What would I like to see?

    I bloody great banner when I click the "next blog" link that warns me that the next blog is "NSFW - Not Safe For Work".

    There is a HUGE difference between DISCUSSING adult themes such as Raincoaster's "Vancouver's Missing Women" (by the way - do you have an affiliate link to Amazon for that? ;) hehe) and posting pictures of the women of playboy with all their bits hanging out on display.

    One I don't mind reading AT WORK, the other I don't even look at from home.

    This is supposedly a place where anyone (young or old) can come and read or write about almost any subject. There's enough porn blogs and websites on the net (just look at Blogger or Blogspot), do we really need them here too?

    My two cents, I'll walk away again now.

    By the way - gratuitous beaver shots and farting will always be funny!

  5. A NSFW banner is not a bad idea. But if you read this whole thread you'll see that people are including even profanity in their "NSFW" category, and that is just going too far. They include the PornoTube article, even though it doesn't have porn pix in it, it just talks about porn.

    If it's possible to facilitate a choice (like Google's Safesearch does) then that's what we should do. There is lots of porn out there because lots of people like looking at it. There's lots of profanity out there because lots of people swear. WordPress doesn't need to take responsibility for those choices; they just need to assist people who don't want to see it to not see it.

    And no, there is no Amazon link to my book. A) It's still at the publisher's and B) posting it would be spamming the forum. Thanks for asking.

  6. For clarity I have not requested that blogs using obscene language be treated in any way differently than other blogs. I have simply decried the use of such language as having become common place and 'acceptable'. No amount of rationalzation or attempts to justify this will ever satisfy me so let's set that aside becaus it was indeed an aside.

    I consider the far ranging discussion of 'asides'(which I myself commenced and contributed to) to be off track from the main points I proposed.

    My agenda is simple.

    (1)I want all sites with images depicting humans engaged in sexual activity of any and all kinds to be labeled adult/mature/not-safe-for-work.

    [And we now all have a second "tool" we can use for reporting them on our dashboards. Thank you Andy for putting your coding skills to work on this.]

    (2) Once so labeled I do not want these blogs to be accessed by randomly clicking "next blog" on our dashboards.

    Why? Because I do not want to encounter them and be offended by them.

    (3) Once so labeled I do not want these blogs or postings within them to be counted into the stats for fastest growing blogs, top blogs, or top posts.

    Why? Because distinguishing adult/mature/not-safe-for-work blogs in ways depicting them as "top" anything amounts to promoting them.

    I would also like to hear from those who have not previously posted on this issue, particularly, if they choose to address the 3 foregoing points, rather than 'asides'.

  7. As a mother of three young boys, a lawyer, and an editor over at Best Blog, I think this conversation is an incredibly important one. My take on it is this: I don't worry too much about what my children find on the internet because I have taken care of their internet use from my end. I wouldn't trust that to someone else, and I don't expect anyone else to do it for me. For that reason, it wouldn't matter to me if wordpress labeled sites as "adult" only, because I'd be making sure my kids didn't have access to that content anyway: they use the internet with me around and I know what sites they look at. Now, mistakes happen (there's that "next blog" key), and occasionally someone sees something weird (my son once typed in Body Miller when he meant to type in Bodie Miller and, well, there were some naked bodies. He screamed, oh gross, and turned it off.) I know some parents aren't keeping an eye on their children. But I don't think WordPress stepping in would make any difference. Those children would have other places to look. From my perspective, I think it's better to tell my children what I think about pornography (which isn't much)when they see it (we live near San Francisco and they see plenty of that type of thing just walking down Market Street) than hiding it from them. Okay, so that's my mothering perspective.

    My legal perspective might not be terribly helpful. As an appellate lawyer in a state court, I don't know that much about the legal status of porn sites. But I think that generally there are federal laws that regulate that sort of thing, particularly sites that exploit children. Now I know that's not all that effective, and there's a lot of stuff that slips through, but I think it's better that sort of enforcement be in the hands of the government and the courts, where at least there is some oversight of misguided attempts at censorship. When private parties get involved in monitoring for "adult" content, there's no way to make sure nobody's censoring a frank discussion of birth control because it discusses the penis and they don't like that kind of thing.

    Which is not to say I don't get what timethief is saying. Just the other day I marked something "adult" (Or whatever it is you can mark it) and it felt good to be able to bring it to someone's attention. The thing I marked was a commercial sex site. It seemed to me that this kind of thing shouldn't be freeloading on wordpress and it offended more my sense of community than my feelings about pornography. If I didn't have that button to push, I would have just moved on to the next site. In the end, I'd rather that WordPress be a free wheeling place where some things slip through than the alternative, which I fear would stifle some of the wonderful craziness that I see on some blogs. For those who are offended by the creeps who slip in with porn, I think the answer is to go elsewhere, to a place where you will be able to find the proper conditions for your internet use. I respect those conditions, but I fear that they will result in the classic first amendment problem: the chilling of speech.

    As for Best Blog, I love writing things for that site. Ken, it's author, works hard to get through what he calls the "great firewall" in China to occasionally post, which is one reason there are a number of editors. (By the way, I'm sorry someone here thought it was "static" and would love to hear his or her suggestions for improvement.) I'm not the only editor, but I can't imagine anyone promoting anything that isn't just a fine blog. We email regularly and discuss what we're up to. We don't review our own blogs, nor do we promote the blogs of friends. We see this as a community project, devoted to promoting the wonderfully diverse WordPress community. None of us is interested in pushing or glorifying porn, because that sort of thing isn't what a Best Blog is made of. I do recall that one editor talked about a site by a guy who was taking a class on the internet porn phenomenon and was blogging about the class, a site that might possibly be considered "adult" but certainly not off limits.

    So there you have it. My six million cents.

    I'm sorry this post is so long -- I'm a bit late to the conversation, is all!

    Best, BlogLily

  8. In the past Best Blogs has reviewed a couple of porn culture blogs. And not necessarily a blog featuring porn on the actual site. iplaybass was one of the most fascinating and most skillfully written blogs that I had ever read. There's actually a lot you can learn from the culture of porn. It's a shame that more blogs like that don't exist.

    On the flip side there comes a time where Best Blogs will draw the line. Actual porn and unhelpful blogs will not be reviewed on the blog.

    Thanks that's my piece.

    Michael

  9. Michael's reference to iplaybass is a great example of an important principle in this debate: the answer to speech you don't like is more speech, not less: speaking out against what you don't like, not censoring it. (Let me be clear: tagging any blog as "adult" content and sequestering it somewhere else on the site is a form of censorship because it singles out certain kinds of speech for less favorable treatment than others, the less favorable treatment being to make access to it less free.)

    In her blogging, timethief admirably displays the principle of more speech in response to offensive speech: she talks about what is so harmful about pornography and passionately defends those who have been hurt by it. She reaches people because she cares about what she talks about. That's the sort of thing WordPress is about.

    My answer is a little different -- I click on by when I see porn, not giving these folks the time of day. It's what I do when I see Ann Coulter-ish clones also. As for inadvertently coming across something while browsing at work, the answer is not to be warned of adult content so you don't come across it, it's to exercise care in your internet browsing while you're at work. Don't click on the next blog button while at work, for heaven's sake, if you'd get in trouble for accessing a porn site.

    My point is this: We're adults. We are neither victims nor children. We don't need to be protected from that which we don't care for because we are fully capable of protecting ourselves from it. Now, other adults may not do as we do -- but one important lesson of adulthood is that you cannot control the stupid, boring, offensive speech of other people, you can only control what you do in response to it.

  10. @bloglily and helpdesk

    Please note that I was not at any time referring to any individual blog called "Best Blog" hosted by Ken.

    Please look at your dashboards and note the "top" categories in WordPress - these are the only "top" categories I was referring to.

    @ bloglily on the first go around summarizing your responses in reference to the 3 issues
    (1) you report adult/mature/not-safe-for-work blogs by using the key provided
    (2) you are not concerned about the "next blogs" issue
    (3) you did not address the issue of porno postings and blogs being in the WordPress "top" posts and blog rankings (because you mis-interpreted what the subject matter was thinking I was referring to a specific blog called Best Blogs by Ken)

    In general your responses indicate that these are not issues for you. You prefer no efforts to censor/sequester be made.

    @helpdesk summarizing in reference to the 3 issues
    (1) not addressed
    (2) not addressed
    (3) not sure if you addressed WordPress rankings or some blog called "Best Blogs"
    In general I'm not sure if all your remarks were made in reference to some blog called "best Blogs" hosted by Ken.

    In general your responses indicate that these are not issues for you in regard to WordPress blogging.

    @ bloglily on the second go around summarizing in reference to the 3 issues
    (1) I click on by when I see porn
    (2) it's responsibility of the blogger not to click "next blog" if at work or not desiring to take a risk
    (3) not addressed

    In general your responses indicate that these are not issues for you in regard to WordPress blogging.

  11. Hello Timethief-- Thank you; that's an admirable and succinct summary. It's hard to believe you've only owned a computer for a short time -- this is a good tool for you!

    Just one word of explanation and clarification. Michael and I write for a site called Best Blog -- WordPress links to it at the bottom of the WordPress front page, beneath the top blogs and growing blogs tabs. That's the site I'm referring to.

    Last night, Dr. Mike mentioned this interesting discussion and, from his description of it, I was under the impression that perhaps the Best Blog site had played an indavertent role in offending someone. That not being at all our intention, I wanted to clarify what we do.

    I do see now that you are referring to the automatic listing of sites that takes place on top blogs and posts and growing blogs. Thank you so much for pointing out that I've misunderstood you -- it's heartening to see that people who might disagree with each other can still be courteous and respectful. Kudos to you and everyone else participating in this discussion.

    Best, BL

  12. I want to give my opinion (sorry about my broken english):

    I think that porn is inevitable: in the 19th century -what was consider as- "porn" (a woman with a spread leg) was the main carrier to promote and expand the use a new technology: the photography. Porn is something that is still doing that nasty job, otherwise internet woulnot be as popular as it is.

    Without porn internet would be something useful only to a bunch of bored nerds. If intenet is what is know is because porn is ment to open the spaces where the eye must take a view, and lecture us to learn how to view it, and lately, to use that space in a practical and conceptual sense.

    Here, in wp is not the exception.

  13. @bloglily
    Is this the slink to the site of the blog you are referring to? http://bestblog.wordpress.com/.

    Can you provide the link to drmike's contribution to the discussion from last night please if you are referring to something he said somewhere else as opposed to in this thread?

    Thanks for your compliment on my computing and summarization skills. It's always good to receive a compliment.:)

    I also too appreciate the respectful tenor and tone of the dialogue being conducted here.

  14. Hey Timethief -- His post was just a shoutout to bestblog, letting us know that we've been mentioned in some of the forums, without linking to any forum in particular or commenting on the content of any particular discussion. I went to the comments boards and thought it might be this discussion. It was just a guess, and it turns out I was wrong! Anyway, I'm glad I made it over here, because it's a very interesting discussion. And yes, that's the right link. Best, BL

  15. @naxos
    Thank you for entering the discussion.

    I take issue with your statement: "Without porn internet would be something useful only to a bunch of bored nerds."

    I am not bored nor am I boring. I'm most certainly not a nerd. And it is my well considered opinion that the internet can be used for a multitude of purposes other than providing sexual material for voyeuristic viewing. In fact the vast amount of material other than pornography which is currently available on the net proves my point.

    If, however, you think the ONLY USEFUL PURPOSE the internet serves to provide opportunities to view photographic close-ups of female gentalia then I assume you don't have access to the views of the real thing in your own life. That's too bad.

    I recognize your right to hold an opinion different from my own.

    It is my opinion that the use of the internet is fueling a steady increase in distribution of pornography, providing a base for the escalation of the global sex trade and the insidious normalization of misogynistc and dehumanizing attitudes and behaviours.

    The sex industry, previously considered marginal, has come to occupy a strategic and central position in the development of international capitalism. For this reason it is increasingly taking on the guise of an ordinary sector of the economy and hence the internet.

    It is my belief that under the banner of “freedom from censorship” misogyny, dehumanizing attitudes and behaviours that cheapen sex are robbing our youth of their childhood innocence. I find this loss to be regrettable.

    I believe the internet can be used as a powerful tool to re-instill sensitivity, respect and compassion for our fellow human beings, most, particularly, in our youth. I would like to see young people look forward to loving, satifying and lasting sexual relationships in their adult lives. Thus I would like to see those who feel the same way provide a balance to the powerful porn lobby on the internet. I don't believe this is currently what is going on.

    It's too bad that you feel the only useful purpose of the internet is for porn. But I know from the deluge of private email I'm getting at [email redacted] that there are many others who do not share this point of view so this is what gives me the strength to keep stating my case. I'm sure you noticed I previously indicated I was okay with letting this thread die. Others urged me not to.

    IMO porno blogs and porno posts depicting images of humans involved in sexual activity ought not to be considered appropriate candidates for the "top" postings and "top" blogs categories on WordPress.

  16. Timethief -- I've got to run but I wanted to say that I so completely agree with you on this: "I believe the internet can be used as a powerful tool to re-instill sensitivity, respect and compassion for our fellow human beings, most, particularly, in our youth." Well said. Best, BL

  17. I kind of see one part of naxos's argument, which is that pornography frequently fuels widespread adoption of a new technology. He cites photography; videotape is another example. So it's only to be expected that as blogging moves into the mainstream, porn is going to be in the vanguard of that movement. I don't like it, but it's a sign that the medium itself is flourishing.

    I wonder how many bloggers reproducing pornographic images have the right to use those pictures, though? Porn being the lucrative industry it is, I can't imagine many sites releasing their archives under a licence that lets others republish for free.

  18. Timethief, i was pointing to something rather different of what you understood. Wank caught it perfectly. I was never talking about you. I do not attemp to take a counterposition about what you are definding, i am not that kind of person. But neither to take your statements. Porn is the carrier of todays visualities: an antipode that gives the chance to express images beyond all retentions. Your are critizicing something rather diferent than porn: your are against its effects. But this is another issue....

  19. Ahh, yes. I'm glad wank helped conveywhat you were actually saying to me and I'm glad that you came back to clarify and confirm. Thank you for doing so.:)

  20. Here's a thought (and one that I might get shot for)

    How adding an option:

    Creating an option within wordpress that catalogues the Adult/Mature blogs, and allowing the users themselves to select "View Adult/Mature" blogs as a separate category? As in when they view the top posts/blogs, they'd see two categories. That way, those who want to view such blogs can do so, and those who don't don't have to. Make this apply to "Next blogs" as well.

    I hope that made sense.

  21. @bloglily
    Having read the comments here at http://bloglily.wordpress.com/2006/08/02/the-great-internet-porn-debate/ dated today and I'm now shaking my head. It's obvious to me that those commenting on your blog ought to have had the benefit of reading the whole thread from my post https://coyotes.wordpress.com/2006/07/29/porno-blogs-fuel-the-global-sex-trade/
    which marked the beginning to the thread I posted here on the forum.

    Moreover, I am deeply disappointed that my post which led to this whole discussion has not been linked to your article but a completed unrelated blog has been linked to it. It was this post which I wrote at https://coyotes.wordpress.com/2006/07/29/porno-blogs-fuel-the-global-sex-trade/
    and the reaction to it that led me to start the thread here on the forum and yet there is no mention of it in your blog article nor is there a link to my name.

    I am offended that you have chosen not to follow blogging protocol and instead chose to perform what amounts to a rip off.

    But I am even more offended that you tried to tie this rip off to yourself and to the completely unrelated Best Blogs where you write a weekly post and linked that blog to your article rather than mine.

    Why oh why did you write an article on your own blog without credit to mine instead of allowing the discussion to proceed here?

  22. evolvingtrends
    Member

    From good comes evil and from evil comes good

    From spam comes porn and from porn comes spam

    Wait ... that doesn't make sense

  23. @trends
    I'll nuke the spammers and where is that rocket launcher for you to use?

  24. Dear Timethief,

    I'm sincerely sorry if the way I've chosen to bring this issue to the attention of the people who read my blog offended you. People all over the internet should be talking about this issue. It is in no way a theft or an insult to discuss issues like this in more than one forum. If anything, it's a compliment to you that you've got people talking about this.

    As for attribution, my post links twice to this thread for the benefit of interested readers. It didn't occur to me to link to anything else because it was this thread that got me thinking about this issue.

    I was glad to see this discussion here: it's one that concerns me and a great many other people, and it has been helpful and interesting to hear what people have to say about it. As I said, I was under the impression that perhaps the other blog I write for might have offended someone and that's why I came over here to check things out. I'm glad that wasn't the case.

    Just so you know, I won't be returning to this thread. I've enjoyed finding out what people think about this issue, but it's time for me to move on to other things: I've got kids to raise and a job to hold down.

    Good luck to you. I wish you well in bringing about meaningful change around this issue.

    Best, BL

  25. @ coyote and anyone interested:

    generally, when someone posts something related to your own post without linkin to it, the best plan is to either

    a) write a new post, linking both your original post and their response, or
    b) if your post is still your most current, you can just post an update to the original.

    your post will show up as a comment on their post, and drag the discussion back to you.

    matt and scoble do this _all the time_ cos it works.

  26. Did not know this post, therefore find again to have to answer to timethief,have already done it on some post (http://dariosalvelli.wordpress.com/2006/08/01/internet-is-for/ and http://dariosalvelli.wordpress.com/2006/07/03/porno-tube-a-youtube-for-hard/. )
    How the readers of my blog know,i talk about ICT world,the internet tendencies and the developments of the sector,how Robert Scoble,Techcrunch,Digg do: I am often present in the blog wordpress top without having never done nothing special,only write my thoughts, reflections, articles on Internet world. I am really sorry for this thread,but i am happy if this misunderstanding is served to the new feature in the dashboard about the link "report mature" that allow you to signal if a blog is for adult,it is not for sure my case: i always especially appreciate the criticisms when they are constructive.

  27. My thanks to everyone who contributed to the discussion in this thread. I think it's a tribute to wordpress bloggers that we were able to articulate our varying viewpoints without rancour. I'm pleased that sysadmin (thanks andy, matt et al) were so remarkably responsive in providing us with a new reporting tool. I also think it's fitting that dario's submission is the penultimate one in this thread which I consider to be resolved as we have come full circle on this topic. Thanks again. TT

  28. Resolved

  29. Interesting read on what one person's defination of mature content is.

    Just to throw it in there. :)

  30. AHHH okay so I read the definition - "I want to clarify my definition of mature content... it's "shut-up and think". You don't shut-up and think when you watch the Texas Chainsaw Massacre or Showgirls, but you do when you watch Crash."

    (1) I didn't watch any of the movies cited.
    (2) And I don't THINK anything other than "EEEOOOWW I'm out of here" when I see images of people involved in sexual behaviour on blogs.
    (3) Obviously the internet cannot be censored and people will fiercely protect whatever territory they cut out of it or insert into it. From sex and absue as well as movies of actual rapes, snuff movies to games based on sex, rape and murder. This fails to impress me.
    (4) The advent of animated games for people who want to experiment sexually on a keyboard with an animated fantasy partner strikes me as truly pathetic.

    Do you want this thread to continue? I don't. I have no further interest in it and was suprised that you added to it.
    Resolved

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