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Full Cocked

Because who wants to go off half-cocked? So yesterday, it came to light in the US that a Russian LJ blogger posted a live execution video on his LJ a few days ago. NPR reported this yesterday afternoon, even though it happened a few days ago. Last night, I saw many people's posts of outrage: How could LJ let that be shown, but the Snarry pic was removed? How can you stay on this service? And so on and so on.

Here's the important words:" LJ LET THAT BE SHOWN." Well... yes. And no. Do you honestly think that LJ has a filtering program reading journals and all their posts - ALL 13 million journals? *cough* Why would they add a tattle-tell button on LJs, then? Someone got pissed off here in the US/Europe (probably the US) about the Snarry pic (MsScribe?) and reported it, and several other posts/images. The Russian blog system, while under the umbrella of LJ isn't really RUN by LJ. It's run by SUP. SUP is extremely controversial in Russia for a multiplicity of reasons: 1) the internet is heavily monitored by the state in Russia as are MOST news sources like TV, radio, papers, and SUP isn't a part of the state controlled internet, 2) LJ pretty much = internet in Russia, which is under US laws, right? and 3) SUP is headed by Anton Nosik, a Jew and Israeli. And a large portion of Russians don't like Jews. Or Israelis. There has been a tremendous upsurge of Neo-Nazism in the former USSR. The Kremlin is anti-freedom of speech. The Russian LJers were TERRIFIED (and rightly so) that LJ would be selling their personal info to the Kremlin/KGB. LJ assured them that would never happen. (They have stuck to that promise. Because they're not really doing ANYTHING with the Russian LJs)

Anton Nosik (his livejournal for those that speak Russian is dolboeb which actually translates into dick head!) is anti-Kremlin, anti-censorship. Again, he's also a very controversial guy - he built up underground newspapers advocating freedom of speech, access to the internet, etc, from scratch. He's very Russian. He's not some MIT nerd that created something "cool." He's not a highly educated, smooth operator. As evidenced by his crappy statement to the press about the video: "People post what they feel must be posted, and write what they feel must be written. There is a list of things that LiveJournal users agree not to do, but posting pictures of an execution is not on the list. There is a clause forbidding comments that incite ethnic hatred, but whether it applies to this particular video is an open question."

Clearly a video that shows a live execution-style murder, a live HATE CRIME murder should be understood that it's WRONG. Disgusting. Unacceptable. I think we can all agree to that. Please also know that the world's journalists are pushing for all videos/information to be allowed to be posted as a way to show what is happening in the world (multiple orgs on line - that is just one example.) Can we sit in our safe houses and say one is fine and the other is not? Sure we can. And we can crank the AC up and go to the supermarket and etc. etc. But how many of you knew that Neo-Nazism is on the upsurge in Russia? How many of you knew that 7 of these types of killings A DAY are happening in Russia? You (and I) do now. Just like how we found out about the Taliban's public executions - by leaked videos online that hit the news media.

LJ has handed the reins of the internet over to SUP - they announced to Russian users back in October that this would happen. Russian bloggers were very upset by it; they want the services/protection of LJ. But... it was a done deal. SUP has its own support and abuse team. You can imagine how efficient they are.

My stance is this (and I will NEVER tell anyone through guilt or other bullying how they should spend their fucking blogging time or dollars. You're a grown up. Do what you want.) execution videos are bad, mm'kay? I do not support hate crimes, mm'kay? If I stick around on LJ, that does not mean the terrorists win. I am not going to call the other blogging sites Safe Zones. *cough* The video was ORIGINALLY hosted by a service like YouTube and embedded in the dude's LJ. Where's the outcry that YouTube/etc. is implicit with hate crimes and murder? LJ didn't (and maybe STILL doesn't) KNOW about the video. Hell, most of YOU didn't know about it. And we bloggers know events faster than the admins at LJ, you can bet your sweet patootie on that one. Also, 6A just launched their largest/most important (to them) software the day the video came out, MoveableType 4. They're probably all on red alert for that rollout/potential bugs/etc. You know: paying attention to where the money is coming in, because that's how they think.

LJ is trying in their corporate way to allow fandom some level of what we've been doing. Just because ponderosa's pics were pulled, her journal banned doesn't mean that LJ hates teh ghey and LOVES the hate and murder. That is beyond a jump to conclusions, that is a freaking Evil Knievel leap across the Grand Canyon, imo. Because three years ago, when that blogger from Alaska allegedly had her mother killed and took part in some of it - then came home and blogged about having killed her, that didn't make LJ complicit with murder THEN either. In fact, her blog was used in court as evidence. She was acquitted, actually.

Here are some links for reading so you can draw your own conclusions (just make sure your conclusions are of age, ahaha.)
There will be NO angry yelling/finger pointing allowed in this post. If you want to have a calm, rational discussion about any of this, yes please! (And much love to romanyg for originally bringing this to light.)
crossposted to IJ, GJ

[ETA: Sat. night]

[ETA Sun. AM]:


( 66 comments — Leave a comment )
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Aug. 18th, 2007 03:53 pm (UTC)
*shakes head*

I'm leaving for vacation for 6 days tomorrow.. and I'm kind of afraid as to how much stuff is going to happen while I'm away. I've got a bad feeling about all of this.
Aug. 18th, 2007 04:50 pm (UTC)
I wouldn't worry too much about it - I just saw multiple posts on my flists about this, and felt the need to address my opinion.

Have a LOVELY vacation - I'm fairly certain LJ will still be here when you get back. ;)
Aug. 18th, 2007 04:01 pm (UTC)

No one's saying that it wasn't horrible. It god damn is. But just because there's anger at LJ over something else means that they are somehow culpable here. They aren't. It sucks, but they aren't.
Aug. 18th, 2007 04:51 pm (UTC)
You know who we should be angry/appalled/furious at? THE GUY THAT MURDERED TWO PEOPLE. O_O

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Aug. 18th, 2007 04:05 pm (UTC)
I appreciate the information. Thanks for doing the research.

Aug. 18th, 2007 04:52 pm (UTC)
*SQUISH* You bet. Also, I have a fabulous restaurant for us to eat at when you come.

...bring stretchy-waist pants. :D
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Aug. 18th, 2007 04:17 pm (UTC)
Hmmm. I'm ambivalent on the good/bad of posting such videos. I think it's vitally important that people know exactly what's going on in the world, and not just what the government wants them to know. That includes the ugly stuff as well as the beautiful stuff, you know?
Aug. 18th, 2007 04:54 pm (UTC)
Well, to be honest, I'm not a fan AT ALL of those sorts of videos, either. I refuse to watch anything that shows actual people being harmed, be it "Jackass" or a news clipping on CNN or slowing down and peering at a wreck on the side of the road.

I'm like you: I want to know what's going on so I can take action. I don't necessarily want to SEE it.

*hugs you*
Aug. 18th, 2007 04:18 pm (UTC)
Thank you so much for your research and take on this. I found the story horrifying but holy fuck does this have Nothing To Do With Potter Porn.
Aug. 18th, 2007 04:55 pm (UTC)

Yeah - these two situations aren't related, from my viewpoint. If I find more links about this - they seem to have stopped coming out of Russia - I'll add them here. Thanks for reading. (and not crucifying me)
Aug. 18th, 2007 04:22 pm (UTC)
Yes, yes, and more yes. When I first saw this last night, I was wondering about the frothing at the mouth I remember when LJ turned over Russian operations to SUP. I also remember the huuuuuuuge outcry when that happened (It made the current wanks very, very small...) I couldn't read Russian, but there were quite a few Russians writing English posts to explain to other LJers their stance. I read quite a few of those and found them educational and enlightening.

It's scary how this "social network" of ours may be a lifeline to people in countries where the state controls the horizontal and the verticle and you have to work around state-run firewalls to get to the outside world.

As for posting execution videos online....as a human being I'm all, "Errrrrr...." And Christ knows I won't watch one.

As an ex-reporter, however, I also see the merit of pointing out they exist and that they're online. I can also see the merit of having people aware of them (or maybe *cringe* even seeing them). I think people do need to know that this shit is going on in the world. They also need to know why, who, and how. They also need to know that there's a shitload that the news doesn't tell you and that sometimes you have to go look for information (think of it as legal stealing) if you really need to be informed.

Frankly, I'm on dolbeob's side here. I think his reasoning was good. And much as I don't like the fact the video was public, that is hardly his fault. He didn't participate in the killing or in making the video. He didn't even upload it to a video service. He embedded the video for the sole purpose of bringing awareness to the very, very serious problem of lawlesness (from the mob and from hate groups) in Russia. What's moe, it's not even a new problem. Russia's been having these problems off-and-on for a long, long time now.
Aug. 18th, 2007 04:59 pm (UTC)
I had a STRONG SUSPICION that you would be on the side of journalism/real news/real reports. *loves*

We're talking about the KGB here, not the right to view images that are a turn on. Your line about our social networking being the ONLY lifeline for other countries is important: we have it VERY GOOD here and we have a tendency to put our own mindset/jumping off point on other people/cultures and they are struggling to get where we were with USENET back in the 80s!

The fact that all of the Russian media is reporting this from an "Anton Nosik, THE JEW, is helping people kill Caucasians and Asians" is something people need to take into account.

(And where's the outcry about Australia selling URANIUM to Putin? Oh, that's right. We're too busy focusing on other things and also NO ONE HERE KNOWS ABOUT IT.)

Oh, Liz. I heart you.
Aug. 18th, 2007 04:35 pm (UTC)
Thank you for providing some context for this video.
Aug. 18th, 2007 04:59 pm (UTC)
You bet. As I mentioned above, any new links I can find regarding this, I'll add to the post. We all need to be informed, you know?
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Aug. 18th, 2007 05:15 pm (UTC)
Thank you for this information.
Aug. 18th, 2007 05:46 pm (UTC)
Aug. 18th, 2007 05:16 pm (UTC)
Ignorance is bliss in my case. It's disturbing that these videos are out there... it's more disturbing that people want to watch it... but I just ...
don't... know what to say. I don't watch the news. I am just turning my head now.
Aug. 18th, 2007 05:47 pm (UTC)
HI TIFF. Yeah - you can just scroll on past this. It's a hotbed of argument for people around here - but it has no bearing on your use of LJ, etc.

How you doon? Come make me lunch I'm staaaaaahvin.
Aug. 18th, 2007 05:23 pm (UTC)
Exactly. That vid - which i didn't see - has nothing to do with Potter pr0n. Good lord. And frankly, as ugly and horrible as it is, i think those things need to see the light of day. People connect with an image more than the written word. Hearing about 'honor killings' is one thing - seeing some woman *stoned to death* and the crowds reactions all around is another and, to me, makes for a more visceral and long-lasting impression.

And anything people can do to get stuff like that stuck into the public conscious for more than ten minutes is *good*. Not nice, not pretty, not *comfortable*. But necessary.

It's like seeing the grinning baboons who're standing around under the lynched bodies of young black men. It hits you in the gut, it makes you sick, it makes that whole situation *so much more real*.

I don't think people need to watch and post and 'revel' in this stuff, but hiding it or not showing it is a disservice to the people who suffered and/or died.

IMO, of course. Thanks for all the links.
Aug. 18th, 2007 05:49 pm (UTC)
Right, right. People didn't understand what was REALLY going on in the South until Jet and Ebony posted the pictures of Emmitt Till. Do I want to view those pics? Absolutely not. Have I? Yes. And it made me understand so much more about the South's past.

And you're absolutely right: this has NOOOOOTHING to do with Potter pr0n. IMO. :D
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Aug. 18th, 2007 06:04 pm (UTC)
I was under the (apparently false) impression that LJ was aware that was being posted.

I agree that LJ can't possibly police the millions of blogs out there. Further more, in some ways it is important that people know that this is occurring and being filmed for entertainment purposes. I, however, choose not to watch.
Aug. 18th, 2007 06:44 pm (UTC)
I have yet to find anything that shows that the SF division has heard/knows anything about this. All of the news (with the one exception of a blurb on NPR yesterday afternoon) is coming out of Russia. If anyone knows a link showing otherwise, I would love to be able to post it.

I agree that people need to know this is happening. I certainly didn't know about the Neo-Nazi movement there before all of this came to light. And I, too, do not want to watch.
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Aug. 18th, 2007 06:46 pm (UTC)
I think I read somewhere that over one million of LJ's 13 million journals are Russian/Ukranian. And from a lot of the reports I read on Radio Free Europe, LJ is one of the ONLY ways for those people to have any non-Kremlin internet access/information. That's a pretty huge deal that I think most of us don't know about. Can you imagine LJ being the only way you know/can communicate with the world?

<3 <3 <3
Aug. 18th, 2007 08:09 pm (UTC)
Ok, draw me a diagram because I do not understand how all your (well researched, certainly) new information changes anything?

LJ hosted a video of an execution.

LJ knew they hosted this, at least after it was done.

Someone from LJ (yes, a poor bastard who is apparently hated in russia- I can do a whole blog on Russian Jewry, some other time) commented on it not being outside their TOS.

It was taken down NOT by LJ.

LJ did not suspend or delete these people's journals.

LJ continues to suspend journals of fandom.

What am I missing that makes me incorrect in my assumption that LJ is more interested in deleting drawings than actual crimes?
Aug. 18th, 2007 08:21 pm (UTC)
As I mentioned above, SUP isn't the same as Livejournal (which really, is Six Apart.) 6A is who is in control of policy changes, the ToS, enforcement of the ToS, and so on.

SUP is the supervisor of Russian blogs, services them and their accounts. LJ has pretty much abandoned Russian LJs after sending Brad out last October to get their servers set up. (The servers that are SUPs.)

6A isn't monitoring/making statements, etc. about Russian LJs, because it essentially Isn't Their Concern. It's SUPs.

SUP removed the guy's LJ, the video was taken down - it's not clear if SUP took the video down or the FSB (KGB) did - and I've not seen anything from 6A or Livejournal (or their employees that comment/run lj_biz, etc.) that they're even AWARE of this incident. Most of us in the US and UK didn't know about it until yesterday or today. Everything was pulled on Russia's end on the 12th, and hardly any information leaked out of Russia, because of the nature of that country's govt.

SUP deleted the guy's journal by the 14th.

My point is that it's not fair to say that LJ doesn't care about actual crimes or this particular incident, and only potentially obscene drawings are their concern. I suspect strongly that they had NO IDEA about the video.

If I'm wrong on this, mea culpa.
Aug. 18th, 2007 08:45 pm (UTC)
Whoa. I hadn't even heard about this till this post. Glad I'm finding out once you've done all this research - thanks for keeping us informed.
Aug. 18th, 2007 08:48 pm (UTC)
You bet! I'm still trying to get new information. It looks like it's being suppressed in Russia, truthfully. No info since the 15th.
Aug. 18th, 2007 09:09 pm (UTC)
Thanks for all the info and links. I'm afraid so far I haven't done any research on my own on this. I've just been going by hearsay.

I'd heard that the vid was post in the context of lauding its contents and supporting it. I am actually for the accessibility of even the most gruesome and horrible of real events in the interest of increasing awareness, but context matters. It does make a difference where it is posted, how it is accessed, etc. That is, I have a problem with YouTube, too, if this video was indeed posted in the context I mentioned above, and if since finding out about it the company hasn't taken action against who posted it.

I'd also heard that LJ might know about it, and I assume they had as much authority over that user as they do over me. Sounds like what you're saying is that's not true about Russain LJs, in which case my opinions toward LJ regarding this matter are slightly different.

At the very least, I don't think this issue has anything to do with porn, either. It upsets me that people could POSSIBLY confuse the two.
Aug. 18th, 2007 10:24 pm (UTC)
Yes, I believe the original post was in exaltation of events. (Which is disgusting to me.) The official police report says the OP posted it in email, and it made its way to LJ quickly. I do know that part of the wildfire part of it spreading all over Russian blogs was mostly in part of people denouncing it, which is a strike in the "go, humanity!" column.

I think the main point is being lost on people (I'm not directing this at you, btw.) and it's that the person that committed the reprehensible acts is the entity that our rage should be focused on, and the people that supported him in mindset are the ones that we should be outraged.

I'm of the opinion that LJ - because of their distancing themselves from Russian LJs in support and service - are not IN FAVOR of this act. <-- that is the opinion I've seen everywhere, that they were.
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( 66 comments — Leave a comment )


Are You Actually

Reading this? I'm just curious. Because that's really detail-oriented of you. Feel free to stop reading. But you can see that there's more here, so are you going to keep reading? Really? That's pretty dedicated. I'm impressed. No, really. I'm not being sarcastic, why do you get like that? See, this is the problem I have with your mother - yes. YES. I'm going there. It's time we put all of our cards on the table.

I love you, why are you doing this? After all we've been through? You don't have to be like this. You know, still reading. You could be baking a pie. And then sharing it with me.

Time Wot It Is

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