Ethics Quiz: Facebook’s War On Chiggers

chigger_bitesA Michael Z Williamson revealed that his post…

“I think we can be bigger than the niggardly diggers looking for reasons to be offended. Post with vigor about chiggers and riggers and giggers”

…was taken down by Facebook, which informed him that “We removed this from Facebook because it violates our Community Standards.”

In light of this, conservative blogger Charlie Martin wants to know how Facebook reconciles this action with its allowing multiple “kill George Zimmerman” pages, and even more pages with “nigger” in the title.

Your Ethics Alarms Quiz of the Day:

Is Facebook’s enforcement of its “community standards” fair, objective, and unbiased?

Well, obviously not.

Granted, Facebook can run its platform however it wants to. However, if it claims to be politically and ideologically neutral with consistent standards, it has an obligation to be so. It isn’t.

I’m not crazy about Williamson’s coy pseudo-racist satire: it’s right up, or rather down, there with other cutesy ways of saying socially disapproved words without really saying them. On the other hand, why is this use of “chigger” more offensive that the coded “n-word,” which is ubiquitous?

As I have written before, if Facebook is going to have content standards, it either has to come up with better ones, or get smarter people to administer them. Right now, its policies are incoherent, politically biased, irresponsible, and dumb.

_____________________________________________

Pointer: Instapundit

Source: The PJ Tatler

Graphic: Medicine Net

27 thoughts on “Ethics Quiz: Facebook’s War On Chiggers

  1. Well Jack, with all due respect, if you’ve ever been bitten by a chigger you’d know how much you want to whack them.

    I’d submit you should really re-look his whole post in terms of the obvious conflict between Chiggers and Whackers…

    • Well Jack, with all due respect, if you’ve ever been bitten by a chigger you’d know how much you want to whack them.

      Having grown up playing outside in Georgia I can agree with you 100%. In addition, the lifecycle shown above omits the areas the chigger prefers to gravitate to.

  2. Its not that they have a high or low tolerance for “hate”, they have UNLIMITED tolerance for “hate” that they happen to agree with, and zero for anything they don’t. Therefore, any hate directed from the left to the right, from women to men, from blacks to whites, from homosexuals to heterosexuals, etc… is perfectly fine. Its pretty standard across all large media outlets, and Facebook has shown itself to be depressingly conformist in this respect.

    • Uh…what? Facebook has refused to take down misogynist pages repeatedly. It looks like you’re making some false assumptions.

      • You make a good point, I WAY oversimplified: I realize that there IS a hierarchy to oppression and victimization, and this is based on several factors. A couple of thoughts on that:

        1) The object of the hatred may have conflicting oppressor / oppressed status’ that makes them a fair target. For example, A site bashing Sarah Palin or Herman Cain would pass muster, as their oppressor status (republican) outweighs their victimization status (black, female), at least in the minds of many people.

        2) Higher ranking oppressed groups may target lower ranking oppressed groups. If the group to which you arbitrarily belong “ranks” higher than another group, you *generally* get a pass (and I DO get to think in generalizations)… the Muslim oppression of women, jew-bashing, gay bashing, etc… is a good example. Muslims are considered to be a victimized religious minority AND an oppressed racial group, which trumps women’s (and just about everyone else’s) interests. Of course, if radical islamists were to target jewish lesbians, they might be in hot water. Unless, they themselves were gay, or black, or whatever.

        Its kind of like a poker game with fluid rules: The objects of the hatred may have done something to ditch their “creds”: Are they NRA members, perhaps? Are they the target of a higher ranking victim group? Perhaps if they converted to islam or became lesbians they could get the sites removed.

        Also consider that the site you reference may be an exception to the rule or perhaps Facebook is not a good example of what I’m talking about. Or, they simply haven’t gotten around to deleting it yet: I’m sure censorship is hard work, something is sure to slip between the cracks now and then. Bias does not equal diligence.

        • This all looks like your beliefs, not any kind of reality, especially not any kind of reality as applied to facebook, which seemed to be the point of your comment. Skeptic liberal females seem pretty high on the list of people who can’t be targetted based on your general guidelines, but facebook didn’t seem to care.

          There is also a pretty significant issue in what people call hate. For instance, calling out bigotry is not bigotry, but bigots don’t often see it that way. They may complain that their are “hate” sites against them, which are really criticisms of their hate.

          I’d agree that there is more tolerance for hate against people that are disliked than against those that are liked, and there are horrible examples of one off all over the place, but your unlimited tolerance and zero tolerance comments were extremely silly.

          • You can deny there is a hierarchy to oppression /victimization, but it is there nonetheless. Who had it worse in this country, the native americans or the polish? I remember a TON of polish jokes from a few decades ago.

            Aside from that, wouldn’t the hatred directed at Palin and Cain be considered sexist and racist? Almost every legit criticism directed at either of them could have been directed at Obama, and most criticism directed at Obama IS considered racist. I am making the observation that at least some people do not consider it so, due to the fact that they (Palin and Cain) have chosen to ditch their victim creds.

            In any case, my point regarding your original post is that the censors at Facebook, due to various attendant factors and prejudices, may not consider the affected site(s) to be sufficiently “worthy” of protection.

            Pursuant to above, another thought to consider is that perhaps the feminists are losing their victim cred *in general*, i.e. yesterday’s victim group isn’t necessarily today’s (See Polish, Irish, Chinese, etc…). Gays didn’t have victim status until relatively recently (perhaps since the 1970’s).

            • You can deny there is a hierarchy to oppression /victimization, but it is there nonetheless. Who had it worse in this country, the native americans or the polish? I remember a TON of polish jokes from a few decades ago.

              I didn’t deny that. Anybody know what’s with all the strawmen this week?

              I would say that creating a strict hierarchy is stupid, and that comparing victimization levels is a fool’s errand.

              Aside from that, wouldn’t the hatred directed at Palin and Cain be considered sexist and racist? Almost every legit criticism directed at either of them could have been directed at Obama, and most criticism directed at Obama IS considered racist. I am making the observation that at least some people do not consider it so, due to the fact that they (Palin and Cain) have chosen to ditch their victim creds.

              I gotta go piece by piece:

              Aside from that, wouldn’t the hatred directed at Palin and Cain be considered sexist and racist?

              Some of the hatred directed against Palin was sexist. Most of it wasn’t. Attacking Palin for getting trendy clothes: sexist. Attacking Palin for claiming to not be an elite when she acts like an elite: not sexist. I’ve noticed that most people complaining about sexism directed at Palin don’t understand the difference. The claims of sexism were greatly inflated. I don’t recall racist attacks on Cain, but I would be surprised if they didn’t exist. I do recall much substantial criticism of his horrible ideas.

              Almost every legit criticism directed at either of them could have been directed at Obama, and most criticism directed at Obama IS considered racist.

              Logic fail. X is directed at A. X could be directed at B. Y directed at B is racist. This says nothing about whether X is or is not racist.

              That aside, your premises are junk. Most criticism directed against Obama isn’t considered racist and the legit criticisms directed against Plain and Cain don’t tend to apply to Obama.

              I am making the observation that at least some people do not consider it so, due to the fact that they (Palin and Cain) have chosen to ditch their victim creds.

              I have no idea what “it so” refers to in this comment, but I can’t stop laughing at your statement that Palin has decided not to play a victim. That’s ridiculous. She still blames the media for violating her free speech rights.

              In any case, my point regarding your original post is that the censors at Facebook, due to various attendant factors and prejudices, may not consider the affected site(s) to be sufficiently “worthy” of protection.

              That’s a big backpedal off the “UNLIMITED tolerance for ‘hate'” vs “zero” tolerance for hate.

              Are you also backing off your list of downtrodden groups that get a free pass?

              Pursuant to above, another thought to consider is that perhaps the feminists are losing their victim cred *in general*, i.e. yesterday’s victim group isn’t necessarily today’s (See Polish, Irish, Chinese, etc…). Gays didn’t have victim status until relatively recently (perhaps since the 1970′s).

              Um…you’re the one who said “Therefore, any hate directed from … women to men … is perfectly fine.” You’re also the one that said that this tolerance was matched with oppression ranking…what you’re now calling victim cred.

              Even if your there is a ranking that matches up with what is and isn’t tolerated, you’re still stuck with having simply pulled one of the values out of your ass. A comment that this class has changed rankings doesn’t make your false statement about this class any truer.

              • OK, I dunno why you chose to get all hostile. Have I insulted you in some way? Project much? YOU were the one who chose to nit pick ME by shoving an exception to the rule in my face. I merely countered by saying that YES there might be exceptions to the rule in some cases and speculated as to why that might be. Yeesh, I APOLOGIZE for challenging your NARRATIVE and thinking OUT LOUD.

                You know what, you win: Facebook neglected to censor a couple of right wing “hate” pages so from that we can deduce they have absolutely NO political bias whatsoever. How silly of me to miss THAT big noogie! I figure if David Duke has a token black friend we can put him in the same category as MLK, right?

                You know what else, people have been known to fall out of airplanes and survive… I suggest you try it.

                • You made a completely ridiculous statement of fact and I called you on it. You took that statement even further, while also trying to weasel out of any responsibility for it (suggesting it might not apply to what you had said it applies to). I called you on those as well. You still haven’t given any evidence whatsoever for your statement. Yet, somehow, I’m the bad guy?

  3. On with the test: Now, there is an example of something that could be protested on Facebook on August 1, in concert with the Justice For Justin Carter re-quoting. What if thousands or millions of Facebook users posted, all on the same day, what Michael Z. Williamson posted which got censored? Does Facebook have Kill Al Sharpton pages?

  4. I’ve been a victim of both the FL No-See-Um and the FL chigger.
    They are both terrible in their own way, although, the chigger assault sent me to the dr. for meds.

    • Me too. Way to creepy. They wanted me to be friends with the twenty-something daughters (with their come hither pictures) of guys I went to HS with. Way too creepy.

      As a kid I was vicitmized by South Florida chiggers. Last year by the Arizona variety. Both miserable. Walking in or near tall weeds seems to be all it takes. No see ums in AZ just annoying. They don’t leave a lasting bite. Not even as bad as a mosquito.

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