Tuesday, January 08, 2019

Financial censorship has been a creeping problem for several years, to throw up on Patreon



Electronic Frontier Foundation has noted that financial censorship from payment processors is not new. Paypal blocked a couple of e-book sites for allowing books that went over the line with some sexually explicit material, including bestiality and underage.  Rainey Reitman had noted this back in 2012. 

Payment processors are not in a position to judge the artistic relevance of edgy material.  But social justice warriors may claim that the material encourages rape or male domination or quasi-fascist personal values.   In recent years, payment processors have been caught in a tug of war between tribalists on both extreme Left and Right claiming grievances, especially since Trump's election. 

Remember, sometimes payment processors threaten platforms with complete denial of access if they don't remove just one targeted controversial content provider, and this has not been transparent.  
  

I have to be careful about this with some materials in spots in my upcoming novel.
EFF also notes that SOPA would have allowed copyright claims to disable people’s sources of income with no due process.  In retrospect, Jack Conte's idea of "manifest observable behavior" (which would apply ti Trump!) seems to have been a phrase to duck the crossfire hitting his company.  And Conte is a musician, an artist himself (look on Wikipedia). 
  
The same is true of Article 13 now proposed for the EU.
  
Amazon had been criticized by not banning white supremacist products, but now is reported to stop selling some rugs with images of Muhammad on them because the concept is offensive to some Muslims.  I would be concerned if banning of some products, especially books or films, were stopped over complaints from special groups.

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