This is a concept that appears to be a particularly difficult one for the binary thinkers of the world to grasp. As I explained in the Darkstream last night, there are three types of free speech:
As I have repeatedly explained, I support Public free speech, which is the form protected by the Constitution, reject Private free speech on the basis of private property, and observe that Platonic free speech does not, and has never, existed.
The problem that I see is that Gab is nobly attempting to set its policy on the basis of Platonic free speech, limited only by the law. However, this is setting them up for potential legal trouble, particularly since that policy does not permit them to remove libelous and defamatory speech.
Here is how Andrew Torba expressed their Neo-Platonic policy:
@Voxday, you are fortunate enough to choose who to publish and who can comment on your blog, but Gab is a completely different environment, a platform for free speech for all viewpoints. We do not agree when it comes to censorship. Gab will not be the judge of what is or is not libelous. If a competent court requires us to take down a post because it is deemed libelous, Gab will comply. Libel as we all know is not protected by the first amendment.
This means that Gab is knowingly complicit in publishing these false, malicious, and defamatory statements which I brought to their attention and requested their immediate removal.
Silverdawn · @GTKRWN
9 hours · edited
Everyone stay away from @voxday He is a faggot Talmudic half jew half Mexican Pedophile pretending to be White.
Fabius MaximusPRO · @Fabian_Nazism
I heard @voxday is a known pedophile who’s viewed more prepubescent boys online than viewers to his own site. Sad
Silverdawn · @GTKRWN
Why do you follow a pedophile? are you a pedophile too?
AlphaJedPRO · @AlphaJed
@voxday the libel is still up
But that’s not the real problem. The real problem is that unless the identity of the individuals is already known, it is going to be necessary to sue Gab in order to force it to disclose their identity so that they can be served for the libel case that Gab requires in order to take down a post. Which is something I tend to doubt is an aspect of their policy that has been entirely thought through. Fortunately, I have other means of identifying anonymous commenters. VFM, you know what to do.
Regardless, this is something that the Legal Legion of Evil is going to have to discuss before I make any decisions, so I’ll be getting in touch with all of you to set up a group meeting later this week. This isn’t the only matter we have to discuss, but it is the most important one at the moment. As a Gab supporter, I certainly don’t wish to harm Gab in any way; this sort of situation is precisely why I previously advised Andrew to adopt a ban-on-sight policy towards known trolls and troublemakers.
But sometimes people, particularly idealists, need to learn these things for themselves.