Feeds

Wales, O'Reilly censorship charter porked by blogosphere

'Dirty, but the pig likes it'

The essential guide to IT transformation

The Victorian blogging code mooted last week by Jimbo "Wiki" Wales and Tim 2.0'Reilly has been given short shrift by web users.

After threatening a set of rules to clamp down on rudeness last week, O'Reilly posted a first draft on Sunday.

The code would introduce "badges" to show how a site complies with the webby duo's take on freedom of speech, which includes a sinister move to "not say things online we wouldn't say in public". Several responses to the charter point out that such a policy would gag those living under despotic regimes, and corporate whistleblowers.

In his first post O'Reilly proclaimed: "Setting standards for acceptable behaviour in a forum you control is conducive to free speech, not damaging to it."

Peter, a commenter on O'Reilly's blog, said: "Reminds me of some of the things America has done at its worst. Commies. Terrorists. Anonymous commenters. This makes me angry." His is one of dozens of overwhelmingly negative responses to the self-appointed web manners duumvirate.

The initiative was dreamed up by the pair in the wake of the teacup storm over marketing wonk Kathy Sierra's no-show at a tech conference run by O'Reilly. She cited death threats from blog commenters.

Wales and O'Reilly would also make it unacceptable to include content or links to pages which:

- is being used to abuse, harass, stalk, or threaten others

- is libelous, knowingly false, ad-hominem, or misrepresents another person,

- infringes upon a copyright or trademark

- violates an obligation of confidentiality

- violates the privacy of others

Legally astute readers might note that there are already laws covering all these issues, whether real or online. The sixth and final commandment says: "We believe that feeding the trolls only encourages them - 'Never wrestle with a pig. You both get dirty, but the pig likes it.' Ignoring public attacks is often the best way to contain them."

Which, we guess, means The Reg breaks the code on a daily basis. Terribly sorry, m'luds. But didn't you acknowledge them by making your badges in the first place? How very meta. ®

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
Super Cali signs a kill-switch, campaigners say it's atrocious
Remote-death button bad news for crooks, protesters – and great news for hackers?
UK government accused of hiding TRUTH about Universal Credit fiasco
'Reset rating keeps secrets on one-dole-to-rule-them-all plan', say MPs
Caught red-handed: UK cops, PCSOs, specials behaving badly… on social media
No Mr Fuzz, don't ask a crime victim to be your pal on Facebook
e-Borders fiasco: Brits stung for £224m after US IT giant sues UK govt
Defeat to Raytheon branded 'catastrophic result'
Ex US cybersecurity czar guilty in child sex abuse website case
Health and Human Services IT security chief headed online to share vile images
Don't even THINK about copyright violation, says Indian state
Pre-emptive arrest for pirates in Karnataka
The police are WRONG: Watching YouTube videos is NOT illegal
And our man Corfield is pretty bloody cross about it
Felony charges? Harsh! Alleged Anon hackers plead guilty to misdemeanours
US judge questions harsh sentence sought by prosecutors
prev story

Whitepapers

A new approach to endpoint data protection
What is the best way to ensure comprehensive visibility, management, and control of information on both company-owned and employee-owned devices?
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Maximize storage efficiency across the enterprise
The HP StoreOnce backup solution offers highly flexible, centrally managed, and highly efficient data protection for any enterprise.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.