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Aug. 22nd, 2007

I'm listening to my radio station which is currently hosting its annual roof-sit at McDonald's to collect change for the support of children who experience abuse and neglect. One girl told a story of how she and her younger sister had been playing in the bathtub. The older girl was touching her sister's privates. The mother came in, saw what her older child was doing, and panicked. After calling a counselor, she asked her daughter what had given her the idea to do such a thing, and the girl answered that her father did it to her all the time. The mother became angry and soon a restraint order was put on the father and the girl took regular visits to the counselor. She (the girl) was sad that she couldn't see her father anymore, but she was also glad because he couldn't do those things to her anymore.
It makes me realize that despite the various little problems challenges that arise every now and then, I really do have a great life.


Aug. 19th, 2007

Yay, I made my second icon tutorial!


Jul. 12th, 2007

Whee, I made my first icon tutorial! (Okay, so it has more to do with light textures than icons, but...hey, whatever!)
Adobe Photoshop, you don't know how much I love you.


Jul. 10th, 2007

If you are (or have ever been) a fan of the Harry Potter books and would like the series to continue, then sign the petition today!

Awesomeness...fandom_counts is getting ready to reach its 34,000th-member mark...:-D.

I'm making my first community pimp.
Let's show 'em how many of us there really are.
Join fandom_counts.
Don't let the numbers slow down!

Making amends...Collapse )
1)      Over the last couple of days we have suspended (not deleted) about 500 journals out of many millions on LJ.
2)      It is now clear that in an unfortunate number of cases these journals were suspended for easily correctable problems in their profiles that would then allow them to be reinstated and that this was not communicated to the journal or community owners at all.
3)      Further, because of miscommunication these journals were taken down before review could be completed to avoid mistakes.
How we are fixing it.
1)      Over the next few hours we will review the journals that were taken down and wherever appropriate we will restore these journals or communities before 12 noon PDT. Sorry it will take that long but we do not want to reinstate true and clear violators of community policy.
2)      In some cases Journals that were restored will be asked to clarify their profiles to avoid the appearance that they are soliciting or encouraging illegal activities.
3)      Journals that we do not restore will be journals that we are fairly sure are actually intended to encourage activities that put minors at risk but we will review them if requested by their owner to be certain that we did not make a mistake.
4)      In cases that we ask owners to clarify their profiles and they fail to do so within 7 days we will suspend their journals again.
So what were we trying to do when we messed up so badly?
As most of you know, LJ has a zero tolerance policy toward content that supports child abuse, pedophilia, or sexual violence. In implementation of this zero tolerance policy there were two issues that made it hard to apply these policies consistently;
Issue one was profiles. 
There were a number of profiles that expressed “interest” in activities that most of us would agree put children at risk, notably pedophilia and child rape. Both in the instructions for profiles and in other places on the site we make it clear that interests listed should be evaluated within the context of “I like x”, “I’m in favor of x” or “I support x”.   As many profiles are the only public part of a private journal and profiles serve partly as an advertisement for people of like interests, it is important that the content of a profile can be evaluated as if it stands alone. If your profile were to express interest in pedophilia with no other content that describes this interest as in helping survivors or protecting children from it we must read the profile as “I like or I support or I’m in favor of it.” For this reason we suspended profiles that meet this criteria.
Another issue we needed to deal with was journals that used a thin veneer of fictional or academic interest in events and storylines that include child rape, pedophilia, and similar themes in order to actually promote these activities. While there are stories, essays, and discussions that include discussion of these issues in an effort to understand and prevent them, others use a pretext to promote these activities. It’s often very hard to tell the difference. As such, we have suspended reported journals that do not clearly and substantially object to these activities while at the same time portraying them.
We recently received a complaint from outside the community about a number of journals. When we receive such complaints it is our obligation to look into them but it is our standards not theirs that we use to make decisions about the complaints. The source of this complaint was not the source of the problem we created.
We never intended this policy to cause the removal of journals that were have perfectly valid discussions about literature, law or culture. We never intended the policies to take down journals or communities clearly opposed to illegal activities but clearly we did.  We love our members of fandom and respect their role in our community.  We made a mistake and now we are going to try to fix it.
That is it. We have always been strong supporters of free speech and at the same time we believe deeply that children deserve special protections as well as the victims of violence and hate. We tried to implement a policy that walk that line and we did it poorly, we are all sorry. One could say that no matter what we did we would either be accused of opposing free speech or endangering children but I am sure we should and could have done this much better. I hope you can forgive us and we can regain your trust.
Barak Berkowitz
Chairman and CEO Six Apart

I know some (if not many) people may not agree with what I'm about to say, but...you go, LiveJournal!
Well, that's the end of that drama.
Over and out.


May. 30th, 2007

Yay, I wrote something that actually contains essence toward the LiveJournal Strikethrough...it's a definite improvement from what I had started writing at three o'clock this morning.

This whole fiasco is ludicrous.

Why isn't the opposing group going after websites like MySpace? Or instant messaging services (particularly Yahoo! Instant Messenger)? LiveJournal is one of the few websites that I can visit and do what I want without feeling uncomfortable. In my opinion, MySpace is a joke when it comes to security. Sure, people can set their pages to "private", but I've heard more stories on the news concerning Internet safety problems which center around MySpace than I ever will stories that focus on LiveJournal.

My school district has banned MySpace completely. If kids figure out how to get past the firewalls that have been set up, the district authorities will send them E-mail notifications, warning them not to visit the site again. If the kids ignore the messages and keep trying to visit the website, they have the potential to face in-school suspensions. When it comes to the school district and their policies concerning LiveJournal, however, the students are free to do whatever they please.

My point? The opposing group should go after websites that have become infamous icons on the news and leave the ones that haven't caused any real problems at peace.

I know this event hasn't affected me directly, but for some reason I'm obsessed with it....


I think some of the LiveJournal Strikethrough frenzy has begun to die down...either that or I'm too tired to look up any more news.
It was fun staying up past three in the morning in the darkness of my room with no one but the cat to keep me company, but now I definitely need some sleep....
Okay...nighty-night, all.


May. 30th, 2007