When Social-Media Blocking Goes Political

I’ve talked about free speech often in the past. I even said, quite recently and quite angrily, that getting blocked on social media is not a violation of your free speech.

However… it would appear that some Twitter users have found an exception… and I’m not sure I can think up an argument against this…

President Donald Trump may be the nation’s tweeter-in-chief, but some Twitter users say he’s violating the First Amendment by blocking people from his feed after they posted scornful comments.

Lawyers for two Twitter users sent the White House a letter Tuesday demanding they be un-blocked from the Republican president’s @realDonaldTrump account.

“The viewpoint-based blocking of our clients is unconstitutional,” wrote attorneys at the Knight First Amendment Institute at Columbia University in New York.

The White House didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

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Twitter Sues Agent Orange

No one is safe from being sued.

From Variety

Twitter has sued the Trump administration over attempts of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to unmask the identity of users behind an account critical of the government. The account in question, @ALT_USCIS, is one of several alt-government accounts which were launched after the new administration took office and proceeded to silence some official Twitter government accounts.

The lawsuit, filed in the Northern District of California, alleges that the DHS tried to use a “limited-purpose investigatory tool” to find out who is behind the account in question, which has been critical of the immigration policy of the current administration. “The rights of free speech afforded to Twitter’s users and Twitter itself under the U.S. Constitution include a right to disseminate such anonymous or pseudonymous free speech,” the lawsuit argues.

The lawsuit goes on to argue that many of these alt-government accounts, including @ALT_USCIS claim to be run by government workers, in this case employees of the U.S. Customs and Immigration Services. These users have taken to Twitter to voice their dissent with official government policies.

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3 Terrifying Executive Orders and a Twitter Thread from Netta About It

This is getting even worse…

Story from ABC…

And below the fold, I’m just going to let Netta speak, instead of giving my own commentary…

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Clinton Did Not Want to Assassinate Assange (Warning: Infuriating Twitter Convo and Rant)

This post is basically going to be a long Twitter conversation between myself and an asshole, along with interjections from me here. Please note that I cuss a lot here… also, this is not as long as it looks, because it’s basically a whole lot of tweets. So keep that in mind. You’ll move through it faster than you think…

Basic intro… I’ve got three posts now about WikiLeaks and their bullshit. Of course some people are angry at me for that…

*record scratch*

What? Hold up… *runs off to Snopes*

Oh… oh I see where that comes from… oh okay…

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Is WikiLeaks Being Run by 13-Year-Olds? Or Just Their Task Force Account?

The worst thing about all this is that I feel like I’m being forced to join a whole bunch of conservatives and people on Twitter blocked by the Block Bot to do this criticism, and it makes me feel dirty.

To sum up… a while back, as you may recall, WikiLeaks got in some trouble for doxxing people’s private lives. More recently (as of yesterday), WikiLeaks got angry because Obama’s administration decided to anonymously share some of the CIA’s report linking senior Russian officials, including Vladimir Putin, to the DNC email server hack.

You know, I remember a time when WikiLeaks was praised. Even those of us who always wanted Assange to face a court of law for the rape accusations leveled against him pretty much liked what WikiLeaks was doing. Maybe that’s because they became a thing during the Bush II Administration, and as a result, were leaking things that really hurt that administration. But it’s not like President Obama’s administration wasn’t hurt by leaking, both from WikiLeaks and from Edward Snowden. And I support all of that despite largely being a very big fan of President Obama (I cannot express in words how badly I’m going to miss him and the entire family; I have major issues with his foreign policy, but he was a great president, as far as I’m concerned).

But either I’ve been blind to what WikiLeaks really is up until now, or they just decided that now was the time to show their true colors… either that, or a 13-year-old is running their @WLTaskForce account…

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Hazel Scott; a Piano Prodigy (4 Videos Embedded in Post)

(It’s almost 8:00am. I finally managed to get tired enough around 4:45am to go to bed, only to wake up a couple hours later coughing due to an itchy throat caused by post-nasal drip. I’ve been like this for at least three weeks now… 🙁 )

There are 4 videos embedded here; 1 from Twitter and 3 from YouTube. Beware in case they autoplay.

So… I realize I missed this past Monday’s Great Guitar Solo, and I haven’t brought the Astronomy Picture of the Week series back. Hopefully I’ll be fixing that this coming Monday and Wednesday, respectively. In the meantime, I have another music post for y’all, this time highlighting the supremely talented Hazel Scott.

How I stumbled on her is actually really funny. I’m a huge fan of this podcast called The Read. So naturally, I follow the hosts, Kid Fury and Crissle, on Twitter. After the debacle that was Mariah Carey’s NYE performance, I was very very curious to see what they had to say. Sadly, they didn’t say anything. However, I did find a pretty funny tweet that Kid Fury had retweeted…

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