Strikethrough and Boldthrough

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Event
Event: Strikethrough 2007
Name(s): Livejournal
Date(s): May 29, 2007
Type: meta
Fandom: Multifandom
URL: Well we really screwed this one up...; Archive
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Contents

LJers woke up on Tuesday, May 29, 2007 to find their flists were showing a larger number of strikethrough'ed (example: names than usual. A suspended or deleted journal on LiveJournal was shown with a line through the name, hence the title assigned to the event -- an example: Pornish Pixies ).

It turned out that LiveJournal had suspended over 500 journals based on their interest lists. Interests included but were not limited to: child pornography, incest, pedophilia, rape [1].

Among the deleted ljs included RPG journals, book discussion groups [2], rape survivor groups, and fannish groups, including the large and popular Harry Potter Fan Fiction community Pornish Pixies, which was an age-restricted community for adult HP fan fiction.

A list of the directly-affected fan journals are here: "Permanent Suspensions", or Strikethrough2007; Archive.

Boldthrough followed a few months after Strikethrough and involved many of the same issues, particularly LJ/6A suspending more journals and trying to take down fannish content.

The events of Boldthrough were named so because, due to a change in code by LJ/6A, suspended accounts began appearing in bold rather than with a strike through the name.

A fan in 2007 commented:
Dear LJ, Thanks for the good times, but I’m seriously considering saying goodbye to you. Yes, even with some seven or eight months left on my PAID ACCOUNT. I have always felt safe here... right up until some no-name, non-government-supported, vigilante group tried to make it even “safer”. I don’t feel that sense of safety and homeliness any more. Now I feel as though I should watch what I say; that I should be looking over my shoulder nervously every time I write a post or a comment. I’ve even removed some of my interests out of paranoia. Oh, I added one, too: free speech. I’m so sorry you felt pressured into doing what you’ve done and I’m sorry you made mistakes in doing that. I’m sorry that an organisation with an essentially admirable aim has potentially alienated some thirteen million people across the globe. I’m sorry that I just made a GJ account in case this all gets out of hand. Communicate, LJ. Tell us what’s going on. Isn’t that what your news account is for? Yours in frustration, Katie. [3]
A fan in 2015 commented:
I remember the general feeling of panic and outrage (sometimes at the same time) where people felt like they were being treated like criminals and that the complete lack of understanding from LJ staff made some feel unwelcome (hence moves to other platforms). I remember some people stipulating that LJ/6A didn't think fandom had big enough presence on LJ to treat us seriously (which is how fandom counts started). It was basically the beginning of the end, because once we stopped feeling safe in our spaces, we looked for other places. Once Dreamwidth entered beta, the feature enabling crossposting to LJ was their biggest selling point that made many people move to DW. [4]

Fan Discussion Topics Generated by Strikethrough and Boldthrough

  • fanworks and journals were deleted without warning
  • fannish entitlement
  • fans being lumped in with pedophiles and lumped in with criminals
  • LiveJournal's rules were non-existent and/or unclear and/or arbitrary
  • being treated rudely or dismissively by LiveJournal staff
  • fan trust issues
  • not feeling safe in fan spaces
  • the whole thing was a witch hunt
  • should fandom self-police and "write responsibly"?
  • issues with censorship and free speech
  • feeling like an unwanted customer, feeling tricked into buying permanent accounts
  • fear of a fannish diaspora to other platforms, and a loss of community
  • discussions about content backups and archiving: don't put all your eggs in one basket
  • a great showdown with TPTB
  • exposure of fandom to pedophiles
  • is fandom is too porny?
  • LiveJournal is a business and can do whatever it likes
  • fannish dramatics and tempests in a teapots
  • LiveJournal is not the center of fandom, and fandom is not the center of the world

Some Context

Other major conversations and proposals were happening that spring regarding fanfiction and control. Some of them were:

"Warriors for Innocence"

"Warriors for Innocence" was the right-wing, conservative Christian group that was reportedly behind the complaints that led to Strikethrough.

One fan wrote: "I understand why I'm driven to expose how quickly Six Apart rolled over for WfI. I lost no trust in Six Apart because of the purge; I had none to begin with. I have always known what Six Apart would do when offered a choice between advertising dollars and fandom. What worried me was the discovery that a ready-made Hammer of God was handy for anyone who cared to wield it." [6]

See Warriors for Innocence for more.

LiveJournal's Initial Responses

Livejournal News was almost immediately checked for an explanatory update, but it remained stubbornly empty. The then-most recent post, dated May 24, 2007 about a different subject, was inundated with questions.

Over the next few days, Boing Boing [7] CNET[8], and other online news outlets and blogs picked up the story, including the site Meta Filter, where on May 30, 2007, SixApart employee Anildash decided to make the first public statement regarding Strikethrough.

Ataniell93, whose RPG journals were targeted, emailed LJ Support to find out why her LJ had been deleted. In her LJ, she quoted the following LiveJournal response:
Material which can be interpreted as expressing interest in, soliciting, or encouraging illegal activity places LiveJournal at considerable legal risk. When journals that contain such material are reported to us, we must suspend them. Because LiveJournal's interests list serves as a search function, and because listing an interest enables other people also interested in a similar topic to gather and/or congregate, we have been advised that listing an interest in an illegal activity must be viewed as using LiveJournal to solicit that illegal activity. [9]

Anildash Speaks on Metafilter

While Livejournal News continued its relentless silence, MetaFilter patrons were carrying out a lively discussion on the events. Unexpectedly, Anildash joined the conversation:
Hey, look, it's somebody that actually knows what happened! As oppsed to, say, CNET. Mind if I speak?

We screwed up in this way: We changed a policy without telling people in advance. Then we had some inaccurate communications about it. And we compounded it by catching some innocent bystanders. I'm sorry we did, and I'm sorry we've made that first mistake before and, unbelievably, did it again. But here we are.

Now then, a lot of the pressure and (often inaccurate) press on this has come from people outside LJ, trying to use as much leverage as possible to force us into either "Six Apart hates free speech!" or "Six Apart hates children!" Believe me, when you're on an externally-imposed deadline trying to coordinate a large group of volunteers to enforce a policy that's rapidly evolving, mistakes can and will happen.

The goal here was to get journals with profiles that listed "child rape" or "pedophilia" as their interests to know they're not welcome on LJ. Naturally, the list of sites submitted by groups like WFI likely included some friendly fire, including legitimate communities for abuse survivors, or, yes fandom. And we accidentally suspended some of those communities, but their data is not gone and will be restored once we get our shit together.

The total number of communities and journals affected is about 500 out of 13 million registered accounts. I'm not saying that to diminish the seriousness of the issue, but to give you some perspective. That may have been lost in translation at CNET between the person who actually talked to someone at our company and the other person who wrote the really slanted story.

Listen, we know and love that one of our core communities is the plethora of fen that flourish on LJ. Hell, half of our volunteers and team members actively participate in fandom. We're not going to every deliberately do anything to endanger that. But we do make human mistakes from time to time, especially when we're under the gun to Do Something To Protect The Children.

As a side note, have any of you ever seen Dateline's To Catch a Predator? (Yes, you'd have to have a TV to know about it.) It's one of the most popular "news" segments, constantly saying how Teh Internets Is Full Of Predators. And the audience for that show doesn't distinguish between MeFi and a fan journal and a truly depraved individual's personal blog. We can, and do (except when we screw up), but the environment we're working in is waiting to throw MeFi onto the fire, too, and say "look, this is a blog -- the things that pedophiles use!

[snipped]

To those who brought up my personal comment in a metatalk thread about a color preference for a CSS file while discussing the execution of a policy decision at my employer? [10] You're ridiculous. Don't turn this site into that kind of place, or you'll end up regretting when people link your personal Ask MetaFilter questions to the things your company does. [11]

Rumor Confirmation

Liz Marcs contacted Warriors for Innocence and carried on a correspondence with them. [12]

Many fans' reactions on Livejournal reaction were dramatic. Fandomtossed on Greatestjournal was formed, along with Fandom Counts and Fandom Pays on Livejournal. From May 29, 2007 - May 31, 2007, in reaction to continued silence from Six Apart and later to Barak Berkowitz's off-livejournal comments, livejournal members relentlessly commented to all open Livejournal News entries available asking for information. Two entries were maxxed out almost immediately.

Also see: Further Reading: Official LiveJournal Posts.

SixApart Speaks

On May 31, 2007, Barak Berkowitz posted a response that was partial explanation, partial retraction, and partial apology [13]. Initial reaction was cynically mixed. The post topped maximum comments within twenty-four hours.

Twelve hours later, Barak Berkowitz posted a second statement partially restoring some deleted journals [14]

Also see: Further Reading: Official LiveJournal Posts.

Then Came Boldthrough

On August, 3rd, LiveJournal suspended fan artist ponderosa121, a fan popular in the Supernatural fandom for their Wincest fanart, for violation of their policy. The suspension referring explicitly to a Harry/Snape pic posted in the recently un-suspended community pornish_pixies. A fan named user elaboration was also suspended for a depiction of the Weasley twins in a sexual situation. Both accounts were deleted without warning.

An except from a letter sent to a fan:
The standard for artistic merit is not whether a work simply has technical merit; it is whether there is serious artistic value that offsets the sexual nature of the content. A group consisting of members of LiveJournal's Abuse Prevention Team, LiveJournal employees, and Six Apart staff reviewed the content that was reported to us. This group decides whether material potentially in violation of this policy warrants consideration for serious artistic value. In this case, they clearly did not see serious artistic value in content that simply displayed graphic sexual acts involving minors. [15]

At that point, LiveJournal hadn't worked out their policy [16], making it difficult for them to answer confused user questions as to what was allowed and what not.

Things were escalated by a number of unofficial public posts which some fans felt were rude and mocking to fandom: examples: LJ Staffer Abe Hasan [17], vice president Anil Dash [18] and former LJ owner and president Brad Fitzpatrick who resigned, and called the art in question "child porn" in a rather insensitive goodbye to his former customers. [19]

On August, 13, 2007, over 10 days after the suspension of the LJ users, LJ made a public post to lj-biz in which they declared their changed policy, stating that:
... a policy document will be linked from each page (what with report abuse buttons, sponsored Ads AND policy links, those LJ pages sure will be cluttered in the near future) b) the policy now makes a distinction between photographic and non-photographic art - in case of non-photographic art (the questionable fan art is such) they will adopt a two-strike policy, meaning the user will only be deleted after reoffending or refusing to delete the offending content.

The Aftermath

Over the course of "Stikethrough" and "Boldthrough," most of the journals, including pornish_pixies, were returned to active status. However, the conflicting information offered by staff members, and what was perceived as a condescending and dismissive attitude, combined with a lack of apology or promise to avoid such actions in the future, inspired many LJers to started hosting their fic at other online journals such as JournalFen, GreatestJournal, InsaneJournal, and at off-site on web-sites or other blogsites. There was a fannish discussion about how to to back up Livejournal accounts to these sites, and how to cross-post. There was much discussion over whether certain fandoms should exit en masse to one site, rather than fragment the fandom.

After the events of 2007, fandom began to realize that movement away from LJ was inevitable. The outrage over Strikethrough directly contributed to the creation of the fan-run journal platform Dreamwidth and the fan-run fanfiction archive ArchiveOfOurOwn.org. LiveJournal user cellia recalls, “Strikethrough confirmed in my mind that I'll never give LJ any money, that I should back everything up regularly, and that one day I would get a Dreamwidth account.” “We are sitting quietly by the fireside, creating piles and piles of content around us, and other people... are going to end up creating the front doors that new fanfic writers walk through, unless we stand up and build our OWN front door,” popular LiveJournaler astolat insisted just two weeks before Strikethrough happened. [20]

Strikethrough/Boldthrough in the Bigger Picture: Some Analysis by Fans

Some fans wrote of these incidents in light of bigger issues: the fact that they felt LiveJournal was shrinking.

  • BoldThrough: User Loss for LiveJournal: A meta analysis with stats!; Archive for page one; page two; Archive for page two, post by partly bouncy at Fanthropology ("Purpose: One of the assumptions with in some of the discussion over BoldThrough from people condemning LiveJournal's decision to ban two users over fan art and the subsequent fall out regarding how LiveJournal handled that decision is that it will lead to a loss of LiveJournal users, to the extent that it may cause LiveJournal monetary losses. The claim was also made that LiveJournal users who were on LiveJournal before the sale to Six Apart were more likely to leave and that LiveJournal wanted to get rid of this group. The claim was also made that paid users were the ones most likely to leave, taking their money with them. This sort of begs the question, "Is this true? Has the fall out been that large? Have the actions of LiveJournal created a situation where people will and actually are leaving? Are those groups leaving in higher numbers?" The purpose of this piece of meta is to try to answer this question.") (August 11, 2007)
  • The demise of a social media platform: Tracking LiveJournal's decline; Archive, post by Aja Romano at Daily Dot ("From roughly 2002 to 2007, a core part of discussion-heavy fandom and writing communities existed entirely on LiveJournal. LJ was unique among social media networks for a long time because so much of fandom communication happened in a central location. Though other journaling platforms like DeadJournal, GreatestJournal (both now defunct), InsaneJournal, and JournalFen existed, LJ was the central fandom hub due to the ease of combining community discussion with fanwork. Over the last half-decade, however, that community has eroded. LiveJournal has been mired in dysfunction and bad public relations. Especially prominent since Fitzpatrick’s departure in 2005 has been an ongoing cycle of friction between LJ and its userbase:")(September 6, 2012)

Fanworks Inspired by Strikethrough and Boldthrough

The First Video Fandom Flounce

In the wake of Strikethrough, Aja Romano demonstrated her repudiation of Livejournal by burning a LJ t-shirt on video.[21] However, the t-shirt was very difficult to ignite.[22] Many viewers were amused.[23][24] The video is no longer on YouTube, but the remix edition (using Tom Tom Club's "Genius of Love") is still viewable here. This is thought to be the first Video Flounce.

"Hoist the Colours"

The official Strikethrough 2007 song was "Hoist the Colours" from the Pirates of the Caribbean soundtrack.

  • "Many comments on the recent news posts are either berating the Livejournal staff, demanding explanations, or quoting the song "Hoist the Colours" from the Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End soundtrack, which is considered by many to be the unofficial theme song of "Strikethrough '07" (as the event has been labeled, because deleted accounts are represented with a strikethrough upon deletion), due to the relevance of the lyrics to their situation." [25]
  • "...given that the theme song seems to be "Hoist the Colours", and that someone in the original thread spam started the "I want parlay" comment, it was a natural choice." [26]
  • "The "revolt" has gotten even more amusing now. Apparently they have their own theme song now. The chosen song is "Hoist the Colours" from the Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End. And oh yeah, the official name now is "Strikethrough '07"." [27]

Icons

A Remix Playlist

icon created by a fan named azurite

A fan created a remix playlist for "Strikethrough."

And now, a somewhat goofy idea: Strikethrough 2007: The Fanmix. Fandom is powerful. Fandom is creative. Here is a mix of fandom's creativity and fandom's voice.
  • Let's Get It Started (Spike Mix)
  • Right Now (Van Halen)
  • Hoist the Colours (Hans Zimmer)
  • We Will Rock You (Queen)
  • We Are The Champions (Queen)
  • Red Alert [Jaxx Radio Mix] (Basement Jaxx)
  • For The People (The Black Eyed Peas)
  • No One [Clean] (Cold)
  • If Everyone Cared (Nickelback)
  • Rock In This Pocket [Song of David] (Suzanne Vega)
  • I Dare You To Move (Switchfoot)
  • Keep Tryin' (Utada Hikaru) [29]

Further Reading: Fans

General Link Roundups

2007: May

May 29, 2007:

  • Catrinella was one of the earliest to respond, keeping a running commentary and link-filled post on the day's events. This post contains a list of directly-affected journals: "Permanent Suspensions", or Strikethrough2007; Archive ("Welcome. This post is an attempt to consolidate information about Six Apart/LiveJournal's decision to "permanently suspend" user accounts and communities for Terms of Service violations related to illegal sexual activity. The decisions to suspend appear to have been linked to user interest entries containing particular words, regardless of whether the account/comm advocated such behavior, described it in fiction (fannish or original), or discussed the realities of surviving sexual abuse. I wish this post to be an accurate and neutral resource. While I am obviously unhappy with SA/LJ's chosen method to manage this situation, I ask visitors and commenters to focus on the facts when posting here.")
  • TOSed. Yeah.; Archive for page one; page two; Archive for page two; page three; Archive for page three, post with seven pages, 214 comments by femmequixotic ("Okay. So I've heard back from LJ Abuse in regards to pornish_pixies. Leaving this uncut. Apologies to the flist. Please don't be knocking LJ Abuse in any way for deleting pornish_pixies...they were very kind and very helpful in their explanation and I can see where they're coming from from a legal POV. Plus, they gave me a way to hopefully save the back comm entries. I'll be spending tonight trying to see if I can recover four years worth of fics. God. pornish_pixies was TOSed because it was reported to LJ Abuse as "containing material which expresses interest in, solicits, or encourages illegal activity."")

May 30, 2007:

  • liveJournal; Archive, post by Seperis ("Look, the thing is, I get the people that are saying that we're all overdramatizing and it's not that big a deal, it's only lj. No, wait, I said that wrong. I totally do not get that at all. It *is* that big a deal. Yes, we started in fanzines, and then there was usenet, and then there was mailing lists, and then there was livejournal. Yes, if this fails, of course we'll find something else. There's never a doubt of that. But that doesn't mean we can't try and fight for what we have now. It doesn't mean we'll win--that we'll get back those ljs we lost, the history and conversations and fiction in them that we may never see again--but I feel like we have to try. As much as the mailing lists, as usenet, as fanzines, our history is here too. Almost everyone has had a mailing list suddenly vanish, usenet threads deleted, bad mods, and livejournal, if it did nothing else, gave us this; a history we keep to ourselves in our ljs, answerable not to listmods or usenet mods, but to ourselves. And apparently, SixApart.")
  • livejournal suspends hundreds of accounts; Archive, post at Metafilter] ("livejournal permanently suspends hundreds of accounts under pressure from "watchdog" group Warriors for Innocence (sketchy, possibly spyware laden site created by pretty shady people). Though the aim of the crackdown is seemingly to protect children from online predators, many suspended journals and communities apparently had nothing to do with promoting pedophilia, and the broad-based approach taken by livejournal has many users irate (over 3700 comments as of posting), especially in light of the fact that that neither livejournal nor the owner Six Apart have publically addressed users, though Six Apart did speak to CNET as linked above.") (152 comments)
  • Finally pushed to putting in my two cents; Archive, post by maekala ("Should we go back to Yahoo (or some alternative) and archiving, I'll be annoyed, but I'll go. Should we go to forums...I'll be really annoyed and I'll resist like hell, but, eventually, I'd probably go there, too. Any other brilliant ideas? I may follow. I don't know. Depends on if I want to be a duck or not. But I would love it if we could just stay put. Please? It really isn't that bad. I promise.")
  • Strikethrough '07 update; Archive for page one; page two; Archive for page two, post by cleolinda ("I can understand targeting the LJ equivalent of NAMBLA, a journal or community that advocates (at best) inappropriate relationships or (at worst) criminal behavior in real life. But as for fiction, I personally feel that if controversial fictional material is posted under a friends-lock in a community that's invitation-only--that is, protected from the eyes of minors--it ought to stand, however. A lot of people will write things that disgust you, and a lot of people won't even write those things well, but I defy you to find a single thing on the internet that does not offend someone. I mean, if you don't believe me, go to baaaaabyanimals and look for any of the entries with babies in addition to fluffy kittens and watch people bitch about having their day ruined by human spawn. Maybe this is just a writer's perspective, but I feel like the issue is putting up barriers between minors and legal, controversial material, not removing the material entirely. And communities that did put up those barriers are still being punished.")

May 31, 2007:

  • The LJ purge; Archive, post by greenlady2 at Mary's Handmaidens (Mary Renault) ("I've never really liked LiveJournal. I tried to get into having one of my own, and it didn't work for me. I don't know why anyone would use it to archive stories, but it seems many do. I just kept mine because it's easier to access the few journals I'm interested in, like this one. But I do feel for the innocent people who had their LJs deleted. I hope that any of the writers who have posted stories on this community have their fiction backed up. It's not a good idea to have all your eggs in one basket. I don't use LJ for archiving my stories. They're on my website, but I also have them on my computer and I make CD copies. It's no good trusting other people to preserve all your hard work. By the way, the profile page for this community includes the word 'rape'. Are we going to be next?  :-)"
  • The Shitstorm; Archive, comment by Ronnie ("While I personally neither read nor write fanfic, I do recognize that it is a major part of fannish life and a central aspect of fan communities, so when LJ decides to delete numerous fanfic archives without reason, I take it as a sign of their complete and utter disregard for the large portion of LJ that is involved in any fandom in any way. fandom_counts is a community created for the sole purpose of getting a fandom head count. The idea is that if you consider yourself to be a part of any fandom, you join that community with any fandom-related account you may have registered. By simply joining fandom_counts, your account gets, well, counted, and helps us all get an idea of how much of LJ is populated by fans. fandompays is doing a similar thing by polling LJ members regarding their payments, the likelihood of them continuing to pay considering the recent events, switching from Plus accounts (ad supported free accounts) to basic accounts (ad-free free accounts) due to recent events, etc.")
  • Internet go 'splody: FanLib and Strikethrough 2007; Archive, post by owlmoose (May 31, 2007) ("Two companies. Two perceived threats to fandom. Two solid weeks of wank (albeit much more constructive wank than we usually see when things get intense) with more almost certainly to come, although the worst seems to have died down. So now what? Some would say that, ultimately, Strikethrough 2007 was a greater threat to not just fandom but free expression on the Internet than FanLib ever was, and I would tend to agree with this. But I'm content to continue using and supporting LiveJournal, while planning to stay as far away from FanLib as humanly possible. The difference, for me, is in the reactions of the different companies when things started to get hot.")
  • Now what? LJ/6A and Us. Why their actions bothered me and what's the next step?; Archive, comment by amireal ("I've been thinking. You know what bothered me the most about this? Because LJ/6A most definitely has the right to protect themselves in various ways for various reasons. It was the sudden and HUGE departure from previous procedure. I've read several accounts of people telling abuse about scary and definitely problematic situations and abuse, rightfully so in most ways that I can imagine, told them they couldn't do much about it. Not only that but livejournal's behavior about suspensions in general has followed a specific pattern. Now the latter? Not really their job or responsibility to handle everything the same, in fact it's not always feasible, but I do think the radical departure of their usual flexibility did not help. The former, I think, most definitely gave people good grounds as to what could and could not be allowed within their journal.")

2007: June

June 1, 2007

  • Meta LJ/Six Apart: A metaphor on growth hormones.; Archive, comment by telesilla ("Because what we have here on LJ is a house we really like to rent. We used to have a so-so landlord and now we have a corporate landlord who doesn't give a damn about us as people. But we like the house and moving's a big pain in the ass because we've managed to collect a hell of a lot of stuff in the five and a half years--for me at least--that we've lived here. And...we don't really have anywhere else to go. Yeah, there's GJ but they don't have a lot of the things that LJ has--no tracking or other kinds of notifications--and there's nothing to say that they won't be targeted by groups like WFI either. Sad to say, JournalFen really isn't an answer either. For some strange reason I keep hoping its owners will step up to the plate and work with the JF users to make the site look good and function better than it does. It's been four years and it hasn't happened yet and I don't think it is going to happen. So here we are. The house is still nice and occasionally the landlord adds some mod cons that we actually find useful. I don't know about you, however, but I trust him less and less. But you know what? I won't say that I'm never gonna move. Fandom has migrated before; in fact, I've been part of more than one fannish move. I can't imagine that I won't be part of another one. Hell, I've moved 16 times and lived on three continents in my actual non-virtual life, so I'm kind of used to this whole thing. Back up your LJ and keep your eyes on the real estate ads. ")
  • For the First Time Ever, I'm Immensely Sorry I'm a Lurker; Archive for page one; page two; Archive for page two, comment by litotease ("Except for the abject moral rage and deep community sorrow I was feeling, the Great LiveJournal Strikeout 2007 itself didn't affect me at all; I've never followed HP fandom at all, so I'd never heard of pornish_pixies (and see how pretty that name looks today, without all of those ugly dashes through it!), and I've never read any of the other journals involved. However, for the past year, I've mostly been reading in & about Supernatural -- you know, that show that's sparked the terms wincest, and wee!cest. Incest. Underage. Two of the keywords that were getting people banned, banned, banned from their community. As far as I know, no one in the Supernatural fandom had their account suspended (which, given how random the suspensions seemed, must be sheer, blind luck). Still, many, many of the fans in this fandom responded with reasonable, rational, absolutely justifiable paranoia. So it wasn't the Strikeout itself that got me where I live. It was the Great LiveJournal Lockdown that followed it. Because there is a group of women out there who, on a daily basis, make me think, smile, laugh out loud. Some days, they make my heart ache; others, they make my panties damp. (Occasionally -- damn you all, you good writers, you -- they do both at the same time.) On the really bad days, sometimes checking in with them gives me pretty much all I have to look forward to.")

June 13, 2007:

  • Will You Rat Me Out If You Don't Like What I Write?; Archive for page one; page two; Archive for page two, post by Stewardess ("The exhortations to be "responsible" carry far more weight once you know there is a group like WfI, intent on eliminating "sick and disgusting" fanfiction even after the debacle of the purge. It would be easy to send an email to WfI and say, "Hey, did you see THIS?" then sit back and let WfI do the heavy lifting. Now that I've acknowledged this, I understand why I'm driven to expose how quickly Six Apart rolled over for WfI. I lost no trust in Six Apart because of the purge; I had none to begin with. I have always known what Six Apart would do when offered a choice between advertising dollars and fandom. What worried me was the discovery that a ready-made Hammer of God was handy for anyone who cared to wield it. Am I paranoid? Yep. I have reason to be. I've written material that, except for the fandom, would be at home at pornish_pixies, for instance. And while that community is back up, it doesn't erase the problem with witch-hunts. They increase suspicion until you feel anyone who is not your outright ally is a potential enemy. The circle of victims widens. The destruction cannot be measured simply by a list of names.")

June 14, 2007:

  • legal beagles?; Arvhive, post by Hth ("And our definition of "underage" is one place where it isn't just maybe going to happen, it has already happened. Come on, those of you who are old like me, don't you remember when it was sort of shocking and awful, a Sad Commentary on Society, when fifteen- and sixteen-year-old girls were sexually active? Not that it didn't happen -- it's always happened, obviously -- but there was this sort of universal tsk-tsk, because it seemed so very young. Now, post-Britney, post-Buffy, the same idea seems to pass by without much of a blink. There's a shrug response instead of a tsk-tsk, because teenagers, what are you gonna do?")
  • Attention Slash Writers and Readers...; Archive, post by larllee ("In [Brad Hicks'] mind, there is no difference between slash and chan. You write gay sex, you are a pedophile. Now it's possible Brad Hicks doesn't understand what he's talking about. I think it's probably, but to link all slash writers with pedophiles is just as damaging and damning as Warriors for IgnoranceInnocence doing it. Worse, because he's had time to read and research and talk to people on LJ. Now, those who know me know I don't particularly like reading slash. Sorry, but two hot guys having sex without me just doesn't do much for me and there is a lack of femme slash. And you all know I'm Anti-Chan as you can get. I have no problems with pedophiles being reported to site administrators. I do have a very big problem with demonizing all gay sex.")

June 18, 2007:

  • They're BAAACK!; Archive for page one; page two; Archive for page two, post by sailormac ("So I get into work today and check my E-mail. There's the usual weekend spam dump, sure enough. And then, I saw the following. Seems that everyone's least favorite LJ-disrupting right-wing nutjobs are back, and this time, they're harassing publications who use Google ads to promote their Web sites (in case you don't know, I work for a travel agent publication): From: warriorsforinnocence@gmail.com Subject: Your Company’s Ad Appears on a Child Sex/Rape Site Date: June 16, 2007 8:45:01 PM EDT Dear [name of publication] Staff...")

June 20, 2007:

  • Standing II: for life; Archive, post by asurelunatic ("I appreciate what everybody does. I really do. I watch these storms come in, and I see some people blow off and go somewhere else, but the ones who are here for the long haul hold onto each other tighter, grab something solid, and stick around. When all the chaos is over -- actually, before all the chaos is done happening, as soon as we start feeling sure of ourselves again -- we start looking around to see what can be done. Sometimes it's the exact wrong thing, and generally someone grabs the person and lets them know in private as soon as possible, because we all know that we're trying our best and we mean well. Sometimes people just start working together and things start being right.")

June 30, 2007:

  • Life After Strikethrough 2007; Archive, post by La Guera ("And let's face it: we're daunted by the prospect of picking up stakes and starting over. We've become established here, and for those of us involved in fandom, our readers or viewers know where to find us. We've worked hard for the five people-or five thousand-who read us, and like good little crackbabies, we want them to come back and give us our next hit. Moving means we might lose a few, and for those who have few to begin with, that's a scary prospect. It's easier, safer, to sit tight and wait it out.")

2007: July

July 8, 2007:

  • Time for me to start activating my transition plan...; Archive, post by elke tanzer ("Those of you who want to stay with LJ as your primary journal? I wish you the best of luck. Those of you who are leaving LJ entirely? I wish you the best of luck. Those of you who are cross-posting to multiple journaling services (whether that includes LJ or not), and maintaining a presence on all of them? I wish you the best of luck. To all of us: we're not going to lose each other. See the links in the big damned post to Directorium and Fanfinder and Fandom411. We will evolve our community and our infrastructure and come out of this stronger and more technically adept than we are now.")

July 19, 2007:

  • An open letter to Livejournal (includes an extensive timeline); Archive for page one (four pages, 200 comments), post by Sabrina ("Over the next few days, I want to collect a list of contradictory statements that LiveJournal and SixApart have posted regarding the Strikethrough '07 debacle. In addition, any official statements you can find to support or refute the legality of fictional sex with minors will be listed as well, for posterity. And finally, I want to collect and archive a list of works published in the United States that feature explicit sexual scenes with characters under the age of 18. I do this in the hopes that it will help the LJ/SA administration that a)they're only making things worse by making promises and then going back on them and THAT is why we are leaving, not because of a silly hissy fit like they seem to think, and b)contrary to their recent statement regarding what they can and cannot host, written fiction. I also hope that by sending this to other news site, prospective new users who could be affected by this will forewarned about the activities and ambiguous business practices this company now engages in.")

July 20, 2007:

  • Thanks to a mistake with a time travel spell and a Polyjuice potion....; Archive, post by telesilla ("I'm not trying to be a jerk here; I really do understand that the Abuse Team has a lot on their plates. I don't automatically equate the volunteers on the Abuse Team with the policy makers at 6A and when I complain about 6A, it's not you guys I have issues with. That said, no, I don't trust 6A to have much of a clue when it comes to running a business. Over and over again, they've done stuff like they're doing right now: posted something that isn't clear and then posted a clarification that doesn't help. Do that too often and eventually your customers get fed up and that's kind of how I feel at the moment. I don't know if everyone feels this way, but for me, it's not a personal issue, but a consumer one and like every consumer issue it comes down to this: I'm not well off at all and what little money I can spend on things like LJ needs to be spent wisely. More and more I'm wondering if giving LJ/6A my money is wise.")

July 22, 2007:

  • Good news! LiveJournal will review our posted fanfiction and tell us if it is okay!; Archive, comment by Stewardess ("Through metafandom, I found this exchange between a LiveJournal employee and the moderator of pornish_pixies. In it, the LJ employee [burr86] says LJ will review our already posted fanfiction and tell us whether or not it could get us into trouble. YAY GRATE, right? *takes deep breaths, centers mind on cat's fluffiness* Leaving aside a rather important issue [LJ has no staff, trained or untrained, to do this, so it will either never happen or be totally screwed up], I am stunned anyone could consider this a good thing. That fen might embrace this as a nifty development does not indicate we are idiots, however. It illustrates how desperate and confused we are. After the string of wtf? announcements from Six Apart, it would be a miracle if we were not.")

July 24, 2007:

  • My opinion only on the continued LJ saga with; Archive, post by alyburns ("Fight it here and now. Each of us together and separately. We need to take charge of our own lives here on live journal because if we don't - eventually we'll just keep running until there's no place to run. So what can you do?")

2007: August: (Boldthrough Began)

August 2, 2007:

  • LJ Taking The Delete Key To The Next Level; Archive, post by Morgan Dawn ("this should be obvious, but when LJ deletes your account, not only is your LJ gone, but any post you ever made anywhere (along with any comments etc). While you can backup your LJ (BACK UP YOUR LJ FOLKS!!) it is not as easy to backup communities and of course the comments you leave in other people's journal can never be backed up by you.")
  • 6A -- causing separation anxiety since 2007; Archive, post by xylodemon ("Once again, this begs the question: what now? Once again, I found five minutes to work on the numerous WIPs I've left to languish, only to ignore it in favour of fretting about stuff I wrote two years ago. Do I weigh anchor and sail for GreatestJournal? InsaneJournal? DeadJournal? JournalFen? Sure, I could move house -- I've got accounts at all four sites. And all four sites have their perks. More of this, less of that, yada yada, and so on and so forth. I could move house. That doesn't mean I want to.")

August 3, 2007

  • LJ: an actual slice of opinion; Archive, post by shusu ("So, as a customer of LJ, here is my problem with all this. And even if you don't pay for your journal, you subsidize LJ with every click-through, with every ad viewed, and if you don't believe me, check your cookies and read the good news for Paid and Perm accounts.")
  • Fool me once...; Archive, post by kangeiko ("Here's the thing. 6A/LJ are homophobic asshats. No, you're not paying attention. THEY'RE HOMOPHOBIC ASSHATS. The recent furor over so-called child pornography (read = anything reported by ]]Warriors for Innocence\\, which included role-playing journals, anything featuring explicit artwork of any kind, any questionable fic featuring things such as incest etc, even literary studies journals focusing on novels such as Lolita) and the mass strikeout of journals led to 6A/LJ backpedaling furiously to win back their users, with promises that only those journals that actually featured/promoted child pornography would be 1) examined, and 2) dealt wit")
  • Boldthrough07, aka Dammit, LJ/6A, What The Hell Are You Thinking?; page two, post by elke tanzer ("Permanently-gone type account deletions/suspensions for some HP fanartist LJs (some of which were possibly completely f-locked? I await confirmation of that...) supposedly for drawings of fictional minors in sexual situations, and LJ/6A forbidding the artist to create new LJs, and the strikethrough standard appearance is no longer applying to the deleted/suspended journals... the journal names as lj-user="whatever" show up as bold text rather than with the little user icon and the crossed-out name. And the deleted/suspended journals won't show up on profile lists unless you're looking at your own, or in the full profile view. No recourse, no warning, and again during a time when most of HP fandom is focusing on a con or traveling to or from it. Add to that the fact that an "upcoming feature" here on LJ will be a "report this page to abuse" button on every single page. What the fucking fuck, LJ/6A?")
  • LJ/6A; Archive, post by Amireal ("Before we all panic, and I'm not saying it's not a good idea to keep an ear out-- I'm seeing two different stories. First that it was the underage aspect. But I've found at least two people saying it was Warner Bros that actually complained.")
  • The cyber dance of the seven veils; Archive, post by boji ("If in the near future fandom and fanfic are hounded while sites like Nifty and Asstr.org are left well enough alone, it will lead me to believe that this was just as much about copyright infringement as about porn. That said the internet became the permissive open minded place it is - at least in our patch - mainly because it took a long time for the older, mainstream demographic to get an understanding of the terrain - or to put it differently, we've been lucky. How did fandom flourish? I hate to say it but it was a lack of the spotlight that probably kept fandom safe and made it the fertile ground it is today. Fanfic wise I'd say we've been here 12 years, and I say that thinking back to the heyday of TXF, centalised archives and usenet. We used to be a smaller group, not that teenagers weren't coming into fandom and writing great fic then too. We used to fantasize about characters that had long since come of age - physically if not emotionally - but the Government and/or corporate lawyers were skittish about fandom from day one. And clamping down from day one. But, 12 years ago the main stream press weren't turning to Henry Jenkins to discover this brave, strange new world, this creative frontier. They didn't know we were here.")
  • The Omega Fan, or The Sky Remains Above Us, Madame Little-- ; Archive, post by Galadriel ("Dear Fandom, I can't hear you over all the shouting. No, really, I can't. No, don't shout louder; it'll just make everything worse. Of late, I have not been feeling the fandom love. Now, that doesn't mean I'm not still in love with my favoured source texts -- not at all -- but it does mean that reading LJ makes me tired. That being a "fan" in this climate makes me cringe. I hate that fandom's first response to every crisis is to scream its fool head off, stomp its patent leathers and threaten to hold its breath until it turns blue. Please, go ahead and hold your breath, Fandom. Do it. I dare you. The couple minutes you spend unconscious will give me a bit of a respite.")
  • "The solution to bad speech is more speech." Unless you're living in the United States.; Archive, post by Synecdochic ("In the eyes of the law, in the eyes of law enforcement, in the eyes of the people who make the legislation, a drawing of a sixty-year-old Character A giving a blowjob to a twelve-year-old Character B is identical to a picture or a video of a sixty-year-old Person A giving a blowjob to a twelve-year-old Person B. This holds true whether Characters A and B are Dumbledore and Harry Potter or "that creepy guy who lives down the road" and "his next-door neighbor he fantasizes about". I think this is the part that fandom misses, a lot. Fandom as a whole is a very anything-goes, libertarian society, which is part of what I think is so awesome about it. Fandom (and yeah, I know I'm generalizing here) generally believes that the solution to speech an individual finds "wrong" or "distasteful" is more speech, and fandom believes in frequent discourse and ongoing conversations.")
  • About the latest LJ suspensions/deletions; Archive, post by elynross ("Am I happy that fan artists are getting caught in the insanity in this country? No, I'm not, and I think it sucks that people have been expelled. I also don't believe that LJ is the true enemy in all this, nor have they done anything that isn't justifiable under their TOS, which we all agreed to when we signed up, whether I like the reality of those terms being implemented, or not. I also don't think they're on a witch hunt, or pro-actively seeking people out to fuck up, or judging their timing as to when to suspend whom. I suspect someone -- quite possibly a fan -- saw the artworks in question, and reported them to LJ abuse. Once that happens, LJ abuse is obligated to investigate, and may well have felt compelled to act, and from the various people I know that are officially involved with LJ, and going by the things synecdochic says, which I also believe to be true, they probably aren't a hell of a lot happier about it than I am.")
  • here comes your nineteenth nervous breakdown; Archive, post by musesfool ("I know some people think this is no big deal, and numerous people think that regardless of where we go, the hammer will fall eventually, and while I don't dispute the latter assertion, I do have a large problem with the way 6A/LJ has handled this whole thing, starting with the original deletions on Memorial Day weekend. I don't like to be treated badly by companies I give money to for service. Sometimes *cough*TimeWarnerCable*cough* I don't have much choice because they have a near monopoly in my area. But here I do have a choice, and eventually, I'm going to exercise it. I won't even go into my distaste for being even mistakenly labeled a pedophile because of my membership in pornish_pixies. (I also note that they don't seem to be giving any trouble to any het fans as of yet; how much of this is homophobia, I wonder?)")
  • Yup, LJ really did tell us to drop dead...; Archive, post by liz marcs ("This is why I was pissed about the complete lack of clarity that LJ kept wafting at its users just before the perm account sale. This is why I said people should keep their wallets shut until we got that clarification on what those nonsense words actually meant. Look, I have no problem with LJ deciding they don't want to host some content but are perfectly okay with others. My issue is that LJ has been blowing smoke up its user bases ass for two months about what is and is not acceptable content. They have not been clear (at all) about what will get you permanently banned from LJ with no warning whatsoever and what will get you a mere order to remove a single post. It appears that there will be no clear rules on this forthcoming. Oh, no. We have to learn how to read minds to figure it out.")
  • more on the stuff going on; Archive, post by umbo ("The picture I've seen was of Snape and Harry Potter, and, no, I'm not linking to it, although I'm sure you can find it linked in a number of other posts on this topic. It seemed to be at Hogwarts. The faces were recognizably those of Daniel Radcliffe and Alan Rickman, even though it wasn't a photomanip. They were both naked. Snape was fingering Harry and staring at his (lovingly detailed) cock. There was absolutely no way to judge what exact age Harry was, but he could have been anywhere from 15-19, IMO. There is absolutely no question in my mind that anyone outside of fandom (and many within fandom) would see that as a depiction of a minor, and it was absolutely a graphic sexual context. I'm sorry, folks, but there is no way whatsoever that someone can argue they should have the right to post that under the LJ TOS, or that it wasn't completely clear that such an image was against LJ's standards of acceptability. Whether or not you're personally squicked by such an image (I am, personally, but that's why I have long stayed away from HP fandom), whether or not you believe current US law protects such images, LJ would be putting all of us at risk if they received an abuse report about a picture like that and did not act.")
  • Boldthrough '07: Uh, we're child molesters? Again?; Archive, post by kalpuna ("My point is that while LJ can kick us offsite any time they please, we, and the work we produce (disregarding explicit manips), are not in violation of any United States law, unless a specific work is declared to be lacking in literary or artistic value. (Now, copyright/trademarks – thaaat's another issue, and one I'm seriously unqualified to address.) I have absolutely no idea why LJ, or anyone else, is under the impression that textual depiction of children in explicit sexual situations is, by nature, illegal. It's not. It's actually not even illegal, as far as I can tell, to talk about sexual crimes you have personally committed (even though NO ONE is claiming LJ needs to host such material), although it may lead to your arrest for the crimes themselves. Speech about illegal activities is not illegal, unless it is obscene, or it constitutes an attempt to actually solicit or encourage such activities. Which fanfiction and fanart, taken as a whole? Most certainly do not.")
  • Taking a step back to get a better look; Archive, post by jelyanne ("It seems that this whole Strikethrough/Deletegate thing will never be over. And you know what, that’s really the truth. It will never, ever go away, it will just get louder and quieter in turns. Right now, it’s loud....Yes, it sucks being somebody’s target. But it does no good to deny that the target is there. If you plug “harry potter”+porn into Google, you get approximately 2,420,000 results. And those outside fandom aren’t going to automatically assume that what fan-works that search turns up are going to be about 18+ aged individuals. They’re going to think it’s about children, because to them that’s what Harry Potter is about. And it’s the responsibility of the Artist/Author/Poster to convince them otherwise. (Preferably before the cut-tag, near the ‘Remus and Harry having naughty fun in a hot-tub, woo HAWT!’ part.) Don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying anything like ‘don’t write’, or ‘don’t draw’, or ‘don’t post’. I’m just saying THINK. Think of what the Outsider is going to see. Just migrating off of LiveJournal or screaming ‘Fandom is being attacked!’ isn’t going to help.")
  • LJ doesn't want us. Time to make other plans.; Archive, post by msilverstar ("I've come to believe that LJ doesn't want to deal with sexuality and those parts of fandom that are sexually explicit. They'd rather do sponsorship deals with Pepsi and Citibank. and sell the attention of their users. Anything that would scare off corporations is simply not worth it to them, despite all the financial support they've had from fandom over the years. They don't want us any more. The only power we have is as consumers, the power to take our money elsewhere. It's time to start. I'm cross-posting everything from now on, and making new communities on other journals. I bought a permanent InsaneJournal account ($30, why not) and will be happy to make syndicated feeds from LJ journals and comms. I'm going to support fan efforts to make new systems of community and archives that we can never lose.")

August 4, 2007

  • Thoughts on protecting the porn; Archive, post by kaethe ("1) Livejournal was probably too harsh. Removal of the posts would have been enough for a first offense. 2) The prevailing fandom opinion seems to be in support of artwork that condones a 40 year old man sucking off a fifteen year old boy.")
  • WTF, LJ?; Archive, post by lavendertook] ("I do not see any reason why LJ, as a courtesy, couldn't inform users before such a purge to give them a chance to back up other writings and artwork that has importance to them, especially when what LJ is considering a violation here is on very shaky definitional grounds even within the laws of the US. If this is the courtesy LJ is affording its users, after wasting our time with totally useless clarifications, then I'm seriously looking into other journal options now.")
  • Two Knuts; Archive, post by slytherincesss ("I disagree, though, with the reactionary suggestions for a mass exodus to another blogging site. The big bitch of freedom of speech is that it goes both ways -- people have the right to voice opinions other than ours, and Six Apart is not obligated to the Harry Potter fandom. The idea that the Harry Potter fandom is some kind of mainstay of Livejournal is, I believe, an overly generous estimation of the power of fen. Livejournal indicates that there are approximately 4+Million journals registered; of these journals approximately 2.5 Million are active journals, meaning journals that are actively being used or blogged on. Using myself as an example, a Livejournal user who is friended by approximately 400 other journals, my journal is representative of 0.000016% of all active Livejournals. That's how very little I matter! Even those fen who have, say, 1500 journals watching their own, the numbers crunch to 0.000060% Also, I believe it is disingenuous to assume that any one person's personal smidgen of fandom as represented on Livejournal is representative of Harry Potter fandom in general (I've been reading a lot of grandiose statements about "fandom" migrating elsewhere) -- I'm hear to tell y'all that Livejournal is not fandom. Livejournal hosts a core -- but statistically insignificant -- group of Harry Potter fen.")
  • LJ - it's not about the kids - it's about us.; Archive for page one; page two; Archive for page two, comment by erestor (""If you're upset about the recent bannings on LJ, you're supporting kiddie porn!" Oh. Is that the same as "if you don't support the war in Iraq, you're a communist?" Funny how propaganda always works the same way, isn't it. I hate chan, shota etc., even if that's a very unpopular thing to say in fandom. I don't care if the kid has cat ears and a tail and looks cutsie. I hate it. This has always been my stance, and I'll never change it. The only reason why I don't go with a hatchet after drawn kiddie porn is that no real children are harmed. Draw and write it if you want, but don't get anywhere close to me with it. That's one of the reasons why I'm so upset with LJ at the moment - they force me to side with people I don't want to side with, but now I have to. See, I've had a long look at the artwork that got user ponderosa121 suspended, and even I can't see the underageness there. No, I don't like the picture. I don't like the content. I don't like the style it's drawn in. But I'd never have the delusion that I could determine it's artistic value.")
  • Some things; Archive, post by toft froggy ("I just don't know, guys. I'm going to have to think very hard about this. I mean, I have written stuff that might be borderline TOS violation, but even if I hadn't, I'd be worried. Where is it going to stop? Are we all going to sit here, watching sections of the fandom be pushed out to live on their own somewhere else, and pretend it doesn't have anything to do with us? I'd move to GJ or somewhere, but all my friends are here, and I've got five years of my life on this LJ. Does anyone know if there's a way to permanently back up your LJ? Could I save this and keep it, in the event I wanted to move?")

August 5, 2007

  • In defense of burr86; Archive, comment by cryptoxin ("Unfortunately, burr86 has lured me over to the dark side. I can't help it, in the post-Strikethrough 1.0 round of policy clarifications, I was totally charmed by his comments on the lj_biz threads. Why? It was his occasional jokes and frequent use of smilies. Yes, I'm easy like that -- he may not have been the epitome of clarity, but he was very winning in those threads. And then tonight I saw his comments on the Existential Flame War satire of the current outcry, and I laughed. Yes, out loud. I couldn't help it. It's not that his comments were the funniest, but they weren't bad and it was funny that he was the one making them. Plus I give him points for commenting in the spirit of that community -- while wishing that his detractors in that thread would have done the same, because it would've been funnier and more effective.")
  • Not done yet, apparently; Archive, comment by rivkat ("So we're supposed to desire them -- bluntly, we're supposed to fantasize about fucking them -- but we're not supposted to say that. And we're not supposed to share our fantasies, because that would be sick. Contradictory and hypocritical are words you could use about mainstream depictions of adolescent sexuality -- which is not to accuse anyone in this debate, but to point out that the American social context is, at best, confusing. And to say that I'm basically with coffeeandink; one of the things I want from fandom as a community of women is the ability to say, "hey, that emperor [or in this case, kid] isn't wearing any clothes!"")
  • It's not that I WANT to leave; Archive, post by telesilla ("So obviously my answer to the question of whether LJ's community standards and business practices are things I want to support is a resounding NO! I'd like people to ask themselves the same question and the one toft_froggy asked. Are you going to "watch sections of the fandom be pushed out to live on their own somewhere else, and pretend it doesn't have anything to do with [you]?" Fandom is diversity. LJ doesn't seem to like certain diverse sections of fandom. If you're okay with a less diverse fandom, with a squeaky clean fandom where anyone can accuse anyone else of abuse and have it stick, then yes, I guess LJ/6A is building the kind of gated community you want to live in.")
  • In which I show that one is never to old to be a starry-eyed optimist from time to time; Archive, comment by gmth ("Is there any chance you might learn something from what's happening here? And here's the point where I become the starry-eyed optimist: Is there any chance you might even take that experience back to your bosses, and say, "Hey look, maybe we were wrong here after all. I was part of a community with a set of guidelines that were not generally understood by outsiders, and some comments I made there were taken out of context and I got jumped on... maybe the same holds true for fandom and we should think about cutting them some slack." Because that's exactly what fandom is. You're living our experience right now. Doesn't being misunderstood like that suck?")
  • Oh, LJ, you so crazy.; Archive, post by apocalypsos ("Now, admittedly, I'm not leaving unless they kick my ass off. I'm trollprincess everywhere else, for the record, and I've spent all of today backing up my LJ everywhere else just in case, but I'm not leaving. I think that the fact that this whole situation involves the posting of possible underage smut is clouding the issue for a lot of people outside of fandom. I get the impression that a lot of people are yelling, "Oh, my God, you're defending the pedos!" without realizing that that's not the issue at hand. The issue comes in two parts: 1. A complete lack of professionalism. 2. "We won't tell you the rules until you break them."")

August 6, 2007:

  • in some ways, it is about the porn.; Archive; comment by kudra ("but more to the point, when it comes to "endorsing" or not "endorsing" what i think we can all agree are variations on sexual fantasies, i'd like some clarity from the people who think that we should be stepping away from the harry potter fiction: do you really think that you have never had a fantasy that someone else would find objectionable? at what point did that fantasy become something that someone should object to, under your theory that we shouldn't be endorsing "bad" things? while it was still in your head? when you wrote it down? when you mentioned it in bed, in the middle of sex? when you shared it with a roommate? when you posted it online? when it popped up in your dreams, completely a product of your subconscious, but vivid nonetheless? seriously: when, exactly?")
  • An exercise; Archive, comment by jmtorres ("Fandom, we sound like the crazy people. This is not to say that we are crazy or wrong. This it to say that our arguments need to be reworded in a way that non-fannish people will see the validity of, because right now, to the non-fannish, what's going on here makes us look like the bad guys. As an exercise, try figuring out what you would say to your completely non-fannish boss/mother-in-law/the grocery story checker who asks how your day's been. Try figuring out how to explain the problem on LJ and your argument about it in a way that sounds sane to the non-fannish. And when you figure out how to do that, tell ME, because I haven't. When you figure out how to do that, use that language with 6A/LJ, because they are not fannish.")
  • If you have been hiding under a rock and don't know the deal with LJ...; Archive, comment by schemingreader ("I recommend that we all back up our journal content, create mirror accounts on other journals, and continue to discuss how to move fandom communities to a non-profit controlled site. If you are interested in the latter, check out fandom_flies. In addition, I think for the sake of our friends who have purchased permanent accounts, we should do all the smart things people are doing now: call the corporate sponsors, contact the Better Business Bureau, and publicize this to the people on the net who are the peers of these LJ yutzes.")
  • Because a simple life update just isn't my style.; Archive, post by everagaby ("What I'm instead taking the time here to talk about is the nature and evolution of fandom, and of our mediums of communication. I remember EGroups being bought out by Yahoo Groups, and the slow but inevitable move from lists to easily accessible personal spaces such as livejournal. I saw the fandom migration away from having a single public posting board for multiple members to the potential for a semi-private space to post your own works. Fandom has evolved in order to accommodate the individual in addition to groups. This evolution at first seemed to me to be cyclical, the burst of potential freedom a new space allows followed by the negative backlash that failed expectations always engenders. Instead it now seems to me to be linear. The backlash and restrictions of a space will always cause us to seek out new mediums with which to speak. We move from point to point, 'zines to groups to communities. The only question I have is what the next point will be. ")
  • Musing: Strikethrough/Boldout - My thoughts on...; Archive, comment by wilderthan ("A large amount of the reaction, I believe, is due to what we refer to as "Strikethrough 07", in which many users and communities, regardless of their content, were suspended because of interests they had listed. The implication was that all these journals were devoted to encouraging and promoting paedophilia, and therefore had to be removed. In a move to pacify those protesting, the CEO of Six Apart came forward and promised that they would be reviewing the journals and returning all of them which were fiction related. This was, in fact, done. However, since then there has been a lack of communication about the issue. Clarifications issued only posed more questions, and those questions went unanswered. The Terms of Service we're all held by have not been changed. And then came the two recent suspensions, sparking fears that Six Apart's apparent tolerance for fandom was simply feigned to persuade those in fandom to buy permanent accounts.")
  • brad's life - On Leaving SixApart; Archive, August 6, 2007 ("Since I've always been just kinda been a floater engineer at SixApart, never really part of (or head of) a group, I just feel a bit detached now without something obviously broken consuming all of my time & attention. There are plenty of other groups at SixApart having fun working on other problems, so I could join one of those groups, but I think this is just a good point in my life to change directions a bit. My apologies that there's not more drama to this whole story. :)")
  • Thanks, Brad.; Archive, posted by anildash ("Thanks and good luck to Brad -- can't wait to see what you do next. And a big hearty fuck-you to rumormongers who stir shit up just to demoralize people who do good work. If you don't have enough drama in your life, go make something that millions of people think is valuable. Update: Just to make it clear, my frustration was with Valleywag gossiping about [Brad Fitzpatrick] and LJ and 6A without ever contributing anything positive to our community. I was not complaining about anything that people have said on LJ. (Except giving a bunch of good charities a bum rap, but that was only a few folks.) That being said, anybody in our community who's got something they want me to pass along to the LJ team (we're definitely listening, and working to improve how we communicate) is more than welcome to comment here or on email or anything else.")
  • Strikethrough/Boldthrough/Boldface '07 - Issues and beyond, post at Fanthropology; Archive, August 6, 2007 ("Now that Strikethrough 2 or whatever name it'll be called has occurred, something struck me as interesting. Namely, how many issues that the Strikethroughs raise. Though, yes there's discussion of basic issues of LJ/6A's handling, appropriateness, respect for content, etc. I also find that it brings up many other issues in my discussions with people about the subject, or that I see as I observe the reactions. So, perhaps more fascinating to me than the core issues are how many other issues it brings up in regards to fandom, fan culture, and soforth.") (90 comments)
  • Open social networking & how to work around that problem now; Archive, posted by femmequixotic ("I've talked to a lot of people lately who are really seriously worried about fandom fragmenting. With very good cause. This whole situation lately is more than a bit nerve-wracking. It's just...honestly, I think we'll settle into a way of keeping track of multiple flists on multiple sites much the way Brad's already envisioning, albeit perhaps a little more roughly. Y'all, we're sort of on the forefront of the Next Big Social Networking Adventure. You and me and all of fandom. 6A's kind of thrown us out there, you know? What Brad's talking about doing? It's what we have to do. By necessity, not choice. I find that incredibly intriguing in many ways. And exciting. And liberating. I look at my two flists sometimes and you know what? The fragmentation between them doesn't destroy my love of fandom or my desire to participate or interact. In fact, it does the opposite. I'm invigorated by fandom again because it's a challenge. Because, whatever their reasons behind it may be, 6A management has effectively thrown the gauntlet down and said Fine, screw you, you want your fandom? You work for it, bitch. And my response? Hell, yeah, I will. You've just gone and given me a reason to now. Sometimes change is good. Sometimes we need to be shaken out of our comfortable state so that we can grow more, instead of just stagnating. But that's not always easy. And it can be very tiring. Believe me, I know.")

August 8, 2007

  • HP:DH spoilers below, though the post really isn't about that book.; Archive, comment by telperion ("And there's a lot to talk about. Some people claim it's about censorship, or decency vs. obscenity, or truly abysmal customer service. And while I fully admit that the current situation is about all of those things, that's not what I'm going to focus on. Because, really, those topics are being done to death elsewhere, and there's an issue that's of particular interest to those of us in fandom. It's this: who says eighteen is an adult? It's not in Potterverse, or Ardaverse for that matter.")
  • Ah screw it. I was going to stay out of this a little longer; Archive, comment by stephendann ("Dear SixApart: The time has come to make a decision. Do you want the current user base as it stands, or do you wish to shed users? If you wish to shed users, then make a stand, post up where you see this venue going, and make public your choice. It's called repositioning. Happens all the time in business. The management decides to take the organisation in a new direction, pick a new market segment, and take it from there. You do not have to serve everyone. You may make decisions, and you make those decisions on a commercial basis for you are a business. But understand this - you are a business. We, the journal holders, are customers. People are going to act like customers if you treat them like customers. You may sack customers. You don't sack community members, at best, you ask them to leave. Decide if SixApart is the steward of a community or just a business? If you're the steward of the LJ community, come back to being part of the community. If you're a business, then start being a business. If you're no longer happy with fandom as a target market, quit the marketplace. Be clear that really, you don't want fanfic, or fanart, and that you'd rather those were posted elsewhere. Make a statement. Tell people what you want to see in a customer, and see whether they chose to stay. Make offers. Make a pitch. Sack a few clients. Be honest, be upfront, and see where the money lands. Just get on with it, and do it whilst you still have customers to sack, because I doubt you've got much of a community to rejoin right now.")
  • Being heard in the right places; Archive for page one; page two; Archive for page two, comment by synecdochic ("I love LiveJournal. I love LiveJournal so deeply, so passionately, that I've given it years of my life. I know that so many of you love LiveJournal too, because you wouldn't be so passionate about it if you didn't. I know that "fandom" is not LiveJournal, that fandom existed before LiveJournal and will continue to exist long after. I also believe that LiveJournal is the best place for fandom to be. I have my reasons, and again, ten thousand word essay about why, but it boils down to a few facts: there is no other service out there with the same tools, resources, and infrastructure as LiveJournal; there will likely not be another service with etc for a very long time, if ever, because the level of infrastructure required is stunning; being on a service that is not fannish-specific means that there is a much smaller risk, for fandom, of the service as a whole being shut down; and finally, I believe, from my personal experience, that Six Apart is trying very, very hard to place the absolute minimum restrictions they think they can get away with without assuming a level of risk and liability that risks the stability and long-term viability of the service as a whole.")
  • Artistic merit, obscenity and poor little confused me; Archive, post by oneiriad ("What annoys and confuses me, though, is all the talk of artistic merit and obscenity and such. Perhaps it is simply due to my background, as a Dane and all. Still. First of all, artistic merit. Now, me, I'm currently studying to be cand.scient.bibl. at the Danish School of Library and Information Science, and have an interest in culture and such. Admittedly, library studies involve mostly texts, but anyway. The thing is, as I understand it, artistic merit is impossible to judge, because we live in a hypercomplex/postmodern/latemodern/whatever age. The great stories are dead. There are no absolutes. There are a thousand perspectives to view a thing through, and especially with art, what one person considers a great work of art, another can think is junk, and they are both right! Taste is individual and therefore difficult to judge.")

August 9, 2007

  • because those URLs are dangerous, dangerous things...; Archive for one; page two; Archive for page two; page three; Archive for page three, comment by violet quill ("I sent in a support request with the exact wording from the open letter: Is posting a link to prohibited content that is posted elsewhere going to receive the same punishment as it would if the prohibited content were posted on LiveJournal servers? And this was the response: In general, yes. In certain cases, for example if there is indication that the content present on the page being linked to was changed to include the prohibited content after the link to it was posted, the actions taken would likely change. In such a case, we would allow the person to remove the link rather than suspend their account, assuming suspension was the normal course of action. Other factors, such as whether or not the user is intentionally linking to content in an attempt to circumvent LiveJournal's Terms of Service, or if some part of a link just incidentally happened to contain a violation, may also effect a decision.")

August 10, 2007

  • kink, pr0n, ethics, law, taboo, and bears oh my; Archive, post by dakinigrl ("In short... I believe that we cannot control *what* gets us turned on (or turned off). Those come under the realm of fantasy and feeling... and those are fascinating to me, and to be given wide berth inside my mind, my heart, my energetic space. I cut other people the same wide berth. Hey, dude, whatever kinks you out, ya know? As long as actual minors, animals, or other non-consenting adults are NOT involved... party the fuck on. This includes people who choose to DRAW pictures of FICTIONAL characters having kinky and/or explicit sex... regardless of the age of those fictional characters... regardless of ANYTHING about those fictional characters. They are ink on paper and it's ART!!!! NO LAWS WERE BROKEN. NO ONE WAS HARMED. I don't find it particularly offensive... even though I'd rather not look at it myself. I also choose not to read a great deal of fan fiction which *while very well written* is also not my kink.")

August 11, 2007

  • Open Letter To LiveJournal/Six Apart; Archive to page one there are fifty pages, 1240 comments to this post by bubble blunder ("Dear LiveJournal and Six Apart: We are all users of your service. We came here for a variety of reasons. We stayed because we like it here, and because we put a lot of time and energy into building and maintaining a community here. We honestly don't want to leave. However, lately some of your actions -- and lack thereof -- have us questioning whether we are wanted and welcome here, and whether our efforts would be better spent building a new community elsewhere. We would prefer that not happen and we are relatively hopeful that you would prefer that not to happen either. There are a lot of us. In fandom alone, we number upwards of 35,000 members according to fandom_counts. But we are not all members of fandom. Many of us, inside and outside of fandom, are academics and/or creative professionals who use LiveJournal for our professional lives, and who can't continue to do so without clear and concise guidelines. Some of us are writers of fiction and non-fiction books, who can't continue to use LiveJournal if we are not certain that our art is safe here. Some of us are simply users who have friends in fandom. Others are concerned that our content may eventually come into question as well, and yet others of us are simply concerned for the fate of LiveJournal as a whole if a large segment of its community decides to leave it. Our signatures below are representative of a much larger group of people who are voicing their opinions to you on these issues in a variety of different ways.")
  • BoldThrough: User Loss for LiveJournal: A meta analysis with stats!; Archive for page one; page two; Archive for page two, post by partly bouncy at Fanthropology ("Purpose: One of the assumptions with in some of the discussion over BoldThrough from people condemning LiveJournal's decision to ban two users over fan art and the subsequent fall out regarding how LiveJournal handled that decision is that it will lead to a loss of LiveJournal users, to the extent that it may cause LiveJournal monetary losses. The claim was also made that LiveJournal users who were on LiveJournal before the sale to Six Apart were more likely to leave and that LiveJournal wanted to get rid of this group. The claim was also made that paid users were the ones most likely to leave, taking their money with them. This sort of begs the question, "Is this true? Has the fall out been that large? Have the actions of LiveJournal created a situation where people will and actually are leaving? Are those groups leaving in higher numbers?" The purpose of this piece of meta is to try to answer this question.")
  • O HAI, YA HOMOSEXUALITY IZ NOT A MENTAL ILLNESS!; Archive, post by slytherincesss ("Hi. Homosexuality is not a mental illness. Anorexia Nervosa is a mental illness. Comparing 6A/LJ's acceptance of pro-ana comms to their deletion of slash fan art IS REALLY NOT ON. Unless, of course, you want to start regressing 30+ years, back to when homosexuality was considered a mental illness . . . no? Then, please. You don't have to grasp at straws to bolster an already valid argument. Yes, let's ban the pro-ana sites, and next we can delete all the forums where individuals who may have, oh, depression, schizophrenia or bi-polar disorder cannot discuss the negative aspects of their illnesses either. Obviously, I don't support pro-ana, but I can recognize it as a symptom of the disease itself. Anorexia is an extremely competitive disorder. Pro-ana sites are indicative of that, yes? Let us not compare a work of slash fan art to a disease or a mental illness, please. They are not comparable and the argument is absurd. Let us just continue to fight the good fight, as so many already are doing. ORLY? YA RLY.")
  • My thoughts on the latest by SixApart; Archive, post by Serena ("What I'm going to say is not going to make a lot of people happy, but someone has to look at this from an emotionless perspective, so I am giving it a try. SixApart is a business. I think this is something we can all agree on. Being a business, SixApart is free to decide just how their services will be used (in this case, their LiveJournal service). Obviously, they are going through an unseen scism at this point, while one faction battles for free speech while the other battles for the idea of "public decency". The scism is not what we are seeing on lj_biz and elsewhere, but is occurring amongst their very own management. In the meantime, those of us who utilize their LiveJournal service are being caught in the crossfire, while they decide what they will support, and what they will not support any longer. The hard and fast truth is that SixApart has the right, as a business, to do exactly what they are doing. That excludes any judgmental factors, such as whether they are sensitive to the users' needs and desires. SixApart also has the right to provide absolutely and completely shoddy customer service, which they are obviously doing. Face it folks - no matter HOW many times you ask, cajole, insist, or demand they communicate better with the user base, it is very obvious that SixApart is not interested in communicating better with the user base. Stop asking them. They've shown through action/inaction that they don't intend to comply. You (general) can spend the next 150 years speculating on why SixApart is making the choices it is, but frankly, that will not change present or past facts in the matter.")
  • Oh, for the love of God--; Archive for page one; page two; Archive for page two, post by Cesperanza ("I don't normally post when things blow up or explode or get weird, but seriously, people, for the love of God, trying to get an even more problematic set of female-oriented LJ communities TOSed is just the worst kind of bullying: we of all people should understand that you can't really judge communities until you're in them and have context and understanding of what function they serve for their members. Being patronizing toward people who struggle with an illness (even if part of that illness is loud, defensive, or even misplaced pride in that illness) makes you look horrible; and for those of you saying, well, it's not really them, it's LJ you're mad at: I'm sorry, you're even worse, because you've just steamrolled a bunch of sick girls for your own personal agenda. And shutting down speech never helps. And sometimes people find community in the strangest places and through the weirdest ways. Someone said to me this afternoon, "Fandom is trying to get pro-ana comms TOSed". I'm saying--it's not fandom. And freedom of speech means protecting speech you don't like.")

August 12, 2007

August 14, 2007

  • On LJ/6A and the recent crisis of TOS; Archive, post by Beet (née Betrue) ("First, I am glad to have more clarification on what will not be allowed, however bummed I am to hear the actual terms. Now I want everyone to stop asking for more clarification. Stop searching out other communities and journals that are "just as bad" or "worse" than the journals that LJ says violated the Terms of Service. Why? Because this is battle we can't win and what we are doing is pissing in the well. LJ/6A CANNOT condone what fandom does. They may not openly give us the okay for something that they do not have the rights to--use someone of else's material for our own pleasure. It doesn't matter on whether you come down on fan-use of copyrighted material as infringement or as fair use, LJ/6A has NOTHING to do with it and is only asking for lawsuits and trouble if it formally and officially tells us it is okay by them. Because they don't get to decide that kind of thing and if they are knowingly party to it, then they can be sued. LJ and 6A have a lot more to lose than the average fan.")

August 15, 2007

  • The Trouble With User-Generated Content; Archive, comment by kai ("So, in my opinion, this isn't solely about fandom, as in "LJ/6A hates fandom, they want us to leave". It's more that fandom does generate a lot of unruly content, and unruly content scares the shit out of advertisers and hosting companies. And, when companies run by people lacking in (crisis) management and public relationship skills get scared, they tend to do monumentally stupid things.")
  • Open Letter to LiveJournal/Six Apart; Archive this post by imaginary circus has 14 pages, 497 comments ("Please sign this post if you were insulted or are upset by LJ/SA's repeated conflation of the terms "possibly obscene explicit under 18 fan art" and "child pornography."")
  • uncooked thoughts on this LJ business; Archive, post by my daroga ("I can't help but think that "freedom of speech" and self-policing are two separate issues. I support the idea that unreasonable dictates from on high squelch free thought and should be questioned. But why does it follow, then, that we should absolve ourselves for all responsibility? Can't we want free and safe space to express ourselves and reserve the right, as individual communities, to express disgust with certain practices?")
  • correspondence take 2; Archive, post by imaginary circuis ("I took anildash up on his offer to talk to me via email. I had a few questions for him.")

August 16, 2007

  • Of Sex, Innocence, and LJ; Archive, post by serenanna ("I am not an expert in either sexuality except my own, nor in psychology except to know that I am not insane. I do believe most people have an intact mental compass of what is real and what is fantasy, what they are willing to do and what they won't do. It's when they don't that there's something wrong with them that goes beyond personal interests. Be worried about the criminally insane, really, not about women that embrace their right to masturbation fantasies through the fictitious. Come on, guys get lesbian and barely legal girlie porn, right?")

August 27, 2007

  • "From a letter 6A sent to a "violator"; Archive, post by Aucta Sinistra ("So a bunch of 20-something interns, middle-aged office managers, and IT nerds - always the cream of the crop of professional literary critics - are going to judge the artistic quality of any story that has two 16-year-olds engaging in consensual sex, although if the two 16-year-olds were to stab each other to death while shooting up and trashing cars, it'd be perfectly acceptable as "art." And, how much do you want to bet that, if you asked them, you'd find there can never be a situation in which they'd see sexually oriented fiction involving minors as art (in fact the whole concept of erotica makes them kind of queasy, so they need to go lie down for a while with People magazine or the latest reality TV show - now that's art!). Rubberstamping makes it all so smooth and easy.")

2007: September

September 4, 2007:

  • (hoping for) a fistful of change; Archive for page one; page two; Archive for page two, post by random ("First things first: I am biased. I am perhaps less biased than some, because I can almost make sense of the actions of all sides and I’ll mock all involved should their lack of logic displease me, but I am still biased. I believe that wrongs have been done and I believe that it’s for the greater good should I illuminate them in a long-winded, link-laden, and mostly chronological fashion. By no means should this be considered an all-inclusive resource and I fully intend to add to the mass as I find and remember more things, but be warned: Link-hopping from here will literally kill hours of your time and way too many of your brain cells. So without further ado . . . The long and really f’n long of Strikethrough ’07.")
  • How LJ *should* have reacted; Arvhive, post by elfwreck ([reaction to an incident at Digg]: "That's what LJ should have done: it should've said, "we're trying to cover our asses legally, but we also have an obligation to provide service to our customers. Thousands of you think you're not doing anything illegal, and we're gonna stand by that--we're going to say, 'if someone thinks we're hosting illegal content, they need to bring a court order, not a save-the-children rant.'" They didn't, of course. And they won't. And they wonder why we don't think they're devoted to free speech? (Except, of course, for the freedom of their staff to slander their customers. That, they stand behind.)")

2008

  • Watch Me Get My Soapbox On; Archive for page one; page two; Archive for page two, post by Amireal ("And as long as we're being totally upfront, I am currently a metafandom compiler. That means I have read just about every single post that has crossed our little compiler hands. There are a couple of themes that seem to crop up repeatedly. A lot of people seem to think that OTW's focus has changed, that they're stepping where they weren't invited. That they're too academic. That the archive was enough darnit! Why did they have to ruin it?? Okay let's start this off with a quick run down memory lane. Remember strikethrough? Remember strikethrough part II? Remember every time your favorite archive/author/artist/gallery got served and at BEST they had some warning and a half assed explanation and at worst it was bang zap gone? We all remember that right? Because I was starting to feel like that was all a mild hallucination. Who knows I've gotten my hands on some of the good stuff recently. Why do I bring this up? What does it have to do with OTW? (For record keeping, the straw that broke the camel's back was fanlib, if you see the post dates and the incorporation dates, that's the very basic cause/effect. Very. Basic.)") (January 4, 2008)
  • Don't Let The Muggles Get You Down, or Why I Joined OTW; Archive, post by femmequixotic ("When FanLib raised its head back in May of last year, I thought it was a negative thing, trying to make money off of what we do. But, to be completely honest, though I was aware of the movement to build An Archive Of Our Own and kept one eye on the discussion, I was far more involved at the time in my own fannish world. I'd just found bandom a few months prior and I was into the shiny, and of course, there was the closing of HP canon to both look forward to and to fear. The discussions of a fan-run archive sounded interesting to me, particularly any that would allow me a place to archive my RPS (since neither of my current archives accept it), but they weren't top of my mind. And then Strikethrough 07 happened.") (January 9, 2008)

Further Reading: Official LiveJournal Posts

  • Well we really screwed this one up…; Archive, post by Barak Berkowitz (LJ staffer) ("For reasons we are still trying to figure out what was supposed to be a well planned attempt to clean up a few journals that were violating LiveJournal's policies that protect minors turned into a total mess. I can only say I’m sorry, explain what we did wrong and what we are doing to correct these problems and explain what we were trying to do but messed up so completely." Includes: "What we did wrong... How we are fixing it...So what were we trying to do when we messed up so badly?... Talking to press... Isn't this all just a panicked reaction to WFI?... Why did it take so long?...Will you make mistakes again?...Where is Brad?" (4863 comments) (May 31, 2007)
  • Journals being restored, Archive, post by Barak Berkowitz (LJ staffer) ("As promised below we have reviewed the journals that have been suspended and are now in the midst of unsuspended about half of them. The class of suspensions that are being reversed are; 1. All Fandom journals 2. All fiction journals 3. All journals who that had problems in their profile only. A large number of journals that are clear violations of our policies will remain suspended. I will write a post in more detail soon but I wanted to get this up now as promised. We are truly sorry for the mess, we have more work yet to do.") (4801 comments) (May 31, 2007)
  • Next steps; Archive, post by Barak Berkowitz (LJ staffer) ("I want to update you on the status of correcting the issues that occurred earlier this week: First, all journals and communities that were suspended that did not clearly violate community policies have been restored. Over the weekend and into the next couple of weeks we will be doing the following:") (4868 comments) (June 6, 2007)
  • Moving forward; Archive, post by Barak Berkowitz (LJ staffer) ("I want to say thank you to all of you who have been giving us a chance to correct the issues around suspended journals, and particularly to the abuse volunteers who have been working tirelessly to keep up with your feedback and correct any remaining problems. If there is any doubt, the abuse team thought they were executing exactly the policy that we wanted them to execute, and they thought it was as dumb as you did. The unfortunate fact is, a large amount of the problem was a failure in communications. That is my failure, not theirs, and I am very sorry about it. Over the last week, we have been making significant progress in clarifying and redefining or policies and procedures.") (3289 comments) (June 8, 2007)
  • Who needs a bear hug; Archive, post by ljkrissy (LJ staffer) ("It's been a rough week all around for the LiveJournal community and staff, and I've got to admit I'm a little nervous to come back and post to news! Everyone on the team is truly sorry for what we all went through, and we’re hoping to get back to our version of normal as soon as we can. We thank you for the calls and faxes, comments and posts. While we can't answer each one individually, we did take note of everyone's input and will be using that to improve our process and policies going forward.") (4782 comments) (June 8, 2007)
  • more clarification; Archive, post by Abe Hassan (LJ staffer) at lj bz ("We're seeing a lot of confusion in the comments to our previous post. Our intention is to provide clarification, not to create concern. All it says is that things that are illegal under United States law aren't allowed here, either. (And as a note to our non-US users: yeah, we know since the laws are different, they can be really confusing to understand, and we're sorry.) We hear the community asking for clarification on what's allowed and what's not allowed. People far smarter than us have been trying for years to wrap language around these definitions, and it's not possible. What we can do is tell you the standards that we will be applying when "questionable" content is reported to us.") (has 4313 comments) (July 19, 2007)
  • Illegal and Harmful Content Policy Clarifications; Archive, post by theljstaff at lj biz ("We are sorry it has taken so long to address the concerned community members. From reading the recent comments there's a lot of misinformation regarding the two users who were permanently suspended on Friday. In this post we're going to try and condense and reiterate all of our recent policy clarifications as well as address the most frequent questions we've seen. To begin, we'd like to restate our policy on illegal and harmful content: Our goal is to encourage and promote a free and open community. We will only intervene to the extent needed to remove illegal and harmful content that is reported to us.") (4774 comments) (August 8, 2007)
  • Process Change for Non-Photographic Images; Archive, post by theljstaff at lj biz ("Hey, everybody. We've heard loud and clear that a lot of you are worried about whether the policy clarifications we've been talking about are going to affect you or your communities. And there's of course a lot of frustration with some of the communications that have been going on. We wanted to take some steps to fix both of these problems. First, we’ve reached out to a large number of you and we’re listening to your feedback. Thank you so much to all of you who believe in the ability for all of us to work together, who've contributed so much to helping us get this stuff straightened out. This post won't address every single concern, but it's the first step of an ongoing process. We do think our actions will be a pretty good reminder that we’re all part of the same community here, and that we’re all ultimately on the same side.") (3067 comments) (August 13, 2007)

Further Reading: Blogs and Industry

References

  1. LiveJournal did not suspend journals based on the interests murder, crime, drugs, cocaine, theft, tax evasion or election fraud; instead, interests such as incest, rape, child pornography, and pedophilia were the targets.
  2. Lolita Reading Community
  3. comments by katiefoolery, correspondence, May 30, 2007
  4. comments by Soyalex, 2015, on the talk page
  5. "For record keeping, the straw that broke the camel's back was fanlib, if you see the post dates and the incorporation dates, that's the very basic cause/effect. Very. Basic.") (January 4, 2008)
  6. comment by stewardess at Will You Rat Me Out If You Don't Like What I Write?; Archive for page one, (June 13, 2007)
  7. Xeni Jardin, LJ purges incest, slash fic under pressure from self-appointed "warriors", Boing Boing, May 30, 2007
  8. Declan McCullagh, Mass Deletions Sparks LiveJournal Revolt, CNet News, May 30, 2007
  9. Livejournal, SO MUCH WTF, mr profit's girl friday, May 29, 2007
  10. A comment about banning journals who'd used lime-green as a background.
  11. Anildash at icon_livejournal suspends hundreds of accounts, Archived version MetaFilter, May 30, 2007
  12. Another Exchange of Emails; Archive for page one; page two; Archive for page two; page three; Archive for page three, post by liz marcs (total: 14 pages containing 517 comments) (May 29, 2007), About that LJ Rumor...; Archive for one; page two; Archive for page two; page three; Archive for page three; page four; Archive for page four; page five; Archive for page five; page six; Archive for page six, post by liz marcs (244 comments) (May 29, 2007), A Swiftly Tilting LJ...; Archive, post by liz marcs (May 30, 2007), LJ User Action Centers; Archive for page one; page two; Archive for page two; page three; Archive for page three, post by liz marcs (117 comments) (May 30, 2007)
  13. Barak Berkowitz, Well we really screwed this one up...; Archive, Livejournal News, May 31, 2007
  14. Barak Berkowitz, Journals being restored, Livejournal News, May 31, 2007
  15. reposted at "From a letter 6A sent to a "violator" (quoted from an LJ post at LJ news, not anyone I know, but it's in their last thread) -- Aucta Sinistra's LiveJounral, posted August 27, 2007
  16. Illegal and Harmful Content Policy Clarifications; Archive, lj-biz, July 7, 2007
  17. journal, accessed in mid-August, 2007, now no longer online
  18. Thanks, Brad.; Archive for page one; page two; Archive for page two, August 6, 2007
  19. On Leaving SixApart; Archive, August 6, 2207
  20. The demise of a social media platform: Tracking LiveJournal's decline; Archive, post by Aja Romano at Daily Dot
  21. hearsawho. Transcript of the video, 04 August 2007. (Accessed 17 March 2015)
  22. Fandom Wank Wiki. The T-Shirt is Robust, via Wayback: 05 September 2011. (Accessed 17 March 2015)
  23. Discussion in fandom_wank: Strikethrough Two: Electric Boogaloo - Apologies for trolling but ..., 04 August 2007. (Accessed 17 March 2015)
  24. A latter-day anon commentator wrote in fail_fandomanon: "I will never get over that. The fact that the t-shirt didn't light on fire at all, that it was horribly planned out in case it did light on fire (just sitting on her couch holding it with her arm??), and then that she still posted the unedited video online. Wow. Amazing." Re: Aja and Andy, 11 March 2015. (Accessed 17 March 2015)
  25. quoted by the archangel from the original wikipedia article (which no longer contains this statement) at [http://news.livejournal.com/98733.html?page=26 You Say It's Your Birthday at the official LJ news page (May 31, 2007)
  26. comment by chofi at Ardente veritate incendite tenebras mundi. (May 31, 2007)
  27. comment by littlegreenwolf at Anime News Network, May 30, 2007
  28. from coell's journal
  29. icon by azurite, created for Strikethrough, 2007
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