Political pundits, bloggers, commentators, etc., of all political leanings and extremes, I come to you now as a simple human being who longs to be heard, like you. I am writing today about a notable increase in the amount of “reporting” among the Internet’s social networking king, Facebook.
Perhaps just an ordinary rise in “passions” that occurs during an election season explains why our site and many others have experienced an uptick in being “reported” to Facebook as “spam” or “hate speech.” But nonetheless, people are using Facebook’s ability to not just “block” people and websites like mine, but to use its most potent weapon: reporting. Blocking someone or a site is self-contained, the equivalent of turning off a radio station you don’t like. However “reporting” is much different.
People of all political stripes, I reach out to you now in asking that our conflicts be unabated by the “report freaks” on this greatest of social mediums. Why must Facebook be polluted by those who lack the maturity to simply ignore one’s posts (i.e. block them) and instead must “report” them? …Huh, “reporting,” even if it is online, is akin to turning someone in to the “authorities,” just like in Nazi Germany, the Soviet Union, or Pol Pot’s Cambodia. It seems Facebook can’t bring itself to deprive the little cyber Nazis of our day of their urge to ban and suppress others via its far too lenient “reporting” ability. Why should Facebook, one of society’s greatest gifts (some would say quite the opposite) be made to ban people for their opinions via “reporting” them?
If I don’t like someone’s postings, I’ll glance over them, or at worst block him/her/it, nothing more. The only time I reported anyone was when a ”comment” to one of my posts threatened the life of the President, something with which I surely don’t want to be associated. But, aside from such deranged instances, this whole “reporting” crap has to stop, otherwise Facebook will cease being the greatest channel of expression that has ever existed. Thus you, Mr. Mark Zuckerberg, Inc., need to drastically limit why someone can be “reported.”
Mr. Suckerberg, did you create Facebook? — for billions of people to just post their thoughts on who won American Idol, or on society’s oh-so invaluable Honey Boo Boo? Did you, Mr. Zuckerberg, not think for a second that maybe … just MAYBE your little social medium may be used for expressing opinions other than on the endless photos people post of their kids every freakin’ five minutes with the caption: “Ooops, little Johnny just went poopy again!” or the always urgent news of: “I’m baking a cake!” WHO CARES!? But according to how Facebook is cracking down on political postings that is all it was supposed to be used for.
Mr. Mark Zuckerwhatever, all you have done with your medium’s appeasement of those who wish to “report” others is allow the rise of innumerable mini-Hitlers. That is to whom your medium is catering with the easy “reporting” ability you allow to occur and thus ban – not “block,” mind you, but ban.
Newsflash, Mark Zuckerwhatever: WE OWN YOU. We, conservatives, liberals, libertarians, peaceniks, and yes, even Black Panthers, White Supremacists and Islamists; everything everyone else finds despicable — WE own Facebook (whether you like it or not).
Sorry, Mr. Suckerberg, but you have become the Dr. Frankenstein of the 21st Century, and we, the people, are your monster. It must be dispiriting, indeed, creating something over which you no longer have full control. Freedom of expression: that is why you created Facebook, Mr. Zuckerwhatever, whether you intended to or not. And in Facebook’s case it is beautiful, hideously beautiful, glorious in all it is able to display; allowing the true nature of people — the good, the bad, and the ugly — to be seen via the security of cyber space. So enough with your medium’s “reporting” capabilities, Suckerburg, we politicos are really growing tired of it.
Dear Facebook group administrators and participants, unless someone is physically threatening or advocating violence, there should be no reason to “report” them. “Block” them all you want, but why “report” someone because of a statement, story, or website you dislike? Grow some cojones, and thus tolerance, all ye jelly-spined, limp-wristed, gutless, Nurse Ratched-personifying “reporting addicts,” and simply block a person or site, just like on television: I don’t like a certain TV show, I turn it off. If enough people do the same you know what happens… ? Yes, the show ends up on the Current network. …No, seriously, it goes off the air. That’s called a FREEDOM. DEAL WITH IT!
Facebook must revamp its criteria for allowing people, businesses, websites and other entities to be “reported” and limit its standards strictly to physical threats and avocations of violence. If not, then perhaps it’s time for another web-developing whiz kid, with his acne and coke-bottle glasses, surrounded by empty bags of Cheetos in mom’s basement to create another online network, one that does not allow people to be “reported” by humanity’s pathetic, power-hungry, wannabe Stasi officers; a truly free social network that could one day render Facebook extinct.
Don’t like what I just said? That’s okay, you can always report me. It’s easy enough to do with one hand, your left hand, as your right one will undoubtedly be extended in a fitting salute.