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Youtube allows disabling commenting of videos with agenda?





JoryRFerrell
Should Youtube allow politicians and political activist groups to disable comments on their political ads?
For instance, some anti-same-sex-marriage campaigns block the ability to comment on the ads they post. Why should they be allowed when they are shouting out about their opinion? It's one thing to block commenting by people who harass you and your campaign. It's a completely different matter to block commenting by people you are attacking in the first place. That seems like cowardice, and an inability to handle free-speech.
handfleisch
Are you serious?
JoryRFerrell
handfleisch wrote:
Are you serious?


Uhm....yes. Have I ever posted anything that wasn't?
Do you disagree? And if so, why?

Everyone, please don't just ask people if they are serious, and then leave no defense for why you take your own position....or even just what your position is. Rolling Eyes Razz
Ankhanu
I don't see why Youtube should prevent comment blocking for these groups (without likewise preventing comment blocking across the board for all users).

I think comment blocking in these sorts of situations is a somewhat reprehensible choice by the user/uploader, but it is a choice they should have if it is a feature of the service. More often than not, the choice to enable comment blocking is very telling of the nature of the uploader that somewhat erodes/denies their credibility.
Peterssidan
I think the same rules should apply to all videos, no matter content. I also think it is good that you can disable commenting if you want. There could be many valid reasons why you would want to disable commenting.

If I want to watch a video only because I might have something to say about it I often choose to not watch it if it has commenting disabled. It isn't very hard to do.
IndieCthulhu
Quiet simply have you seen the type of people that comment on YouTube 90% of the time?

Okay you've thought about that, now add political topics that are very touchy with people highly opposed and highly agreeing. The main comments that you would get on videos such as this would just be downright painful.

And for those handful of YouTubers that have half a brain and actually have an idea about what is going on would quiet simply be an argument that belongs in a political forum board not YouTube comments where everyone that posts a comment is almost always inclined to believe that anyone else posting a comment has the IQ of a walnut, being smashed by Homer Simpson. It's not like these political campaigners actually pay attention to what the public says so in the end its wise to not let people get to angry they have blood-lust about some 12 year old that thinks they know politics on YouTube and instead let them talk about their political beliefs on the campaigners website where they might be heard and not have to deal with people to lazy to go to the website. Or a forum board where people have an actually community worked out and people get to know each other.
JoryRFerrell
Peterssidan wrote:
I think the same rules should apply to all videos, no matter content. I also think it is good that you can disable commenting if you want. There could be many valid reasons why you would want to disable commenting.

If I want to watch a video only because I might have something to say about it I often choose to not watch it if it has commenting disabled. It isn't very hard to do.


I am aware that I don't have to watch it, and I can understand what it says about them when they block comments. However, there are folks who understand neither, and should be exposed to any and all sides of an issue, when there are groups actively trying to take away freedoms or taking stances that are not necessarily representative of fact. Folks who are not intelligent enough to look at how these folks operate may be swayed by the ad before ever hearing the opposing sides. Imagine if the president post's something political on the internet. Would he have a right to block comments by "we the people"? No. If he is posting as a politician, he is posting something which people should be able to rebut if they feel the need. People in positions of power and media should never have the ability to censor refutation of their position. That is what this is: Political Censorship. It's a passive form, but it's censorship nevertheless.

This isn't solely a matter of same-sex marriage, but it's a great example.
What reasonable cause would they have for posting an ad that claims homosexuals are immoral and not capable of raising healthy children, while at the same time, blocking homosexuals from commenting the video? Shouldn't political ads which attack human rights always be open to commenting and criticism?

If I posted a video about you, which defamed you and called for your rights to be stripped away, but which people solely relied on for info about you, wouldn't you want them to see the arguments brought up in the comments? Especially with the fact being they will not likely do any other research or actively seek other ads opposed to it, so there is at least a chance they might see something that makes sense in the comments? Isn't freedom of press involved here? If channel four says shit about you in a youtube release, shouldn't you have the right to directly address the claims and info they posted?

If these ads are all lazy people see on the subject and are ignorant enough to feel they know enough on the subject to take away human rights, shouldn't steps be taken to make sure they hear both sides?
IndieCthulhu
JoryRFerrell wrote:
Peterssidan wrote:
I think the same rules should apply to all videos, no matter content. I also think it is good that you can disable commenting if you want. There could be many valid reasons why you would want to disable commenting.

If I want to watch a video only because I might have something to say about it I often choose to not watch it if it has commenting disabled. It isn't very hard to do.


I am aware that I don't have to watch it, and I can understand what it says about them when they block comments. However, there are folks who understand neither, and should be exposed to any and all sides of an issue, when there are groups actively trying to take away freedoms or taking stances that are not necessarily representative of fact. Folks who are not intelligent enough to look at how these folks operate may be swayed by the ad before ever hearing the opposing sides. Imagine if the president post's something political on the internet. Would he have a right to block comments by "we the people"? No. If he is posting as a politician, he is posting something which people should be able to rebut if they feel the need. People in positions of power and media should never have the ability to censor refutation of their position. That is what this is: Political Censorship. It's a passive form, but it's censorship nevertheless.

This isn't solely a matter of same-sex marriage, but it's a great example.
What reasonable cause would they have for posting an ad that claims homosexuals are immoral and not capable of raising healthy children, while at the same time, blocking homosexuals from commenting the video? Shouldn't political ads which attack human rights always be open to commenting and criticism?

If I posted a video about you, which defamed you and called for your rights to be stripped away, but which people solely relied on for info about you, wouldn't you want them to see the arguments brought up in the comments? Especially with the fact being they will not likely do any other research or actively seek other ads opposed to it, so there is at least a chance they might see something that makes sense in the comments? Isn't freedom of press involved here? If channel four says shit about you in a youtube release, shouldn't you have the right to directly address the claims and info they posted?

If these ads are all lazy people see on the subject and are ignorant enough to feel they know enough on the subject to take away human rights, shouldn't steps be taken to make sure they hear both sides?


What you are saying is completely true but also naive.

Political ads always have a form of communication, even if they are blocking the easiest form of communication for you on youtube, if the issue really upsets you that much the political candidate would have their own website (usually posted in the description or end of the advert) where there is a feedback and contact information section. And if you are STILL not happy with not having the freedom of speech you can always go down to your electives office and make your statement there in person.

If you were to post a video about Peterssidan that was entirely defamatory and you had blocked the comments, the fact that you are making about one specific person, they can SUE you for defamation of character. They can also lobby to the point that the video is using them as a basis meaning that Peterssidan LEGALLY in accordance to the YouTube Terms and Conditions has the rights to alter/remove and change the video as he sees fit.
Ankhanu
Yes, people should be exposed to any and all sides of an issue… but comment blocking does not infringe upon that exposure. Blocking commenting does not prevent dissemination of rebuttal or refuting content on Youtube (or in other media), it just means that it's not immediately linked to the video/content in question and someone interested must seek it (and often recommended videos on the topic will show up in that video's feed, whether comments are enabled or disabled). Comment blocking does NOT prevent people from making responses, just prevents them from responding directly below the video, there's no actual censorship, just a sense of it. Comment blocking is a non-issue in terms of dissenting content in that way.

Honestly, if a user is so willfully ignorant or disinterested in a subject, they're not going to be receptive to alternative stances as presented in a Youtube comment. If they're interested in the topic, they'll continue looking for content, and if they're not interested, or firmly within one camp, they're likely to stay that way, comments or no.

I think it's more open/honest to leave commenting enabled, but I'm supportive of the freedom to make the choice as well.
deanhills
Ankhanu wrote:
I think it's more open/honest to leave commenting enabled, but I'm supportive of the freedom to make the choice as well.
Agreed. Particularly when I'm looking at some of those comments. I haven't posted anything on the YouTube yet, but would I be able to edit the comments, as some of the comments just look completely nasty and "dumb". I think the authors should have both the right to moderate the comments as well as close the posting of materials to comments.
truespeed
you can moderate comments dean,so you do have that option.


YouTube seems to attract and bring out the worst in people,
I fully understand why people would switch off comments,this should always be an option,even for those with an agenda.
handfleisch
truespeed wrote:
you can moderate comments dean,so you do have that option.


YouTube seems to attract and bring out the worst in people,
I fully understand why people would switch off comments,this should always be an option,even for those with an agenda.


Yes, that's why I thought this was so funny as an issue. Youtube comments are the among lowest forms of debate out there, so I am surprised anyone would care or stick up for the right to make Youtube comments. There are plenty of better places to comment or debate (and I might add that most of them make no difference whatsoever, except to make the commenter fool themselves into thinking they made a difference.) Also, everyone who posts a video has the ability to turn the comments on or off, so why make a special restriction on political videos? It's all nonsense.
JoryRFerrell
IndieCthulhu wrote:
JoryRFerrell wrote:
Peterssidan wrote:
I think the same rules should apply to all videos, no matter content. I also think it is good that you can disable commenting if you want. There could be many valid reasons why you would want to disable commenting.

If I want to watch a video only because I might have something to say about it I often choose to not watch it if it has commenting disabled. It isn't very hard to do.


I am aware that I don't have to watch it, and I can understand what it says about them when they block comments. However, there are folks who understand neither, and should be exposed to any and all sides of an issue, when there are groups actively trying to take away freedoms or taking stances that are not necessarily representative of fact. Folks who are not intelligent enough to look at how these folks operate may be swayed by the ad before ever hearing the opposing sides. Imagine if the president post's something political on the internet. Would he have a right to block comments by "we the people"? No. If he is posting as a politician, he is posting something which people should be able to rebut if they feel the need. People in positions of power and media should never have the ability to censor refutation of their position. That is what this is: Political Censorship. It's a passive form, but it's censorship nevertheless.

This isn't solely a matter of same-sex marriage, but it's a great example.
What reasonable cause would they have for posting an ad that claims homosexuals are immoral and not capable of raising healthy children, while at the same time, blocking homosexuals from commenting the video? Shouldn't political ads which attack human rights always be open to commenting and criticism?

If I posted a video about you, which defamed you and called for your rights to be stripped away, but which people solely relied on for info about you, wouldn't you want them to see the arguments brought up in the comments? Especially with the fact being they will not likely do any other research or actively seek other ads opposed to it, so there is at least a chance they might see something that makes sense in the comments? Isn't freedom of press involved here? If channel four says shit about you in a youtube release, shouldn't you have the right to directly address the claims and info they posted?

If these ads are all lazy people see on the subject and are ignorant enough to feel they know enough on the subject to take away human rights, shouldn't steps be taken to make sure they hear both sides?


What you are saying is completely true but also naive.

Political ads always have a form of communication, even if they are blocking the easiest form of communication for you on youtube, if the issue really upsets you that much the political candidate would have their own website (usually posted in the description or end of the advert) where there is a feedback and contact information section. And if you are STILL not happy with not having the freedom of speech you can always go down to your electives office and make your statement there in person.

If you were to post a video about Peterssidan that was entirely defamatory and you had blocked the comments, the fact that you are making about one specific person, they can SUE you for defamation of character. They can also lobby to the point that the video is using them as a basis meaning that Peterssidan LEGALLY in accordance to the YouTube Terms and Conditions has the rights to alter/remove and change the video as he sees fit.


I am well am well aware that he could sue for defamation. That is not the point. The point is, if he hypothetically had no other recourse, according to the law, should he not be afforded the opportunity to speak his mind directly against any media? How is defamation of millions at once any different from defamation of an individual? Shouldn't people during the civil right's movement had the right to write news articles in the newspapers which also featured articles defaming an entire race? Wouldn't that have had an impact in coverage of their side of the issue? That may seem idealist, and it is. If they had those kids of rights in the first place, they wouldn't have had much to worry about. The fact that THEY DID NOT have the right to directly confront media attacking them was a sign that they did NOT have equal right's or representation. That's what this is about.

If no one cares about gay right's, and so they receive less representation, doesn't that mean they need every opportunity to approach criticism of them? Why should large, financially-powerful organizations be allowed to engage in the spreading of mass propaganda while attempting to shut down the oppositions ability to represent itself?

I am not just attacking the actual ability to block comments. I am also attacking the mindset that causes people to do so. As others stated, ti people with the ability to reason, blocking comments is a sign of a non-credible poster. BUT, not everyone finds logical thinking so easy. Not everyone is
aware of how one-sided their viewing of propaganda can be. So by posting this, anyone with said problems, who reads it, may hopefully think a little more about the reason for it,and whether or not it is in fact a sign of a source that can be trusted.

I have had far better luck asking people questions about why something works, than stating facts about how it does. I honestly see more people get that strange expression of discovery when I bring up my points as questions, rather than when I state FACTS. Fact's are sometimes hard to trust. We realize this, but they are still not something we (HUMANS IN GENERAL, NOT EVERYONE) readily accept unless it seems to be widespread knowledge. Maybe the issue here, as with religion, is that we don't question things enough. WE DON'T ASK ENOUGH QUESTIONS. We (again, generalizing here) just want the simple answers, hot and fast, easy-bake style. But if we constantly ask why, however tired we feel about having to chase down the answers, we are less likely to fall for bullshit.
So, this isn't necessarily just about asking for comments by political ads to be un-blocked. It's a question as to why these organizations block them in the first place.
jsk02a
I quite simply believe it's the uploader's decision whether or not he or she wants to allow comments. I have read the trolls, and perhaps the uploader doesn't feel like they want to deal with a bunch of people posting hate comments on the page.

I think it's firmly their right to disable comments, no matter what topic the video covers. If you don't like it, you don't have to watch the video...
JoryRFerrell
handfleisch wrote:
truespeed wrote:
you can moderate comments dean,so you do have that option.


YouTube seems to attract and bring out the worst in people,
I fully understand why people would switch off comments,this should always be an option,even for those with an agenda.


Yes, that's why I thought this was so funny as an issue. Youtube comments are the among lowest forms of debate out there, so I am surprised anyone would care or stick up for the right to make Youtube comments. There are plenty of better places to comment or debate (and I might add that most of them make no difference whatsoever, except to make the commenter fool themselves into thinking they made a difference.) Also, everyone who posts a video has the ability to turn the comments on or off, so why make a special restriction on political videos? It's all nonsense.


Any chosen forum of debate is what you make of it. There are people here on this website who act like fools, but people there are also folks who intentionally come to have real discussions. In the end where you debate does not matter so much as HOW you debate. And again, I am strictly speaking about organizations and politicians. Not average joe. As for me not having to watch a vid, can't we extend that and say people don't have to read all the comments on their vid?
Why should people be allowed to, in some cases, purposefully mis-inform the public, yet have the right to not deal with "nasty comments"? Do you HAVE TO READ all comments to your videos? No. So you are your own comment filter aren't you? Isn't that how it's supposed to be in the land of free speech? Everyone gets to have their say, and everyone gets to ignore the voice of everyone else who gets their own say?
Ankhanu
Jory, I think your argument is something of a strawman.
As I've mentioned, the medium of Youtube is not preventing criticism of a given point, even if an uploader has disabled commenting. If other users wish to make commentary on the uploader's video(s), and they've blocked commenting, there is nothing preventing the user from uploading their response to Youtube. All sides to an argument have the same opportunities to have their content hosted (as long as the ToS is not violated).

In your direct example of gay rights, there is nothing preventing those supportive of sexual equality from voicing their views on Youtube… in fact many users I'm subscribed to, and many more users I'm not, voice such opinions on a regular basis. Yes, the people putting down homosexuals are douchebags, but comment enabling/disabling will have no affect upon that… and it doesn't change the fact that opposing views may be readily expressed.

Do you seriously believe that if comments were enabled on currently disabled videos that there would be any actual change? I have severe reservations that it would. If someone's not aware that they're watching propaganda when they see it, I seriously doubt a sea of Youtube comments is going to open their eyes or sway them to a different way of thinking. Most of these people also aren't going to read the comments on a Youtube video anyway. The issue is a non-starter.

I think the reasons why organizations/users block commenting in the first place is often quite obvious. Yes, asking why is important, critical thought is very important… but sometimes the answer to the question is so obvious that the question doesn't really need to be asked Razz

JoryRFerrell wrote:
Isn't that how it's supposed to be in the land of free speech? Everyone gets to have their say, and everyone gets to ignore the voice of everyone else who gets their own say?

Again, even with comment blocking, there is NO limitation upon free speech.
IndieCthulhu
Okay to cover all bases when it comes to Freedom of Speech.

America one of very very few countries that have a legal right to Freedom of Speech, many people don't know but countries such as Australia don't legally have Freedom of Speech, so the fact is Youtube has hundreds of servers around the world, and is a global corporation, so all they have to do is move a video to an offshore server and BAM no more legal Freedom of Speech.

In the end, politicians should have the right to do what everyone else on you tube has the right to do, block comments if necessary, post videos and well, everything else.
JoryRFerrell
IndieCthulhu wrote:
Okay to cover all bases when it comes to Freedom of Speech.

America one of very very few countries that have a legal right to Freedom of Speech, many people don't know but countries such as Australia don't legally have Freedom of Speech, so the fact is Youtube has hundreds of servers around the world, and is a global corporation, so all they have to do is move a video to an offshore server and BAM no more legal Freedom of Speech.

In the end, politicians should have the right to do what everyone else on you tube has the right to do, block comments if necessary, post videos and well, everything else.


Youtube has the ability to allow Aussies to block comments, while preventing comments from being blocked in US. It's a simple matter of filtering nation tags, allowing the prevention of non-US citizens making comments, or seeing comments made by Americans. So that point is moot.
Also, despite being based off seas, they are still subject to US law if they choose to operate in this country. Any Japanese industry, which has bases in the US, must play by all the same rules and laws as US citizens. In other words, they have to follow laws concerning freedom of speech and equal employment.
JoryRFerrell
Ankhanu wrote:
Jory, I think your argument is something of a strawman.
As I've mentioned, the medium of Youtube is not preventing criticism of a given point, even if an uploader has disabled commenting. If other users wish to make commentary on the uploader's video(s), and they've blocked commenting, there is nothing preventing the user from uploading their response to Youtube. All sides to an argument have the same opportunities to have their content hosted (as long as the ToS is not violated).

In your direct example of gay rights, there is nothing preventing those supportive of sexual equality from voicing their views on Youtube… in fact many users I'm subscribed to, and many more users I'm not, voice such opinions on a regular basis. Yes, the people putting down homosexuals are douchebags, but comment enabling/disabling will have no affect upon that… and it doesn't change the fact that opposing views may be readily expressed.

Do you seriously believe that if comments were enabled on currently disabled videos that there would be any actual change? I have severe reservations that it would. If someone's not aware that they're watching propaganda when they see it, I seriously doubt a sea of Youtube comments is going to open their eyes or sway them to a different way of thinking. Most of these people also aren't going to read the comments on a Youtube video anyway. The issue is a non-starter.

I think the reasons why organizations/users block commenting in the first place is often quite obvious. Yes, asking why is important, critical thought is very important… but sometimes the answer to the question is so obvious that the question doesn't really need to be asked Razz

JoryRFerrell wrote:
Isn't that how it's supposed to be in the land of free speech? Everyone gets to have their say, and everyone gets to ignore the voice of everyone else who gets their own say?

Again, even with comment blocking, there is NO limitation upon free speech.


In the end, yes, people can make videos, which actually directly address any other video which blocks commenting. But I think the question does need to be asked. Why block ALL commenting on a political ad? Why not block individual posters who add no valid points? You CAN flag spammers. So why BLOCK ALL posts? Also, can't you ignore any comments not to your liking? Do you have to read everything you see? No. Again, your own eyes and mind are filters.

Also, I am aware of your point about people not being likely to change their minds because of a youtube comment. But then again, that doesn't mean it never happens. Right?

I do not see blocking comments on a cartoon about unicorns to be an issue. There is no reason to attack such a video, so blocking comments won't hurt anything, despite being pointless. It's a video about unicorns. However, take a video about say....Iran. A political group purposefully posts a video stating a massive load of horse shit. This horse crap is designed to rile up patriotic Americans who are already scared. Should such an ad, designed with a specific purpose, (to inform...or misinform in this case) be allowed to spread propaganda without giving people informed about the true facts the ability to at least ATTEMPT to speak some sense on the matter? Should videos, advocating against rights, have the right/ability to spread propaganda designed to the end of motivating the public into taking action, which may result in human rights violations down the line, while also preventing direct opposition?

Basically, it feels like there should be a line in the sand between posters making videos as individuals who are not currently elected to a position of office, as well as not spreading propaganda as a group. I.E. Joe Blow down the street could block comments on his political rant, but our mayors and president, when posting info related to politics, could not.

If Hitler had a youtube channel, should he have had the right to block comments on his political motivated videos which preached hate, and more importantly, political action and physical violence against Jews? Unlike the impoverished german in the alleyway at the time, EVERYONE was listening to Hitler, because he was in a position of power. THAT is my point in this. Also, because no one normally pays any mind to youtube comments, wouldn't you hope that at least a few people on the fence about the whole situation, might pay attention to a few of the comments, and possibly end up acting as "Schindlers"?

Basically, politicians are not like the average citizens. Political activists/organizations are not like
the average citizen. These groups ARE INTENTIONALLY designed and act to effect mass changes to our politics. In this light, doesn't this mean they should have certain restrictions on how they are allowed to spread their propaganda, however right or wrong, compared to an individual with no political agenda?


To empasize...I do IN FACT think disabling comments has an effect. The fact that I see heated flame wars (alongside actual reasonable, sensible comments) involving people who are thinking about the issue says alot. The fact that people are there to watch a video and will usually comment when they have the option, says to me that commenting is a VERY important part of youtube. COMMENTS ARE CENTRAL TO YOUTUBE, since sharing is the whole point of youtube. It is one of the major features that makes youtube so well-liked(it's ease of use compared to other systems). How many people would probably start using Vimeo or some other option WITH comments, if youtube did away with it's own comment system? I certainly would. Videos on youtube are meant to be shared and talked about so it defeats a lot of the purpose (unless you are trying to spread propaganda directly unopposed) to block commenting.
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