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No First Amendment if They Ban You

Discussion in 'Game/SP News & Comments' started by chevalier, Oct 2, 2009.

  1. Blades of Vanatar

    Blades of Vanatar Vanatar will rise again Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    Thrasher - Look at it as a variance of a lease program. The government gives you a virtual spot to set-up shop. But then a company or person or whomever puts their time and most importantly, their resources, aka money into the site. It's like their own virtual business or shop. Their's to run as they see fit. Think about your home. I own a home on 2 acres of land. I really don't own the land, the government does. When I "buy" the land, it's basically a lease from the government. I still have the right to keep others off of it, but in reality, it's still the government's property. That doesn't make it open to everyone else.
     
  2. Thrasher91604

    Thrasher91604 For those who know ...

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    I don't lease the land from the government. I own it. The government did not create it.

    Whereas the opposite is true for the internet.
     
  3. Blades of Vanatar

    Blades of Vanatar Vanatar will rise again Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    That is One-Hundred percent incorrect. You own nothing, buying the land from someone else is just transferring the "lease" or better yet, the initial "Land-grant". The government owns it, not you. You have a title to your home, which is a land-grant from the government.
     
  4. Thrasher91604

    Thrasher91604 For those who know ...

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    Somehow I doubt that all of the land is the US came from government land grants. :rolleyes:
     
  5. Blackthorne TA

    Blackthorne TA Master in his Own Mind Staff Member ★ SPS Account Holder Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    Well sure, lots of it came from US government land grabs :)
     
  6. Splunge

    Splunge Bhaal’s financial advisor Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    The legal technicalities surrounding land claims notwithstanding, I want to respond to this:

    The government developed the protocols that allow the internet to exist. The actual infrastructure might be owned by private companies or governmental agencies, depending on where you are (telephone lines, for example, might be owned by the government, government-owned corporations, or non-governmental corporations). The servers that actually host web sites, however, are privately-owned (except, perhaps, in the case of government websites), and pay fees to the owners of the infrastructure in order to use said infrastructure. The non-governmental websites that use those servers are privately-owned, and in turn pay fees to the host. So basically, the government has little to do with the internet, other than developing the original protocols and maybe providing some fee-based infrastructure.

    Look at it another way - the government builds roads (infrastructure). Those roads allow traffic to get from my home to yours. Does this mean that I or anyone else should be allowed unlimited access to your home if we use the roads to get there?
     
    Blades of Vanatar likes this.
  7. NOG (No Other Gods)

    NOG (No Other Gods) Going to church doesn't make you a Christian

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    My point is that they do have equal access. If you want to go through all the work and effort Sony did and set up your own servers and systems, you can. The same standards, rights, priviledges and responsabilities apply to both you and Sony. It's just that Sony invested the resources to use it, whereas you haven't.

    More on point, the government builds roads and provides free access to the roads, but that doesn't mean you are entitled to take a car from GM without paying for it. The government made the roads, but not the vehicles for traveling on them. Private corporations make those, and if you want to get one from a private corporation, you have to play by their rules (prices, conditions, agreements, etc). Now, if you want to make your own car, you can, provided you're willing to invest the time, effort, and resources to do so.

    In short, this guy is like someone who got a car from a company on lease, failed to pay the lease, and then sued the company when they repossessed the car.
     
  8. Splunge

    Splunge Bhaal’s financial advisor Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    Exactly. And that's the point I was trying to make in post #19.

    Actually, that would be more equivalent to accessing the internet without paying the ISP user fees, as it's the ISP which provides the means by which you can use the internet (must like cars provide the means by which you can use the roads).
     
  9. Ziad

    Ziad I speak in rebuses Veteran

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    To stretch the metaphor past the breaking point, it's like someone walking into a restaurant, verbally abusing the customers and the staff, then suing the restaurant because he was thrown out.

    The comparison between roads and the internet strikes me as flawed because it's being used to argue that they both have the same level of freedom, or that roads have more freedom than the internet, but I find it to be the other way round: the internet has more freedom than roads in real life. You can create your own website and put just about any rude or offensive content so long as it's not illegal. Try to stand at your window with a megaphone shouting obscenities and you'll soon have the police knocking on your door for breaching the peace (or whatever the equivalent is in your country).
     
  10. Thrasher91604

    Thrasher91604 For those who know ...

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    An argument based on an analogy while easier to state and comprehend, is almost always faulty in some sense... It's more important to base arguments on agreed to relevant fundamental principles.
     
  11. Blades of Vanatar

    Blades of Vanatar Vanatar will rise again Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    In this case, what do you think they are?
     
  12. dmc

    dmc Speak softly and carry a big briefcase Staff Member Distinguished Member ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful Adored Veteran New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!)

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    The relevant principles here are that the website in issue is the private property of a specific corporation, which has every right to dictate the terms that govern its use. The plaintiff agreed to those terms, breached them, was kicked off, and chose a bogus first amendment suit to grouse about it. The corporation has no first amendment obligations towards the individual whatsoever, as it is not a governmental entity, or a quasi-governmental entity, and the website is not "public" in the sense that would implicate the first amendment at all.

    Also, corporations are, legally, persons. It's a fact of life in the US at least, and in many places overseas as well. They have most, but not all, of the rights of human "persons" under the law and this would not be a cognizable exception to any of those rights.

    Just so you understand what I mean by quasi-governmental entity, or quasi-public property, there's case law in California that prohibits mall owners from automatically excluding people from their malls who are there for purposes of demonstration, and other first amendment activities. The idea is that the mall has become sort of a popular town-hall in the modern age and some of the obligations of maintaining that fall to the mall owners. Most other states think that's bunk, but, for now, it's the law in California.

    The situation described in this thread is not the same, or even really close to it.
     
  13. Thrasher91604

    Thrasher91604 For those who know ...

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    I think the core of the argument is a difference in agreement on what fundamental rights are more important: free speech, or property.
     
  14. Ziad

    Ziad I speak in rebuses Veteran

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    Why can't they both exist at the same time? Do you have to exercise your free speech on someone else's property? There are so many ways to do it, whether in "real life" or through the internet, without involving anyone else's property. Write to a newspaper with an "open letters" page, make it a bumper sticker, bring it up in conversation whenever you're talking to someone, and yes, make your own web page or blog and put your opinion on there. I don't think it's about which right is more imporant (they both are, and they're both protected), it's about an attempt to completely displace one in favor of the other. What's the point of having something called "private property" if anyone is allowed to walk in using free speech as an excuse?
     
  15. Thrasher91604

    Thrasher91604 For those who know ...

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    Ha! I knew someone would try to dodge the question by saying both. But it can be hard for people to admit that they actually believe that property rights trump free speech. That's the status quo, sadly. Corporatism is slowly eroding human rights and that should be changed.
     
  16. NOG (No Other Gods)

    NOG (No Other Gods) Going to church doesn't make you a Christian

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    I think the real core of the arguement is who those rights cover. They cover the relationship between citizens and a government, not between citizens and other citizens or citizens and private entities. In short, only the Government can infringe on your rights to free expression, free press, freedom of religion, right to bear arms, etc. If anyone else does anything that limits those things, it's either a legal action or a violation of criminal law (for example gagging someone on the street is assault). Sony didn't violate any laws when they did this.
     
  17. Thrasher91604

    Thrasher91604 For those who know ...

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    Uh no, the argument was originally about a company (Sony) and an individual. it got twisted into a government issue by missing the fundamental issue.

    What's more important - a corporation's property or a person's free speech?
     
  18. Blades of Vanatar

    Blades of Vanatar Vanatar will rise again Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    Free-speech wasn't the issue here. He had no rights to free-speech on Sony's website. Just as Tal can dump you here for insulting another member in a inapproiate way. Go call Tal an Effing Butthole repeatedly and see if you remain on the boards. He has the right to dump you. Free-speech doesn't cover private sites. Go into a VFW, join as a member and then abuse the club. They will kick you out. It's the same thing.
     
  19. Splunge

    Splunge Bhaal’s financial advisor Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    With all due respect, I think you're missing the point. "Free speech" isn't a fundamental right. It's a right that exists only to the extent that it's granted. In the U.S., that right is granted in the Constitution, and only to the extent that the government can't tell you what you can or cannot say.

    Really? That's pretty interesting. Dumb, but interesting.
     
  20. Thrasher91604

    Thrasher91604 For those who know ...

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    You're still dodging the question: What is more important property rights or the freedom to express yourself?
     
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