Saturday, February 25, 2012

YouTube banning 'religiously offensive' videos

Note that I posted one of those videos, "The BEST emotional PORN," here. Despite the title, it was hardly offensive - except, I suppose, to the people who are determined to get offended at everything.

No, it wasn't offensive, but it was good at making its point. Don't believe me? You can download the video here and see for yourself.

Yes, it was hard-hitting. Yes, most believers would not like  the comparisons. But it wasn't pornographic. It wasn't anything that couldn't be shown to children, even.

But some believers don't want you to see it. Why? Well, probably because it's too effective. Probably because they don't have an answer to it. But that's the thing about free speech - it doesn't have to be popular speech. In fact, popular speech doesn't need protecting.

Don't take my word for it. If you didn't see the video when I posted it two weeks ago, watch it now.

Edit: According to this video, after widespread objections, YouTube backed off. Those "offensive" videos are back again. Remaining alert and defending free speech does work.


Jeff said...

So much for me "hearting" YouTube. They're becoming like any other big corporation; the bigger they become, the more cowardly they become.

I was somewhat amused watching that Muslim cleric lecture that Western journalist about our conduct. That's a switch; "we" being on the receiving of that lecture for once?

As far as executing that man is concerned, it shows that Islam and Christianity are one-in-the-same; the more devout they are, the more they see killing as being negotiable. It depends on WHO'S DOING THE KILLING and WHO'S BEING KILLED.

WCG said...

Well, religions are the same in one respect, Jeff - they don't like criticism. They disagree vehemently among themselves, but often, they're still willing to band together to prevent criticism of any of them - or of religion in general.

Of course, we have freedom of speech, but there are limitations to all of our freedoms. Despite the First Amendment, it's against the law to falsely yell "fire" in a crowded room. It's against the law to libel someone. It's against the law to spill government secrets.

And, increasingly, hate speech is against the law. But when is it hate speech and when is it legitimate criticism? After all, criticism doesn't have to be true to be legitimate.

In general, I sympathize with hate speech and anti-bullying laws, but I also recognize how very, very dangerous they are. When is it OK to say what you think, and when isn't it? Note that all too many religions are trying to get blasphemy considered a hate crime.

Well, when you can't rationally defend your beliefs - and you're not willing to change them - you can only try to keep people from criticizing them.

Despite this particular situation, I'm not sure how much success they'll have on YouTube. But I do know that they'll succeed if no one pushes back against them. If advocates of free speech don't stand up to be heard, YouTube will inevitably take the easy way out. The squeaky wheel, after all, gets the grease.

Coffee Loving Skeptic said...

The only thing offensive about this whole saga is YouTube's lack of respect for those of us who can't stand religious privilege.

WCG said...

Yes, I agree. Of course, religious believers won't like it. But since when do we censor free speech just because someone doesn't like what is being said? After all, no one is forcing them to listen (or to watch the video, in this case).

A public site like YouTube might have good reason to ban explicit pornography, and certainly threats of violence. But this is just a case of some people not liking the message.

I think that YouTube is taking the coward's way out. But appeasing these people does not work. It just makes them bolder and bolder in their demands. And in the end, YouTube will destroy what has made their site so popular in the first place.