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All the Perl that's Practical to Extract and Report

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  • Now of course taking down their sign isn't censorship in the sense of government oppression of free speech. You are right they can perfectly well get their own lawn.

    However, I could say the same thing about the private college who fires professors who express certain political views or expels any student who suggests that Jesus is not our lord and savior. Some institutions value and even their very existence are based on providing a fair and open forum for the debate of ideas.

    Obviously this critique was not suggesting that someone should file a legal action against you to force you to allow these comments. Rather he was making the same remark that those who would criticize the college I mentioned above would. It is the same complaint I would make if a blog deleted any comments that disagreed with the poster.

    Ultimately the real upshot of this statement is just that, 'I/We find this service valuable because it provides an open forum in ideas. You are now undermining that value by deleting posts you don't like.' They would like you to behave differently and want to show that this behavior alienates some people but ultimately their threat is really that they and like minded people WILL go find another lawn.

    Just like professors and money will leave the university that enforces a political view so too will many commenters stop bothering to say anything on a blog they think is no longer giving different ideas fair shrift. Of course, different people have different notions of what this entails and often some content filtering of complete trolls is necessary.