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Tuesday, June 15, 2010

 
More Thoughts On PayPal vs. Atlas Shrugs

How can PayPal or anyone realistically enforce a policy of denying accounts to people who allegedly promote hate? In most circumstances "hate" can't be proven in a court of law, two notable exceptions being criminal organizations that actively call for murder, and the rare outfit (Westboro Baptist) that explicitly uses the word "hate" in its literature (and its URL).

Also, a lot of folks out there can't tell the difference between hate and criticism, or between political disagreement and hate. Maybe there could be competing PayLeft, PayRight, PayLibertarian, PayAlexJones, etc. services to fill all the gaps. Would this kind of ideological discrimination pass constitutional muster?

On another note, if anyone sends an email saying you've violated an Acceptable Use policy, that email had better cite explicit examples of use violations. PayPal's letter to Geller does no such thing. You don't tell someone you're doing something wrong without telling her what you think they're doing wrong.

IIRC, this is the first time Islamists lobbied PayPal to yank someone's account for insulting their religion. They didn't pull that stunt during the years that this and other websites reported jihadi activities. They did it when you worked with an organization that assists people seeking to get out of Islam.

Suggesting that Islam has a disproportionate number of violent folks is one thing, but if you actively help people to convert from Islam to something else, now that's really insulting!

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