Tag Archives: censorship

Indie Authors, Gamers, and Monopoly Censorship

Book publishing and game news journalism are both being disrupted by “user generated” platforms that have consumer-side economies of scale.

For book publishing, two of these platforms are Kobo and Amazon Kindle. The users/producers of these services are called “indie authors.”

For game news publishing, two of these platforms are Twitter and Reddit. The users/producers of these services are called “gamers.”

While these services are united in their hostility to other types of publishing, each still faces competition from other “user generated” platforms with consumer-side economies of scale.

For instance, in book publishig, Kobo’s President Michael Tamblyn is warning “indie authors” that Amazon Kindle’s interest is not theirs, and Amazon Kindle could use market power to take away their profits and silence them.

Meanwhile, in game news publishing, this form of censorship has been observed. Early on in the #gamergate scandal, reddit began censoring discussion of collusion between Vox Media, Gawker Media, and game developers. This lead to the discussion to shift to twitter, a rival platform.

The power that monopolies have to extract all profits and control the agenda is called wholesale transfer pricing power.

If Amazon achieves a monopoly in “indie author” book publishing, they would have wholesale transfer pricing power, be able to strip all economic profits from indie authors, and censor indie authors at will.

If Reddit would achieve a monopoly in “gamer” news publishing, they would have wholesale transfer pricing power, be able to strip all economic profits from indie authors, and censor gamers will.

The only difference is that this shift from command-and-control to user-generated publishing is more advanced in game news than it is in books.

The today of gamers is the tomorrow of indie authors.

That’s why the gamergate scandal is the biggest news in publishing.

Pelosi tries to censor… Congress on the ‘Net!

An important post from my friend Mark Safanski:

zenpundit.com » Blog Archive » Nancy Pelosi vs. Social Media, Free Speech and Democracy
Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who would like very much to reimpose the old, so-called, “Fairness Doctrine” that once censored conservative opinion on television and radio broadcasting, is scheming to impose rules barring any member of Congress from posting opinions on any internet site without first obtaining prior approval from the Democratic leadership of Congress. No blogs, twitter, online forums – nothing.

This was first reported to me by Congressman John Culberson (R-Tx) and I asked for approval to cite him and for any media links to this story. He provided the following link of regulations proposed by the Chair of the Congressional Commission on Mailing Standards (PDF) Congressman Michael Capuno (D-Mass) that was sent to Rep. Robert Brady, Chairman of the House Committee for Administration. The net effect of the regs would be to make it practically impossible for members of Congress to use social media tools to discuss official business or share video of the same with the public while creating a partisan disparity in what little approved messages might be permitted. It would be a very considerable error to assume that the House leadership intends to let dissenting Democratic members post any more freely than Republicans.

Mark is out front on this one. I don’t see anything from other blogs, but Safranski’s serious and knowledgeable, so this is for real.

Stop Pelosi! Free the Congress!

Bypassing the Great Firewall

My appreciation to Brendan (of I Hate Linux) and Aaron (formerly of groundrocket, this blog’s original home) for their help in allowing to see the outside world. While less of the internet is censored than before (I can read the New York Times, Wikipedia, etc.) most major blog services are censored, as well as some nonpolitical but calming sites (why does China filter LOST podcasts? Why???)

Brendan and Aaron are using quite different technologies to give me freedom, and they complement each other very well. Between a Putty proxy and Windows Home Server, I have all the techy liberty I need!

Watch Fitna the Movie

Fitna is a well made, fifteen-minute long piece of agitation-propaganda. Some of the points of the film are specific to Dutch or European politics, particularly as Europe wrestles both the separate but intertwined issues of large-scale immigration and Islamization.

It would be easier to sneer at Fitna if not for its urgency. Currently, the movie’s website has been suspended by Network Solutions, presumably out of fear of Islamist violence. In the same way that paying a tax to an insurgency is material support of the insurgency, Network Solutions’ suspension of the Fitna site is material support for Islamization. But I digress.

Watch it, because people who kill over cartoons don’t want you to.

Islamists, Network Solutions, and Free Speech

As reported on Slashdot and elsewhere, Network Solutions has yanked Fitna The Movie from the web. “Fitna” is a sort of spiritual sequel to Submission, whose director was killed for the trouble.

Domain temporarily unavailable
This site has been suspended while Network Solutions is investigating whether the site’s content is in violation of the Network Solutions Acceptable Use Policy. Network Solutions has received a number of complaints regarding this site that are under investigation. For more information about Network Solutions Acceptable Use Policy visit the following URL: http://www.networksolutions.com/legal/aup.jsp

What’s disturbing about this is the quasi-governmental aspect of the censorship. Network Solutions domain hosting biz is of course their business, and if they submit to Sharia that’s their business. However, the company is also one of the very few “domain name reigstrars.” Wikipedia reports that the company earns 90% of their income from participation in that quasi-governmental oligopoly, which decides what websiteaddress.com, .net, or .org can be registered.

Google: Good and Bad

The good: The Great Firewall of China is blogging blogspot and livejournal currently — thanks Cisco and Nortel! Fortunately, google reader is still up and running, so I can still follow all of my favorite blogs.

The bad: Unfortunately, google’s attempt to track its users is reducing its functionality as a quick search engine. For instance, if I google “great firewall of china tdaxp,” the first result appears to be to http://www.tdaxp.com/tag/great+firewall+of+china but is actually to http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&ct=res&cd=1&url=http%3A%2F…. So to copy a url, right-clicking on the result is not good enough — I need to follow it to its source.

Amazing Race All-Stars

Lady of tdaxp and I watched the finale to the show’s eleventh season. Very fun… our favorite team came in second, and the winning team certainly seemed nice. We can’t wait for Amazing Race 12. PS: You’ll note that I link to the answers.com entry to Amazing Race. Wikipedia is censored in China, so I’m forced to rely on older mirrors like answers for all my trivia now. Anyone know a better wiki mirror than Answers?

Mike Daisey Assaulted on Stage

Mike Daisey, the hillarious author of 21 Dog years: Doing Time @ Amazon.com, had his notes ruined during an assault during a walk-out. The whole thing is on Youtube, and Mike’s blog.


Aftermath

Apparently, the criminal (Mike calls him a terrorist, and it’s hard to disagree with that term) is a self-described Christian. Of course the assalut wasn’t Christian. The assault was the opposite of Christian. This isolate crime — this particular act of terror — has a more in common with the Muslim cartoon riots. Which, perhaps, is appropriate. The assault against Mike Daisey is a perversion of a Christian, as Islam is an heresey of Christianity.

"Multiculturalists" in Lincoln Public Schools Ban Books

LPS mulls best Native books,” by Margaret Reist, Lincoln Journal Star, 3 October 2006, http://www.journalstar.com/articles/2006/10/03/top_story/doc4521bf0c8a4b7965832929.txt.

Recently, my blog friend Adam of The Metropolis Times highlighted Banned Book Weeks. Ironically, the day after Banned Books Weeks Ended, Lincoln Public Schools set to work banning some more

And in addition to seeking out the best Native literature it could find — 128 new recommended books — it took the unusual step of recommending school libraries remove 12 books from their shelves.

Here is a list of the books:

The best justifications are those that are explicitly racist, such as

Misrepresents Lakota spiritual beliefs and cultural practices. Relies too heavily on research by non-Natives.

for Sitting Bull and His World and

Misunderstanding of Navajos’ strong oral storytelling traditions (no child would take notes while an elder told a story). Pathetic attempts at Native humor. “Whitewashing” of Native experiences.

for The Girl Who Chased Away Sorrow: The Diary of Sarah Nita, a Navajo Girl, New Mexico, 1864

Books to avoid” about Thanksgiving from the same group that inspired this censorship list — Oyate — are available below the fold. A shorter version is also available.


Accorsi, William, Friendship’s First Thanksgiving. Holiday House, 1992, grades 1-2
Aliki, Corn is Maize: The Gift of the Indians. Harper & Row, 1976, grades 1-3
Anderson, Laurie Halse, Thank You, Sarah: The Woman Who Saved Thanksgiving. Simon & Schuster, 2002, grades 1-4
Ansary, Mir Tamim, Thanksgiving Day. Heinemann, 2002, grades 1-3
Apel, Melanie Ann, The Pilgrims. Kidhaven Press, 2003, grades 3-5

Bartlett, Robert Merrill, The Story of Thanksgiving. HarperCollins, 2001, grades 3-5
Barth, Edna, Turkeys, Pilgrims, and Indian Corn: The Story of the Thanksgiving Symbols. Clarion, 1975, grades 2-4
Borden, Louise, Thanksgiving Is… Scholastic, 1997, grades 1-2
Brown, Marc, Arthur’s Thanksgiving. Little, Brown, 1983, grades 1-2
Bruchac, Joseph, Squanto’s Journey: The Story of the First Thanksgiving. Harcourt, 2000, grades 2-4
Buckley, Susan Washburn, Famous Americans: 15 Easy-to-Read Biography Mini-Books. Scholastic, 2000, grades 1-2
Bulla, Clyde Robert, Squanto, Friend of the Pilgrims. Scholastic, 1990

Celsi,Teresa, Squanto and the First Thanksgiving. Steck-Vaughn, 1989, grades 1-2
Clements, Andrew, Look Who’s in the Thanksgiving Play! Simon & Schuster, 1999, preschool-2
Cohen, Barbara, Molly’s Pilgrim. Lothrop, Lee & Shepard, 1983, grades 3-4
Conaway, Judith, Happy Thanksgiving! Things to Make and Do. Troll Communications, 1986, grades 1-3
Crane, Carol, and Helle Urban, P is for Pilgrim: A Thanksgiving Alphabet. Sleeping Bear Press, 2003, grades 1-4

Dalgliesh, Alice, The Thanksgiving Story. Scholastic, 1954, 1982, grades 3-4
Daugherty, James,The Landing of the Pilgrims. Random House, 1987, grades 4-6
Davis, Kenneth C., Don’t Know Much About the Pilgrims. HarperCollins, 2002, grades 2-4
DePaola, Tomie, My First Thanksgiving. Putnam, 1992, preschol
Donnelly, Judy, The Pilgrims and Me. Grossett & Dunlap, 2002
Dubowski, Cathy East, The Story of Squanto, First Friend to the Pilgrims. Dell, 1990, grades 3-4

Fink, Deborah, It’s a Family Thanksgiving! A Celebration of an American Tradition for Children and Their Families. Harmony Hearth, 2000
Flindt, Myron, Pilgrims: A simulation of the first year at Plymouth Colony. Interact, 1994, curriculum for grades 3-up
Fritz, Jean, Who’s That Stepping on Plymouth Rock? Putnam & Grossett, 1975, grades 3-5

George, Jean Craighead, The First Thanksgiving. Puffin, 1993
Gibbons, Gail, Holiday House, grades 1-2:
Thanksgiving Day. 1985
Thanksgiving Is… 2004
Greene, Rhonda Gowler, The Very First Thanksgiving Day. Atheneum, 2002

Hale, Anna W., The Mayflower People: Triumphs and Tragedies. Harbinger House, 1995
Hallinan, P.K., Today Is Thanksgiving! Ideals Children’s Books, 1993, grades 1-2
Harness, Cheryl, Three Young Pilgrims. Aladdin, 1995, grades 3-6
Hayward, Linda, The First Thanksgiving. Random House, 1990, grades 1-3
Hennessy, B.G., One Little, Two Little, Three Little Pilgrims. Viking, 1999, grades 1-2

Jackson, Garnet, The First Thanksgiving. Scholastic, 2000, grades 2-up
Jassem, Kate, Squanto: The Pilgrim Adventure. Troll Communications, 1979, grades 3-5

Kamma, Anne, If you were at…The First Thanksgiving. Scholastic, 2001
Kessel, Joyce K., Squanto and the First Thanksgiving. Carolrhoda, 1983, grades 3-5
Kinnealy, Janice, Let’s Celebrate Thanksgiving, A Book of Drawing Fun. Watermill, 1988, grades 1-2
Koller, Jackie French, Nickommoh!: A Thanksgiving Celebration. Atheneum, 1999, grades 2-4

Marx, David F., Thanksgiving. Children’s Press, 2000, grades 1-2
McGovern, Ann, The Pilgrims’ First Thanksgiving. Scholastic, 1973, grades 2-up
McMullan, Kate, Fluffy’s Thanksgiving. Scholastic, 1997, grades ps-2
Melmed, Laura Krauss, This First Thanksgiving Day: A Counting Story. HarperCollins, 2001
Metaxas, Eric, Squanto and the First Thanksgiving. Rabbit Ears Books, 1996, grades 1-3
Moncure, Jane Belk, Word Bird’s Thanksgiving Words. Child’s World, 2002, preschool-1

Ochoa, Ana, Sticker Stories: The Thanksgiving Play. Grosset & Dunlap, 2002, grades 1-2
Osborne, Mary Pope, Thanksgiving on Thursday. Random House, 2002, grades 3-5

Parker, Margot, What Is Thanksgiving Day? Children’s Press, 1988, grades 1-2
Peacock, Carol Antoinette, Pilgrim Cat. Whitman, 2004, grades 1-3
Prelutsky, Jack, It’s Thanksgiving. Morrow, 1982, preschool-2

Rader, Laura J., A Child’s Story of Thanksgiving. Ideals Children’s Books, 1998, grades 2-4
Randall, Ronnie, Thanksgiving Fun: Great Things to Make and Do. Kingfisher, 1994, grades 1-3
Raphael, Elaine, and Don Bolognese, The Story of the First Thanksgiving. Scholastic, 1991, grades 1-2
Rau, Dana Meachen, Thanksgiving. Children’s Press, 2000, grades 1-2
Roberts, Bethany, Thanksgiving Mice! Clarion, 2001, preschool-1
Rockwell, Anne, Thanksgiving Day. HarperCollins, 1999
Rogers, Lou, The First Thanksgiving. Modern Curriculum Press, 1962, grades 1-3
Roloff, Nan, The First American Thanksgiving. Current, 1980
Roop, Connie and Peter:
Let’s Celebrate Thanksgiving. Millbrook, 1999, grades 3-5
Pilgrim Voices: Our First Year in the New World. Walker, 1995, grades 3-5
Ross, Katherine, 1995, grades 1-3:
Crafts for Thanksgiving. Millbrook
The Story of the Pilgrims. Random House
Ruelle, Karen Gray, The Thanksgiving Beast Feast. Holiday House, 1999, grades 1-2

San Souci, Robert, N.C. Wyeth’s Pilgrims. Chronicle, 1991, grades 1-3
Scarry, Richard, Richard Scarry’s The First Thanksgiving of Low Leaf Worm. Little Simon, 2003, grades 1-3
Schultz, Charles M., A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving. Simon & Schuster, 2002, grades 1-3
Sewall, Marcia, Atheneum, grades 1-3:
People of the Breaking Day. Atheneum, 1990
The People of Plimoth. Aladdin, 1986
Thunder from the Clear Sky. Atheneum, 1995
Siegel, Beatrice, Walker, grades 3-5:
Fur Trappers and Traders: The Indians, the Pilgrims, and the Beaver. 1981
Indians of the Northeast Woodlands. 1992
Silver, Donald M., and Patricia J. Wynne, Easy Make & Learn Projects: The Pilgrims, the Mayflower & More. Scholastic, 2001, grades 3-5
Skarmeas, Nancy J., The Story of Thanksgiving. Ideals Publications, 1999
Sorenson, Lynda, Holidays: Thanksgiving. Rourke, 1994, preschool-2
Stamper, Judith Bauer:
New Friends in a New Land: A Thanksgiving Story. Steck-Vaughn, 1993, grades 1-2
Thanksgiving Fun Activity Book. Troll, 1993, grades 1-4
Stanley, Diane, Thanksgiving on Plymouth Plantation. HarperCollins, 2004, grades 1-3
Stiegemeyer, Julie, Thanksgiving: A Harvest Celebration. Concordia, 2003, grades 2-4

Tryon, Leslie, Albert’s Thanksgiving. Aladdin, 1998, grades 1-3

Umnik, Sharon Dunn, ed., 175 Easy-to-Do Thanksgiving Crafts. Boyds Mills Press, 1996, grades 2-up

Waters, Kate, Scholastic, grades 3-up:
Giving Thanks: The 1621 Harvest Feast. 2001
Samuel Eaton’s Day: A Day in the Life of a Pilgrim Boy. 1993
Sarah Morton’s Day: A Day in the Life of a Pilgrim Girl. 1989
Tapenum’s Day: A Wampanoag Indian Boy in Pilgrim Times. 1996
Weisgard, Leonard, The Plymouth Thanksgiving. Doubleday, 1967, grades 1-3
Whitehead, Pat, Best Thanksgiving Book, ABC Adventures. Troll Communications, 1985, grades 1-2