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Hey, we should probably change the default terms of use

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Dr. Fox On Socks




That is against the rules for me to post here because it violates the (really, really stupid default) terms I agreed to when creating a blog on this site. Those terms include (emphasis added):


You agree, through your use of this service, that you will not use this Blog system to post any material which is knowingly false and/or defamatory, inaccurate, abusive, vulgar, hateful, harassing, obscene, profane, sexually oriented, threatening, invasive of a person's privacy, or otherwise violative of any law.


We have the ability to remove objectionable messages and we will make every effort to do so, within a reasonable time frame, if we determine that removal is necessary.


You agree not to post any copyrighted material unless the copyright is owned by you.


I know that 2+2+=5 is both false and inaccurate. I also don't own the copyright to the terms of use themselves, so I violated those terms again by copying them here (even though copying them does not violate copyright law).


So... yeah.

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I disagree -

a. Those who control the blogs will think reasonably. Saying "2+2=5" is something that most admins would not in their right minds delete because many would either see it as an unknowledgable falsity or as just minor inaccuracy that would ot affect the whole post. Your example does not work in the context of cross-x.com.

b. I think that any blog should try to prove a point/argument - this is what all blog posts do (even your own, for example). Somebody who does this with falsity would mislead people and give them inaccurate information, which would take away the whole point of the post and make blog posts far more uneducational (using my example - what if your whole post was based off of quotted information from legal terms that you knew were not in the terms at all. Then this whole comment would be useless, and this whole post would have had no warrant to read).

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On your (a), the terms do not ask whether the material I posted would be reasonably believed or that the admins would want to punish it. The terms only ask whether I, the poster, know the material is false or inaccurate. I admit that I know "2+2=5" is both false and inaccurate. So, I have violated the terms. Whether those terms are actually binding or whether the admins will choose to punish me for the violation are separate issues. My argument is that the terms are too restrictive and posting "2+2=5" should not be a violation in the first place.


On your (b), the solution to address falsity is to post a correction. If someone is demonstrably wrong, and refuses to respond to comments or other communications that offer a correction, then they will just look dumb and everyone will judge them accordingly (just as happens in the forums when arguments are made with faulty factual premises). Being wrong on the internet should not, by itself, be a violation of terms of service.


(Even ignoring the "2+2=5" bit, I also definitely violated the copyright term by posting the terms themselves, which I do not own the copyright to. Sure, that posting counts as Fair Use under copyright law, but these terms of use for the private website don't care about Fair Use or any other exceptions to copyright.)


And chaos, reading is for losers. You're better off with your head in the sand...

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