Steemit Censorship Is Hitting A Sore Spot. Any thoughts On Latest Controversy?

in steemit •  14 days ago

So this Steemit banning The Dark Overlord hacking group seems to have the entire crypto-community up in arms. It seems we're always surrounded by one controversy or another. Censorship in this space, is a huge no no though, and now Steemit finds itself in the middle of this hot topic.

I'll be the first to admit, I'm not a big fan of the way The Dark Overlord hacking group went about this. When you're more concerned about financial gain than you are about releasing the truth I question your integrity and in this case authenticity. The bitcoin ransom has made it rather difficult to show support for this group. It is, however, censorship of political speech.

If they didn't try to extort money for the information, I would have a totally different take on this. If out of the goodness of their hearts, they decided to release important information that could change the narrative of 9/11 or show that the people were lied to, they would have my full support. I would probably power down and leave Steemit in protest. However, since they chose to seek financial gain through extortion, I really do have a problem with this. It becomes more of an ethics issue than a censorship issue to me.

The bigger question I pose though; is this the start of censorship on Steemit? The blockchain is designed to prevent this sort of thing. I get that Steemit (the organization/company) has to protect themselves from pedophiles, and other illegal content that people might post. I don't condone the extortion tactics of The Dark Overlords either. I have a huge problem with the censorship of political speech and dissidents though. With that said, I'm just curious what the rest of the Steemit community thinks. Is this the beginning of a bigger problem?

Edit: I should point out that the information is still available on the blockchain, just not available through the Steemit app. Thanks to @steevc for pointing out this important fact.

Bitcoin Ransom: 9/11 Papers Hacker Group Banned from Steemit Platform

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They are not banned from the Steem platform. The article gets this right. It's possible they broken some part of the terms of service. Steemit have to cover themselves as they are operating a site in the US and could get raided or taken down. It's interesting that only six accounts are banned and you can check them on the other sites. The platform itself is resistant to censorship.


That is a great point. Someone just pointed this out on Twitter too. The information is still available depending on what app you use, just not on Steemit currently.


You can always access it with a local app. This just limits how many people can see their posts without them looking at alternatives to Steemit


Maybe someone should develop and host a front end for the steem blockchain thats like the dark side of steem. Dark web steemit.


I'm sure someone will do this. Need to host it somewhere where it can't be taken down. Could do it on the dark web


there could be a silver lining in this, that it makes people more aware that steemit and steem are separate and bring more traffic to the alternative dapps.


Devs really have a small list I actually went through all six wasn't that controversial
The Dark Overlord may be the only one that would be newsworthy.
1 Was opt out first one
Other 4 had a few posts not much
Then TDO lol


That is until the other condensers ban them. Unless the other condensers are setup anonymously or allowed to host "illegal content", I am sure their respective governments will try to shut them down to at some point.

I couldn't give a toss about those @dorkoverload clowns but all the flagging censorship that is going on has got me really fucked off!

This is how I feel about steemit today


The flagging debate has been an issue from the start. Definitely a form of soft censorship.

So they've been taken off steemit and it looks like steempeak has also removed the content, although they are still on there. If they aren't able to log into steemit, does that also mean they can't log into any other app? Are they no longer able to post new things?

They brazenly say that they are hacking and "stealing" information, which would be unlawful in most countries. So I guess what they are essentially doing is trying to sell stolen goods on the blockchain. For SteemInc to stand by and not do anything would make them an accessory.

Could this escalate? Possibly, if the US government decide that certain other things are a crime too. I don't think it will necessarily be coming from SteemInc though.

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It certainly raises a lot of questions about decentralized blockchains. The info is out there, accessible from other dApps. I think the bigger question is, if governments can't control the information on blockchains, will they somehow try to ban them? This really could become a giant pain in the rear for governments. Think a decentralized wikileaks with no founder or head to harass or imprison.

The fact that STINC has a TOS, like every privately held company, is not news. And just like any other privately held company, they can make sure that someone who is violating these TOS is banned from the website.

Personally, I think TDO acts like a criminal organisation, so for me this has nothing to do with political speech or the censorship of it.

It's a shame something like this is used to promote the competitors...

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Welcome to crypto where there's always an alternative motive. I agree though. the way they went about this with blackmail and extortion changes everything in my humble opinion.


They are simple criminals and make no pretenses otherwise. They don't give a shit about punishing wrongdoers. All they want is to extort money. That's their "business". Their account on the Steem blockchain still exists and will continue to exist despite not showing it. I think people should stop being such crybabies about some private company based in the US filtering content illegal in the US.


I think people in the US need to be concerned about the amount of content that is being filtered.

There is a really simple thing in FAQ:

"What can users post to Steemit?
Steem is an open platform meant to host and welcome any legal content."

Stolen stuff is not legal, and offer any illegal thing, also forbidden.
End of the story.

Crying about censorship, bah...
Those, who think, this is a censorship, just skip steemit, and use other front-end, what exist on steem blockchain.

Flagging is not censorship.
If it was you couldnt read the article after flagging.
In fact you can only delete something from a blockchain if most of the witnesses agree to rewind before that post got out..

Propaganding censorship on steem is a cut in our own leg..
The price of Steem is effected of thing people think..
And if people think there is censorship on steem.. The price will fall...

But okay maybe I should buy your minnow stake then.
And of all the other minnows who think there exists censorship on steem.

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In some way, flagging could be considered soft censorship. This has been a debate since the start. People need to separate Steemit from Steem though. There are plenty of other dApps that use the STEEM blockchain. Seeing all the other development is what has built my faith in STEEM. There's a lot of positive things happening outside of Steemit too.

Hey, @the-bitcoin-dood.

As you pointed out, there's quite a bit more to this than just political speech. While those into crypto and blogging here might be more lenient to hacking into some organization's or government's servers if it serves the interest of the people, it's still against the law. So, is extortion, demanding ransom, or selling the hacked information to the highest bidder.

There were people who were none to happy when Steemit Inc announced a new terms of use agreement last year. Now, we're seeing the first public display of enforcing the agreement that I'm aware of, and while there's an aspect of free speech to it, there's also the additional aspects of criminal activity.

I am with you here that there's plenty to be conflicted about. I think there are plenty of things the people should know about their governments and what they're doing. I also think that in order to protect the people, there are secrets that should be kept. Knowing which is which, which serve to protect the interests of the people, and not the interests of the government or those in power, is at the heart of this, and probably a discussion that needs to be had and come to terms with.

Steemit Inc. protecting itself against unlawful activity is within their purview, and does not remove the posts from the blockchain, nor does it prevent the account from future posts, as has been pointed out, too.

I think when this swerves into criminal activity, the freedom of speech part kind of falls apart.


I think in the greater scheme of things, Steemit Inc does have to protect themselves. The criminal activity does indeed change everything.

Totally agree with you..
That's not censorship, they just blocked something illegal like extortion and most of all, they cant remove it from the blockchain..
It is quite harder to reach, but it's still available! So i'm quite confident in steemit! :)

I really like how you write.. I will start to follow you man! :)

Personally I feel each front end has the right to have their own policy on censorship! We all have access to the same blockchain and if I only want to show food posts and block all other posts on my front end so be it!

You find the community/dapp that suits you! Steemit isn’t steem!

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I am going to stop using steemit and start using other front-ends becasue of this reason...prolly steeve

I still can Access his Posts. He even has a 25$ upvote- quite decent for cencorship

Is this Not maybe mainstream fud? Who pays ccn?

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That link goes nowhere for me. It says "Page does not exist"


Use steempeak or partiko to open

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The ban only applies to and sub-domains just learnt about GDPRUserlist today
The list is called “GDPRUserList.js,” but it is apparently also used for banning users for Terms of Service violations. A short list, it contains just six user names:

• mateja.klaric
• xondra
• tgylhn
• vichkovski
• wizzymt
• thedarkoverlord

Like an opt out agreement I guess

Why do you think it's censorship or political censorship at that? Do you think threats/blackmail/extortion are covered under freedom of expression?

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No but info on 9/11 truth is political censorship. I stated in the post I don't agree with their tactics of extortion/blackmail. They lose all credibility.


Potential info on 9/11 that blackmailing hackers have is only plain extortion though. Even if they had released the info and then steemit took it down it still wouldn't be censorship as it was never protected speech, it was always threats/extortion. What I mean is that you cannot censor blackmail or threats, regardless of how important the info is because it's not a legitimate freedom of expression so removing it is simply removing blackmail and refusing to enable it.

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how the heck is it possible to get banned from the chain? they do not run all the nodes them self? Do they have manual banning switch hardcoded in to the code? This is not good if that is true