#BootDuke

Three months ago I wrote about how Twitter restricted access to my tweets because I was engaging in behavior that they deemed abusive. Mainly, I was telling assholes who are murdering the planet that I hope they get cancer and die.

I stand by that. If you think that’s harsh, well, I really don’t care.

Anyways, I guess their plan worked because I quit doing that. I’ve cut off aggressive engagement towards climate deniers. Instead, I occasionally visit their feeds and drop some actual facts about science in their replies. Sometimes I’ll even pepper in facts about them as well. For example, I typically reply to tweets by professional child killer Steven Milloy with a quick mention that he’s a deadbeat dad. He’s a deadbeat dad who was forced to pay $180,000 in unpaid child support. That’s a fact. It’s a fun one to point out too.

But despite my best efforts, I’ve been disciplined by Twitter several times since I wrote that post. I was even suspended from all access to Twitter for 24 hours once. That happened because I quoted Trump back at a Trump supporter (seriously). More recently, access to my tweets was restricted after I RT’d a Washington Post tweet about a Marvel artist who dropped some disgusting religious hidden messages in the panels of a comic he worked on. When I RT’d it, I said “fuck this asshole.”

Note, I did not tag said asshole. I didn’t even name said asshole. I was commenting on this assholery. That was enough to get a reprimand from the Twitter higher-ups. More recently, I got hit again. Once by telling someone to “fuck off” and again for calling someone an idiot.

I feel I don’t need to defend the latter. “Idiot” is a pretty tame insult. The idea that anyone should be put on notice for calling someone an idiot is pretty laughable. As for the “fuck off” tweet, well, let’s check out that full exchange.

Yeah, fuck that guy. I’m going to stand by that one.

I should add that this is all speculation on my part. With the exception of the Trump-quoting tweet, I don’t know what I’m doing that’s getting me in hot water. That’s because Twitter won’t tell me. I’m just told I’m being abusive and that I have to stop it. That’s like grounding a kid for doing something bad, telling the kid not to do it again, but failing to tell them what they did wrong. It’s impossible to get an answer out of Twitter for these situations. They have no support contact for this situation. If I try to use the form for account suspensions, it won’t let me because in most cases my account hasn’t actually been suspended, it’s just been restricted. There’s no appeal process for that. The @Support account at Twitter is entirely useless too. It’s 100% automated. That shouldn’t be a surprise though, I suspect the entire anti-harassment initiative at Twitter is entirely under the control of robots.

That’s my assumption because it just doesn’t work. I guess that Twitter’s anti-harassment actions work something like this:

  1. An account is reported by multiple people for abusive behavior. Even if action isn’t taken, it’s then put on a list.
  2. Accounts on that list have their tweets run through an algorithm. That algorithm probably looks at things like the number of unsolicited replies sent by the account, along with key phrases and/or bad words.
  3. If the account crosses some sort of threshold in regards to those phrases/words, or if it’s reported an excessive amount of times, it faces some kind of disciplinary action, all without a human ever seeing the tweets in question.

That has to be how this works. Any human interaction with the alleged abusive accounts must be minimal at most. Because if humans were involved then it might actually work.

While I don’t know the specifics, I do get why I keep getting in trouble. I disagree, of course, but I get it. Technically speaking, I am routinely breaking Twitter’s rules. I’m not nice. I’m mean, even. I say unkind things to people in a blunt manner that many find off-putting or even disturbing. Sure. Fine. The site has rules. I’m not following them, so they entirely within their right to punish me for it. Within the logic of their system, I deserve it. And I don’t want to be angry about it. I’m too angry too much. And too negative. I want to get positive up in here. I want to turn this frown upside down and take this negative experience and use the energy from it to change the world for better.

I want to get David Duke banned from Twitter.

You kids today probably don’t know who David Duke is, so a quick education: he’s a racist piece of dogshit.

Fine, I’ll elaborate a bit.

David Duke is a former politician who was a state representative in Louisiana in the late-80s. He was also in the KKK and is a convicted felon for stealing money for a sham charity. He’s a rampant racist, anti-semite and holocaust denier. He’s also not an accredited doctor, so don’t let that Twitter handle fool you.

He should not be allowed on Twitter. I’m not saying that because of any rules he violates on a regular basis (I’m getting to that), I’m saying that because, well, DAVID FUCKING DUKE SHOULDN’T BE ALLOWED ON TWITTER. That should disqualify him from participating in the discourse. Any sane, rational person at Twitter, when finding out that David Duke had a twitter account, should have just simply said “aw fuck no” and shut that shit down.

But no, Duke’s been on Twitter for a long time now, since 2009, and he’s used it solely as a platform to expound hateful rhetoric. And he’s not even sly about it. Say what you will about punching bag Nazi Richard Spencer. Sure, he’s an abhorrent human being who rightfully deserves to get punched about the face and body pretty much everyday. But his twitter account is relatively tame. He keeps it “safe,” by speaking in vague platitudes and avoiding overly violent racist rhetoric. You can’t say the same for David Duke. He uses Twitter to send out blatantly hateful messages, often directed towards Jews and racial minorities.  Here are some samples, note the use of terminology typically associated with Jewish people (shekels, goyim) and pay special attention to the usage of ((())). That’s white nationalist code for “jew.” I’m not making that up.

Some of these tweets violate Twitter’s rules regarding personal attacks. All of them violate Twitter’s rules regarding hate speech. Per their Terms Of Serivce:

Hateful conduct: You may not promote violence against or directly attack or threaten other people on the basis of race, ethnicity, national origin, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, religious affiliation, age, disability, or disease. We also do not allow accounts whose primary purpose is inciting harm towards others on the basis of these categories.

David Duke is in clear violation of Twitter’s most basic guidelines. Indisputable fact. But he remains because he masks his most hateful language with the most basic of codes and “hidden” messages. If I’m going to get put in “twitter time out” for saying “idiot,” then this motherfucker should get kicked off for being a piece of shit racist violating Twitter’s rules on a nearly hourly basis.

I can’t report Duke’s tweets. He blocked me. I do, however, take screen captures of them and tag @support in tweets about them. I think we should all do that (and if he hasn’t blocked you, then please, report his tweets as well). Do it as much as you can. And Twitter likes hashtags, right? They like them brands and synergy and all that bullshit. So, I think we need a tag for this. I was originally shooting for #fuckduke but, in accordance with Twitter’s rules, I want to keep it clean (and non-hateful). So, let’s keep it simple.

#BootDuke

There’s no reason for him to be on Twitter. It’s time he gets the boot. Maybe if he gets kicked off the site, I’ll be just a little less angry and I’ll tell less people to go fuck themselves.

No promises, but I’ll try.

 

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