In the fight against CRT and LGBT people and such, do you suppose the GOP will come after Wikipedia next?

Yes, I mean the actual foundation itself up stakes and leaving. Right now, English Wikipedia complies with US copyright laws because it’s based in the US, with servers in Florida. Wouldn’t take much to relocate.

Weird. I must see MSM a million times for each time I see LSM.

Wouldn’t it be far easier and much cheaper to take over Snopes? Of course, that would be smart and sly so we are saved from that possibility.

Snopes already has problems enough. :frowning:

They’ve been eking by with help from donations, if someone with real power took an interest they’d be toast.

Humorist Will Cuppy called his house Tottering-on-the-Brink. Snopes has been living there for years.

Speaking of laughs, if you want to roll on the floor take a look at Conservapedia’s page on Wikipedia. The right wing site proudly boasts 850,000,000 page views over its history, which seems impressive until you notice that Wikipedia gets twice that many every week.

Going after Wikipedia using some legal shenanigans is not impossible. But if Conservatives could get enough editors to go in and turn it into a place of misinformation, then Conservapedia wouldn’t exist.

One of the things people find particularly annoying about Wikipedia is actually one of its biggest strengths: the sheer bureaucracy and resistance to change. It also has safeguards to prevent astroturfing, being willing to lockout entire organizations if they get a bunch of agenda-based edits. They’ve shut off congress’s ability to edit pages before. What other online community has the balls to do that?

Hijack Hidden

Perhaps it’s my local view, but it appears that the bigots have forced any schools to abandon teaching CRT as it has become too much of a political hot topic.

The easiest and most effective way for Republicans to attack Wikipedia would be to follow the Texas model and enact laws which allow people to sue Wikipedia for libel when they see content they don’t like.

“This Wikipedia page says Donald Trump lost the 2020 election! That’s a liberal lie! And it hurts my feelings! I’m suing for emotional distress!”

Wikipedia might not lost these lawsuits but it will be run out of business by legal expenses.

Unless it’s really narrowly written, such a law would open all kinds of sites, including right-wing ones, to lawsuits. I’m not sure they can write it that narrowly without it being a bill of attainder, which would be unconstitutional. Well, probably unconstitutional. The method of enforcement, allowing private citizens to sue, might give cover to judges to rule it not a bill of attainder.

Hijack Hidden

Unless they are graduate schools in social sciences, they were not teaching CRT. Hard to abandon what you were never doing.

Now, what the bigots are demanding that schools abandon is any reference to racial discrimination, past or present, but that’s not CRT, even though some bigots claim it to be.

It’s not their style. They’re more likely to work on convincing their followers to not trust Wikipedia and other such sources of information than they are to directly attack it. No need to directly attack those telling the truth when it’s easier to just lie to your own followers and tell them not to believe such sources.

I don’t think it would be very difficult to write a law that only applied to Wikipedia without saying so out loud. Just enact a law, for example, that allows people to sue any website that allows open-access editing and has more than fifty million articles (to protect small independent sites from harassment). This looks neutral on paper. But there’s only one website that matches that apparently generic description. (Look up the Gallo exemption for an example of this strategy.)

I don’t feel this would violate the bill of attainder prohibition. Congress would not be declaring Wikipedia guilty of anything or imposing any punishment. They would just be allowing people to sue Wikipedia. Any lawsuits would be subject to a due process hearing where they could be dismissed if they were without merit.

Hijack hidden

Unfortunately, that is not enough for the anti-intellectuals from the right, some states included colleges and universities in their news laws against CRT.

South Dakota passes anti-CRT law; other states weigh bills

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2021/05/26/laws-against-teaching-critical-race-theory-college-are-unconstitutional/

Modnote: This thread is not about CRT, it is about Wikipedia. No more hijacks to CRT. In fact, I’m going to hide the CRT postings.

Cease and desist!

That still could be argued as being aimed at only one company, thus being a bill of attainder. I’m not a lawyer, so I’m not sure how good an argument it would be.

Oh, and the Gallo exemption is used by other rich people, so it’s not really an example of this kind of strategy. Yes, it was passed to give them a tax break, but wasn’t written so narrowly as to exclude other tax payers. There have been tax breaks that have been written so narrowly as to apply to only one person, but that’s not one of them.

That’s more or less what I meant by the last couple sentences in my post.

I’m also not a lawyer but I don’t think that’s what a bill of attainder is. My understanding is that a bill of attainder is when a legislature enacts a declaration that some person or group of people is guilty of a crime. It’s a means of bypassing the court system and not giving people the opportunity to defend themselves.

The law may be used by other people now that it exists. But my understanding is that at the time it was enacted, it was a major tax exemption that only the Gallo family was eligible to receive due to the narrow way the law was tailored.

The Chinese firm Huawei sued the U.S.:

challenging the constitutionality of a law that restricts federal agencies from doing business with the company. The law in question identifies Huawei and Chinese telecommunications company ZTE by name, prohibiting executive agencies from using Huawei’s (or ZTE’s) products and from contracting with entities that use such products. Although Huawei’s complaint against the United States makes several arguments, they primarily argue that the law’s restrictions amount to an unconstitutional “bill of attainder.”

It had loads of statements from legislators singling it out, but it lost in court and another judge refused review.

It doesn’t look like a general precedent to me. OTOH, I don’t see why a bill like the one *Little_Nemo suggested earlier wouldn’t similarly be found constitutional. States have passed bills limited in effect to employers with more than X employees and this seems well within those parameters.

With exquisite timing, this popped up in my news feed.

Texas residents can now sue Facebook, Twitter and YouTube for allegedly censoring their content after a federal appeals court sided Wednesday with the state’s law restricting how social media sites can moderate their platforms.

The 15-word ruling allowing the law, which had been blocked last year, to take effect has significant potential consequences. Most immediately, it creates new legal risks for the tech giants, and opens them up to a possible wave of litigation that legal experts say would be costly and difficult to defend.

Texas’s law makes it illegal for any social media platform with 50 million or more US monthly users to “block, ban, remove, deplatform, demonetize, de-boost, restrict, deny equal access or visibility to, or otherwise discriminate against expression.”

I guess that gives me two questions.

The first is, what are the limits here, is illegal content still bannable? Who is allowed to decide what illegal content is?

The second is whether it is legally or technically feasible to simply cut Texas off?

A question one could ask of Facebook, Twitter and other media outlets.

Well, no, that’s kinda the whole point.

Under the previous system, facebook and twitter can choose to have terms of service, and remove users for violating them. Now, it seems as though they will no longer be allowed to do so.

So the question is who will now decide what illegal content is, since the owners of the platform are no longer allowed to.