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Socially Uncensored : The complete idiot's guide to an uncensored world

Discussion in 'Forum Showcase and Critiques' started by Adam Howard, Aug 15, 2012.

  1. Adam Howard

    Adam Howard Well-Known Member

    First a little history,

    Socially Uncensored was founded September 7, 2010 with the prime directive that everyone has the given right to freedom of speech and freedom of information. We believe it is everyone's given right to never be denied to express their thoughts, opinions, ideals, and general view-point.

    The basic principle being that you can talk about anything without restriction or fear of censorship.

    Members have a wide range of resources outlets to express themselves on SociallyUncensored.eu such as our community forums, blogs, photo gallery, video gallery, emotional status updates, and of course user status updates.

    From a technological point of view,

    Socially Uncensored originally started with phpBB (SU v1) and has gone through several other changes since than (phpbb, phpbb with WordPress, vBulletin, vBulletin Suite, XenForo, SMF, IPB, IPB Suite, XenForo). Currently with collectively over 300 modification, template edits, skins, add-ons, and other 3rd party products.

    The hardest part of course has always been adding the most functionality, eye catching visual design, with simplicity.

    The community,

    Members range from the complete technological noob to the most advanced. Although historically the community is mostly female, we do have some male members as well. The age ranges anywhere from 16 through 94 (confirmed, my Grandfather is a member), but with an average age between 39 - 50. Location wise members are from all over the globe, but on average mostly in USA, Canada, and The UK.

    The vast majority of our community members are friendly, eager to learn, eager to share their opinion, and above all do not believe in censorship.


    http://www.SociallyUncensored.eu/forums

    Thoughts? Feedback? Questions?
     
  2. Ingenious

    Ingenious Well-Known Member

    I'm really interested in the concept Adam. Mainly because I would wonder how you can have genuine uncensored content in the age of legal action and libel; how do you protect yourself from this? Also, wouldn't some posts be self-incriminating? I think it's a brilliant idea BTW - just genuinely interested because my forum has been censored numerous times under threat of legal action when my members express an opinion that is considered libel. I would never have the balls to have an anonymous or uncensored area which is a sad reflection on today's world.
     
  3. Adam Howard

    Adam Howard Well-Known Member

    Despite what the media would have you believe, it is not illegal to be a member of Anonymous.

    In fact it is no more illegal than it would be to be part of The Republican or Democratic Political Party, when someone else does something wrong. Just because someone is Republican or Democrat, doesn't mean everyone is guilty of a crime when a Republican or Democrat does something illegal. The same applies to Anonymous... We can't all be accountable for every action that is said or done by everyone, just as The Catholic Church can't be accountable for every "nut job" who kills someone in the name of "god".

    Anonymous isn't so much a club or organization, but rather an idea. And for everyone, that idea is a little different, much as how the concept of religion is a little different for everyone.

    As for our logo... I think this thread would make for some good reading.
    http://www.sociallyuncensored.eu/forums/threads/socially-uncensored-logo-why.10798/

    And as for our legal department, we're always armed and ready. Of course it also helps that the ownership is not singular and primarily, not here in America.

    In fact our Terms of Service was released here on XenForo as an "open source" resource provided here as an example, "as is" and "without any warranty".

    Overall I'm not worried about it. We believe in freedom of speech and freedom of information and will forever continue to do so.
     
    Pivetor likes this.
  4. jadmperry

    jadmperry Well-Known Member

    From a US based analytic framework, generally when speaking of "censorship" you are talking about restrictions based on government directive. When private parties restrict content, this would not normally be considered "censorship." (Most of this analysis falls under First Amendment to US Constitution, which does not use "censorship" in the text...).

    I post this because it puts an important issue in context- who is seeking to restrict posting: whether the government is seeking to restrict posting of something (or sanctioning someone for something previously posted; this is another issue- prior restraint is not favored) or whether a person is trying to restrict postings by another person. The analysis is completely different based on what actors are involved.

    It also strikes me that there is an important philosophical issue that must be addressed at some point- that is, though in the extreme you could take the position that everything should be permitted to be posted, publicized, or shared, most people draw the line somewhere. Child pornography for example, solicitations for murder, incitement to imminent violence...is there a line that your community holds? Once you determine there is a line, where is it set? Would posting videos of private materials be okay? If so, how far does that line go? Videos of people using the bathroom? Engaged in private sex acts? Recordings of phone calls posted without permission? Then you get into issues with copyright. Would streaming a sports event or concert be okay? Now, I know some of this gets into media that is far afield from what I think your general point is- that people have the right to post and share their own views...but, I can see a Pandora's box of things that could spin out from that starting point.

    UPDATE: I hadn't recently checked out the site itself (but I had in the past). I really like the styling and it looks great in my opinion. I just checked your rules and I think you have at least addressed the pornography question. I thought it interesting that you have an Official Language policy (and I certainly understand why...if someone is posting in Tagalog and you can't read it, it is hard to moderate). At the same time, philosophically, it would seem to mean that English speakers have "more" rights at least on your board to share their views. This may be obviated by things such as Google Translate, though. Still, it struck me as somewhat of a step away from the extreme "totally uncensored" view.

    Interesting concept though, overall. I just took a break to write this, but when I have sometime, I would be interested in checking out what discussions go on and whether they be political in nature, religious, cultural, or what.
     
  5. Ingenious

    Ingenious Well-Known Member

    Thanks Adam. It's certainly an interesting concept for all the reasons jadmperry states too. My main points were not relating to the legality of taking part however but rather to the real world issues with user posted content that is decided to be libellous, and the idea of self incrimination. Namely that it's easy to believe in these things but in the real world when company A contacts you because person B posted something libellous, or user C decides that user D is posting stuff which is defaming him, what do you do? And can you protect members from self incrimination, say for example someone posts about recreational drug use and the authorities want to identify him?

    I am interested in knowing and understanding how a community can function as a genuinely uncensored one in today's litigious world. If it's possible then it gives me great hope that we're not, as a society, totally owned by government, authority, corporations or those with deep pockets for legal take downs :)
     
  6. jadmperry

    jadmperry Well-Known Member

    I wanted to follow-up and make sure it is understood that I was not taking a jab at the idea. It seems to me that any organization or site that picks a position runs into these issues- for example, does a site that supports right to keep and bear arms have to advocate for unrestricted right to have machine guns? Grenade launchers? Artillery pieces? There is always a line that an organization/site has to draw (well, I guess not always- they could choose no line, but that can be problematic).
     
  7. Adam Howard

    Adam Howard Well-Known Member

    Socially Uncensored is The Devil's Advocate (we walk a very fine, grey line). :cautious:

    We allow for any topic to be placed into discussion and open for further discussion and debate. Typically regardless of how controversial it maybe.

    Some guidelines for life that apply to Socially Uncensored:
    • Whining is not socially acceptable behavior, even for 2-year olds.
    • Everyone is entitled to their own opinion... regardless of how stupid it is.
    • Everyone is entitled to be offended by anyone else's opinion.
    • Everyone have as much right to their own opinion as everyone else does to be offended by that opinion.
    • Everyone has as much right to act like as ******* as everyone else does to treat them like an *******.
    • Everyone is entitled to an equal opportunity to say things that make them look stupid and/or ignorant
    (there is a difference)
    • You don't need to agree with everyone... not everyone will agree with you.
    • You don't need to like everyone... not everyone will like you.
    • The fact that you may feel really, really strongly about your religion / politics / country / pet / etc does not make your opinion of said topic any more right or important than anyone else's.
    • Whining is not socially acceptable behavior, even for 2-year olds.
    http://www.sociallyuncensored.eu/fo...-on-when-to-report-a-post.9907/#axzz23es1QeKt

    We cover everything from political, religious, social, and moral topics; all without censorship.

    We do allow for other languages to be used, but we do request that people offer some kind of English translation (best effort) as the majority of the community does speak and write in English. We don't see this as a limit and do offer a link to Google Translations (best effort, because we understand that Google doesn't always get it right). So no, you don't have to know English to post your view-point.

    Yes, adult content is allowed (soft-core and hard-core). As the human body can also be a form of expression.
     
    8thos likes this.
  8. Adam Howard

    Adam Howard Well-Known Member

    Please read our terms of service :)
     
  9. Adam Howard

    Adam Howard Well-Known Member

    We prefer not to draw those lines and remain uncensored in allowing everyone the freedom of speech and information.
     
  10. Adam Howard

    Adam Howard Well-Known Member

    Question: Why an uncensored site? And what continues to motivate you?

    Answer:

    First let me say, that any future questions anyone has about SU or the management of SU...

    Please do not send me a PM. I'd much prefer addressing such questions here in this thread and I would much prefer that you post the question for all to see. Future PM's on this subject will be ignored.

    Back to the answer.....


    For me, it has not been because I help found Socially Uncensored, nor has it been because I help manage it, or even that fact that I invested a lot of time, money, and effort into this community.....

    The reason why I continue is because of the ever-growing need for an outlet where people can speak freely without censorship. Over the years that concept has been attacked on exactly what that does or does not mean. And some people have come, gone, come back, and others continue to join.

    Our community at it's best and at it's worse has been a source of entertainment, information, and perhaps even a soap box. Much like society, it isn't perfect and it may never be perfect, in fact it most likely will be far from it.

    But it is the one place I know where people don't have to get alone, agree, or even like one another; although thankfully many people on SU do.... The point is that regardless you have a voice and so does everyone else, no matter if people like or hate that voice.

    More and more policies, laws, standards, and political correctness throughout the world seem to slowly deter the idea of uncensored expression and thought. But we still have it on Socially Uncensored.
     
  11. DRE

    DRE Well-Known Member

    LMFAOOOOOOO Whining consists of the majority of posts about xenforo these days.
     
    Adam Howard likes this.
  12. Adam Howard

    Adam Howard Well-Known Member

    I find that it does on most sites... The difference about people whining on Socially Uncensored is the staff either ignores you, because whining isn't a valid complaint, or we chime in with the rest of the members.

    That's the difference about an uncensored community... Unlike most sites (not all) where the staff tries to be politically correct... On SU we too have an opinion.
     
  13. DRE

    DRE Well-Known Member

    I went Hitler-mode on my site the first couple months so it made tamped down the whining. After awhile you loosen up people learn when it's appropriate to complain instead of complaining just to complain.
     
  14. Adam Howard

    Adam Howard Well-Known Member

    Lmao :ROFLMAO:

    I was accused of going "Hitler-mode" on my site when we first opened up. Of course I didn't see it that way. It mostly had to do with our site policy about not allowing unlimited time to edit or delete...

    Such a feature can be abused ... ie... X user says Y, everyone agrees and a few days later it look like everyone agreed to something bad (really bad).

    Also being uncensored means not being able to remove other people's comments, opinions, thoughts, and ideas. If X user could delete his whole thread, than dozens of others lose their voice.
     
  15. Digital Doctor

    Digital Doctor Well-Known Member

    When did the ED forums go Xenforo ?
     
  16. Adam Howard

    Adam Howard Well-Known Member

    the ED forum? :confused: :cautious:
     
  17. Adam Howard

    Adam Howard Well-Known Member

    We're releasing a series of videos demonstrating the power and advancements of our community using XenForo 1.2



    Our first video being how "lost post" due to user error or technical error is now a thing of the past, thanks to XenForo 1.2 (best seen in full screen)
     
  18. Matthew Hawley

    Matthew Hawley Well-Known Member

    Only **** thats a long password! :O
     
    Adam Howard likes this.
  19. Matthew Hawley

    Matthew Hawley Well-Known Member

    So...uhh...Why you have uTorrent installed? :ROFLMAO:
     
  20. Adam Howard

    Adam Howard Well-Known Member

    500+ characters long
    Generated with my password manager (which also needs 2 step verification to access). ;)

    Where did you see uTorrent? :confused:
    I don't have it installed. I think maybe you've confused one thing for another. o_O


    edit: I do have Tribler installed. Just noticed ccleaner calls it uTorrent. Just dug through my program folders.... no uTorrent.... that is odd.....

    Tribler is still a torrent program. I use it to download Ubuntu, Debian, ect....
     
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2013
    Matthew Hawley likes this.

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