We published a statement on our stance on neutrality of free software (and why we won't stay neutral in this case): f-droid.org/en/2019/07/16/stat


You seem to believe that Gab is wholly composed of harassers. This is simply false.

The majority of Gab users are nothing like that. AND harassers exist on every platform.

Singling out Gab like this is silly.

The reason Gab has been seized upon is because it's popular with Trump supporters, and a lot of Trump opponents are desperate to do anything they can to prevent Trump 2020.


> The majority of Gab users are nothing like that.

And these Gab users don't seem to perform much action against the harassers that exist on that platform - contrary to many other places on the Internet, whose communities actually do something about the hate speech problem.



@phoe @fdroidorg

There's no such thing as "hate speech". There's only free speech. You may not like some of it. If you don't like it, don't listen.

@jhol @fdroidorg See, F-Droid doesn't like it. That's exactly why F-droid doesn't listen to it anymore.

Well.i dont like mastodon maybe i should get rid of it
@jhol @fdroidorg

@phoe @fdroidorg

Right... and I'm saying they're doing something idiotic.

"Hate speech" cannot be consistently defined. It is not a politically neutral term. If f-droid start trying to moderate political ideas on their platform, there's simply no way they can do so consistently.

@jhol Sure it can. "Hate speech is speech that attacks a person or a group on the basis of protected attributes such as race, religion, ethnic origin, national origin, sex, disability, sexual orientation, or gender identity" - that's via Wikipedia.

@phoe @fdroidorg

I know what the term means. I don't accept it (nor does the US legal system, but I digress)

Hate speech is not a legal category in the US, nor is there a hate speech exception to the First Amendment in the US, but that's not the same thing as "hate speech doesn't exist." Don't give government the power to define common language terms.
@phoe @fdroidorg

@rchive @phoe @fdroidorg

Free speech supporters don't accept hate speech as a separate category separate from simple speech.

@jhol @rchive @fdroidorg

That's the issue that I see with free speech. To clarify, "free speech" as an ideology is different than "free speech" as a right.

Words are able to harm and kill people by directly amplifying hate in people, who then commit actual hate crimes. There are examples of exactly that happening. [>>]

@jhol @rchive @fdroidorg

"Free speech" as a law takes that into account, where "free speech" as an ideology completely ignores that relationship in favor of "I can say whatever I want and it will have no consequences".

The consequences are there in the open to see - and, for some reason, they are not seen by the proponents of absolute free speech as an ideology.

@ice @phoe @fdroidorg @jhol Spot on man ! God, have I ever enjoyed watching SJWs get to salty over nothing ? OH yeah ! In the glorious , incredible, amazing night of November 8th 2016 !

@phoe @jhol @fdroidorg First of all : a) that is not a legally accepted definition, since moral relativism is incompatible with the basis of law which is natural law, b) it's not an objective definition, since there can be no laws that have to applied differently to different groups, c) it's not a logical definition, because, since no standard of what constitutes a "protected attribute" is defined, ANY attribute IS a protected attribute, therefore ALL groups are protected groups, which renders the meaning of "protected group" contradictory, d) it's not a rational definition since if the objective of the concept of "hate speech" is to fight discrimination, it is irrational to fight discrimination by discriminating between "protected" and "non-protected" groups.

Therefore trying to create a non existent standard of law applying moral relativism using as an authority ( i.e. Wikipedia ) that is not part of the justice or lawmaking branch, is both pointless and self-defeating.

@The_Mad_Pirate @jhol @fdroidorg In your example, you're using only logic, not empathy. That's why you'll get contradictory results.

@phoe @jhol @fdroidorg Repeat with me : "Your feelings are not an argument". So, empathy it is NOT a logical justification of anything, not public policies, not economic policies, not social policies. Only rational policies based on falsifiable hypothesis that allows to correct those policies if what they predict does not match objective reality.

@The_Mad_Pirate @jhol

No, I disagree.

Repeat with me: "emotions exist and are real and valuable". Humans are emotional beasts, not computers; emotions are an integral part of human life and convey a ton of information to other people, and it is wasteful to purposefully ignore such a valuable source of information and perception.

@phoe @The_Mad_Pirate

I see what you're saying. I think I am more temperamentally inclined to the @The_Mad_Pirate 's way of thinking.

I agree we need to understand people's feelings.

My concern is that feelings are becoming quite divorced from reality, and being used to drive bone-headed arbitrary decisions.

@jhol Again, I consider feelings and emotions to be a part of reality that intertwines with all other parts of it - including the logical precision mentioned by @The_Mad_Pirate.

Since they're intertwined with everything, it's impossible for me to consider reality without its emotional context, because - if we remove one source of information along with everything connected to it - then decisions made on the basis of that source will seem completely unjustified and "bone-headed". [>>]

@jhol @The_Mad_Pirate And if they seem unjustified and bone-headed and arbitrary, then it's trivial for a person to go into full-stop mode and start opposing the decision in question along with people who have made it. It's stupid, it's bonkers, it's idiotic - and these statements immediately block any attempts that would otherwise try to understand that decision with more information - including the emotional part of it. [>>]

@jhol @The_Mad_Pirate Which, again, I want to have complete information. Otherwise I'll end up with a logical system that, by definition, cannot explain everything. The holes that are made in the logical system are where we must use assumptions, and it's trivial to base a whole theory off a wrong assumption.

@jhol @The_Mad_Pirate

The way I think of it, nowadays people are almost trained by the general society to succeed via wealth and money, via social status, via company size, via contract sizes, et cetera; the fact that people are emotional beings is downplayed, ignored, shamed, and/or marked as weakness. [>>]


And I consider that to be highly crippling in general, since it shapes a legion of people who are, by design, unable to understand emotions, and therefore prone to depression, illnesses, and suicide (especially men).

That, in turn, makes them emotionally illiterate *without any fault from their side*, and I wonder if @The_Mad_Pirate is one of these folk. (That's not a question for me to answer though - I'm not in their head and can't figure it out from outside.)


I don't think you really choose your political affiliation. It looks like an expression of your innate personality type.

Politics emerges because both left and right logic and emotion have utility. Then a negotiation takes place that allows society to respond to the world. This is why we must listen to each other again.

No good can come of all this deplatforming that's going on


@jhol @The_Mad_Pirate Again - I've mentioned why some people are unable to listen when the other group of people throws hate speech at them. That is why deplatforming occurs.

If the discussion occurs in a civilized manner - for instance, without harmful speech - then it is obvious that it has a chance of succeeding and producing adequate results. Otherwise, discussion is impossible. That's the core of the issue.

@phoe @The_Mad_Pirate The problem is that there's no objective way to define civilized. There's no objective way to define hate speech.

And so there's no way of making discriminations like this without authoritarianism, bias, contradictions and double standards.

Which is why, even though it's often ugly, freedom is the only way to go.

Let people speak.

@jhol @The_Mad_Pirate

Sure, except you also need to objectively define freedom at that moment. And we get in trouble, just like with all other man-made concepts.

When Gab freely speaks, isn't that freedom?

When F-Droid freely disassociates itself with Gab, isn't that freedom either?

Hopefully I'm not being obtuse here, but: it sounds like you're more or less saying that deplatforming occurs bc some people (understandably) can't participate in conversations where they are being attacked by hateful speech. This was not my impression of the concept? Isn't deplatforming supposed to be essentially a tactical tool for silencing harmful speech or punishing bad actors, when those issues are not being dealt with by other means? Or are we going off of different definitions of the concept?


> Isn't deplatforming supposed to be essentially a tactical tool for silencing harmful speech or punishing bad actors, when those issues are not being dealt with by other means?

It is. The speaking ones are unwilling to be quiet en masse, the listening ones are unable to listen en masse, so nuclear options, such as deplatforming, are chosen and executed.

@phoe @jhol @fdroidorg who defines what an attack constitutes? many people just decide to feel attacked all the time, so is everything hate speech?

many people tell me "racism against whites doesnt exist" but is caucasian not a race too?

@jhol @phoe Oh no, there most certainly is "hate" and "hate speech". In fact, the boundaries of "hate speech" might be much more clearly defined than "free speech" which has always bee subject to long philosophical discussion since forever.

Your committing hate speech right now because this offends me.
@jhol @phoe
When people thought everything is hate speech.

@chebra @phoe

Not correct. The concept of "hate speech" is a very recent idea. Which has never been accepted in the US legal system - for example.

@jhol @phoe
Maybe, but I'm not talking abut legal definition. Legal definition of free speech also exists, yet you didn't mention it. Maybe because legal definition of free speech clearly excludes inciting violence and other crimes, which is exactly the boundary of free speech we are dealing with now.

@chebra @phoe We're not though... because Gab as a whole has not broken any laws. Otherwise, it would have been shut down by the police.

@jhol @chebra Neither has F-Droid. So I have no idea why F-Droid would be unlawful in what it is currently doing.

@phoe @chebra I never said they had done anything unlawful. This is pedantic.

I said they "had no right".
I'm saying that morally I disagree with their decision.

In the same way that it's not unlawful to lie - doesn't mean it's morally defensible.

@jhol @chebra Exactly, so they *have* a concrete right to do what they are doing. Everything else is you disagreeing with them utilizing that right, which you are allowed to do by free speech, and which everyone else can not listen to via their right to freely filter what they see.

@jhol @chebra Here? You mean that I'm on a Mastodon instance that takes action against hate speech? I just am.

@jhol @chebra You're landing posts on my notification feed, and we're having a conversation. Looks exactly like the definition of what social media is created for to me.

@jhol @phoe

Would it? So you think everybody who is not in jail today is by definition innocent because "they would have been caught by now"?

@chebra @phoe Show me where Gab - this monolith that you seem think of them as - has comitted a crime. If you can't then they are innocent until proven guilty.

There may be criminal individuals who use Gab - but there are on every platform.

@jhol @chebra Once again - not every platform has done something with the hate speakers that pollute it. I prefer to stay on those who perform actual action against them.

@jhol I have to remind you again that you started arguing with "law" yourself. I never said the issue of free speech and hate speech is about law, you did.

quick nitpick: the prohibition on inciting violence is actually extremely narrow. the exact phrasing is that speech which the speaker intends to incite "imminent and likely lawless action" is not protected. so saying to a group of protestors, "we'll take the fucking street again" is protected, while "we'll take the fucking street now" would not be. advocating lawless action at some indefinite point in the future is still protected speech.

it's worth noting that that judicial precedent was set in a case concerning an anti-war protestor.

nitpick done, I'll go now *ducks out*

@phoe @jhol

@hushpiper @jhol @chebra

Hate speech isn't limited to imminent and likely lawless actions. Hate speech isn't harmful only when it's imminent; most of hate speech online, in what I have experienced so far, is not actually placed in any concrete time frame, not even imminent.

> Maybe because legal definition of free speech clearly excludes inciting violence and other crimes, which is exactly the boundary of free speech we are dealing with now.

This is what I was replying to. It had nothing whatsoever to do with hate speech.
@chebra @jhol

@hushpiper @jhol @chebra

Got it - I misread the context.

Time for me to go to sleep...

@jhol @chebra

> The concept of "hate speech" is a very recent idea. Which has never been accepted in the US legal system - for example.

Neither were women voting rights exactly a hundred years ago.

So - never accepted *yet*.

@chebra @jhol @phoe Define "hate speech" in a logical, rational and objective way without using floating signifiers.

@The_Mad_Pirate @chebra @jhol

I can't - as much as my logical mind would God damn love to. ;__;

Speech and social interactions in general are too complex, composed of different layers, and full of subtleties to define these with mathematical precition.

It takes some practice and even mental composition to be able to perceive and decipher all of the information.

@The_Mad_Pirate @chebra @jhol I advocate for a world that is more than mathematical precision.

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