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Thompson's Rules

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Joined: 31 Jul 2007
Posts: 395

PostPosted: Sat Oct 20, 2007 8:12 pm    Post subject: Thompson's Rules Reply with quote

These were Thompson's rules for wales.6.forumer.com's chat secion, but generally apply - in case you all wondered what kind of standards of behaviour we hope for...hope for...

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Posted: Wed Aug 31, 2005 12:42 pm Post subject: Rules Please read


This section has been designed for general chat but we still ask you not to flame here and once again flames will be moved! { I think he means swearing, being abusive, etc, he's a very polite man }

Here are the basic rules once again:

These are outlines of the rules. We are trying not to be too harsh on the rules but there are some rules where your post will be deleted and if it persists you will be banned. These are set out by the Terms and Conditions set out by Forumer! { Who ddn't enforce them ! }

You must not make posts that; provides links to, promotes, provides instructions on the following topics:
- Warez / Piracy / Hacking / Viruses, or illegal mp3's
- Adult or obscene material
- Illegal Drugs
- Derogatory/Slanderous/Racial/Explicit Material
- Sharing of passwords / Serial Numbers /
- Invasion on privacy / Impersonation of others
- Spam / MLM
- Harassment
- Illegal Conduct of Any Sort

This Forum has been made is for posting of events and constructive discussion! However we realise that at somepoint some kind of flaming will occur. This is why we have created the Hall of Flames forum, all posts flaming another member wil be moved here.

Flaming will not result in a ban unless it is persistant and the user does not contribute to any discussion, We don't mind if you resign up for the forum if you are going to contribute to the discussion although if you do resign up and carry on flaming you will only get banned again.

We ask you to post your threads in the correct section in the forum, if a thread is made in the wrong forum it will be moved to the correct one.
This is material transferred from forumer.com
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Joined: 07 Jan 2007
Posts: 203

PostPosted: Fri Feb 20, 2009 6:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

( dai acting as administrator )

I'm glad to look back and see that Thompson's Rules, even before we tried to restart the discussion, had stated that illegal conduct was banned. But I don't think that he anticipated this problem because the Terrorism Act 2006 had not been long on the statute book when he wrote those rules in early 2007. So we need to re-consider the policy of the board in the light of a recent posting that didn't break our rules but made me think a lot about how we are going to handle the possibility that somebody posts statements that break that Act and others. We didn't really consider this before because none of us have even had the thought on our mental radar, we are clearly not those sort of people in our own eyes. We handle obnoxious statements by arguing them down not censoring them, except that statements that misrepresent republican values should be transferred to Quarantine - Diheinbraw - with an argument posted by Repwblic as to why this had been done, to make it obvious that we do not endorse them but neither will we delete them in order to respect free speech.

In doing this we are really applying Republican laws not British laws, and there can be potential conflicts in this - most obviously the U.K.'s Treason Felony Act 1848 which has a section that criminalises any discussion of Republicanism at all ( but which section has fortunately probably become defunct since the Human Rights Act 1998 ). For the most part, having finally become a democracy of sorts after World War Two, most of the values that republicans uphold are to be found somewhere in modern British laws and the conflicts in practice are negligeable.

The laws that we are likely to fall foul of as a discussion group are those that impinge on free speech which is a very dear value to us as republicans. Already people here object to the Quarantine idea - and we haven't even used it to date ! Republicans deny that there is any such thing as a thought crime and I suspect that many reject the idea of speech crime as well since even the most vile threats consist merely of words. Some would argue that intentions are irrelevant e.g. if you killed somebody by accident, or negligence or intentionally that person is still dead and you have violated their Prime Right to Life and the penalty should be the same in all cases, maybe your death even. If somebody is on trial for a crime, establishing their intentions is notoriously difficult whereas the discovered facts cannot be contradicted.

But words can frighten people and terrorism need not be about bombs but threats, even the most vacuous unspecific threats can terrify people. One of the criticisms to be made of the U.K.'s legal system is that consists of negative laws, just such a system of vacuous threats that provides no positive guidance for conduct - a legacy of the 18c. The Terrorism Act 2006 contains such laws and they terrify me. The first section of it basically says that almost any historical or theoretical discussion that some casual observer cares to choose to interpret as an inducement to copy what is discussed could be seized upon to construct an allegation of encouraging terrorism, depending on the contents and circumstances of its publication. That could very well catch out the unwary enthusiast for some romantic episode or compelling idea who is unaware of how their treatment of it can be twisted around, and the context of this discussion is our desire to make real our ideal republic.

It's clear that censorship is demanded by the law, but it is not a positive law that declares what we can discuss. You can read the law for yourself, but I think that there is little choice in the matter - I'm not going to bother to seek a confrontation with the law for the sake of somebody else's post.


P.S. What I feel about this is that we lose the opportunity to be seen to be putting arguments against the black faction, but then also I feel that if our society was to act consistantly it would ban the Bible as a terrorist manual inciting racial hatred and all sorts of criminality but that ofcourse is the sacred text that our society is based on.
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