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> Kinsella rebuts Berlet, two Notable Wikipedians square off
nobs
post Fri 16th February 2007, 3:19am
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QUOTE
This is a blatant attempt to stage a confrontation to allow the complainant and allies to hijack a page and sanitize any serious criticism of the Ludwig von Mises Institute (LvMI). [Cberlet]
QUOTE
No, criticism is normal and acceptable. But you don't "balance" a criticism with one from David Duke, duhh! Stephan Kinsella 05:27, 27 July 2005 (UTC)
QUOTE
User:Cberlet on the other hand has linked to materials that he personally authored for and published with the Southern Poverty Law Center [44][45] and furthermore he did not disclose at the time of the addition that the source he cited was his own. [Rangerdude]
QUOTE
Adding an entry in [Kinsella's] blog so that [Kinsella] can come here and cite it is not the way to write an encyclopedia. -Willmcw 22:09, July 21, 2005 (UTC)
QUOTE
Williamcw: You said, "Adding an entry in your blog so that you can come here and cite it is not the way to write an encyclopedia." But, apparently, referring to baseless smears against libertarians (Hoppe) by someone (Palmer) who's made it an ongoing policy to smear this person, is the way to write an encylopedia? Encyclopedia articles should not be yet another place where campaigns of character-assasination are waged. And that holds for individuals and institutions. -- David J. Heinrich
QUOTE
Willmcw and others kept insisting that critiques from "mere blogs" didn't count; yet Willmcw had previously linked to the Tom Palmer blog. Stephan Kinsella 05:27, 27 July 2005 (UTC)

Will Beback inserts David Duke in LvMI
QUOTE
I put in David Duke's criticism of the Center to prove that point...Point made, problem solved.
Kinsella, like Daniel Brandt was the victim of a vicious smear and tried to defend himself through Wikipedia's processes.
QUOTE
[Will Beback], are you saying that your personal attacks are excusable if they are in response to others made against you? Moreover, I never knew anything about you until I saw you making up stuff about me--that I had erected my own entry (untrue); that I worked for the Mises Institute (untrue)--in your first attempt to delete my entry. When I objected, you smarmily danced around and I then noticed your pattern of snide, leftist-inspired wikistalking, such as your second attempt to delete me, your utterly outrageous and repeated attempts to add a snide comment about the copyright status in one of my articles detailing my opposition to IP law [Wikibio describes Kinsella as "an American intellectual property lawyer" and is in Category:Patent attorneys]; when you did not like my edit to the Mises Institute page showing the SPLC [authored by Berlet], who had smeared the Mises Institute as being a hate group, had been criticized by others for going overboard--you "buttressed" this with a criticism by David Duke, which was a very slimy, dishonest, bad faith, and disingenuous move; and your ridiculous repressing of my entry due to a CopyVio simply because of your busybody dislike for my own website's quite standard copyright notice, in your attempt to use your power as an editor to try to push your pet GNU agenda. Outrageous. [[User:Nskinsella|NSKinsella (Stephan Kinsella)]] 02:03, 8 November 2005 (UTC)
QUOTE
Stephan, this isn't helpful. We're trying to resolve the dispute here, not engage in it. Words like outrageous, snide, dishonest etc etc are the problem, not the solution and I'm asking everyone here to be part of the solution. SlimVirgin (talk) 02:15, 8 November 2005 (UTC)

So Berlet, Will Beback, et al can slander and defame Kinsella as being associated with a hate group (sourced to Berlet) in Wikipedia. When he responds, words he uses like outrageous, snide, and dishonest "are the problem".

ArbCom finally found an "error" on Will Beback's part, but don't follow the links from there, it's part of the coverup.

This post has been edited by nobs: Wed 21st February 2007, 5:28am
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Herschelkrustofsky
post Fri 16th February 2007, 7:33am
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Nobs, this is the sort of thing that were probably more appropriately posted to the "Nobs 'n' Chip" thread. While this material has historical interest, we really don't need a constant stream of new threads devoted to it.
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nobs
post Fri 16th February 2007, 6:09pm
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QUOTE(Herschelkrustofsky @ Fri 16th February 2007, 12:33am) *

Nobs, this is the sort of thing that were probably more appropriately posted to the "Nobs 'n' Chip" thread. While this material has historical interest, we really don't need a constant stream of new threads devoted to it.
I don't think so.
QUOTE(Daniel Brandt @ Sun 24th December 2006, 2:08pm) *
Dear Sarah:

I am looking for a Florida-based attorney to negotiate with the Wikimedia Foundation to take down my biography. If this fails, I plan to file an invasion-of-privacy lawsuit against the Foundation. Considering the fact that all the Talk pages are also made available to the search engines, I may include a defamation-of-character complaint in the suit. My main interest in litigation is to establish in a Florida court that Section 230 of the U.S. Communications Decency Act does not provide immunity to the Foundation, due to the fact that the Foundation's entire structure is designed to moderate the content on Wikipedia. I will argue that because of this, the Foundation functions as a publisher rather than a service provider. Only service providers are immune under Section 230.
Mr. Kinsella is an expert in Intellectual Property Law,

http://www.kinsellalaw.com/publications.php

and his statement above about using free license to disseminate defamatory material
QUOTE
your attempt to use your power as an editor to try to push your pet GNU agenda
shows he is well acquainted with the vital issues involved.

This post has been edited by nobs: Sat 17th February 2007, 2:28am
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Somey
post Fri 16th February 2007, 6:37pm
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QUOTE(nobs @ Fri 16th February 2007, 12:09pm) *

QUOTE(Herschelkrustofsky @ Fri 16th February 2007, 12:33am) *

Nobs, this is the sort of thing that were probably more appropriately posted to the "Nobs 'n' Chip" thread. While this material has historical interest, we really don't need a constant stream of new threads devoted to it.
I don't think so.

Maybe we should take a poll?

If all this were actually happening now, as opposed to 14 months ago, then I'd be inclined to agree with you, at least in this particular case. But Kinsella hasn't been particularly active on WP since then - fewer than 20 edits in the last year - and just because he's an IP law specialist doesn't mean he'd bear any relevance to the Brandt case, which is really about defamation and invasion of privacy. Besides, Kinsella isn't in Florida, and he apparently wants his own bio article to stay in, not be deleted...?
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nobs
post Fri 16th February 2007, 7:36pm
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QUOTE(Somey @ Fri 16th February 2007, 11:37am) *
If all this were actually happening now, as opposed to 14 months ago
Brandt said he's looking for an [intellectual property] lawyer now.
QUOTE(Somey @ Fri 16th February 2007, 11:37am) *
Kinsella hasn't been particularly active on WP since then - fewer than 20 edits in the last year -
yes, and after the way he was treated is no wonder. Also, the dubious sources about the organization he's connected with remain in that organizations entry.
QUOTE
Williamcw: This is not a notable criticism. As for the SPLC being "notable", I've never heard of them before, and their web-traffic is smaller than that of Mises.org and LewRockwell.org by 2 orders of magnitude. Hardly seems significant to me. But accepting that they are, I stand by my assertion that Encyclopedias shouldn't be places where mud is thrown. Absent a response to this rubbish, it is a denigration to the LvMI; it shouldn't be allowed to stand unchallenged, simply because no-one there has gotten around to responding to it. [presumably cited to Dr. Daniel J. Heinrich under a subhead Unnamed "Opponents"]
(Also, the SPLC reference was authored by, guess who).
QUOTE(Somey @ Fri 16th February 2007, 11:37am) *
just because he's an IP law specialist doesn't mean he'd bear any relevance to the Brandt case, which is really about defamation and invasion of privacy. Besides, Kinsella isn't in Florida, and he apparently wants his own bio article to stay in, not be deleted...?
Kinsella is evidently an International Intellectual Property lawyer, and Section 230 reform is International in scope (maybe we can get Guy to input here). It appears he does want his bio to remain, but that's his business and we've no need to speculate further. This is Brandt's decision to contact him for whatever they may wish to discuss confidentially. I have in fact myself communicated with him privately to apprise him of the situation.

On a further aside, three Proposed Principals in the Rangerdude/Will Beback/SlimVirgin case,
    Controversial experts
    Harassment of controversial experts
    Focusing attention on controversial users
are plural, "experts", and "users", i.e. this refers to both Kinsella and the author of the SPLC guilt by association smears. The Rangerdude/Will Beback/SlimVirgin case was a milestone. And I invite HK, before he wishes to pursue his proposal here further to comment on his posting, The importance of this case (see also my next subhead, bona fidas).

This post has been edited by nobs: Fri 16th February 2007, 8:03pm
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Somey
post Fri 16th February 2007, 8:10pm
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QUOTE(nobs @ Fri 16th February 2007, 1:36pm) *
Brandt said he's looking for an [intellectual property] lawyer now.

Maybe we should ask him...? I know that right now he's mostly looking for someone who will take his case on contingency, but I was under the impression he was looking for someone more experienced in defamation cases, not IP cases. In fact, I don't think he's disputing who "owns" the material in question, is he? It's all GFDL material, after all.

QUOTE
Kinsella is evidently an International Intellectual Property lawyer, and Section 230 reform is International in scope (maybe we can get Guy to input here).

It is? I suppose the underlying issue applies universally, but I don't believe there's any sort of active international movement going on to better define who is a publisher and who is a service provider. Is there? That's a legitimate question, btw - I'm not trying to just gainsay you.

Still, whether that's the case or not, I doubt that Brandt's hiring of an attorney (on contingency or otherwise) who already has some negative history with Wikipedia would necessarily help his case, and it might hurt it rather substantially. I suppose I could be wrong about that, but if it were me, I'd probably look for someone they'd never heard of before.
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nobs
post Fri 16th February 2007, 8:35pm
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QUOTE(Somey @ Fri 16th February 2007, 1:10pm) *
QUOTE(nobs @ Fri 16th February 2007, 1:36pm) *
Brandt said he's looking for an [intellectual property] lawyer now.
Maybe we should ask him...? I know that right now he's mostly looking for someone who will take his case on contingency, but I was under the impression he was looking for someone more experienced in defamation cases, not IP cases. In fact, I don't think he's disputing who "owns" the material in question, is he? It's all GFDL material, after all.
This needs investigation. I'm not a lawyer, but as I understand it GNU & GFLD came into existence for free distribution of software programs, not dissemination of defamatory text. My question is, for there to be a license, there must be a license holder. Who is the license holder of defamatory text?
QUOTE(Somey @ Fri 16th February 2007, 1:10pm) *
QUOTE
Kinsella is evidently an International Intellectual Property lawyer, and Section 230 reform is International in scope (maybe we can get Guy to input here).

It is? I suppose the underlying issue applies universally, but I don't believe there's any sort of active international movement going on to better define who is a publisher and who is a service provider. Is there? That's a legitimate question, btw - I'm not trying to just gainsay you.
Oh yes, there definitely is. And much has been at Wikien-1 for as long as I've been monitoring the list.

It is also an interesting question. Americans routinely have no compunction about posting blatantly libelous crap on the internet (G.W. Bush screws monkeys, Prince Charles is gay, etc.) Our British counterparts on the other hand, are much more reserved. It's a cultural differance. They can't get away with that stuff under British law. So in English language (Brit/American) discussions, you have basically four groups: ( a ) Americans who talk about "accountability" ( b ) Americans who bemoan censorship ( c ) Brits who envy Americans guarantee of the First Amendment which doesn't exist in Britain, and ( d ) Brits who serve as the model for Americans who want accountability without censorship.

As to your other comments, we shouldn't speculate. I just want Brandt to know, he wasn't the first. Rangerdude documented a pattern of labeling persons and organizations with invidious labels. Most unfairly labelled are pissed off. And Wikipedia is on record of not only sanctioning and encouraging such conduct, but granting special privileges and impugnity from internal regulatory processes. It truelly is a goddamn scandal. I'll be happy to shut up if they let me back in and start treating me fairly. Absent that, I'll just keeping telling what I know (I know where the bodies are burried...nobs mutters ominously....)

This post has been edited by nobs: Fri 16th February 2007, 8:55pm
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Somey
post Fri 16th February 2007, 11:34pm
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QUOTE(nobs @ Fri 16th February 2007, 2:35pm) *
...as I understand it GNU & GFLD came into existence for free distribution of software programs, not dissemination of defamatory text. My question is, for there to be a license, there must be a license holder. Who is the license holder of defamatory text?

Well, that's just it, Nobs... For GFDL material there effectively is no "license holder." There are authors, publishers, and consumers, but nobody really "owns" GFDL-licensed content, so the traditional target of a defamation lawsuit, namely the IP owner, is removed from the equation. As we've discussed many times, anyone hoping to sue WP has to identify the authors (who are, of course, anonymous, not to mention all over the planet), or target the publisher, who in this case attempts to hide behind an obscure subsection in the CDA that supposedly protects it as a "service provider," which of course is an almost silly claim in Wikipedia's case.

However, such a claim may not be silly in other cases, i.e., other websites. And since the law doesn't like grey areas, the whole thing becomes a crap-shoot, with the results quite possibly based on who gets the precedents set in their favor first... That's the basis of my opinion, at least, which is that our focus as concerned citizens and critics should be more on changing the actual law, not sitting on the sidelines munching popcorn and cheering while Brandt makes various legal arrangements.

Now if I could just get off my ass...

QUOTE(Somey @ Fri 16th February 2007, 1:10pm) *
Oh yes, there definitely is. And much has been at Wikien-1 for as long as I've been monitoring the list.

I was thinking something more, I dunno, reality-based? Along the lines of international conferences attended by justice ministers, attorneys general, that sort of thing? Maybe a formally-published legal or academic journal article or three? Nobody outside of Wikipedia reads WikiEN-L, except for total losers like me who just do it for entertainment.

QUOTE
Most unfairly labelled are pissed off. And Wikipedia is on record of not only sanctioning and encouraging such conduct, but granting special privileges and impugnity from internal regulatory processes. It truelly is a goddamn scandal. I'll be happy to shut up if they let me back in and start treating me fairly...

Shut up here, or shut up there? Right now I'd have to say your only conceivable chance of reinstatement there would be to stop posting here altogether, if not have us ban you outright. Remember, I did offer to ban you at one point, in the hopes of improving your "street cred" over there on WP, but you wouldn't hear of it!

Anyway, I think there are also some fairly-labeled people who are pissed off too... mustn't forget them, even if they lack the sympathy factor. unsure.gif
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gomi
post Sat 17th February 2007, 12:58am
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QUOTE(Somey @ Fri 16th February 2007, 3:34pm) *

QUOTE(nobs @ Fri 16th February 2007, 2:35pm) *
...as I understand it GNU & GFLD came into existence for free distribution of software programs, not dissemination of defamatory text. My question is, for there to be a license, there must be a license holder. Who is the license holder of defamatory text?

Well, that's just it, Nobs... For GFDL material there effectively is no "license holder." There are authors, publishers, and consumers, but nobody really "owns" GFDL-licensed content, so the traditional target of a defamation lawsuit, namely the IP owner, is removed from the equation.

I beg to differ. The license holder is the owner of the copyright, and the owner of the copyright is the person that made a particular edit. One interpretation is that the original creator of any page owns the first copyright, and each subsequent editor owns the copyright to an (allowed) "derivative work". Thus, in practice, the copyright is "owned" by the sum total of all editors to a page. The GFDL does not control who owns the page copyright, it merely requires that restrictions on redistribution be waived.

If a page is defamatory, then one would have to identify the point at which the page went from being non-defamatory to being so. The most obvious person to sue for defamation would be the person that made the edit that crossed that boundary. However, most lawyers would then sue everyone who edited after that point for contributory defamation, and (excepting the ISP exception) would sue Wikipedia for distributing ("publishing") the defamation. This has nothing to do with the GFDL or copyright.

The right to discover information related to who made a certain edit would accrue with this. For an effective shield against the defamation, Wikipedia (acting as an ISP) would need to provide relavent records indicating who the defaming editor was and how to find them. For comparison, this is what the RIAA and MPAA have done with/to MP3 sharers and the like. They can then bring civil actions against whomever they can identify.

Caveat: I am not a lawyer, though I pay quite a few of them.
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Somey
post Sat 17th February 2007, 2:02am
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I'm not a lawyer either, in case you couldn't tell...!

Anyway, Gomi is correct, and I stand corrected. (Sorry...!) Any "license" on a copyrighted work is simply a grant of permission to use the work in some specified way. "Holding" a license only gives you the rights specified under the terms of that license... Holding a copyright is the thing that implies some measure of legal responsibility on the part of the holder, owner, or whatever.

My familiarity with licenses and copyrights is mostly in regards to commercial software, where you're at least fairly certain there's an identifiable person involved. Even if that person is deep in the heart of Siberia.
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post Sat 17th February 2007, 2:19am
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QUOTE(Herschelkrustofsky @ Fri 16th February 2007, 7:33am) *

Nobs, this is the sort of thing that were probably more appropriately posted to the "Nobs 'n' Chip" thread. While this material has historical interest, we really don't need a constant stream of new threads devoted to it.


I agree with this sentiment unfortunately.
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nobs
post Sat 17th February 2007, 5:05pm
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Will Beback said
QUOTE
A substantial part of Rangerdude's editing career at Wikipedia has involved promoting the LVMI and denigrating the Claremont Institute, along with their respective personnel.
I will take Will Beback's characterization of RD at face value. RD appear's to be deeply knowledgeable in the feud Will Beback cited. Rangerdude was the target of ideological profiling, the equivalent of surveilling all Black males on the grounds that a certain percentage may commit violent crimes. In the sense that targeting minorities for special surveillance, Rangerdude was wikistalked before ever registering an account, having been profiled by Polirtcal Research Associates and the Southern Poverty Law Center as a "neo-confederate". This is evident in the first Finding of Fact:

Wikipedia:Requests_for_arbitration/Willmcw_and_SlimVirgin/Workshop#Rangerdude.27s_editing
QUOTE
1) Rangerdude (talk • contribs) generally edits articles which relate to Southern conservative themes often related to Texas.

An essay entitled Nazism, the Internet and Culture of Violence, written in the pre-Patriot Act era, discusses the problem of extremism being communicated on the internet; here's a brief extract:

QUOTE
Not only is this region where right wing fanatics in North America lead the "normal" portions of their lives in relative obscurity, but also where their weapons are assembled, money is raised, and right wing headquarters are located. This north-south latitude stretches all the way down through Nebraska and to Texas.
Rangerdude was targeted as a "neo-confederate" as defined by the SPLC's Intelligence Report. It was in this publication that Berlet also listed American Enterprise Institute, the Bradley Foundation, Horowitz's Center for the Study for Polular Culture, and the Ludwig von Mises Institute as well as several others, as hate groups. Anyone using these sources, or showing an affinity to these organizations has become the subject of ideological profiling in Wikipedia.

This post has been edited by nobs: Wed 21st February 2007, 4:56am
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