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Monday, August 05, 2019

Controversial internet message board 8chan went offline Monday after internet infrastructure company Cloudflare stopped providing support for the website used by the suspected gunman in El Paso to post a hate-filled screed.

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I'm not tech-savvy, so I frankly don't know what this all means, and I've never been on 8chan (and don't care to). I don't know if there are go-arounds, or whatever. I'm sure Rcade knows what these means.

#1 | Posted by Karabekian at 2019-08-05 10:39 AM | Reply


Cloudflare is a hosting provider for websites, they also provide protection from "denial of service" (DoS) attacks. Controversial sites often use Cloudflare for that DoS protection.

Cloudflare usually considers itself as just a "transit" for the website traffic, as such, they are very reluctant to pass judgment on the content of any website they provide services for.

That Cloudflare has taken this action with 8Chan is very significant.

#2 | Posted by LampLighter at 2019-08-05 11:10 AM | Reply

They're not a host, they're CDN and web security service.

And, unfortunately, 8ch.net is still up.

#3 | Posted by qcp at 2019-08-05 11:13 AM | Reply | Newsworthy 1


@#3 ... They're not a host, they're CDN ...

That's correct. I was too loose with the semantics.

Thanks for the correction.

#4 | Posted by LampLighter at 2019-08-05 12:28 PM | Reply

"Cloudflare is a hosting provider for websites, they also provide protection from "denial of service" (DoS) attacks."

So a site that provides protection for DoS attacks just engaged in a DoS attack?

#5 | Posted by sentinel at 2019-08-05 01:21 PM | Reply | Funny: 1

No, they merely engaged in DoS.

#6 | Posted by snoofy at 2019-08-05 01:22 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1


@#5 ... So a site that provides protection for DoS attacks just engaged in a DoS attack? ...

8chan probably ran afoul of Cloudflare's terms of service agreement.


#7 | Posted by LampLighter at 2019-08-05 01:40 PM | Reply


Dumped by Cloudflare, 8chan gets back online -- then gets kicked off again
arstechnica.com

...8chan was able to get back online today despite Cloudflare cutting it off, as operators of the controversial website quickly found a new provider of CDN and DDoS protection services. But as of this writing 8chan is offline again, apparently as a result of a cloud provider cutting off 8chan's new vendor....

Cloudflare CEO Matthew Prince announced his decision to boot 8chan yesterday, noting that a suspected terrorist gunman apparently "posted a screed to [8chan] immediately before beginning his terrifying attack on the El Paso Walmart killing 20 people." In the past, 8chan was used similarly by perpetrators of attacks at a mosque in Christchurch, New Zealand and a synagogue in Poway, California. "8chan has repeatedly proven itself to be a cesspool of hate," Prince wrote.

But Prince noted that 8chan would likely find a new provider and get itself back online -- and as predicted, 8chan quickly switched its website over a provider called BitMitigate, the same company that began serving the Daily Stormer after Cloudflare cut it off.

"All our domains have been removed from Cloudflare, so we will be moving to another service ASAP," 8chan administrator Ron Watkins wrote on Twitter late last night....


#8 | Posted by LampLighter at 2019-08-05 01:42 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

"apparently as a result of a cloud provider cutting off 8chan's new vendor...."

This type of censorship is really going to come back to bite a lot of innocent people. But go on, cheer those who will be violating your own rights soon.

#9 | Posted by sentinel at 2019-08-05 03:59 PM | Reply

#9 So there is no speech you object to? KP is okay? Do you know what goes on in 8chan?

#10 | Posted by bored at 2019-08-05 04:03 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

Ah, the old if you're not for sledgehammer censorship against 3rd hand parties then you must be for kitten porn canard.

#11 | Posted by sentinel at 2019-08-05 04:31 PM | Reply

Ah, the old "pretending we don't already have widely supported government censorship" canard.

#12 | Posted by snoofy at 2019-08-05 04:37 PM | Reply

Sentinel,

What branch of government owns Cloudflare?

Because that is the ONLY right to free speech one has: protection against GOVERNMENT sponsorship.

#13 | Posted by RevDarko at 2019-08-05 04:54 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 3

#9 | Posted by sentinel

Hate breads hate and 8chan is a cesspool of hate as Prince noted. If you doubt that visit it. I would hope any and all sites preaching hate and allowing it without restraint would suffer the same fate. Unreasoning hate is a threat to all we hold dear.

#14 | Posted by GalaxiePete at 2019-08-05 05:05 PM | Reply

Unreasoning hate is all some of us hold dear.

Try to take that away from them and they cry "First Amendment!"

#15 | Posted by snoofy at 2019-08-05 05:08 PM | Reply

stochastic terrorism www.dictionary.com
noun
the public demonization of a person or group resulting in the incitement of a violent act, which is statistically probable but whose specifics cannot be predicted:

#16 | Posted by snoofy at 2019-08-05 05:21 PM | Reply

Good. That should finally end hate in the world once and for all. White supremacist ideology is now extinct; a thing of the past.

#17 | Posted by SheepleSchism at 2019-08-05 05:29 PM | Reply

Good. That should finally end hate in the world once and for all. White supremacist ideology is now extinct; a thing of the past.

#17 | Posted by SheepleSchism

Not as long as you can help it. Protect king racist at all costs!

#18 | Posted by SpeakSoftly at 2019-08-05 06:22 PM | Reply

"What branch of government owns Cloudflare?
Because that is the ONLY right to free speech one has: protection against GOVERNMENT sponsorship."

POSTED BY REVDARKO AT 2019-08-05 04:54 PM | REPLY | FLAGGED NEWSWORTHY BY GALAXIEPETE, NEWSWORTHY BY LEE_THE_AGENT, NEWSWORTHY BY SPEAKSOFTLY

Do they give trophies for fighting straw men?

#19 | Posted by sentinel at 2019-08-05 07:18 PM | Reply

Yes, you won a Swastika.
Add it to your collection.

#20 | Posted by snoofy at 2019-08-05 07:19 PM | Reply | Funny: 1

This type of censorship is really going to come back to bite a lot of innocent people. But go on, cheer those who will be violating your own rights soon.

#9 | POSTED BY SENTINEL

I always forget its only Censorship if the crazy Conservatives get taken down by corporate America.

#21 | Posted by Sycophant at 2019-08-06 12:27 PM | Reply

How about other white-supremacists web activities, like where the Trump Campaign has already posted over 2,200 online adverts talking about an 'invasion' of America by brown people? How is this not considered a problem?

OCU

#22 | Posted by OCUser at 2019-08-06 02:08 PM | Reply

"I always forget its only Censorship if the crazy Conservatives get taken down by corporate America."

Conservatives feel that social media companies censor them. And so do liberals.

This is actually more of an authoritarian vs libertarian issue than a "Conservative" vs. "Liberal" one.

#23 | Posted by sentinel at 2019-08-06 05:39 PM | Reply

The First Amendment was (and still is) a good idea, and we should apply it to American companies rather than letting them do what the government cannot. No American company should have the right to censor people based on the content they produce. I know that isn't the rule now, but it's time for a law that corrects this. We have the RIGHT to Free Speech - that shouldn't go away just because we're using a private company's website to exercise it.

#24 | Posted by Merovigan at 2019-08-06 06:24 PM | Reply

- that shouldn't go away just because we're using a private company's website to exercise it.

POSTED BY MEROVIGAN AT 2019-08-06 06:24 PM | REPLY

A PRIVATE company versus the Public sphere is a huge chasm between the 2.

#25 | Posted by LauraMohr at 2019-08-06 06:40 PM | Reply

The First Amendment was (and still is) a good idea, and we should apply it to American companies rather than letting them do what the government cannot. No American company should have the right to censor people based on the content they produce. I know that isn't the rule now, but it's time for a law that corrects this. We have the RIGHT to Free Speech - that shouldn't go away just because we're using a private company's website to exercise it.

#24 | Posted by Merovigan

Yeah that's it. It's the 1st amendment that needs to be fixed. But the 2nd is set in stone.

#26 | Posted by SpeakSoftly at 2019-08-06 06:51 PM | Reply

#25 In the internet age, I respectfully disagree. It's illegal for our President to block someone on Twitter, so, I would say the chasm is actually pretty small.

#26 Nope, I didn't say we should change the First Amendment. I said we should apply the spirit of it to laws pertaining to the relationship between private companies and Americans.

#27 | Posted by Merovigan at 2019-08-06 06:59 PM | Reply

#26 Nope, I didn't say we should change the First Amendment. I said we should apply the spirit of it to laws pertaining to the relationship between private companies and Americans.

#27 | Posted by Merovigan

Cool should we apply the "spirit" of the second amendment so it only applies to muskets and militias?

#28 | Posted by SpeakSoftly at 2019-08-06 07:07 PM | Reply

#28
What do you think?

#29 | Posted by Merovigan at 2019-08-06 07:17 PM | Reply

What do you think?

#29 | Posted by Merovigan

I think that's far more sensible than your suggestion.

If you're saying I have a right to come to YOUR website and use it however I want for free speech, then I can come climb onto your house to shout my free speech from your roof.

#30 | Posted by SpeakSoftly at 2019-08-06 07:22 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

#30
A website is not the same thing as private property. In fact, if we were to make the two scenarios similar I would have to have made some sort of an agreement with you that I can show you advertising and claim all the rights to do whatever I want with what you say, as well as search your wallet, read all your IM on your phone, etc. In return, you may enter my home and speak. You may not climb on top of my house unless you have been invited to do so. Creating an account on a website is that invitation.

Nevermind that homes are different from businesses. It's a messy analogy, for a few reasons.

No one has a Right to post on a website. However, once you have been granted access to said website (which almost always involves some form of account creation) you should not be denied that access for doing something that we all (Americans) value - speaking your truth. You certainly cannot legally ban all the (insert protected group) from Facebook, right? If FB were to suddenly decide that they didn't want Black members, they would be breaking the law by denying Blacks accounts simply because they were Black. They would also be breaking the law if they removed access to the website after finding out someone was Black.
(This is another weakness of your analogy - you can deny someone access to your home because of their race, but you cannot deny someone access to your business because of their race.)

Isn't free speech MORE worthy of protection than ANY class or race-based group membership?

#31 | Posted by Merovigan at 2019-08-06 07:49 PM | Reply

#31 POSTED BY MEROVIGAN AT 2019-08-06 07:49 PM | FLAG:

Interesting argument, but WRONG. The host is private. The First Amendment applies to government, period.

#32 | Posted by cbob at 2019-08-06 07:53 PM | Reply

No one has a Right to post on a website. However, once you have been granted access to said website (which almost always involves some form of account creation) you should not be denied that access for doing something that we all (Americans) value - speaking your truth. You certainly cannot legally ban all the (insert protected group) from Facebook, right? If FB were to suddenly decide that they didn't want Black members, they would be breaking the law by denying Blacks accounts simply because they were Black. They would also be breaking the law if they removed access to the website after finding out someone was Black.
(This is another weakness of your analogy - you can deny someone access to your home because of their race, but you cannot deny someone access to your business because of their race.)

Isn't free speech MORE worthy of protection than ANY class or race-based group membership?

#31 | Posted by Merovigan

Property is property. If you can't kick someone out of your website for saying something horrible than you can't kick out a houseguest for saying something horrible. Does FREE SPEECH allow your racist trump loving uncle to sue you when you tell him to get out during thanksgiving?

#33 | Posted by SpeakSoftly at 2019-08-06 08:01 PM | Reply

#32
I totally agree. My point is that we should create a law that changes that. At some point the same argument was made that a business could deny service based on race, based on the same private property logic you'r implying. You're saying "There's no law enforcing the First Amendment on businesses" just like there was no law saying a business can't ban all Black people. We saw that was wrong and made a law about it, and I say we are in a similar situation with the right to free speech online. An online provider should not, in my opinion, be allowed to discriminate based on the content of someone's free speech. I would support legislation around that.

#33
"Property is property." That's just not true - there is a clear difference between a business operated on private property and private property that does not operate as a business. Further, not that you would need to do so, but you could create a carve-out for non-businesses to allow the racist trump loving uncle to be kicked out without considering it discrimination. But, again, that isn't necessary because all properties are not the same. Your racist uncle is allowed ban all Blacks. You're allowed to kick him off your home. He's not allowed to refuse business service to Blacks, and you shouldn't be allowed to refuse him a business service because he's racist.

#34 | Posted by Merovigan at 2019-08-06 08:16 PM | Reply

Your racist uncle is allowed ban all Blacks. You're allowed to kick him off your home. He's not allowed to refuse business service to Blacks, and you shouldn't be allowed to refuse him a business service because he's racist.

#34 | Posted by Merovigan

The difference is that people are BORN black. They CHOOSE to be racist. He's not being banned from the platform for being how he was born, he's being banned for behaving a certain way.

#35 | Posted by SpeakSoftly at 2019-08-06 08:19 PM | Reply

RACISTS are not a protected social class, much to their dismay.

#36 | Posted by SpeakSoftly at 2019-08-06 08:20 PM | Reply

#34 I will say that I'm generally NOT in favor of restricting differing opinions. That's why I have never plonked anyone on this site, and I've been here almost from the start. But my personal opinion is not the same as constitutionally supported case law.

#37 | Posted by cbob at 2019-08-06 08:25 PM | Reply

Racists are free to rant on street corners.

Privately owned forums don't have to take crap from them.

#38 | Posted by Tor at 2019-08-06 08:36 PM | Reply

#36
But their rights are protected by the First. Every Hate Speech law that makes it to the SCOTUS is ruled unconstitutional, and I think everyone on has been unanimous. Not these 5-4 political decisions, literally 9-0 stating that Free Speech and Hate Speech are the same thing and they are protected.

So, it's clear that the purpose of the First is to protect hate speech. We as a nation literally value it first, above all the other amendments. So ... why shouldn't our businesses? Why should we allow something we value so much to be demeaned by anyone?

Speech that demeans on the basis of race, ethnicity, gender, religion, age, disability, or any other similar ground is hateful; but the proudest boast of our free speech jurisprudence is that we protect the freedom to express "the thought that we hate". United States v. Schwimmer, 279 U. S. 644, 655 (1929) (Holmes, J., dissenting).[11]

#39 | Posted by Merovigan at 2019-08-06 08:37 PM | Reply

#37
One new law would undo all the previous case law. Words on paper undid all the previous segregation laws, this could be just as powerful.

#40 | Posted by Merovigan at 2019-08-06 08:39 PM | Reply

#38
The thing we should be proudest of is that we allow people to express themselves and do not take kindly to anyone, especially not a for-profit enterprise, denying that expression.

#41 | Posted by Merovigan at 2019-08-06 08:40 PM | Reply

"MEROVIGAN"

If you saw someone on a soap box ranting about abortion at your walmart you'd want them out of there.

#42 | Posted by Tor at 2019-08-06 08:44 PM | Reply

One new law would undo all the previous case law.

That's not how the Constitution works, ------.

At the end of the day, your "argument" is foreclosed by the first five words of the First Amendment. When you get around to reading it you'll understand.

#43 | Posted by JOE at 2019-08-06 08:46 PM | Reply

#42
What I want, and what's right, are not always the same thing. The law shouldn't be a series of personal justifications made to make me feel as happy as possible. So yeah, you're right I wouldn't want some nutjob showing me aborted fetuses while I shop. But, that really has nothing to do with my point, or the spirit of the first amendment.

#44 | Posted by Merovigan at 2019-08-06 08:48 PM | Reply

#43
So you're saying such a law, essentially adding expression to the list of protected classes, would be found unconstitutional because the first is only about the government? The first amendment not only states that the government may not make such a law, but also states that no laws limiting the rights of for-profit companies may be created?

I'm not sure that's how that works but, if I'm wrong and a ------ then surely you'll stop replying to me because that would be effort wasted on a ------.

#45 | Posted by Merovigan at 2019-08-06 08:53 PM | Reply

But their rights are protected by the First.
#39 | Posted by Merovigan

Yeah which is why they can still stand on public street corners and yell pro trump racism if they choose. Until they can't do that, they can't whine that their speech is being stopped.

#46 | Posted by SpeakSoftly at 2019-08-06 09:04 PM | Reply

#37
One new law would undo all the previous case law. Words on paper undid all the previous segregation laws, this could be just as powerful.

#40 | POSTED BY MEROVIGAN AT 2019-08-06 08:39 PM | FLAG:

Um, no.

Passing a law is the role of the legislative branch. Case law is basically the running journal of precedent as determined by the judicial branch.

The courts don't give a crap what legislators think is right. Their job is to review relevant case law and see if they can find an answer to the legal question before them. And if not, they attempt on their own to determine anew whether the challenged legislation or lower court ruling is in line with the constitution. That is, assuming there isn't some technical issue like lack of standing or expired statute of limitations.

#47 | Posted by cbob at 2019-08-06 09:06 PM | Reply

So you're saying such a law, essentially adding expression to the list of protected classes, would be found unconstitutional because the first is only about the government?

#45 | Posted by Merovigan

That would be the first protected class that you can CHOOSE to join. The constitution protects classes that are born that way. You CHOOSE to be a racist moron. If you want to get onto a website that doens't allow racist morons, you can get onto one, you just have to leave your moronic racism behind. Black people can't leave their blackness behind to get into the lunch counter.

#48 | Posted by SpeakSoftly at 2019-08-06 09:06 PM | Reply

If I'm not mistaken, I believe that the "hateful speech is free speech" was settled in the Fred Phelps case.

#49 | Posted by SheepleSchism at 2019-08-06 09:13 PM | Reply

If I'm not mistaken, I believe that the "hateful speech is free speech" was settled in the Fred Phelps case.

#49 | Posted by SheepleSchism

That's not what's being debated here but whatever.

#50 | Posted by SpeakSoftly at 2019-08-06 09:33 PM | Reply

"Racists are free to rant on street corners.
Privately owned forums don't have to take crap from them."

I agree with this. Except what happens when private companies, who bribe and get kickbacks from the city government, start taking over not just street corners but even whole city blocks, and cut off the utilities to other private owned entities if they don't follow arbitrary rules?

#51 | Posted by sentinel at 2019-08-06 10:14 PM | Reply

Then you get Disney's 42nd Street.

#52 | Posted by snoofy at 2019-08-06 10:17 PM | Reply | Funny: 1

8Chan is based in the Philippines and run by an ex-U.S. military Neo-nazi.

White nationalism is no different than radical Islam. "This is about trying to convince others of your worldview through coercion to violence and terrorism," one expert said.

PS - After Cloudflare ceased its relationship with 8chan, another lesser-known internet services company known as BitMitigate stepped in. As a result, Voxility, which was actually providing the bulk of BitMitigate's underpinning services, has stopped working with BitMitigate.

www.nbcnews.com

#53 | Posted by AMERICANUNITY at 2019-08-07 03:05 PM | Reply

Except what happens when private companies, who bribe and get kickbacks from the city government, start taking over not just street corners but even whole city blocks, and cut off the utilities to other private owned entities if they don't follow arbitrary rules?

#51 | POSTED BY SENTINEL

So you are basically asking what happens if the country becomes some sort of sci-fi type corporate controlled dystopia?

Utilities are currently publicly regulated and what you describe would be illegal. If you don't want that to change then don't vote for politicians who are hardline supporters of ideas such as privatization and deregulation. And don't support regulatory appointees like Ajit Pai and Andrew Wheeler who hold such positions. I mean unless you believe that corporations are driven by the desire to act in the best interest of the public and freedom and would never consider doing what you describe.

#54 | Posted by johnny_hotsauce at 2019-08-07 03:39 PM | Reply

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