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Who decides what is a feature and what is not? What are the reasons a story, once posted as a feature, is removed from the feature section? Where is the explanation for these choices? Is there a retraction section to the web site? Do the readers simply forget once stories are removed? What are we trying to convey by removing stories without explanation?
IndyMedia or Somewhat IndyMedia
IndyMedia or Somewhat IndyMedia
<br><br><h3>IndyMedia or Somewhat IndyMedia</h3><br><br><br>

While most in the mainstream might think my interest ridiculous, I am curious about the ideas of primitivism. So, when a post went up called "Primitivism, an illusion with no future" I was quick to devour what was being said. One of the best ways to sharpen my own ideas is to understand an issue from as many perspectives as possible.<br><br>

I liked this post and especially the photo. When I saw it on the side bar, I clicked on it to get a counter-balance to the primitivism ideas I've seen floating around. When someone then moved the post and the photo to the feature section, I thought "Great! People at indymedia have enough guts to call into question some of the ideas of their own contributers and supporters, not just the opposition." I was looking forward to a healthy discussion.<br><br>

Then someone removed the post as a feature story.<br><br>

I thought my browser's cache might be displaying an old version of the site, so I reloaded. Nope. Someone took it down.<br><br>

So my questions are who and why. It seems to me the story has relavence for this community and based on the number of follow up posts there are people responding. Beside, even if there is no interest, who make the decision to remove features? What is the criteria? Doesn't this seem a little contridictory to the idea of a "free" media?<br><br>

I'm looking forward to learning the story behind this story.<br><br>
A link to the original post 24.Jul.2002 10:38

a subscriber



Here's a link to the original post...

To visit the community discussion board go to...
Primitivism, an illusion without a future

response 24.Jul.2002 11:28

pdx indy editorial guy fellowtraveler@riseup.net

I'm on the editorial team for portland indymedia and can attempt to answer these concerns. This is not an "official" editorial team missive; it's just my interpretation of events. For primary documentation, anyone can view the archives of the editorial listserve, which can be found at:
 http://lists.indymedia.org/mailman/public/imc-portland-editorial/2002-July/date.html
It's a bit to wade through, since not all the posts there relate to this issue, but if you want the full unadulterated story, that's where to go.

Here's the story: portland indymedia features are uploaded by several different people on the editorial team. usually, one person is more or less the person most responsible for any given feature, though additions/edits are sometimes made by other editorial folks. this post was uploaded as a feature and then removed as a feature by the same person on the editorial team. why? because the person who uploaded the feature received comments from other editorial people saying that this post was not enough to make a feature out of, and that the text of the feature on the front page was inconsistently formatted and unclear. basically, though, this post didn't fit enough criteria to become a feature on portland indymedia.

what are some of the criteria that the editorial team looks for in a post, to decide if it should be a feature.

first, is it original to indymedia? this was a repost from another publication. that doesn't count it out immediately, but it's a big one.

second, is it of local interest? this post talks about Zerzan, who is a local personality, so that's there. it's not the strongest connection but it counts for something.

third, is it timely or connected to a particular event? not in this case, no.

a post that becomes a feature doesn't have to fit all these criteria, but it must be really strong in at least one of them. emma goldwoman's posts, for example, don't have a local tie-in, and are not connected to a particular news event, but they are original writing that really has no other venue than indymedia. also, her work has been showing a real growth from essay to essay, and the series-aspect of it is great. portland indymedia didn't feature her first essay, but started with the second one, when it became clear that she was developing her ideas and inspiring a lot of discussion.

there were other issues with the primitivism feature, too, besides criteria. if an editorial team member wants to upload a feature based on a newswire post that's about a topic that's been featured before (forest activism, labor, a protest, "the f'n cops", health care, etc.) then all they must do is alert the list that the feature is on the way. if, however, the topic has not been explicitly covered before -- as was the case here -- then a discussion is required before it can go up. that did not happen with this feature. an announcement went out that it would be going up and then it was just there.

in my opinion, primitivism is certainly a relevant topic worthy of discussion, and a feature about it would be cool. however, there would need to be more to that feature than just one article that's a repost from another publication. an original essay that cites a bunch of articles and makes links to various websites, etc., is really what needs to happen for this topic to be featured.

in other words, the subject of primitivism deserves better coverage (or critique, if you don't like primitivism) than this essay, above, gives it.

i hope that clears things up a bit.

Pathetic 24.Jul.2002 14:06

A New Yorker

Whatever, Mr. pdx indy editorial guy. You guys obviously completely blew it on this one. This type of silly behavior has done a great deal of harm to my impression of Portland Indymedia...and I'm an active participant in Indymedia work, not just some random heckler.

To let a post go up and then take it down is the height of New York Times -esque behavior, and completely descredits the work that people are trying to do here. Your "criteria" for center col. postings is limp at best, and the majority of the reasons you site are small ones. "Spacing"?? Common. Thats ridiculous.

The reasons why this was removed are obviously ideological. I think it was pretty great that this article got up in the center col., and debates over the content of "green anarchism" or whatever are of great relevance to our work here. If a feature had been posted that praised "primitivist anarchy" or whatever you call it I'm SURE it would not have been removed.

A much better way to handle this would have been to leave the post up but to ask the poster to please do things differently next time.

This action is the type of crap that gives the left a bad name. For shame.

An Android9 by any other name... 24.Jul.2002 19:16

eugenester with a clue

...is still Android9.

Those of us who've had the misfortune of communicating with you can spot your style right away. All the fake names (subscriber, etc.) are not going to cover you. Give it up freak, and go the fuck away.

In Your Face, Clueless 24.Jul.2002 21:36

Going Nowhere (subje : agitrop)android9@hotmail.com

Yo dog -

I'll deal with the others when I finish reposting the Booth article to the Global Wire.

But I only post as android9, when spewing my own harsh and polarizing analysis. I always identify myself. Everybody knows who I am. I am not trying to sneak on anybody.

As you know, I rarely hesitate to state my opinion.

Fuck Off, COINTELPRO Pig-Bait!

android9
In Your Face, Clueless
In Your Face, Clueless

reply to new yorker 24.Jul.2002 23:21

pdy indy editorial guy

i would agree with you, BUT -- what we were dealing with here was a renegade loose cannon who shouldn't've had the password. (I gave it to him and have since apologized for the mistake.) we have our own process for uploading features and he ignored it, knowingly, and with selfish, destructive intent. this was not ideological except for him. my own views on primitivism (which are irrelevant, but since you accused) lie somewhere between his and John Zerzan's. :)

re: new yorker 24.Jul.2002 23:29

deva

the feature that was taken down was a poorly developed idea

the feature contained 4 paragraphs, with no coherent thread between them. . .the first one mentions the black-bloc, but then just moves on to other disparate ideas

the whole thing was not clear, had blatant spacing errors (spacing errors are not a big deal as such but show the sloppy manner in which the feature was conceived and implemented)

therefore, a number of people asked that it be taken down, and reworked before it was reposted. . .nobody on editorial blocked the idea of such a feature, just how this particular one was implemented. the individual who posted it, showed no interest to address the concerns of others (structure not content) and so it has stayed down

<<<If a feature had been posted that praised "primitivist anarchy" or whatever you call it I'm SURE it would not have been removed.>>>

you assume anyone involved here in the editorial group calls it anything. . .it is simply not a topic of discussion.

deva

brambles 25.Jul.2002 00:18

mad hare

Android9 and Zerzan are the same.

Byproducts of overintellectualizing. Different words, but same manifestation of dry intellect run amok.

Primitivism as expressed by individuals, has its flaws. So does every other ideology. The conclusion to draw from this, is that clinging to ideology itself is suspect. Read the Tao Te Ching. The author wisely understands the limits of words and ideology and starts with the statement. The Tao that can be spoken, is not the Tao.

Primitivism, Green Anarchy, whatever one wants to call it, is pointing towards something important. The human race has gone as far as it can go with intellect. The mind of the human being is quickly becoming ingrown and inbred.

Technology is the outcome of the arrogant 'rational' mind. The 'rational' mind, which is rarely ever rational, abhors spontaneity, intuition, and the cauldron of potential that is life. The intellectual mind tries to control what it can, and denies the rest. It ignores the source of its very ability to do so.

Dogged dependence on the 'rational', is a highly irrational attitude, and is today's religion. The religion of the rational, of the mastery of science over life, has had its day. It has botched things badly. It is time to see this, and grow beyond it.

The notion of a return to primitivism needs to be examined. What is primitive? Many older cultures were more highly developed socially than current western culture. Primitive really only applies to one narrow measure - technical development.

The idea of primitivism is an arrogant assertion from the headucated western intellect which is so assured and proud of its narrow accomplishments. The modern mind, which has become so polarized and compartmentalized is arguably quite primitive. Many older cultures, expressed much deeper visions of life than this current shallow culture. Maybe we have gained something, and maybe lost something. Whether it is overall a positive or negative movement, or if that concept even has meaning are debatable.

One thing is for sure. Western society has passed its apex and is in serious decline. The question that remains is if humanity will learn something and take a leap into the unknown.

Time to dance naked before the fire.

Portland Indymedia has come a long way... 25.Jul.2002 01:44

Ken Spice

In the beginning, I was the only person who knew the necessary passwords. It was I who decided what was in the center column. My decision was based solely on what interested me, and what I had time to do. The center column was sorely neglected. Clearly that was not good enough, and I was thrilled to give the site over to a functional collective.

Indymedia has come a long way since then. I have not been involved in over a year. The site has become an incredibly useful resource in that time. Kudos to the Portland Indymedia Collective!

Having said that, and as a now-outsider, I perceive the need for the "editorial team" to get its act together. Last I knew, the stated policy of editorial was to feature any and all locally based original reporting. A neat idea, I thought, but of course there is the picking apart of definitions: are these the only stories to be featured? What is "reporting"? What is "original"? As an occasional watcher of the editorial list archives, it seemed these questions were dealt with superficially, if at all.

Recently, things seem to have changed. The reasons listed above for pulling this feature are weak at best, particularly in light of other recent feature decisions - such as deciding to make a feature out of a series of articles spammed to Indymedia's worldwide about how everything would be better if our bosses were women instead of men.

Please. Ignoring for a moment the fact that many of us are trying to overthrow ALL bosses, it seems crystal clear to me that a locally-initiated discussion surrounding "Primitivism" is at least as important a feature as some random spam that folks can read at any Indymedia site, formatting problems or not.

It's not about you or me, it's about a revolutionary form of community media.

I can see I'm not alone. 25.Jul.2002 14:45

a subscriber

It seems I was not the only one with reservations about the removal of this article. Thank you for the discussion thus far. I do agree with a number of points made, namely, this article is relevant to the Portland's site because of the subject matter. Not only is primitivism one of the paradigms I see operating in the activist circles, in some circles it is the dominant paradigm. Personally, I find myself agreeing with a lot of the analysis primitivism presents, at least what I perceive it to present. I am glad to see the ideas floating around. My objections are that

1)This obviously controversial article was removed in spite of the resonance with and relevance to the community.

2) No formal explanation was given for the removal until after the question was raised.

3) The explanation that was given after the removal was questionable. With the exception of the person posting not following the procedure, the reasons don't hold water with me. This post was timely (we're currently in an expansion of primitivist thinking as evidenced by the Green Anarchy US tour), of interest to the community, and controversial. What else do you want. Ideological homogeneity? Editorial hegemony?

I respect the work that everyone at Indy PDX is doing and appreciate your efforts.

That said, I strongly dissent to the decision to remove that feature and think the explanation which followed is an attempt to deny the real reasons for it's removal i.e. there's no room for the heresy of criticizing the "primitives" ideas.

That's not what IndyMedia is about.

From the mother ship...

The Independent Media Center is a network of collectively run media outlets for the creation of radical, accurate, and passionate tellings of the truth. We work out of a love and inspiration for people who continue to work for a better world, despite corporate media's distortions and unwillingness to cover the efforts to free humanity.

Media distortions... unwillingness to cover...

Maybe this is hitting a little to close to home.

Anyway, know your readership is intersted in your work, how you do it, and who gets to say what. That's something you can be proud of. My unsolicited advice from all of this is think twice, then get a second opinion, then maybe as a last resort, censor.

I'd still like to see that story as a feature - the picture was great.

android9 Purged from pdx-editorial? 25.Jul.2002 23:17

Andy Rice android9@hotmail.com (specify subject: agitprop, or get trashed as spam)

Well, they changed the password, before I could remount the Booth article as a Feature.

The action was purportedly taken in reaction to my proposal that pdxIMC should not sponsor a fundraiser for Cascadia Media Collective as an IMC event, because they are obviously part of the "Green Anarchist" clique that has hijacked Eugene's "imc".

The maniacal laughter of some pdx-editorial posts in response to this proposal betrays the truly insane perspective of some of these people, who engage in a classic passive aggressive stye of psychotic reversal of reality, to rationalize their own lunacy.

But this isn't really why they changed the password, locking me out from re-mounting the Booth article.

In fact, the same individuals have been falsely lobbying and agitating privately as well as publicly against me for awhile now. They were poised in waiting, ready to pounce at the least provocation.

Knowing this to be the case, it seemed all the more appropriate to speak up and state my position on this issue, of whether IMC should endorse and promote fundamentally reactionary and counter-revolutionary tendencies, let alone allow them to take over an IMC.

It is a deep subject, and most people don't seem to want to go there. But I think it must be addressed, and I raised the issue, not really expecting to prevail on the point, but hoping to generate discussion on the topic, at least.

Whether we have any right, let alone an obligation, to even try to make such discernments, as to the "political correctness" of an organization, a theoretical tendency, someone's practice, or an article, is adamantly contested by bourgeois ultra-individualists who depise, avoid, and fear any such prospect of real democratic process.

I propose that an editor, and especially an IMC editor, has such an obligation. and a right, to at least discuss such considerations, and to call for a vote on issues that warrant a decision.

The only time this becomes disruptive or destructive is when factionalizing elements try to block, manipulate or sabotage democratic process. Preventing formal decisions that hold people accountable guarantees chaos, the ultimate destroyer.

Democracy is a tenuous and fragile spirit, easily killed by subjectivity. Jeremy's appeals to subjectivity betray the root of this whole flap, his own obsessive regression politically, which he oxymoronically poses as "rEvolution".

We should call it by it's true name, a de-evolutionary sabotage of the revolutionary principles of IMC.

All of the explanations about editorial criteria for Features, and how the Booth article did not meet those criteria, etc are absolute bullshit. There was nothing wrong with the Feature, and there was no reason to remove it.

My web skills are admittedly rudimentary, but the article was not as fucked up as Jeremy and Deva imply above. A "better article", in terms of more links or whatever wouldn't have hurt, but this item is deep enough in it's own right, and time was a factor.

Most interesting about Jeremy's and Deva's arguments are the contradictios with "criteria" applied to the Female Chauvinist series advocating Matriarchy, which I objected to, but saw get foisted on the Features column over and over.

This is detailed more in my remarks to the pdx-editorial list, where you can also find all the discussion surrounding the Booth item, the Chauvinist items, and going back a month, of previous discussion I've had on this list. (You can draw your own conclusions as to whether my posts are racist, sexist or homophobic, as has been so scurrilously, falsely alleged)

I reluctantly took the Booth article down pending further input, on his demand, in the interest of solidarity, and in deference to his seniority in the collective.

This may have been a mistake, in terms of real politik, since I had no reason to expect reciprocity for these principled gestures. Maybe I should have left it up, and let him take it down his own self , if he hated it so bad.

But if I am obsessive, it is about prinicple, and democratic process. For those reasons, I acted against my own subjective desire in this matter, and took down the article, pending any improvements people might suggest.

I now propose that the item should immediately be re-featured exactly as it was before, with links to all the side discussion on the Wire. No changes should be made, considering the circumstances, so everyone can decide for themselves if it is so out of compliance with pdx imc standards.

I offered to remove some of the bolding on some of the text, so it would look more like the drab gray text blocks you are so used to seeing on the page, but that is the only change I saw any real basis for, even though I disagree with it.

On the topic of editorial standards for appearance, and especially content, of Features, and of Wire posts, I think it is important to stress that any such considerations must be conducted democratically, and according to collectively approved written documentation, of which there is little or none, presently.

It's mainly in Jeremy's head right now, where he says there is a lot of "wiggle room".

Having no real formal basis for decision-making, the work is thus rendered totally captive to absolute subjectivity.

There are other issues surrounding this matter, not the least of which are the scurrilous accusations against me of racism, sexism and homophobia, and other defamatory tactics used to justify changing the password, to marginalize and exclude me from the "collective".

Unprincipled false lobbying and agitation, and bringing false information to the collective and to the public, are the most destructive obstacles to democracy, and should not be tolerated, especially among mass media workers.

Some false charges were brought secretly, without giving me any chance to respond to them, and are utterly contrived. I request public satisfaction on these issues, from pdx imc.

If the collective is not able or willling to deal with such matters, it is not a collective.

This brings us to the really burning issue: what is a Collective? Look it up in the dictionary. There is nothing "loose" about it.

Recent events in France, Turkey and Russia indicate this is a topic needing further discussion and decision making. We are not the only ones suffering from this "loose" shit.

Allowing GA to intiate a bogus "imc" in Eugene, based on deliberate lies and misrepresentations, and to then proceed to dominate the site by deliberately anti-democratic means, is not an acceptable "collective" practice.

Terms must be more clearly defined, and more explicit criteria established, if IMC is going to survive, especially as a Collective.

That also includes enforcement, the biggest buggaboo of all to bourgeois ultra-individualist anti-communist throwback tendencies.

The notion that "anarchy" is a fuck-all, do whatever you want kind of approach must be refuted. Bourgeois counte-revolutionary tendencies must be suppressed, by coercion, when necessary, if we are going to have democracy.

There is no room for a bunch of local settler rednecks to "take a vote" to cut down all the trees and kill all the fish, revert to Jim Crow, or re-enslave women.

They have a right to demand a dignified transition to a more sustainable and humane society, but dignity and justice do not require "tolerance" of racism, sexism, or eco-rape, in the name of "freedom" and "diversity", or local and personal "autonomy"

Democracy can only function as part of a larger social consensus on the macro scale. This is a fundamental sticking point for the primitivist chaoticists, who tend to passionately eschew the whole concept of democracy, "on principle".

Their notion that minorities will automatically be unjustly suppressed by genuine democracy turns history on it's head.

Even a cursory glance at history reveals that the much larger problem is tiny elite minorities suppressing democracy, to arbitrariy, capriciously rule over the majority.

Only real democracy can protect minorities, because in fact the general public tends to not want to go to war or to be mean and unfair to anyone.

Racism, sexism and other chauvinist oppressions are contrived constructs of the minority rule of elites, not natural human tendencies.

This brings us to one of the most fundamental concepts behind these issues, whether humans are born damned, and are just naturally too degenerate, ignorant, stupid, demoralized, coerced or naive to ever be able to democratically manage the production and distribution of goods and services.

Until this issue is resolved in people's minds, as to whether democracy is even possible, desirable, or viable or not, we are all blowing it out our ass, spinning around in circles.

I'll be around. I have no intention to abandon these issues, but will keep raising them, as an obligatory and integral part of revolutionary struggle, anywhere.

Meanwhile, the only way to really understand some of this discussion is to take the time to closely study the GA "imc" in Eugene, and CMC, which is prominently featured there, and follow the links.

Better yet, go to their event, study their literature, and engage them in some principled discussion, not about the oldgrowth, or Palestine, but about their own worldviews and their analysis of what ultimately needs to be done.

You won't have to dig very deep beneath the surface of all the "revolutionary" rhetoric, before the monstrous head of reactionary fundamentalist Pagan Jihad rises up to snarl in your face. As nice and dedicated and sincere as many of these people can seem to be, they tend to be whack!

I also recommend perusing the archives of imc-process, resolve, and pdx editorial, if you want to understand better where I am coming from, and how these fools have reacted all along to my legitimate criticisms.

Beyond that, instead of abandoning pdx or Eugene IMC to their present subjective morass, people should step forward and get more involved. Contend with destructive counter-revolutionary tendencies, in a principled and democratic manner, as if your life depended on it, because it does.

IMC is our last best hope for instilling democracy, to avoid or minimize civil war. Call off the boycott of elections!

Become the Media! All Power to the People!

Fight Entropy! 25.Jul.2002 23:34

android9

Even a Dog of a Democrat is Better than a Pig of a Republican
Fight Entropy!
Fight Entropy!

The purging of android9? 26.Jul.2002 11:11

Ken Spice

I've taken the time to read through the editorial list archives for July, available at  http://lists.indymedia.org/mailman/public/imc-portland-editorial/2002-July/date.html

The best thing I can think of to say is that android9 (aka Andy) was rather difficult to work with. I lost track of the number of times in his lengthy diatribes this person said "I will block this or that" or "I will not allow this or that to happen" or "I expect such and such" or "must..." or similar demands. Likewise, his one-note fixation on the evils of "Green Anarchy" means that it gets worked into every unrelated issue. Ugh. He comes off as an autocrat with way too much time on his hands. If I were working with the editorial group, I probably would have supported changing his password, and probably would have done so sooner. His pleadings of "scurrilous attacks" fall on deaf ears here... more often than not Andy appears to me to be the attacker.

The "fools" (Andy's word) that are currently active in the pdx indymedia collective are doing a bang-up job. Isn't there always room for improvement though?

I challenge the current members of the editorial group to do some serious, and hopefully public (list archive in addition to face-to-face) thinking and talking about the features area. It it super-important, now that you have begun to make the features section far more dynamic, to get some of these "policies" out in the open and out of just a few people's heads.

Most of the arguments that have been used against Andy's features are terrible. One time it was "we DO NOT make a feature out of any item whose only source is the mainstream press." Not true. Here is but one example:  http://portland.indymedia.org:8081/front.php3?article_id=13027&group=webcast

Likewise, technical stuff such as spacing, text formatting, etc. seems to be no reason at all to remove existing features... it's not as though there aren't any number of inconsistencies in this area within the existing features.

Most of all, it's hard for me to understand how this critique of "GA", weak as it may be, could be thought of as not fitting the criteria of being timely and of local interest - particularly in light of the recent feature announcing a new "GA" grouping in Spain (local connection unknown).

And finally to the last bugaboo: the content itself. This will always be a difficulty you have to wrestle with, as there is a tension between the desire to highlight "all timely, original reporting with a local connection" and the desire to decide which articles have sufficient "merit" however you may define that, to appear in the feature section.

I agree with some of Deva's comments above, critiqueing the article's weaknesses. I can only say that such critiques are also possible with very many of the features that appear. It strikes me that if Andy hadn't already been so difficult to work with, or if someone else had put this feature up, it may not be erased right now. I for one thought it was interesting, and far more worthy on the basis of local and timely, than the series of features you've put together highlighting so-called "Emma Goldwoman". I really hate it when features get made of items that have been spammed all across the indymedia network - it defeats the purpose, in my opinion.

re: feature removal 26.Jul.2002 23:50

deva

first, Android9 removed the feature, not anybody else. . .it was asked to be taken down to improve it before returning as a feature. nobody wanted to stop the feature due to content or topic, or even stop it at all, just have it improved. Andy's assertions to the contrary are false.

if he had asked for help in a civil manner, and not frothed at the mouth while calling people on editorial primitivist/chaoticist/matriarchal/paganjihad lunatics, people would have been happy to help him fix it up. they would have likely helped him anyway if he hadn't demanded everyone keep their hands off his feature. . .

one thing readers may notice is that the editorial team adds any links to other articles, especially if it is a timely link. . .if someone complains about Editorial, hell, it will get added too.

Ken Spice mentions the green anarchy tour as a relevant local link. This is the sort of link that editorial will add to connect to local interest (or other way round, if someone were making a feature about the GA tour, and someone posted the primitivist article, it would certainly get linked in the feature, simply because it was posted)

Android9 would fight hard to stop such a link to 'his' feature, because his agenda is to push a certain viewpoint, rather than provide other current viewpoints and related news that appear on the newswire.

this is where Android9 is out of step with current editorial policy and the spirit of the editorial group and indymedia in my opinion, and it is andy himself who is demanding censorship of features based on what they are about, not editorial.

He vehemently tried to block a feature announcing the Green Anarchy Tour. An announcement that could/should be up there, and could have been integrated into a broader feature on primitivism if not for andy's virulent opposition to anything that might be positive about the GA folks. It is Android9 who is demanding a feature not happen because of personal bias, not editorial.

No person in editorial has tried to stop a feature by Android9 going up. Likewise there has been no complaint about a topic he has proposed. his assertions to the contrary are false. he has decided that people on editorial do not like a critique of primitivism, but he wrong there too.

<<<<1)This obviously controversial article was removed in spite of the resonance with and relevance to the community.>>>

again, it was not removed. . .it was asked to be taken off until it was improved. andy took it off himself and did not bother to fix it up some and put it back up. that is his doing, not editorial as a whole.

<<<2) No formal explanation was given for the removal until after the question was raised.>>>

usually the person who takes a feature off, would make such an announcement. andy made no communication to editorial listserve that he had taken the feature down, when he was planning to put it back up etc. he proposed no changes, suggestions etc that i read.

<<<3) The explanation that was given after the removal was questionable. With the exception of the person posting not following the procedure, the reasons don't hold water with me. This post was timely (we're currently in an expansion of primitivist thinking as evidenced by the Green Anarchy US tour), of interest to the community, and controversial. What else do you want. Ideological homogeneity? Editorial hegemony? >>>>

this is misleading. there has been no explanation given for why it was taken down. The rationale by editorial folks is to why it was asked to be improved. Nobody in editorial asked for it to be taken down, other than to give some time to be reworked (reworking features is a fairly common occurance) and that because andy has shown himself so intractable and hard to work with. . .normally, a feature gets improved on the fly

andy received a fairly complete features.html document which describes the different sort of features, structure, graphics info etc, and jeremy spent a few hours putting together an html guide for him. . .i spent time on the phone with him, on my dime, answering questions about feature construction.

the features.html doc is part of the ongoing effort to make the feature info more available and accessible. this was written before andy got involved and is in the process of being refined (admittedly a slow process). andy's diatribes and negative influence have distracted from this work. rather than offer to actually help with it, he only harranges and harrasses people to do as he demands.

i have yet to see andy engage in positive movement, only negativity. how much energy has he put into criticizing editorial? and how much in addressing the concerns regarding the feature and getting it up again? very telling

Ken,

you mention the Afghanistan feature as an example of a non-original item used as the sole basis of the feature. In that case, if i remember correctly, the feature was not quoting the original article but referencing it. . .the feature was written by someone in editorial. . .a clear difference. . .also, there is no way to get original reporting from Afghanistan, so some allowance was made. This is the mecca of primitivists, and so there are all sorts of possibilities for original reporting.

none of these 'rules' are hard and fast. . .andy's 'feature' was poor in numerous regards, and not particularly strong anywhere. there was very little effort put into it. Emma Goldwoman's articles are original writing, not reposts. That is a BIG and very specific point that has been explained to andy a number of times. likewise, if you, or andy, had decided to write a counter article, that would immediately have been linked to the emma goldwoman feature. put it up there and it will get linked.

certainly andy's demand that nobody touch the feature (people in editorial routinely add links, and new articles to features) and his general negative demeanor have eroded good will towards him. . .nevertheless, i stand on my criticism of the feature. . .it is just that with another person, it would have been easy to fix it up. . .my features have been fixed up numerous times.

again, remember ALL THE REASONS CRITICIZING THE FEATURE WERE ADDRESSING WHY IT SHOULD BE IMPROVED, NOT PREVENTED. . .
and once again, i'll make the point, that andy took down his feature, and did nothing to address the concerns raised. it is his own failure to put in any real work on it, that it remained down. . .

deva

Getting Real 29.Jul.2002 09:16

android9 android9@hotmail.com (subject: agitprop)

In response to Ken:

I too have gone back and reviewed the pdx editorial list archive. It seemed to me there were some posts missing, leaving major gaps in the discussion. If this is true, it has subtley distorted the coherence and actual nature of the exchanges. I'll have to check on that.

A quick review does make me seem too aggressive, even off the wall, while Jeremy and Deva come off as being quite demure and reasonable.

Even if that were true, which I dispute, you fail to mention the details of what we were discussing, and the positions taken on the issues of substance, like why the Female Chauvinist articles should or should not have been featured over and over again, larger than any other features.

Jeremy and Deva's arguments for that features were a lot of bullshit. My arguments against it were legitimate.

It's true that my style puts some people off, and I have to struggle to tone it down. I cannot deny being somewhat subjective to the issue of primitivist chaoticism being a fundamentally counter-revolutionary tendency that is sabotaging the work, not only at pdx, but also in many other arenas of strggle. It is a global problem, actually.

But again, your reaction to my style should not be allowed to distract from the substance of the debate.

I tried to clearly state what I think the criteria should be for features, and that includes what I think should be excluded. I think editors have a right and a duty to carefully consider what should be featured and what should not be featured, and that it should not just be "whatever".

For you to imply that I am some kind of authoritarian negativist for discussing what I would tend to vote for or against seems like an objection to me having opinions.

I don't recall using the word "demand" in any of that. I did state what kind of things I would tend to block consensus on. All that means is that further discussion, or a vote, would then be neccessary.

You object to me having too many opinions, without addressing the legitimacy of those opinions in specific, which seems like an evasion of the real issues.

I appreciate that you recognize the arguments against the Booth item feature are a lot of bullshit, and that there needs to be more explicit and detailed criteria for features established, and that these criteria need to be in writing, and approved by the general collective, not merely wiggling around in Jeremey's mind. This is an important point.

In general their "discussion" demonstrates how reasonably and nicely and demurely Jeremy and Deva can pump a line of complete bullshit, including now, in their passive aggressive campaign to try to brush me off and falsely discredit me.

The above post by Deva further examples this approach.

In fact, Jeremy adamantly insisted the feature be deleted altogether, and not "worked on the fly".

I did no such "frothing at the mouth" over the removal of the feature at the time, although I have commented on it since, in some fairly harsh and critical terms. We'll see who is the mad dog here.

I said I would block consensus on a GA Tour feature. Again, that means there would have to be further discussion and/or a vote. Why claim to have such a process if you aren't going to use it?

To "demand" a vote is only unreasonable in that I shouldn't have to demand it (and then get ignored, or purged for it). It should be an automatic part of the process. Resistance to this, and even attacking me over this can only be taken as opposition to democratic process.

Who is "out of step" here? Me, for trying to engage in a democratic process, or the editorial collective, advocating a "whatever" criteria one minute, about their pet features on Female Chauvinism, and then giving me a raft of shit the next, over "my" feature critiquing primitivism? Why are they so resistant to just taking a vote, and then moving on?

Why do I have to be a disrupter for advocating a more formal and democratic process? Deva seeks to reverse the reality of the situation. It would seem they prefer chaos.

The "fairly comprehensive" htmml document he refers to was virtually useless to me, as a novice. The first time I tried to use it, it froze up the feature's administrative page for an hour.

I had been requesting such tech documentation for weeks, and what was finally sent was an off the top of the head jumble, with a few obscure tips, at best. I have a copy if you want to see it, and judge for yourself.

The nebulous Feature Guidlines draft document he refers to assiduously avoids any real criteria for what gets featured, in a spacey "whatever" kind of way that completely negates every objection raised about the Booth item feature. It also has not been approved by the collective.

To claim that our discussions have distracted from completion of that document is absolute bullshit. I just got here. Why isn't it already available?

I have proposed several times that Jeremy and Deva should step back from so frantically posting news, and get caught up on the other adminstrative work, like producing the necessary documentation.

The site would not go down the tubes, if they did so. They could put their money where their mouth is, and let some of the women step forward and cover for them, while they do this.

They reacted with hostility to this proposal, as some kind of negative attack on the work they have been doing. I make a reasonable and obvious proposal, and they feel attacked. Why is that?

The reason is that they would prefer to keep it nebulous and spacey and subjective, because they like it that way. They would prefer to maintain absolute control, by making sure others are dependent on them for technical assistance, and that all criteria is subject to the "oral tradition" wiggling around in their heads, rather than subject to the democratic process of the collective.

In a typical passive aggressive evasion and twisting of reality, they acknowledge the need for the documentation, yet refuse to produce it, and then get all bent out of shape when I insist that they just do it.

It's about keeping the control subjective, and avoiding accountability, through chaos. It's an identifiable tendency.

One thing the discussion list does show, and my practice has proven, is that I have not just given them a hard time and done nothing for "positive movement". I have advanced numerous postive proposals, and put in a huge number of hours working the site, as well. To imply that the Booth item did not get re-featured because I am lazy and uncooperative is bullshit.

They purged me before I could get it back up, because I had posted my intention to re-post the feature as it was, due to the controversy over it's removal, and the fact that their objections to it were bullshit(which Deva now acknowledges somewhat, since he can no longer deny it, in the face of everybody else calling his attention to it).

In fact he also tried to nitpick the item to death initially, just like Jeremy, over bullshit.

Finally, the "very BIG and specific point" that the Female Chauvinst items were not reposts is untrue. The "Goldwoman" items were spammed to all the imc's. I directly solicited Booth's item from the author. It was only recently published, and not nearly so readily available to the public. Besides, there is absolutely no rule against reposts, as Deva implies, and it has been a common practice in features before.

Attempting to write off the whole matter as my own failure is a damn lie. The fact that Deva and Jeremy insist on pretending to be so reasonable and so unjustly "attacked" is really disengenuous, and will ultimately undo them. Nobody likes to be bullshitted, and the collective should not tolerate it from the editorial committee.