Monday, July 23, 2018
What was Imgflip thinking when they decided to screen submissions and have moderators decide which ones are being featured and which ones aren't?
It has to cost more to hire staff than to let the memes automatically be approved and it's virtually guaranteed that they're going to anger a lot of people when they show their biases by refusing to feature some memes while allowing others. And a large part of that is clearly a pro-corporate and Trump bias that doesn't welcome many memes that question obvious corporate scams, religion, or blind patriotism, often in support of wars based on lies!
In the short term, no doubt they can censor views they don't agree with, whether or not that's their intention, but in the long term regulars are going to figure it out.
In a previous article, Is CIA studying support for censorship on the internet? reviewed how the CIA was involved in psychological research since the fifties and sixties, that almost certainly included work that could be used by political and media organizations, which don't necessarily need to be involved in the CIA, although it's still possible and in some cases likely.
In all fairness ImgFlip doesn't seem to mind featuring Memes critical of themselves; however a closer look does indicate that they're more likely not to feature Memes that criticize corporate corruption, in many cases, although there are plenty that they do allow. And they have a strong bias towards Trump among both the moderators, and probably even more among the users, that often seem to up-vote his supporters and down-vote any criticism of him.
The previous article explained that I assumed that when the moderators featured a Meme then retracted it, most of the time it was a result of down-votes; this has never been officially confirmed, but there have been plenty of other Memes that seemed to indicate others came to the same conclusions. I also mentioned that DailyKOS had their own censorship problems. I was previously banned, at least under one account, although I'm sure I could create another one, for promoting a third party candidate during the 2012 elections, which they apparently don't allow, even though they claim to oppose censorship.
I don't get the impression ImgFlip is likely to do the same thing, nor is it in their best interests to do so, since it would only draw more attention to their biases, like it did with DailyKOS, which doesn't seem to be nearly as popular as it used to be, and gets fewer citations that I've noticed. It's far better for them to shrug criticism off, especially if few people are paying attention.
The following are a large number of my Memes, since the last article, that either have never been featured or been retracted after being featured for a brief period of time, in most cases, although there are a handful that are retracted after a couple of week. Religious ones that raise doubts about a God that refuses to communicate even when atrocities are committed by religions he allegedly inspired to say that this isn't what he meant and Memes critical of Trump are more likely to be retracted than most other Memes, assuming they're featured at all. In most cases Memes that question wars based on lies, especially if it points out that veterans are dying for lies not defense of our country are not featured at all, but if they are they're often retracted. There are some other political Memes that are often retracted, possibly because they criticize a candidate like Joe Manchin that has supporters on ImgFlip.
They might argue that they're letting the public show which ones they think should be featured or not, and perhaps they're trying to be non-partisan; however they've set up rules that are clearly designed to benefit those that understand them best and rig them for their own political goals, which often means those with the most money that can hire puppet Memers, but this is obviously just passing the buck if they make that case.
When it comes to Memes that criticize large corporations, they might express concerns about potential lawsuits, but this would be a clear surrender to large corporations that have the money to resort to the threat of legal action even when they don't even have a remotely justifiable case.
One of the few Memes that was critical of large corporations that was featured then retracted after only a few hours and about twenty views was about the large number of people that have collected large amounts after getting away with murder. Some of these have been featured, others not for reasons I can only guess at but this one mentions that the person collecting $2.2 million dollars for life insurance of her husband and later being convicted of murder for hire, also mentions that she was a friend of Donald and Marla Trump in the nineties. My best guess is that it was retracted after a large number of down-votes, although I can't be certain.
They have said that they're more likely to feature creative memes at one point or another; however they feature an enormous amount of shallow meaning less memes; they might also decline to feature some crude ones that they might consider trolling, but even if that's justified they still allow an enormous amount of them that are sexist, racist or express other political views, not that I'm recommending they should be censored. The truth is supposed to be an absolute defense against libel or slander, and most of my Memes that have been rejected can easily be confirmed, and they often express views that might reduce violence or support for wars based on lies, which is the intention, yet they're not featured.
ImgFlip is a relatively small forum, judging by the amount of traffic but they give preferential treatment to incredibly shallow Memes, often because of a lot of up-votes as a result of a small number of extremely active regulars, which every forum seems to have and I can't help but wonder if many of them are paid for one reason or another, if not there're an enormous amount of obsessive compulsive's dominating many forums.
Edit 10/01/2018: It's increasingly obvious that they're much more likely to support Memes for Donald Trump than those against him. This is especially clear when it came to Memes about Kavanaugh, which are almost all favorable to him or minor criticism, as indicated in hashtags for Kavanaugh and Brett Kavanaugh It's not for lack of opposing opinions since I made quite a few which I'm adding here that were never featured, except this one so far and this one so far so there's no way of knowing how popular they are.
These are most of my Memes that have either never been featured or were retracted after being featured by a brief time since my last article about it:
If you're thinking I might be one of those obsessive compulsive's, I won't dignify that idea by either confirming or denying it!
If anyone thinks I'm just complaining because it's my memes that aren't being featured I won't dignify that idea by either confirming or denying it either!
Initially a comment to another Meme
Initially a comment to another Meme