LiveJournal's pedophile revolt

Mass deletion sparks LiveJournal revolt:

A site by the name of Warriors for Innocence has done something that I’ve been trying to do for years. They convinced LiveJournal to finally delete all the pedophile journals and communities that they were guilty of hosting. For years LiveJournal tried to defend the pedophiles by claiming free speech. At the time I didn’t realize that LiveJournal is a branch of the government. But it seems they’ve finally come to their senses.

LiveJournal, which is owned by San Francisco-based Six Apart, confirmed Wednesday that it deleted around 500 journals this week in hopes of better “protecting children.” It said the deletion was prompted by activist groups, including one called Warriors for Innocence that claims to track sites promoting pedophilia, the sexual abuse of minors, and other illegal activities.

500? That’s weaker than MySpace’s 7,000 sex offenders. But it’s a start.

Of course we have people complaining about it…

Some deleted LiveJournal communities went by names like childlove and little_children (a community permits multiple LiveJournal users to post entries, while an individual account is limited to one user). Others, however, broadly fall into the category of science fiction, fantasy or user-written “fandom” stories–and it is those that have sparked the outcry.

“As a queer, feminist writer who explores the darker aspects of human nature, many of my stories deal with incest, rape and child molestation,” a LiveJournal member named “bitterfig” wrote. “As such, I belonged to and contributed to several of the communities which have been suspended and frankly I’m pretty offended. I don’t like being lumped in with rapists and pedophiles and other ‘monsters on the Web.'”

One now-deleted group called “pornish_pixies” focused on fan-written fiction, frequently sexually explicit, about characters in the Harry Potter novels. “The distinction between fiction and non-fiction could not be made any clearer in a place like the Harry Potter fandom, and this oversteps the boundaries that the LiveJournal abuse team has,” said a pornish_pixies member who identified herself as Maria in an e-mail. (A related group, “erotic_elves,” has survived the purge.)

That just sounds like erotica for pedophiles if you ask me.

The infamous LiveJournal abuse team had this to say about the mass (can you call 500 out of 13M mass?) deletions…

For its part, LiveJournal’s abuse staff has defended pulling the plug on the communities by saying: “Material which can be interpreted as expressing interest in, soliciting or encouraging illegal activity places LiveJournal at considerable legal risk.”

Which is 180 degrees from what they told me two years ago…

Dear LiveJournal User thetrenchcoat,

As explained in our previous response to you, it is neither against the Terms of Service nor illegal to discuss illegal actions, or to admit to having committed them. As long as the content posted does not solicit illegal activity, it is considered allowable under both the Terms of Service and the ideal of free speech. LiveJournal is committed to preserving as much free speech as possible for its users, as long as that speech does not cross the line into invading other users’ privacy.

Users are entitled to post about topics that may be abhorrent to much of the general population, so long as they do not cross the line into solicitation or instruction of illegal acts. We respectfully suggest, if the posts in this community disturb you, that you simply cease reading them.

LiveJournal Abuse Team

Anyway LiveJournal users are revolting (insert joke here) over claims of censorship and terminating their LJ accounts. Like LiveJournal is even going to miss you. If there are 13 Million users all those revolting won’t even be a drop in the bucket. Personally I think this would be a huge marketing gimmick for LJ. They can say “hey look we get rid of our pedophiles unlike MySpace”. You would think that would attract more users, especially parents concerned about their kids’ online safety.

However I get the feeling that LiveJournal will cave and it will be back to business as usual.

In the meantime I need to talk with the Warriors for Innocence people to see how they did it.

No safety for Golden

Sheriff Cannot Guarantee Jonesboro Shooter Andrew Golden’s Safety:

The Sheriff who represents the same county where Jonesboro shooter Andre Golden used to live says he can’t guarantee Golden’s safety if he returns to Arkansas.

Craighead County Sheriff Jack McCann said hostility toward Golden and accomplice Mitchell Johnson still remains nine years after they opened fire on those fleeing Jonesboro Westside Middle School during a fake fire drill. The shootings were on people’s minds again Friday, as Golden turned 21 and likely left federal custody a free man for the first time.

“It’s a concern because there’s still a lot of hostility towards him and Mitchell Johnson,” said McCann, who was the county’s chief deputy in 1998. “I really don’t think any of the family members would do something to them; I think somebody out here would want to do something for the notoriety.”

Did the sheriff just serve a warning or declare open season?

Other Jonesboro shooter set to be released

Jonesboro shooter Andrew Golden likely to be released Friday:

Andrew Golden is one of the gunmen from the Jonesboro school shooting. Today is his 21st birthday meaning that more than likely he will be released from jail today. At the time of their conviction there was a loophole in Arkansas state law that prevented Golden and cohort Mitchell Johnson from being kept behind bars longer than they’re 21st birthday. Johnson was released 2 years ago. Now it’s Golden’s turn. He’ll be out on the streets with a clean slate and no probation.

It only took Johnson 18 months to get in trouble with the law again. I wonder how long it will take before Golden has his next run in with the law.

Gag order sought in Charlotte cop killings

Defense seeks gag order in police killings:

The defense attorney for accused Charlotte cop killer, Demeatrius Montgomery, is requesting a gag order on the proceedings in order to help Montgomery get a fair trial.

The lawyer, Duane Bryant, said such an order is necessary to preserve Montgomery’s right to a fair trial.

Montgomery, 25, is charged with two counts of first-degree murder in connection with the March 31 fatal shootings of Charlotte-Mecklenburg police Officers Jeff Shelton and Sean Clark.

Prosecutors announced this month they would seek the death penalty against Montgomery.

“This case has been subjected to substantial, pervasive publicity,” Bryant wrote in his motion.

Bryant’s motion suggests that investigating officers are responsible for the publicity. The publicity, the defense lawyer said, includes the dissemination of inaccurate information and matters that would not be admitted into evidence at trial.

Bryant did not cite in his motion the information he claims is inaccurate or the matters he claims would not be allowed into evidence.

The funny thing is police and prosecutors have been very tight-lipped about this case. However if Mr. Bryant wants a gag order I say we give it to him. I want there to be no doubt if a conviction is eventually handed down.

Of course the press is falling all over themselves with righteous indignation.

Jon Buchan, a lawyer for the Observer, said Wednesday he will file an objection to the defense lawyer’s motion. He said a hearing date has not been set.

“The public is very interested in this case, and it should be,” said Observer Editor Rick Thames. “Two police officers lost their lives. A local resident is accused of killing them. All the more reason why this motion to conceal the judicial proceedings from the public should be denied.”

Thames said he knew of no inaccuracies in news coverage that could affect Montgomery’s ability to receive a fair trial. He also noted that the courts have the means to offset the potential effects of pretrial publicity, key among them the careful questioning of potential jurors.

Yes, Charlotte-Mecklenburg police Officers Jeff Shelton and Sean Clark did lose their lives. And as a community, which even includes you Charlotte Disturber, we should do everything within our power to ensure that the trial goes off without a hitch. If that means a gag order then so be it. I think the public will understand. I dare you to tell me that your appeal has nothing more to do with selling a few more papers.

Castillo will not face death penalty

Orange County school shooting suspect will not face death penalty:

Earlier when I said that we’ll find out tomorrow if Alvaro Castillo will face the death penalty or not I lied. The article stated Wednesday and I was thinking today was Tuesday for some reason. Human error.

Anyway, District Attorney Jim Woodall said today that he will not seek the death penalty against Castillo.

Woodall says Castillo’s mother did –not– want her son to face the death penalty.

Remember that the victim in this crime is Castillo’s father. Still justice needs to be served. The best way to do that is with a lengthy stay behind bars.

NC legislation on parental consent passes committee

Bill on parental consent for MySpace advances:

North Carolina is slowly starting to turn into New Jersey as far as over-regulation is concerned.

RALEIGH – Children under 18 would have to get parental consent to join and other social networking Web sites under a bill approved today by a state Senate appropriations committee.

N.C. Attorney General Roy Cooper has been pushing for the legislation, saying it would protect children from sexual predators who target victims online. Cooper is co-chairman of a group of 50 state attorneys general trying to negotiate with on the issue.

I have yet to hear not only how they plan on implementing this but also how they plan on enforcing it. what do they propose happens to a child that gets on without parental permission? Will the child be prosecuted or the parent? Will it result in jail time or fines? Will there be a special task force that will be in charge of making sure that all NC kids on MySpace have parental permission? Will this law discourage predators and pedophiles from trolling MySpace?

Again I say this is nothing more than feel good legislation preying on the fears of those that are not tech savvy in order to gain re-election. None of it actually keeps our kids any safer.

Castillo may face death penalty

School Shooting Suspect Awaits Fate:

Tomorrow we should find out whether or not Rafael Alvaro Castillo will be facing the death penalty or not. Castillo shot and killed his father, videotaped the aftermath, then went to Orange High School in Hillsborough, NC and fired rounds at the school. Luckily there was only a few slight injuries.

Orange County District Attorney Jim Woodall is expected to announce Wednesday whether Alvaro Castillo, 19, of Hillsborough, will pursue the death penalty or time in prison.

Detectives said Castillo sent a homemade video tape and a letter to a local newspaper the same day of the incident. On the tape, Castillo seems to become animated and agitated when talking about alleged abuse at the hands of his father.

Investigators also said Castillo sent an e-mail about the alleged rampage to the principal at Columbine High School, where two gunmen shot 13 people before killing themselves in April 1999. In the e-mail, Castillo reveals his obsession with that massacre.

Personally I’m rooting for the death penalty but I’ll settle for life without parole. Anything less than that is an injustice.

What does Australia know that the US doesn't?

MySpace hands over known sex offenders; how many unknown?:

One of the problems I’ve had with all the blustering from state attorneys general about MySpace is what are the AGs doing about the predators that haven’t been caught yet? I never see anyone in the American media asking that question yet the Australian media has no problem seeing the same problems that I do.

MySpace, with 180 million registered profiles and still growing, is possibly the world’s largest social networking phenomenon. The US with a population approaching 300 million has an estimated 600,000 registered sex offenders and quite possibly some multiple of that who are unknown and unregistered. This then begs the question of how many unregistered sex offenders and potential would be predators still have profiles on the MySpace site.

In most places, there are more criminals at large than in jails. If MySpace truly is a virtual representation of the physical world, then it stands to reason that wiping the profiles of 7,000 known sex criminals may well be just lopping off the tip of the iceberg. Hopefully, that is not the case.

Yet we still don’t hear what the AG’s are doing to keep sex offenders off the streets. Personally I just hear them pointing the finger at MySpace. Maybe they should clean up their own “house” first before worrying about MySpace.

15 will get you 20

Teen charged with taping sex act with minor, posting it online:

Thanks to Jessica we have this story out of Kentucky about one 18-year-old Jeurne Sterling Walton. He was arrested for recording a sexual encounter between himself and a 15-year-old girl on his cell phone then posting the video to MySpace.

The victim said she had oral sex with Walton in April, according to court records.

“She did not know that the suspect was using his cell phone to record the act because he told her that he was only text messaging a friend and was not recording,” records said.

As word of its existence spread on or around April 27, the video was passed from student to student at Bryan Station through iPods, cell phones and other electronic devices.

“We picked up the talk among students,” district spokeswoman Lisa Deffendall said.

Walton pleaded not guilty to various charges involving sex with a minor. Wait, what? Not guilty when there’s video proof? I’d love to hear the defense on this one.

Anyway I could not find his MySpace however Jessica was kind enough to provide his mugshot.

Michelle Dohm still allegedly contacting students

Dohm Ordered To Avoid Contact With Victims:

Every time news comes out about this story it gets even more weird.

Michelle Dohm is a grade school teacher from Thurmont, MD. who was arrested and convicted for sending threatening notes to some students at her school. Even after she had been under investigation it is alleged that she still sent correspondence out to some of the students.

Now the news is that she was in a court hearing today and was ordered to have no more contact with her victims. It seems that even after her conviction she has contacted some of the students she was accused of threatening.

Prosecutors sought to revoke Dohm’s bond and lock her up until her sentencing on June 26th.

Instead, a judge signed a consent order in which Dohm, who is free on bond, explicitly agreed to have no contact with the victims.

This story has become so ridiculously hard to believe that I don’t even think Lifetime would make a movie out of it. I’d almost dare to say that Court TV wouldn’t either but they have no shame.