Social behaviour modification & censorship

author’s note

I found an old screen-capture image I’d taken from Facebook a few years ago, and it inspired me to write this post, which discusses how an alternate economic framework, based on consequences rather than property, would deal with such things as censorship, societal values, and moderation of behaviour.

For those of you whom have been following my work to any degree so far, you should already know that the Open Empire Foundation vision, is that of a civilisation based on the principles of Ecological & Social Justice & Sustainability expressed in non-species-biased, non-property/trade/currency-based, and non-hierarchical (aka anarchic) justice economics & politics.

For those of you previously unaware, now you know.

With this context in mind, let’s have a look at that screen capture – from a few years ago – which as far as I’m concerned, this is a valid example of the failure of capitalism.

the incident and response

Screen capture of Facebook community standards response fail to reporting a page which incites murder of other sentient species
Facebook community standards fail on the social values of animal welfare and ecological sustainability

So Facebook – after considering the matter – had replied that the incitement to violence, murder, and genocide of an entire sentient species, along with the resulting physiological and psychological suffering of the individuals of that species, not to mention the reckless disregard for the deleterious ecological impact of completely removing a species from its ecosystem … was deemed to be “just fine”.

is this a fair judgement of facebook?

Yes I know Facebook management didn’t necessarily make this decision personally … BUT … their employed – and I assume trained – representatives did, and no further contact was made on the subject by them, meaning that it either never came under review, or it did and yet passed.

should it have come under review?

Without question, the seriousness of the allegation was one of violence ( and in this case murder and indeed genocide ), furthermore the screen capture was posted online and it’s been a few years since then, so they’ve had all the time in the world.

Clearly this is a failure of their priorities and process, if not also their values.

why do these failures occur?

I can imagine what excuses they’d give about the sheer volume of posts on Facebook, and the number of staff they have to employ in order to review posts … but the reality is this:

  • they set their standards
  • they design their processes
  • they design and implement their systems
  • they hire their staff
  • they train their staff
  • they monitor their performance

… and at all stages, on every level, they failed, and failed miserably.

the reason it happens is not because it’s technically difficult, nor ethically complex – but because it’s not a financial priority

the alternative economic approach

Under a different economic paradigm – where the “cost” of prioritising the monitoring and moderation of ( for example ) social media pages, was considered in terms of the quantification of ecological and social consequences, instead of financial “profit” – what would happen, is that a page such as this would be allowed by “free-speech” … BUT … there would be no incentive to create it in the first place.

the reasons being because:

  • it has no positive ecological consequences
  • it has seriously negative ecological consequences
  • it has serious negative sociological consequences
  • it is an act of incitement to murder, genocide, suffering, and the extinction of another sentient species

… and thus: if it could be shown you were probably serious, it may result in your incarceration or death ( along with similar or equivalent consequences for anyone following your lead, depending on their level of commitment ).

This is not because it’s against any “law”, not because there’s any authority to tell you how to behave, not because there’s some societal moral authority claiming to know what’s right and wrong, thus justifying a dictation of social standards … but because the nett quantifiable ( and thus verifiably perspective-agnostic ) beneficial vs. deleterious ecological & social consequences of incarcerating or killing you, are completely justified in terms of preventing the absolutely nett deleterious consequences of allowing you to keep doing so, and in terms of the nett beneficial consequences of putting a stop to you.

the feedback consequences

Therefore everyone else is given a motivation to stop you EVEN IF they agree with you, and you’d better just hope your friends get to you first.

None of this is to say that the very first option would be killing you – and the likelihood is that people would attempt diplomacy first, perhaps even the website managers taking your page down, not out of censorship standards, but in recognition of the fact that the deleterious consequences of keeping it online outweigh the deleterious consequences of taking it offline – but the possibility is there, that you’d call this social karma down on yourself, especially if you persisted in your attempts to incite people to a genocide of another species.


Thus we can have a non-species-biased anarchic society:

  • without authority
  • without law
  • without censorship

… yet a social media page like this, probably wouldn’t exist in the first place, and the kind of stupidity behind it would likely die out over time.

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