Introduction to @TheBlockBot

 

(Note for those coming here when blocked, nowhere does the bot say you are anything, abusive, an MRA, whatever. Look at the tweet that added you and ask the blocker that blocked you. The levels are from annoying to abusive bigot. Level1 people might have something to complain about in terms of being labelled “abusive, stalker, doxxer or faker”, few have however as it’s a pretty clear cut accusation. Level2 and Level3 are more subjective, are you really that damaged by some people thinking you are an asshole or annoying?)

For more information on blocking consult Twitter’s help center.

Twitter is polluted by a number of anti-feminist obsessives, who viciously harass those who don’t support their warped views. The Block Bot is a Twitter application to automatically block the nastiest of these people. Once installed, it works in the background, fetching the names of those to be blocked from a central server, and discreetly blocking them.

The Block Bot can be used anonymously, and makes no change whatsoever to your Twitter profile. The blocks are made silently, and (from the point of view of the person being blocked) are indistinguishable from ordinary blocks. You may follow @TheBlockBot Twitter account if you wish, but there is no requirement to do so.

You can adjust the strictness with which blocks are applied, by choosing from one of three nastiness levels. Level 1 is sparsely populated with “worst of the worst” trolls, plus impersonators and stalkers. Level 2 (which we recommend for general use) includes those in Level 1, plus a wider selection of unpleasant people, in the opinion of the blockers. Level 3 goes beyond The Block Bot’s main purpose, and expands the list to include those who aren’t straight out haters, but can be tedious and obnoxious.

The Block Bot does not affect your ability to block people manually, and does not interfere with your existing block list. It does not block anyone who you are following, and will unblock anyone who you later choose to follow. If you no longer wish to use the bot, it can easily be removed.

 Posted by at 10:17 pm

  196 Responses to “Introduction to @TheBlockBot”

  1. this is shit

    • While we appreciate your in depth commentary on something… The web site, the bot, life in general, maybe you discovered where that funny smell was coming from as you sat down to write a thoughtful and insightful analysis of the ethics of using Twitters block function… after much discussion at The Block Bot Towers we feel you could really do better than this Helen, we is disappoint.

    • Hmm, I think Helen was commenting on her own comment. Very clever.

  2. Is this serious?

    • I’m glad there is no ability to embed pictures as I don’t give out medical advice and certainly don’t need to see your man parts. I suggest if you want to know if your rash is anything to worry about you contact your doctor.

      [We get some weird eggs on this site!]

      • They are weird eggs, but I do enjoy how their comments are often self-reflecting, as Helen’s above and Steve’s here.

        “Is this serious?” I don’t know, Steve. You tell me if your comment was seriously made.

  3. Well, that’s one way for a whole lot of people to never find out if they’re wrong or not, without even knowing what arguments they’re turning a deaf ear to. Maybe one day you guys will care about if your assumptions are true or not, and be able to have your ideas withstand public scrutiny, instead of hiding behind a bot to block any dissenting opinion.

    So much for that whole critical thinking thing.

    • Riiight, so there is no way anyone can see what the arguments are against their beliefs unless they allow communication from anyone anywhere at all times. You do realise this just blocks on Twitter? Hardly the most conducive medium for exchange of ideas and concepts, many scientists publishing their papers by Twitter? No.

      Is there no one with a cogent argument for not blocking a few twits on Twitter?

      P.S. Do you see any irony in your statement that A+ is “turning a deaf ear to arguments” by blocking when you commented on this web site? Shame it was such a crappy argument.

      • The bot doesn’t “just block” it also flags for spam, why?

        • Rarely, only on #level1 and when #spam is added. Accounts set up to abuse people might get this treatment or fake ones so that when they contact users of the bot there is a chance they get suspended. Frankly it doesn’t work, not sure if Twitter ignore the API driven reports in their algorithm.

      • You say that “It does not block anyone who you are following, and will unblock anyone who you later choose to follow.” but how will you discover that you want to follow someone if you can’t see there tweets? Just curious.

        • You can see their tweets, try blocking someone then look at their timeline. Look at a search they appear in. Look at a thread they are in. The tweets will be there… If any of our users finds someone they know is talking to a blocked person or they look interesting they only have to follow them, problem solved.

  4. Disgusting

  5. LOLZ all the way you guys. Nobody speaks during the sermons.

    • I’m pretty confident this numpty won’t let the irony of his comment being approved affect his opinion in the slightest.

  6. Hi, could you please open source the bot – and more so, the database (preferably both!)? May reuse it for an IRC bot I have in development.

    Put a link up here to an SCM or just a tarball or something, I leave no email behind. Thank you.

  7. I’m in awe of your machine magic making, seriously. It’s this sort of thing that hammers home what a waste of time truanting from Catholic school was when I was a young ladyboy. Thank you. Plus the monosyllablic comments of disapproval above have brightened my evening.

    • Glad to be of service, they really don’t have much of an argument. Usually boils down to a narcissistic but..but..how will I be able to make people listen to me! Censorship! Freeze Peach! Blah blah fart.

      • You created a blocklist of supposedly “anti-feminist” people that just happens to be comprised of a whole bunch of skeptics (men AND women) that have criticized a few loudmouthed bloggers from FTB and Skepchick. Some of these, like Sara Mayhew, have been the targets of abuse themselves by incendiary, crass blowhards like Rebecca Watson. This list also includes completely decent people like Barb Drescher and Steve Zara, who are certainly not trolls, nor bigots, nor “anti-feminists”. You’re blatantly lying about people, and this list is nothing but a petty blacklist designed to shield a handful of routinely incendiary atheist bloggers from criticism.

        And you think the people criticizing you are narcissists, or have bad arguments??? This is nuts. You’re a terrible person. I pity you.

        • If anyone is wondering who Eshto / Ryan Grant Long is and why he is so keen to call us “liars” this might help ->
          http://freethoughtblogs.com/greta/2012/01/09/two-questions-for-dj-grothe/

          Ryan Grant Long: Slap the bitch?

          His violent misogynistic response is a problem, but if he had apologised then that would have been that. Unfortunately he has a “womens study” certificate and seemingly the first thing he was taught was never admit to doing wrong.

          • That doesn’t address the issue raised:

            Are the people mentioned, Sara Mayhew, Barbara Drescher and Steve Zara, harassers and anti-feminists?

          • The bot clearly describes people in level 3 as annoyances and fools… If you want to conflate levels to build a cross for your friends then that’s up to you.

            If you are the infamous Claus “Drumsticks!” Larsen, I’d guess you’ll have some dictionary argument on why clearly defined levels are all the same.

          • Did you, at any time, during the BBC interview, make it clear that the tool is also designed to block out those found to be “annoyances and fools”?

          • Yes we went through levels one by one… Anyone who can read can also see there are three levels and realise that the level spoken about was “the worst of the worst”. (Level1)

          • But that is not apparent from the segment.

            Have you contacted the BBC to inform them that their segment should have made clear that you are also using the tool to block out those found to be “annoyances and fools”?

          • Wasn’t clear to you maybe, or not clear enough in your opinion. It is stated that Paul signs up to Level 1 and the bot blocks abusive people on that level. Both are factually correct as it doesn’t say ONLY abusive people. No one complaining is on L1 BTW. Anyone looking up the bot and seeing you on the list can see what level you are blocked at and see the descriptions of “Super Slimey”, “Pesky Pittizens” and “Mildly Mildewy” for L1/2 and 3 and realise, if they can read, that you are not “labelled” abusive necessarily even if you are in L1. Even more they can go to your Twitter timeline and see for themselves. No claims are made for an individual – they are added on the basis of the OPINION of the person adding them to the list (Most were not added by @ool0n BTW!) …

            So yeah it would be great if they’d added more of the interview from that pov. But personally I was much happier to see more of Stella Creasey as appeasing narcissistic fools who weren’t even mentioned on Newsnight doesn’t seem worthwhile.

          • Abuse and stalking are not matters of opinion. If they were, nobody would need this block bot, would they?

            It is not correct that no claims are made for an individual: You set up the levels, and described how each level should be perceived. If TwitterUser_A deems Sara Mayhew a stalker and abuser, all users of the system will perceive her as someone who has abused and stalked someone on Twitter.

            By way of this block bot, people like Sara Mayhew could be banned from Twitter, if just one person adds her, regardless of level, if enough people use your software. However, those signing up will never know that they have supported the banning of a person who merely had the audacity to disagree with the one person adding her.

            How will you avoid abuse of the system, e.g. someone signing up, putting, say, Rebecca Watson’s Twitter account on the list, thus having her banned, when enough people have used your software?

            Or perhaps, you won’t disallow such use, since it is for all?

          • You have no idea what you are talking about Claus… Learn a little about Twitters spam algorithm then come back and play.

  8. So after making this brilliant bot how does one put the feminists who are abusive on the list? Or is this only offered for “women” who feel offended?

    • Nice “gotcha” but unfortunately there are some people in the trans* community using it to block TERFs and anti-sex work feminists. The A+ community this bot primarily serves is pro-sex, trans-inclusive and hence against the whorephobia and transphobia exhibited by a small number of so called “radfems”.

  9. If you turn it up to level 4, does it block everyone except yourself?

    • Get it right, the numbering is back to front so level 0 would be the one where we are sat alone blocking all of Twitter! :-D

      -> Next version, block everyone! Actually that’s a good idea, allow people to create an account where everyone is blocked by default and you need to follow/unblock to converse with them. Sort of a protected account, but public … Twitter should totally do that, cheers!

  10. “Riiight, so there is no way anyone can see what the arguments are against their beliefs unless they allow communication from anyone anywhere at all times. You do realise this just blocks on Twitter? Hardly the most conducive medium for exchange of ideas and concepts, many scientists publishing their papers by Twitter? No.”

    So you’re just wasting all this time on a bot for a non-conducive medium for exchange by blocking the ability to have said exchanges? That sounds about right for A+, considering the time you waste on your non-productive faux feminism and other ridiculous bullshit.

    • No it doesn’t stop any exchanges … Unless the person blocked has also blocked you. Anyone using the bot and finds a person blocked all they need to do is follow that person. We encourage that and for people to tackle the misogyny and bigotry exhibited by some people on the bot -> but on their terms. This stops those people directly contacting the users of the bot and it gives them warning that an “exchange of ideas” might not be fruitful.

  11. I posted this on my FB as well:

    Recently there’s been some talk about The Block Bot after the BBC featured it in a piece on Newsnight. Tim Farley (of What’s the Harm) wrote up a great post with lots of detail on his Skeptools site. It can be seen here – http://skeptools.wordpress.com/2013/08/01/block-bot-twitter-report-abuse-ool0n-atheism-plus/

    My post isn’t really to cover that, but more to cover how to improve block bot into something that is more transparent, and more importantly, fair.

    Currently the block bot is run by a group of Atheism Plus members. This already causes a problem with bias, and as many others have pointed out, there are plenty of people blocked at the lower levels of the block bot as “annoying” simply for being critical of some of the ideas behind Atheism Plus.

    So, the goal of this post is to put fourth some ideas to make the block bot better, and work as advertised.. Let’s get to it!

    Suggestion #1 – Transparency.. Tim managed to find out who runs the block bot, and who’s responsible for putting people on the bot, but he had to ask. This should clearly be defined on the website. There should also be clearly defined rules as to what gets you put on each level. Is it the whim of one of the admins, or were there a number of legit reports? Nobody knows.

    Suggestion #2 – Change reporting entirely. The Block Bot is advertised as being crowdsourced, but I don’t really see evidence of that. I would suggest making it truely crowdsourced. Offending tweets should be reported to The Block Bot, and then dealt with.. How should we deal with it…

    Suggestion #3 – When a tweet is reported, the user should be linked to an ID# or something that masks who sent the tweet, but still allows the bot to track the number of reports by user. Any other twitter handles should be stripped from the tweet as well, and then the tweet can be voted on by the community to see if it does break one of the clearly defined offenses. By masking the twitter handles this removes a lot of the biased that is currently in the system.

    Suggestion #4 – Currently there is no way to be removed from The Block Bot, except for trying to find the admins and pleading to be removed. Depending on the severity of the offence, the blocks should auto-remove after a period of time, or, at the very least, some random tweets from their timeline picked up and re-voted on based on Suggestion #3.

    • Good for you, but the bot is fit for purpose as far as its hundreds of users are concerned. More improvements will come with time and actually blockers are including offending tweets where appropriate as its been suggested by many people.

      Code is open sourced for the very reason that there should be many bots and your “problem of bias” is no problem at all. There will always be “bias” as one persons asshole is anothers friend. We get around that a little by never blocking people you are following. Ultimately there needs to be shared lists for different communities – there will be no “one true” block bot.

      • “There will always be “bias” as one persons asshole is anothers friend.”

        Unless you mask the twitter names as I suggested, then you wouldn’t see who it is that’s saying the offending tweet.

        • Doesn’t work for transparency, users need to see who is on what list. I did keep the list to only users, then they all signed up with sock accounts and were tweeting the “hidden” list everywhere. So that really doesn’t work.

          ETA: But not worth arguing as you are free to implement how you see fit.

          • You can see who’s on what list, the hiding of who tweeted is only for judging if a tweet is offensive or not. That process should be blinded.

            The person that reported the tweet would know who it is (and wouldn’t be able to vote on that one) and once it went through the voting process it would be revealed, but during the voting it should be hidden.

          • Feel free to implement, a review step was considered too complicated for what is only blocking on Twitter after all. Don’t want to make too much work for the admins. But you could implement – not sure how you “blind” the tweets – you’d need a web interface to report people and Q’ing. That would be quite complicated to code for and manage, I think such a bot would die as the admins get bored with the amount of work. Assuming it ever got popular.

  12. Nice one Oolon.

    Could you clarify, to make it into level three, do you only need to be “critical” of feminism/A+/empathy, or is it more to do with the way that the criticism is delivered?

    I know that you don’t decide and that it is the users who do, but what has your experience been? Have any decent critics been false-positived JUST for being critical?

    • Perfectly possible there are false positives, I think that’s obvious, to err is human. Also totally subjective as one persons annoying is anothers insightful. Hence people should only sign up to level 3 if they are happy that they can take the risk on missing a reasonable anti-A+ person. Many critics of A+ are not on there, Avicenna for one, anyone being reasonable won’t end up there. People parroting unsupported assertions about feminazis, echo-chambers, A+ is “taking over” atheism or A+ block ALL dissenting opinion get blocked as boring. Heard it a million times and they are incapable of forming a logical argument on that subject IMO. But anyone is free to follow or read their timelines and make their own minds up.

      Also many got on level 3 for retweeting ElevatorGATE or uberfeminist/etc when they have been spamming conference hashtags. That means they get retweeted by @hashspamkiller and that counts as “annoying”. If it was someone I saw was reasonable doing that, I’d just unretweet on hashspamkiller and ask them to stop spamming the hash. So far no one I’d consider reasonable retweets their guff, cannot think why.

      • That’s pretty fair.

        I particularly like the way that it is the abused who get to decide who the abuser in this system. It takes away the chance for the abuser to minimalize the damage that they do.

        Creating and testing a flexible system to root out false positives will make this a pleasing solution for all but the most dim-witted detractors.

  13. While I would not hand over responsibility of managing who I see online to you, I do repsect you for trying to do something about abuse.

    • http://www.atheismplus.com is against bigotry online and off … BTW it doesn’t manage who you see, only who can contact you unsolicitedly on Twitter. Blocked people still appear in conversation threads and hash searches, when you don’t use the Zapper! as well that is ;-)
      Using Tweetdeck to see what people have been trying to contact is pretty common amongst our users, they just want to be able to deal with them on their own terms.

      Also totally up to the user who they follow, no one has people they follow blocked.

  14. I am blocked in Level 2, which states:

    “Level 2 blocking: these are the abusive subset of anti-feminists, MRAs, or all-round assholes who think nothing of tweeting their much loved photoshopped pictures, memes and other wonderful media directly into your timeline to get attention (Listen to Meee!!1!). This level also includes the “parody” accounts, if you have better things to do with your life than “disagree” on Twitter with a parody of yourself that seems to have suffered a frontal lobotomy.”

    You better be ready to backup these claims.

    • HAHA, Cheers Phil, this gave me the best laugh of the day. From the fucking idiot who proudly admitted to coining part of the phrase “Rebeccunt Twatson” in response to the avalanche of abuse she endured. You are a shit stain and I refer you to Arkell v Pressdram, have a nice day!

      • Nope, not from the avalanche of abuse she endured, but mostly from the abuse she (and her followers/friends) gave. Anyway, nothing in my twitter history shows abuse or harassment.

        • In your opinion there is nothing that makes you an asshole, we can have any opinion we like about you and add you to a list! There are no statements of fact made about you or anyone else on a “list” other than someone thinks you are an asshole and added you. We don’t even guarantee that all people adding to the list think that. I know this must come as a surprise to you after all these years of being called an asshole by FTB commenters, in print. Good luck #bravehero

          BTW You were added on the 2nd April, one day out for ultimate irony. Not by oolon either :-)

          • Well, this turns out to be very interesting, because Not Oolon (Aratina, maybe), you just admitted that the people on these lists are basically foes of a very specific blog congregation, FTB, and also means there is actualy no point in this bot, other than slandering/libelling/defaming people you don’t like.

            Am I an abuser, or a harasser?

          • You really are as thick as two short planks, I can hold the opinion you are a harasser and an abuser. I certainly think you involve yourself in it and have been extensively documented abusing and harassing on FTB and elsewhere. I can express that in print, comments etc, even add you to an ignore list, even share that with my friends *gasp*. I cannot say you harassed person X or abused person Y in a particular way if the specifics were untrue and criminal as that would potentially be a libellous statement of fact. Anything else is an opinion.

            Otherwise you and friends would have been sued off the internet for calling people “cunts”, “twatson”, etc, etc, even making up lies about them on your forum and disseminating them.

          • This is called insults, not libel. Check the forum, and my posts, and point out where any of my commenrts could be construed as abuse or harassment. Then get back to me, we can discuss this as adults (I hope).

          • If anyone is wondering what Phil classes as “adult” conversation then have a look here at an excerpt from his forum… Its NSFW for a reason!
            http://freethoughtblogs.com/almostdiamonds/2013/02/02/what-is-more-important-than-peace-nsfw/

            I think we will take a rain check on the Giordana lesson on how to totally be a mature atheist-skeptic …

        • Just wanted to laugh at Phil one more time. Here is where he was added, after being a complete jackass:

          https://twitter.com/aratina/statuses/319211227060514816

          • Yep, where I was added, by you. Why was I added, and where was I a complete jackass? Not on Twitter, that’s for sure.

          • We made the amazing leap that someone supportive of the Slymepit will themselves be a SlymeTwit on Twitter. Seems a fair guess? Also seems our users are happy to take the risk that you will cure cancer on Twitter or something and miss out on the fun.

            Future versions will include the reason for adding so #slymetwit can be excluded from the blocking criteria as we agree on Twitter you barely say anything. But you surely are a Slymepit Tweep and that is more than enough reason for us to add you.

  15. What a fantastic idea!

    I love Atheism+, and this seems like a good solution to the mountains of terrible trolls everywhere. I took a look at the source, but only stayed for a few minutes because of my dislike of php. ^_^;

    It actually gave me an idea for a more general purpose spam detection bot. If one were to use the Google Prediction API, they could construct trainer data for spammers and abusers to feed to the Prediction AI, then the AI could automatically detect (and perhaps block/report) twitter users who the Prediction API rates as a close match to the trainer data.

    Anyway, keep on hacking, the bot is cool!

  16. Dear Atheism+,
    Can’t we please just all realize that atheism is just saying no to the question “is there a god?” and nothing more. If you want to support certain ideas and idealogies that’s fine, but don’t drag down “atheism” with you. This kind of needless censorship only serves to divide people up, much like the religious do, sonplease stop this unnecessary program.
    Yours sincerely, rational people

    • You didn’t notice that the whole premise of atheism plus is that it is meant to be more than just atheism? No one is trying to redefine your precious dictionary terms, so step up from the fainting couch.

      • One thing all people who subscribe to the ideas of “atheism+” seem to be ignoring is that everyone on the Internet gets hate, that is the dehumanizating quality of the Internet. “Trolls” merely see a picture and name, not the person behind it. I believe that the Internet represents the ultimate freedom in a way because it is the first thing humans have created that basically does not exist in a physical sense, but yet has an enormous impact on human lives. What you are attempting to do destroy that marvelous freedom. I agree with many of your platforms but also disagree with a lot as well but I will never block an atheism pluser or feminist simply because I believe strongly in conversations. Don’t just lock yourself up in your little section of the web, we will never come to any agreement that way.

  17. Oh and By the way, I am anti-RADICAL, feminism, I stand for free speech, choice, and logic. So please censor me because I have a different opinion, because I disagree with women like Anita Sarkeesian and Big red, and support the works of ThunderF00t, censor me. you would just prove you are nothing but cowards who in the face of facts, will silence them.

    • This seemed the most coherent of your rants, we also are anti-radfems like the TERFs and SWERFs … Do you know anything about the area you are supposedly so set against? Probably not if your information came from the ThunderFool.

  18. How convenient, now people can completely isolate themselves within their ideological bubble without ever having to hear any dissenting opinions! One step for closed-mindedness, one big step for destroying critical thinking

    • Don’t be ridiculous this is Twitter, also it’s for those that don’t want to hear the “dissenting” opinion that they are “cunts”, “professional victims” or have bigotry thrown their way. Plus a few people who hang out with those being abusive agreeing how thin skinned the people they harass are.

      You do also realise that dissenting opinions exist without them needing to be shoved down people’s throats? Its quite insulting to assume everyone using the bot is incapable of reading other peoples views on the issues at hand. Some use the bot to avoid arguments on Twitter as they want to use it for “social networking” *gasp*. This doesn’t mean they avoid arguments where 140 chars are not a limiting factor.

      Critical thinking doesn’t require people contacting you directly on a social media platform, to imply that is the case is ridiculous hyperbole of the sort that bot users like to avoid.

  19. I’m wondering: Is Richard Dawkins blocked as well? After all, wasn’t part of this whole “Elevatorgate” started when Prof. Dawkins criticized Rebecca Watson for complaining about that particular event? Didn’t Rebecca say that she wasn’t going to listen to Dawkins or read his books anymore?

    So…is he blocked for being some sort of misogynistic anti-feminist atheist capitalist godless racist? Or would that be going too far?

    Also, how about Sam Harris? After all, a ton of FTB people have heaped loathing and criticism on Sam Harris for being too critical of Islam, and a whole host of other reasons. Sam Harris responded by denigrating PZ Myers and PZ’s followers in one of his essays. Is he going to be blocked for being a racist right-wing gun toting anti-liberal misogynistic bastard who thinks that speaking out against women being forced into burkas is a good idea?

    Well, what of it? I’m eager to find out.

    Also, what about Matt Dillahunty? He was literally banned by the Atheism+ forums. A lot of people posted that they were incredibly offended by Matt and that they thought he’s some sort of disingenuous lying misogynist who hurt their feelings in ways previously unheard of. Matt responded with a video basically saying that the people at Atheism+ Forums should be apologizing to him instead of looking for an apology from him.

    Is he blocked? Or does being banned from the A+ Forums not count as a legitimate reason for being blocked on Twitter as well and labelled as a troll?

    I’d very much like to hear back about these three famous cases because, if A+ truly is about treating people equally, then why not go all the way and not take fame and influence into account?

    I’m waiting for a reply with, naturally, baited breath.

    • Is this some sort of “bias”/”hypocrisy” gotcha? Cos we are quite happy to add any of those if they engage in sniping at the community. Given Matt Dillahunty is an A+ supporter I doubt that will be the case. Dawkins pumps out a daft tweet every now and then and everyone laughs/sighs/facepalms but not enough to be more than a sideshow. Harris, no idea.

      So if you have a point, why not make it? Could save us both a lot of time…

    • BTW, I’d like to add a postscript:

      I’m not saying that there aren’t absolutely vitriolic and disgusting people on Twitter and on the internet who shouldn’t be blocked. I block people on G+ all the time for being absolutely vile (I don’t tend to use Twitter much at all anymore, if ever).

      However, I do it on an individual basis after reading what they have to say. I don’t rely on mass block lists based on political ideology, their views on feminism, their views on religion, or anything like that. I go through them on a case by case basis. Twitter already provides the tools for doing so (a button you simply click to block them, just like G+). So why the need for this blockbot? I consider this tool to be mindless and dogmatic in the extreme and easily abused. I also consider that automatically flagging their account as spam to be abuse, since many who will use it have never had any tweets coming from these people and are not personally affected.

      I am not defending the real trolls who should be blocked on an individual basis and simply ignored, but I am defending those who simply disagree with A+, do so politely, engage in debate (even heated), and are are now labelled as trolls and lumped into a category into which they do not belong.

      This is what is so upsetting about the ideology behind A+. It isn’t that most of us don’t stand for many, most, or even all things which the A+ community apparently stands for, but the fact that it appears to be run and guided by extremists. Just like the French Revolution brought in the age of enlightenment, it also brought in the extreme wing which thought that cutting off the heads of anyone who disagreed (even in debate) with some of their proposals was simply a spiffy idea. I do see A+ in very much the same way that I see the Jacobins. Enlightenment, reason, and rationality are always a great idea and almost all of us in the community can get behind that. But decimating your own ranks to dogmatic creeds is not part of the package we want to be associated with.

      Sorry for the long post, but I had to have my say.

      • You agree there are horrible people on Twitter but personally see no need for a shared blocklist? You missed the high profile dog piles of rape threats and abuse onto women on Twitter then? There are a lot more where they just disappear or put their accounts into protected status, effectively silencing them to anyone apart from their followers. So have a read of this for an example where someone uses it to silence abuse -> http://freethoughtblogs.com/almostdiamonds/2013/08/04/an-organizer-for-a-state-level-skeptic-group-in-the-us/

        As I say elsewhere some people just use to keep away from the strife in the community and use Twitter for networking. Many use cases that you are incapable of empathising with apparently. Sorry for you.

        I could address your A+ strawmen, but I’d guess we’ll discover you’ve based your views on second or third hand views of what A+ is. I seriously doubt you’ve put in even the most basic work in discovering for yourself. And you have the arrogance to accuse the people using the block bot as lacking in critical thinking. You are a perfect example of an “Annoying” level person, certain in your own superiority and clarity of mind with no need to do any work or critical thinking in coming to your conclusions.

        • No, I do not see a need for a shared block list. I thought I expressed my reasons with clarity. I apologise if I wasn’t clear enough. I have not missed any rape threats, or death threats, as I’ve been on the receiving end of those often enough. But when I am, I simply block them and move on. I’m not saying that some shouldn’t take it more seriously than that, but I don’t simply label all people who disagree with me as potential rapists, or people who make rape threats. I find that to do so is a bit prejudicial on a very base level.

          I do agree with some in your posted link that Twitter is a complete war zone (and, I think, an utter waste of time for the most part). That’s why I don’t engage in things there. I actually find that people who do are, for the most part, just the sort of people whom I don’t tend to talk to anyway. Twitter is practically made for trash talk and isn’t worth spending much emotional time over in any sense at all. You might notice how some rather distinguished intellectuals handle themselves on Twitter – some of which even engage a few people. But they don’t tend to respond to bigots, racists, or trolls. Ever. And they certainly don’t talk about how they feel about those sorts of people on Twitter when they have anything to say on the matter in public. Perhaps that should be a lesson to everyone.

          I’m not particularly phased that you think me incapable of any empathy, nor am I surprised. The moment I chose to make some valid criticisms about A+ and my views on it, without trying to personally insult anyone in particular, I knew that somebody would simply label me as intolerant. It goes with the territory. I say this because, once again, A+ appears to validate my own claims about how they tend to deal with any questioning of dogmatic ideas. Merely question, and you’re going to be labeled as intolerant. I’m sorry that you feel this way. I wonder how you’d do in an Oxford Union debate. I guarantee you that in debates such as those, there are no “safe spaces”. Democracy, debate, and even science, are not built on “safe spaces”.

          As to my “strawmen”, I don’t really see where I stacked any up before beating them down. I have done my homework on A+, I have watched both sides bash each other to pieces since 2011, and I have engaged from time to time with how I think about the A+ community and what I think about it overall. I have noted that I do support many, if not all, of the causes cited by A+, but do not wish to join simply because the mere act of criticising it in any way will lead people to automatically throw epithets at you and claim that you are using strawmen and ad hominem attacks.

          There are people who are loathed by the A+ community – women, might I add – who are strong atheists and are now accused of…hating women. Women who have fought for secularism, science, and equality since decades. I might also add that there are men, with the same kinds of history of standing up for civil rights in the real world and not on some bloody pissant blogs which almost nobody reads outside of the community, who are now being labelled as misogynistic. All simply because they don’t think that the people who are directing the community of A+, or their rabid fanatical followers, are such a spiffy idea. For this, they have been labelled trolls, women haters, and worse. They are lumped in with delinquent morons who thrive on trolling with rape, racist, and murder jokes for a laugh.

          Lump them all in for good measure and string them up, eh? They’re all the same, eh? Let’s see if we can rid ourselves of all of these troublemakers at once, eh? I know: let’s all declare them enemies of A+ at the same time but, better yet, say that they’re enemies of women and minorities. And then let’s mark their profiles as spammers automatically, and block their views completely from the page – exactly what we used to complain about when it came to Creationists and Islamists who abused the spam, ratings, and comment systems built into YouTube and blogs. And then, when it’s all done, we’ll accuse anyone – anyone at all – who points this out as being, at the very least, an “Annoying level person”.

          Please! Don’t stop there, I beseech you. How about you label me a “non-person” instead? How about you put my account on your block list and send me to the gulag along with anyone else who thinks that the emperor is as naked as a robin?

          A+ turned to a fascist mentality only a few weeks after it was born. Your reaction to my simply pointing out that it appears that extremists have been guiding A+ should be evidence enough that I was, after all, correct. But go ahead: add me to your list if that’s what you want to do. After all, you said I’m the perfect example of an “Annoying level person”, so by all means. Not that anyone even follows me on Twitter, not that I even engage there anymore since almost two years, or care about it in any way, but simply because it’ll tell everyone who is exposed to this reaction exactly what to think of your tactics and, dare I say it, lack of style.

          • You made no valid criticisms of A+, this essay is also similarly full of unevidenced bollocks. “Fascism” … Totally daft and I only approved your comment to show how ridiculous the anti-A+ people are.

            Explain “safe space” to me as an example that you have even the minimum knowledge of the subject, given you bring it up.

          • Organizations which tend to make “lists” of undesirables usually tend to fall into the fascist category. Not always, but almost always.

            I see your little kvetching group as utterly fascist in nature and dictatorial in deed. I don’t go around making lists of enemies to my ideology, nor do I tend to associate myself with those that do.

            And you’re the one calling me daft?

            Truly, I must be a subversive person.

            My post may not have been a specific criticism of A+, but your response certainly was.

            Good day.

          • Enemies? You got that from the descriptions… Huh. Read it again, mostly ridicule I’d say unless manboobz.com see the MRA’s they riducule as “enemies” as well.

            I notice you failed to describe a term you misused in your comment, safe space, I’m not surprised. Subversive? No, ill informed.

  20. This is why I have nothing to do with Atheism+. Dissent? HAHA! SILENCE IT! Just like our creationist forefathers – we shall block, flag, deny and ridicule any dissent from the PARTY MESSAGE!

    Oh, how we represent atheism – and aren’t just radical feminists riding on the coattails of atheism – because our movement is reviled the world over!

    LICK BOOT, OR BE BLOCKED PEASANT! The VAGINA IN THE SKY HATH SPOKEN!

    Also, nice move in getting twitter accounts marked for spam, so you can have them terminated. Fucking FEMINAZI clowns. Eat a dick – if you know how…

    • I honestly did not fake this pile of incoherent crap to demonstrate exactly why the block bot is a good idea. It would take a fuck ton of meth to fake something this ridiculous, not worth the lost brain cells.

  21. Is it really necessary to create a block bot for people who have differing opinions from yourself? And then to encourage people who may have never seen or heard of some of the blocked people to just block them anyway? I thought the entire idea of atheism was to promote free belief. This is more akin to some internet inquisition, though.

    • Have you read anything on this page? Or just came here to brainfart your preconceived notions without doing the barest minimum of reading…?

      • I have read it, and you’ve never quite answered any of the questions. You’ve simply responded with derogatory remarks and laughed at them for having negative opinions of people you seem to hold in high regard.

        I wouldn’t really have a problem with this blockbot if it were, as you claim, simply people making accounts for harassment. But it really doesn’t seem like that’s what it is.

        • Then level1 is for you .. Its also the most popular level so feel happy you are in the majority. Now why should anyone not be able to utilise level2 and level3 if they want to? The context here is community specific so you need to know about the Slymepit and “deep rifts” in atheism to understand fully. But the principle is the same if there are a group of anti-FTB/A+ foamers then why wouldn’t we want to avoid them? I’ve not seen a good argument from them yet so I and many others will take the chance.

          Now the bot is also used to block TERFs and SWERFs, but that’s a whole other story.

          Here is an example of an anti-A+ person who would likely never be put in the block list ->
          http://web.archive.org/web/20130513113400/http://freethoughtblogs.com/nonstampcollector/2013/04/07/wrapping-up-my-blog/

          Also gives you some idea on how potty the anti people are.

          • I don’t really think it’s “community-specific” when you’re advertising it on BBC. Also, again, some people are on this block list who are known to be against radical feminism, and as far as I can tell that’s the only belief they would hold that is against the A+ beliefs.

            I understand that some of them make blatantly shitty remarks – “Rebeccunt Twatson” as a notable example – but many of them simply provide criticism of their arguments or views, without resorting to that sort of comment.
            Overall, I’m inclined to think that this is a petty rebuttal to some of them, and is akin to – and about as effective as – an ostrich shoving its head into the ground.

          • “advertising” on the BBC, wtf are you on about? They reported on one communities solution to the problem. At no point was it presented as “the” solution.

            Point me to the best argument made against A+ then …

  22. mass blocking on any site of people with different opinions than yours
    shows how weak a position you’re arguments hold

    blocking trolls is understandable

    but you have put many on this list which are not trolls
    and just have different views and will argue against you’re points
    its sad that you have to resort to this

    • So why is it an atheist community that blocks people with different opinions is not blocking theists, or did that not occur to you when you came here to whine? So no we really don’t have a weak position, only people with such weak positions they need to abuse people to cover up that fact.

      • this is a block of people criticizing certain feminists views.

        “and why not block theists?”

        well there arguments won’t hold up to yours

        while the ones criticizing certain feminists views will.

        and there are people on the list who have never abused people.

        they have pointed out idiotic views and incorrect views

        “is this now considered abuse”

        • “while the ones criticizing certain feminists views will.”
          No they really don’t, Ally Fogg and many others have some good criticisms but most of the idiots like Thunderf00t conflate sex-negative/bigoted radfems with all of feminism. Or more likely he makes it up as he goes along. So there are good critics of feminism whereas the f00ls live at places like manboobz.com to be laughed at. Not listening to them is a good thing, unless its to point and laugh.

          • i agree “radfems” are a very small part of feminism

            but dont you agree that the radicals should be called out on there bigoted views?

            and blocking people who call out these radicals is not good.

          • Yup and a great example of why your reasoning is fallacious. You really think the trans* community is going to stop calling radfem TERFs out any more because they are blocked on Twitter! LOL

            You think the MRAs who conflate a few nasty radfems with all of feminism need to be listened to. Go for it, as the block bots users can by following them.

  23. by blocking like this it gives the
    impression that you are supporting the radfems
    by blocking there critics

    and that is how it comes across to a person from outside a+

    • I think you’ll find the A+ community is a very staunch critic of TERFs/SWERFs etc. Unlike the MRAs and general anti-feminists they don’t respond with the misogyny that just props up the TERF/SWERF flawed position.

  24. I’m sure the intentions behind this site are noble, however I feel subscribing to a list of people to block, instead of personally evaluating their positions is intellectually lazy and is a recipe for the hive mind type behavior that has always been a problem to atheists trying to get their ideas out to the general public. If instead you provided a resource with refutations to the positions held by those you are currently auto blocking, it will display many times more confidence than censorship. Remember that the difference between science and religion is that science fears and censors no idea, while religion is constantly burring its head in the sand to avoid evidence to the contrary of its beliefs.

    • You seem to be mistaken about science and have swallowed some nice sound bites. Of course science censors ideas, climate change denialists get no platform and are ignored and ridiculed. As are “quantum” woo proponents and other pseudosciences. Scientists do not *listen* to these people or constantly question established fact. MRA and anti-feminist philosophy is fundamentally flawed so we don’t want to listen to their irrational arguments. Engaging is like the angry pigeon on the chessboard, puffed up and always claiming victory when people walk off in disgust, manboobz.com does a good job in just laughing at the worst of them.

      Have a look at Chopras statements about how science is scared of his non-materialist view of the world and how they run from his ideas. Sounds very like you and the other people criticising A+ with nothing but criticism on how A+ manages its community. Empty baseless bollocks about “echo-chambers” etc.

      • Science does not directly censor pseudo scientific claims. Scientists don’t waste time or resources on them, but they don’t actively avoid these claims for fear of their own beliefs not holding up to scrutiny. In fact many scientists and educators offer refutations of things such as climate change denial. They go through lists of claims, and offer evidence to the contrary. They don’t just ask if you would kindly ignore/block everyone they have personally determined to be incorrect.

        If I had subscribed to your block list, how could I have heard the positions of respectable people such as thunderf00t? Not only would I not be allowed to hear the original arguments which got them on this list, I would not be able to hear their defenses of themselves or apologies if one was due. I am certain there are unpleasant and incorrect people in this list, but I would much rather determine that for myself, as I stopped letting others think for me the day I left my religion.

        Don’t get me wrong, you can block and ignore whoever you want as is your freedom; Please don’t pretend, however, that this represents any form of intellectual rigor. There are a multitude of people in your list; to summarize your refutation to *all* of their *separate* arguments as: “Please block these people, they are annoying” is no less silly than how the religious evade evidence to the contrary of their beliefs.

  25. I dont see why you have to block someone just because they have a different opinion to you. Just shows that your points are too weak to be put under scrouteny. INB4 personal insults to make yourself feel smarter.

    • Totally fallacious argument, blocking is blocking and says nothing to the truth of a persons or groups arguments. If it makes you feel better though, yeah whatever dude, rock on.

    • We don’t block based on “difference of opinion”. It’s behavior based, not opinion based. And you are still an asshole.

  26. Frankly, I am shocked that such a progressive bunch of people, who are normally champions of marginalized people everywhere, are now further marginalizing certain types of people. Sociopaths, narcissists and misogynists face widespread discrimination and are shunned throughout society, simply because they lack basic social skills, have no empathy and see other humans as a means to an end. Aside from all that, they are quite deserving of our respect and support.

    I really don’t understand why you people can’t just put up with the constant harassment, rape threats, death threats and insults filling up your Twitter experience. I mean, have a little empathy – they can’t help the fact that they are lacking all the qualities of a decent human being. That’s just who they are, and we should accept and embrace them, regardless.

    We are all atheists, after all, and that common bond of not believing in something that doesn’t exist should transcend all the abuse and discomfort and legitimate fear that we may feel while interacting with these people. Why should we divide the tight-knit atheist community because some atheists just happen to have no empathy and enjoy tormenting others? We need to hold together as a solid community, showing the world how wonderful atheism is, abusive sociopaths and all.

  27. Telling people how they should think and aggressively censoring any that disagree with you? Hmm, now why do those tactics sound familiar to me

    • LOL, I dunno Jack maybe you just woke up from a horrible nightmare about feminazis! Next time splash some cold water on your face and and repeat “there’s no place like home, there’s no place like home” ten times before commenting. :-D

    • Let me guess, they sound familiar because you don’t know anything else? You’ve always been force-fed your views and have no ability to think for yourself, right, Jackoff?

  28. This is intellectually reprehensible. You are blocking anyone who answers yes to both of the following questions.

    1. Does this person hold a different opinion to that of my peers?
    2. Does this person’s opinion present a threat to the collective opinion of my peers?

    Notice how theists only answer ‘yes’ to the first question. That is why you are not blocking them. In the game of ‘proving you are right’, theists are the training level you pass before getting into the game. You had so much fun on the training level. On the training level, you were the only person armed with a ‘rationality’ pistol, shooting down the unarmed theists left, right and centre.

    Then comes level 1. Sadly, level 1 provides a stark and unpleasant contrast to the training level. You’re no longer the only one holding a ‘rationality’ pistol, and low and behold, there are now opponents who wield it even better than you do. You play a few rounds, and quickly realise that in order to feel as good as you did on the training level, you’re going to have to put in a lot of practice. But, what if… yes, that’s it! We could stop them from appearing in the game, and only let the unarmed theists in. I mean, they’re still out there playing the game, kicking ass with their 1337 skillz and their ‘rationality’ pistols. That doesn’t matter though. You don’t hear them or see them.

    Annoyances? Bigots? If that really is the case, then the question really comes down to: why aren’t you blocking theists too?

    *WARNING: Do not read any further if the truth offends you*

    Because they pose no threat to you. You block those people who present a real threat to you, and you label them bigots. Again, I can not stress enough just how intellectually reprehensible this is.

    Allow me to sum up my points.

    - You only block people who pose a threat to you
    - You don’t block theists for the reason that they don’t pose a threat to you
    - You label anyone who poses a threat to you as annoyances (I agree with this – being proved wrong really is an annoyance) and bigots

    I’m expecting a beautiful rendition of Myers’ Law to follow :)

    • Your premises are incorrect since you state absolutely that anyone not agreeing with A+ gets added to the block list. Plenty of FTB ppl don’t like A+, like Avicenna. There are bloggers on Patheos who are no fans. None of these are in the list. The idea that those in there have opinions that are a “threat” is risible, check out atheistskepticdialogue.com or for the MRA opinions manboobz.com. They have nothing I’ve seen close to a logical argument, and its boring hearing the same crap over and over. I’m sure climate scientists block the potty denialists on Twitter as well, they are afraid of “THE TRUTH” man!

      As for Level1, majority just abuse and don’t even attempt an argument. Not sure how I determine even if they disagree with my peers or that their opinions could be seen as some sort of threat.

      Talking for myself and threats to my opinions, I’ve laid out the threats to my beliefs in feminism quite clearly. Refute the research on microagressions and stereotype threat and I’d have to seriously rethink my beliefs. I’ve challenged many bloggers on the other “side” to do this, provide evidence that a non-interventionist/libertarian “equity” feminism is better. They fail, every time, well actually they don’t even try. Too hard and it’s much easier to throw around memes about “professional victims” and generally be assholes than actually try any skepticism. (EDIT: Threat isn’t really the right word as I’d love to see someone attempt a debunk of that research)

      So why bother addressing your “argument” when the premises are incorrect? Although I will say ignoring people who insist on demanding attention is not intellectually reprehensible. That is all blocking does… A large number of users happily argue away with the members of the list, so it doesn’t even stop that. Nor is it trying to, just makes it harder for them to demand the attention they think they are entitled to.

      ETA: For anyone reading this the citation of “Myers Law” is a great dog whistle for a lack of rational thought. Read it and laugh at the basic lack of understanding of critical thinking and how beautifully it is setup to confirm the biases of the person citing it.
      http://greylining.com/2011/12/01/myers-law/

    • Threats are not to be tolerated, and yes, I find you intellectually reprehensible. You will be blocked.

  29. I loved this. The death throes of feminism is hilarious to watch. You people are so fanatical you can’t see how pathetic you really are.

    Thanks for adding me to the list by the way. Being attacked by you is a badge of honour. Soon your twisted ideology will be a long forgotten memory.

    *Comment Awaiting Moderation* PATHETIC.

    • Feminism, in its death throes since Pankhurst, according to misogynists… I guess in a mere 100 yrs or so it will be dead and the glorious age of the MRA movement will start, ROFL!

      • Your arrogant hypocrisy knows no bounds. Censoring and mass blocking just like the religious you claim to hate.

        The organisation of the Anti-Feminist movement online is the death note for your fascist movement. All you have now are the tactics so despised by rational and sane people.

        I will love watching your movement perish. It is coming ;)

        • How is it arrogant to laugh at you? Seemingly you are severely delusional … The “anti-feminist” movement online is a laughing stock, get back to us when they have any power to do anything but whine impotently about feminists.

          • ”How is it arrogant to laugh at you? Seemingly you are severely delusional …”

            Projecting much? Your feminism is SO STRONG you have to resort to the cowards way of defending it. We’re the laughing stock? We’re not the ones engaging in mass censorship when faced with criticism you fool.

            That’s the indefensible heart of the matter. Feminists resorting to fascism in order to try and save a dying and flawed ideology.

            The damn is breaking and you will fail. And I will laugh as you weep bitter tears.

          • Hehe “censorship”, the last refuge of the MRA with no argument :)
            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=owgqleO7JXA

          • For some reason “FeministCrybabies” decided to not post any more comments, so y’all will have to make do with reading manboobz.com to understand where xe is coming from ;-)

    • Because we are the be all and end all of feminism… (And the world is ending on July 12, 2012!)

  30. Your low character is subject of Greek Plays: using lies and your knavish trick to defame people such as thunderf00t who uncovered your tricks of attacking people who are not keeping you femenist……sorry actually matriachist happy, so that those people who are defamed by you femenist……opps sorry again I mean matriachist, will be massively blocked by those who are being tricked by you too.
    May you clowns who uses the name of equality to cover your misandry ideology and matriarchism as well as plans of making opposing opinion todisappear and even defaming them in that so called RationalWiki all recieve your just deserts.

    • Wow, Thunderf00t sure has some fanboys with compelling arguments. Nice work there Mr The Foot …

      • Wow, how subjective you matriachist are! Then, should I say that those who support your cause are all brainwashed puppy?

        • Ok then Thunderf00t’s “brainwashed puppy” … Tell me what is inaccurate on this page, which you seem to think is the result of some conspiracy against your idol -> http://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Thunderf00t

          • Well subject of Greek plays, is Crusade against feminism a objective title to for his video of criticizing Anita Sarkeesian’s unrightful reason to discredit those games? (And she had made a mistake of making a conclusion before doing the research and lots of ironical statements) A “few” examples where that may not be the case? It might be few for you( Perhaps actually for you it will never be enough even if there are more), but they the important point that he want to criticize which includes many of the Anita Sarkeesian’s mistakes

          • Are you saying “crusade against feminism” is not a fair portrayal of his activities since FTBs? His blog was 90% about FTB and feminism, videos such as “feminism is poisoning atheism” part 1/2/3/4 I believe?

            I didn’t say it was objective, I said is it incorrect? Seems you cannot find any facts that are incorrect… Where are the lies about him given you said he was “defamed” in that article. Not being objective is not defaming. So last chance, what is factually incorrect in that rational wiki post?

            BTW, nice rebuttal to TFs video on Anita Sarkeesian ->
            http://freethoughtblogs.com/amilliongods/2013/03/20/regressive-crap/

    • Not even worth responding to this dreck. My hat is off to those who ventured in that direction!

  31. Any idea or movement that needs to invent public silencing machines to prevent criticisms of the idea speaks volumes on its worth. Hey why not silence this comment too? THAT will certainly help the credibility of your ideas.

    • Public silencing machines? What would they look like, that is cool! Sounds quite steampunk … Shame its just a delusion of yours, could make quite a good art project though.

      You realise that no one is silenced when someone ignores them? The deep philosophical question of; “If a dudebro whines on about misandry and no feminist is around to hear it, does it make a sound?” has long been solved by the great invention that is the internet. They do. At length. Incoherently. We don’t want to listen to them anymore, sorry.

    • I hope google and yahoo revoke your access to their spam filters. Would show you how wrong you are.

  32. This whole blocking thing is backfiring on you guys at A+. Let all voices be heard , even ones that spout hate. The strongest arguments will always rise to the top. It’s not to late to switch directions. Otherwise, my prediction is this site will be a ghost town by 2014.

    • Cassandra is not a good fit for you Dave. The petulant voices of privileged arses like you will never be silenced, which is a reason for a lot of dark humour when you whine about “silencing” and “freeze peach”.

    • It’s backfiring, that’s why we had over 20 sheeple begging to be added yesterday so they could be blocked by all 10 of our users! lul.

  33. Big yawn. I’ve gotta go and talk to adults now. good luck with your pimples.

  34. That some people conflate “ignoring” with “silencing” is all you need to know about them. Dishonest creeps.

    Keep up the good work. :)

  35. What a bunch of pussies. Really, give up the internet and take up knitting.

  36. This is so funny. People who claim to be “rational” and “righteous” trying to censor people who have opinions they disagree with. Your movement is a joke to the truly rational people who can debate people with facts instead of resorting to bully tactics.

    • Giovanni, you are not “censored” by people choosing to ignore you. Even choosing to ignore your ideas and arguments, you are not entitled to an audience. Finally to resort to accusing us of “bullying” when the aim is to ignore is a weird concept. How many bullies did you encounter at school who just ignored you and left you alone with your friends?

    • How wrong of us to “censor” a bunch of whiny misogynists. Bad us.

  37. i was about to say that you’re a bunch of totalitarian dumb asses but after reading the comments, its already been done.
    congratulation !, you managed to turn the original atheism into something way more intolerant and totalitarian than any other religion.
    that being said, i hope you end like the nazis. since its what your movement is starting to look like.
    have a good day :)

    • We have “turned” a non-belief into something? That’s some righteous semantic alchemy right there, I’m very proud, thanks.

      Godwin to finish, always a winner for your average “free thinking skeptic” …

    • I feel the need for a disclaimer… We honestly have not only let the delusional asshole comments through…

      Now I know how the Atheist Experience feel when all their “master debater theists” turn out to be witless wankers.

    • “Original atheism”? Must be like True Scotsmen.

  38. “My, what thin skin you have!”

    “All the better to perpetuate my own victim mentality with, my dear!”

    Good on you, blockbot, for making sure that nobody leaves the Atheism+ echo chamber.

    • Do any of the goons perpetuating this victim blaming shit have even a barest inkling of how toxic it is? By labelling people “professional victims” or having a “victim mentality” you are continuing an age old misogynistic tradition that originates in religious ideas about the victim deserving their treatment. Their “just-world” view of sin being punished ended up as this cultural phenomenon of victim blaming. Let alone the layers of slut shaming added on top just for victims of sexual assault and harassment, the “jezebel” brought it on herself. Really embarrassing that atheists, let alone skeptics, continue to push these stereotypes that do so much damage.

      Educate yourself, http://everydayvictimblaming.com/, and stop it. If you cannot come up with a logical argument against ignoring people on Twitter then don’t bother.

      • There are people out there that have survived & overcome some horrific experiences, i think the point here is they OVERCAME them because they didn’t wallow in self pity. Some people see the A+ forum & it’s supporters as supporting a culture of “This happened to me now my life is ruined” which is potentially harmful. One of the reasons Ayaan Hirsi-Ali is so roundly condemned by many in the FtB/Skepchick/A+ cadre is because she exposes the lie of the professional victim meme your perpetuating. I don’t expect you to agree but i’m not frightened by what you have to say & certainly not frightened so much as to require a “tech’” solution to some bad werdz. I refuse to demean you by feeling sorry for you, i’m assuming your better than that?

        • Do you actually ascribe to the idea that scepticism is a good thing? That we should apply critical thinking skills to our beliefs to examine if there is any truth in them? Cos you make a whole lot of bogus claims in this turd of a comment.

          There are people out there that have survived & overcome some horrific experiences, i think the point here is they OVERCAME them because they didn’t wallow in self pity.

          [citation needed] … Looking through the DSM and psychiatry books I cannot find this “wallow in self pity” thing you refer to. Seems to be a line of total bullshit used to blame people for their mental illness or to victim blame people who have been raped, bullied, otherwise treated so badly they develop PTSD. The reference I can find mostly describes self pity as a normal healthy response to adversity. When it isn’t and it adversely affects a person to the point of being considered mental illness there is a link to depression and stress, unsurprisingly. So to blame someone for their mental illness and expect them to magically shake it off is again victim blaming. Never happens with physical injuries you have an illness with a physical cause and you didn’t do it to yourself, because of the stigma of mental health issues invariably someone is there to tell you to “pull yourself together”. Everything we know about mental health and psychiatry tells us this doesn’t work, yet you perpetuate this myth. They are just doing it for attention….

          You pointing to people who get over a trauma without needing years of therapy or developing PTSD is called confirmation bias. Because you are a victim blaming shitweasel this motivates you to justify your irrational / unscientific view that everyone *can* survive any trauma because *some* people have. I know someone whose cancer spontaneously remitted, I’ve always managed to shake off any depression I feel coming on and I have never been clinically depressed. All these are examples of what *I* or others managed to do, expecting everyone with a different physiology to react the same to equivalent inputs is totally irrational. That’s your position and its obvious bollocks.

          To make it clearer is Justin Griffiths someone who “wallow[s] in self pity”? You lot at the pit like to cite Greg Laden triggering his PTSD as a terrible thing to do. I could take that comment mentioning violence from Laden and laugh in his face, Justin couldn’t. Does that make me stronger than him or better somehow? No I haven’t had his experiences and even if I had to blame him for his own victimisation would be victim blaming you fricken idiot. Now I know he is justified because he got his PTSD from the military and that is apparently the only approved way of getting it… How about EllenBeth talking about being triggered by her treatment on Pharyngula? Again I would have laughed in those commenters digital faces. Wouldn’t have affected me in the slightest. Does that make her someone who “wallow[s] in self pity”? Neither of these two people seem to have “overcome [their] horrific experiences” … According to you they are weak now as there is a way to bully them that I, and presumably you, are not affected by.

          Any of this getting through? Probably not… Read up on it: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Posttraumatic_stress_disorder

          Some people see the A+ forum & it’s supporters as supporting a culture of “This happened to me now my life is ruined” which is potentially harmful.

          Peoples lives are ruined by being raped, bullied, constantly demeaned day in day out because of who they are. How does this not get through to you? Again PTSD is real, anxiety and mental health issues are created by traumatic past events. It is not those peoples fault for developing mental health issues and you are an asshole for suggesting it is.

          But lets assume you have something other than your bullshit feelings or assumptions that this is “potentially harmful” .. I note the lack of conviction there, but I’m sure when the opposite is to throw a lot of people under the bus who have “real” issues, like Justin Griffiths and his PTSD, you’ll have a citation to hand to prove this is harmful?

          P.S. Your a dick.

    • Yes, dear Russell. You are such a victim. A professional one, if I don’t say so myself…

  39. So the basic idea is destroy the first amendment and freedom of speech in general, wow that scared of new ideas and different opinions. *TSK* *TSK*

    • Yes, clearly ignoring people on Twitter will literally destroy the first amendment and freedom of speech. It works just like that.

    • The first amendment…. of the United States Constitution! Wahahaha! (You do realize this is global? We are not bound by any amendment.)

  40. Apart from scale, i see no difference between this & state sanctioned censorship to “Better protect it’s citizens” when all they really mean is they may be exposed to things we would really prefer they not see. Don’t kid yourself “Moderator” your hyperbole isn’t fooling anyone (Except maybe yourself).

    • Orly? So its not hyperbole to compare state sponsored censorship with a community block list for Twitter. Your comment stands as yet another example of the paucity of logical arguments against blocking on Twitter. Everyone moderates their own private space and this is not censorship, taking advice or suggestions from people is also not censorship. Taking that to the next level and automating that advice is still not censorship.

      That you cannot see this is amusing to us.

  41. Nice, let’s start blocking annoying christians

  42. I am sorely disappointed I am not on your list. I’ve been perma-banned by the ASH-holes, and feel you A+ lot are a bunch of cunts.

    please rectify this, post haste.

    fuck off and die,
    @melferburque

    PS – moderating forums is for pussies.

    • Sorry but pathetic wannabes are no longer added by request. I see you measure your self worth by how many groups you can feel superior to. Sorry about that, you may get over it one day.

      • says the guy running a smear campaign against half the atheist community. gotcha.

        douche.

          • that you think this kind of smarm endears you to anyone is pathetic. you’re an obvious troll. you’ve got your little sycophants, and anyone with any self-awareness at all can see you for the worthless piece of shit you are. and yet you think you’re winning.

            sad. I wouldn’t be surprised if you’re just a poe who gets his jollies winding other people up. you’re doing immense amounts of harm to the community, and for what? so you can rub one out of that limp dick of yours?

          • U still mad, bro? Need another hug … Come here you big softie!

          • “A+ lot are a bunch of cunts….fuck off and die,” then “you’re an obvious troll.”

            Bzzt…. does not compute. I mean, melfybutt even claims blockbot mod is a poe, while being so absurd I cannot distinguish them from a poe. Life is hella weird.

  43. Does this really work and does it also block the spam bots too? This could be a useful asset in my armory against the lower-quality elements of Twitter.

  44. Atheism+ website :
    “The Block Bot is a Twitter application to automatically filter out abusive users.”
    |
    leads to——>
    |
    Oolon’s (A+ propagandist) blockbot website:
    “Note for those coming here when blocked, nowhere does the bot say you are anything, abusive, an MRA, whatever”.

    @Oolon:
    Are you just afraid of potential legal consequences for labeling people as abusers, or are you just a typically dishonest feminist ?

  45. INGSOC, anyone?

    • Daft hyperbole, anyone? Anyone? Anyone? Bueller?

      Cos of course a service that people can sign up to or not and customise to their own whim (Follow or unblock anyone they want) is just like a totalitarian government!

  46. The comments on this board are hilarious. Let’s see, if people impose their oppressive ideals on me or always bombard me with information that I’m not interested in, I’m just supposed to just sit and nod and have a conversation with a group of fucktards that won’t listen to me or my pain? Basically, the naysayers are proving the purpose of a blockbot. People don’t HAVE to put up with your shit. People don’t want your two-watt “eurekas” spamming their timelines all the time. Please understand that conversations happened BEFORE many of these people were added. It’s not fascist (duh bitch, you have to be in a position of power to be fascist), it’s not some silencing technique. It’s protecting trans* people from being triggered by someone telling them they’re inhuman. It’s keeping atheists or agnostics from having to deal with your daily Bible verses. It’s to keep Black women from having to see your bigot ass refer to them as welfare queens or some shit. Fuck outta here.

  47. The person who made block bot, James Fuckingdoucheanham, should promptly take a nosedive off of the London Bridge and live at the bottom of the Thames where his pussy fascist ass belongs.

    • Still lmao at this one, was getting his man-pants in a wad about the block bot so I had a little jibe at his expense…
      https://twitter.com/ool0n/status/411049425260527616
      … Turns out he can say “refute” and “logic”, but he cannot do them … Even funnier is that when losing an argument he deploys a sock account to pop up and tell everyone what a great guy hottnix11 (himself) is and what a “hot girl” he is with. Very convincing, dude.
      https://twitter.com/ool0n/status/411235523655499776

      Still think you are missing anything being on the block bot? Naw, click the sign up button, NOW!

      [This was a public service announcement by the atheismplus.com fascism promotion dept.]

  48. You give anti-feminists more prominence in this app than sexists (the only instance of ‘sexist’ — or ‘sexism’ for that matter — is in the comments).
    The fact is a lot of feminists are sexist and I can’t help but think that this proves it, you probably don’t mention sexism in the description because the runners of this board are the female-supremacist type of feminists rather than the ‘equality for all’ kind. The type who have a hissy fit when they’re called out for how flawed their fallacy is, going on a blocking spree with this app when their hypocrisy and double standards is brought to light.

    • You think not mentioning “sexism” proves we are female supremacist sexists? Err, ok … Luckily we require a higher standard of evidence than the absence of words to add someone to the block bot. I think you’ll find anti-feminist/sexist and misogynist all overlap quite strongly if you created a Venn diagram of them. A+ does definitely not push the “female supremacist” type of feminism, whatever that is, bit of an oxymoron given feminism literally means the movement to achieve equality. You’d need to be a matriarchalist, or something, to fulfil your description, not feminist.

      Ironic that you claim we cannot stand our fallacies being pointed out and then proceed to commit one yourself. I wonder if you’ll take it well? Lets see, calling out “hypocrisy” and “double standards” is a tu quoque or call to hypocrisy fallacy. All too often anti-feminists, MRAs, feminist detractors of all types, engage in focussing on what individual feminists do, or they claim that feminist X,Y or Z is not living up to their, so called, own standards. For a start this is usually a misinterpretation or nuance free interpretation of what “their standards” are and hence meaningless. But even if they were accurate it says absolutely nothing about the truth of “their standards”… Is feminism correct? Are its theories correct? Are feminists being effective in their goal of achieving equality? None of these questions is answered by your focus on calling out “their hypocrisy and double standards”.

      Do you understand that? You need to focus on the ideology, not the people, and deconstruct that. Create a better one, if you can. The main opposition to feminism has always come from within feminism with 2nd wave, 3rd wave, radical feminism, intersectionality, etc, not from without. In fact the “opposition” outside has been the so called “Mens Rights Movement” who make the same mistake as you and “attack” by focusing on the flaws in feminists. We already know humans are flawed so this really is not very useful. If you have no valid arguments against feminism not feminists then you will be ignored. Your fallacious arse can languish in the block bot until you work it out, if ever. Cheers.

      • You’re not proving your point very well, you seem to be favouring women by arguing in support of “equality”. I can assume you don’t have a problem with misandrists and have some beef with MRAs, trivialising men’s matters like they are immune to sexism in your little world. We can see through you like a window.

        By the way, ‘feminism’ does not mean to “achieve equality”, hence the femin- prefix. What would you say if ‘masculism’ had that same definition? It is possible to pursue equality without asserting such labels, you know, just be a sensible human being.

        • Still you don’t understand the definition of feminism, I expected with Google at your fingertips you may look it up. Apparently not. Further you move the goalposts from the original comment where we were part of “female-supremacist type of feminists rather than the ‘equality for all’ kind” to an an argument that feminism, by definition, doesn’t mean to “achieve equality” … Were you embarrassed to admit your MRA credentials in the original comment? How cute! [Hint: It was obvious, don't be so coy next time.]

          Let me help you with your masculinism-feminism problem, women have less rights and power than men in our patriarchal society. Hence to achieve equality we need to “be favouring women”, as you put it. The central premise of feminism is that women should have equal opportunity to men, they don’t currently due to structural power differentials. Remove those and equality of opportunity can be achieved. That is the feminism we support, the radical notion that women are people, try saying it. Seriously. How can we favour people over people? Makes no sense, bro.

          So to answer the first bit of your comment, yes we have a problem with “misandrists”, or more accurately people prejudiced against people because they are identifying as men. Makes no sense and is irrational bigotry. However we laugh at people seriously using the term “misandry” as if it is in any way comparable to the systemic misogyny in our society, it ain’t. The only people even vaguely looking like the mythical misandrists to us are the Trans-Exclusionary Radical Feminists who seem to have a loathing of men. They are also biological essentialists so anyone “born a man”, is irredeemable in their eyes, and a “man”. They have no power to hurt people with male privilege, you will be hard pressed to find victims of theirs that identify as men. They can however hurt people at a disadvantage, that power differential that makes a mockery of misandry again, and they do, trans women are their target. All these “misandrists” are in the block bot.

          Finally, yes we have a problem with MRAs, the vast majority are rape apologising whiny assholes who seemingly cannot understand simple concepts. Fortunately they are mostly ineffective and are a laughing stock on the internet (See Manboobz.com), they achieve nothing for men and spend all their time whining about feminists. So carry on staring through that window at your straw, seems to be all MRAs are capable of, that and throwing poo at it. If they actually took the time to learn a few basics and look beyond their myopic privileged view of society they could actually do some good. Instead they have a history of failure to achieve anything productive in 40 years since Farrell spewed his original crap in the 70s up to the present day with the terrible joke that is AVfM. Of course that is probably the fault of a feminist conspiracy :-)

          Contrast that to feminism which has had a positive effect on men’s lives over those same decades. Economic empowerment of women and ensuring their reproductive rights are primarily feminist issues and have improved men’s lives immeasurably, to name only two. Nothing even vaguely comparable from the MRM.

          • women have less rights

            Citation or it never happened.

          • You are presumably talking about legal rights, however even there women do not have the same rights to bodily autonomy that men have in many 1st/2nd and 3rd world countries. As for the right to walk down the street unmolested, let alone at work or on the internet… No, women don’t have those rights in any country.

          • And there are people, of either gender, who are scared of walking down the street in fear of being stabbed or assaulted. Do they get a look in or are they brushed aside, to make way for someone with a victim complex doesn’t like being complimented via a wolf whistle?

          • Do Islamists want religious equality? No they don’t. Gender egalitarians would not use such an inclusive term for their group, if equality is what they aspire to achieve.
            Being anti-feminist isn’t discriminatory, much like being anti-SNP isn’t either. Being anti-female is as sexist just as it’s racist for being anti-Scottish, there’s a difference being against a movement and against a particular ethnicity, gender, sexuality and what have you. Everyone has their prejudices; I do and so do you, namely against anti-feminists and men who get screwed over by child custody laws (MRAs).

            What is your initial impression on females who are against the feminist movement; do they feel the wrath of the Block Bot™ or are they exempt due to their gender?
            We are living in a world where feminism will be shunted by most of both sexes and become a thing of the past, in the west anyway. You might as well be collecting the electoral roll of all western countries and get ready to add everyone on them to this oh-so elusive list, feminism is going in the way of religion.

          • “anti-feminist” is a nice useful term for people whose focus is just being against feminism, likely particular feminists, and use misogyny to attack them. I wouldn’t call Ally Fogg an anti-feminist, even though he spends a fair bit of time criticising feminists and feminism. Somehow he manages it without being a massive douche, a formula the average MRA cannot achieve. I wouldn’t call the sex workers, trans or WoC activists who criticise feminism, many of whom eschew the label “feminist”, anti-feminists either. They have valid criticisms of a feminism that is mostly white and middle class and has consistently failed sex workers, trans women and WoC.

            So anyone, male, female or other who uses misogyny to attack feminists or feminism and that is pretty much their focus and mode of attack (Not reasoned argument) then they could be labelled anti-feminists by us. They have nothing to add, fuck ‘em.

            As for having “prejudice” against anti-feminists or MRAs, well that’s just ridiculous. I hope you feel very bad for making such a daft argument. The word literally means “preconceived opinion that is not based on reason or actual experience.”, but in a feminist/SJ context is usually applied to judgements made about people for their intrinsic properties such as gender or sexual orientation. Having the opinions that make you an MRA or anti-feminist, by our definition given above, make any opinions about them very much based in reason and on actual experience. Nothing like the prejudice faced by people for being a certain colour, gender, sexual orientation etc.

            I like your final paragraph prognosticating about the end times being upon feminism, nicely tops off your rant.

          • You aren’t doing feminism any favours, seeing that you target people who are against your clique than those who are against women. That’s probably why you don’t mention sexism, you’d be thwarted by your own creation otherwise. Saying you block “misogynistic” women emphasises that point, I bet you have no problem with “misandristic” men, do you?
            You don’t like the “MRA” because they out you for the sham you really are, they threaten your bullshit cause and you don’t need to deny it either. You should grow up and rid this petty and juvenile vendetta you have against boys, did they poke fun at you on the school playground or something?

          • Jesus Fruitcake Christ. It’s as if they want feminism to be a joke. I’m starting to think that these guys are really the opposition who are trying to make other feminists look bad.

          • If someone thinks Feminist Group X makes feminism a joke, then they really don’t understand feminism. There are, as explained, transphobic, man-hating, sex worker hating, radical feminists who are roundly opposed by us for example. They roundly oppose us back! In my experience MRAs, anti-feminists and people with a cursory understanding paint feminists as a homogeneous group. The reality is very very diverse.

  49. I was wrongly identified as a racist and this was PUBLICLY posted online. This is defamation of character on both parts of The Block List and the one who put that up (@VanguardVivian). Being as this person has over 8,000 followers – this is extremely damaging to my character seeing as the information I posted – that the first slave owner in america was black – IS TRUE. Anthony Johnson was one of the first black slave owners who was also black! This is FACT and as such, NOT RACISM, as I was simply stating a point.

    PLEASE REMOVE ALL TRACES OF ME FROM YOUR SITES OR I WILL TAKE ACTION

    @KeithHam1988

    • Oh my, well this is a serious matter … Of course you did derail a conversation about racism with the totally irrelevant detail that the “first slave owner was black”. No one was asserting that PoC (People of colour) cannot be involved in racist systems, so this was a non sequitur. White people popping up with non sequiturs to minimise and deflect conversations about racism are likely to be assumed to be racist. Also it’s interesting how many mental loops you need to jump through to justify that a man owned as property in the US was the “First” US slave owner himself, of course it was called something different then, so totally different! Now if Anthony Johnson had gathered lily white people and owned them as property for a few hundred years and treated them no better than cattle, then you may have had a point. So we can only assume you are either racist or stupid… Wait! Both possibilities exist! Apologies for slighting you again.

      Anyway, back to the serious matter of your impending legal action. We really cannot know if you are definitely not a racist, you could be a local Klan leader for all we know! So have a go at this Harvard test and let us know what results you get … https://implicit.harvard.edu/implicit/canada/takeatest.html (Click “I wish to proceed”, and choose the “Race” test. Of course if you want to do the gender / sexuality tests we’ll happily add those results to the report on you!)

      We await your results with excitement and trepidation!

      • Why would I take a test to prove anything. I am not racist, I grew up around people of all races -I’m Canadian fro crying out loud and I attend church at that. I am greatly offended by the fact that I have been labeled as a racist for unjust reasons. You don’t have the right to judge me and I don’t have the right to judge you. Simple fact is that you have defamed my character for the simple reason that I stated a fact that I thought to be interesting – not even by a person who is African-American but instead a WHITE person. If you aren’t of that race, what right do you have to say what I said was offensive?

        Couldn’t I just as well say that she was being racist towards Whites and Europeans?

        • So much hilariously wrong about this comment … Will let it stand on it’s own, except to say why yes Keith you *could* say “she” (You mean they, VanguardVivian is “they/them”) were being racist towards Whites and Europeans. I’m guessing they wouldn’t be threatening libel action for you expressing your protected right to free speech, amazingly uninformed speech direct from your backside, but still free…

      • Either way, I’ve already contacted a lawyer.

        • LMAO!

          Please, please, please let us know how that goes … (You won’t, but it would be great to be a fly on that wall!)

          ETA: The irony is that if you found a lawyer so rapacious that they actually took your money … You would be being racist! Because yes, it would be racist to sue people for calling others racist. I wonder if you can work out why… Guessing not. So here are some exhibits for you to peruse. We have experience with people threatening libel and more than a little legal advice from friends and libel experts who stomp on scumbags who try and use the law to infringe on free speech, like yourself.
          http://www.oolon.co.uk/?p=411
          http://www.oolon.co.uk/?p=488
          http://www.oolon.co.uk/?p=497

  50. Censorship bot is more like it, the only people using this are rad femminst who can’t handle the opinions of others.

  51. Thank god for Block Bot. Now I will never have to be exposed to wrong think or comments that interfere with my carefully crafted threat narrative. Block Bot should be implemented on the entire World Web Wide. And in real life too if at all possible.

    • Better get onto those school boards, why are they not teaching the controversy. For that matter those darn climate scientists don’t appreciate diversity of opinion or “wrong think” either, damn them all! Why won’t everyone listen to MEEE!! … Oh, I mean, why won’t people listen to opinions that just differ from theirs, ahem. Nothing to see here, move along.

  52. if you require something like this then your a person who cant handle real life and look at a point of view that isnt your own and laff at and ignore it or think on it and dismiss it and let people say whatever they want about you or whatever. people who think youtube is a private area then why are your comments and videos that people view in a public setting when not set to private. but i do understand getting something like this for children.

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