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Internet Users Have Been Defamed by the Anti-Defamation League

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posted on Apr, 26 2010 @ 12:13 PM
In a recent report authored by the Anti-Defamation League, Internet users everywhere who express opinions that are highly critical of "government" have been viciously defamed as "extremists," "terrorists," and worse. The report ignores reality, context, and history in an effort to fabricate new levels of fear and public apprehension about public discourse that falls well within the hard-fought confines of free speech.

The copyrighted (2010, ADL) report, Violent Voices: Anti-Government Extremism Takes on New Intensity is authored by the "ADL Center on Extremism" and contains no other citation of the person or persons involved in creating this hit-piece on the expression of intense political opinion online. The "report" should be viewed by all those who express their opinions on the Internet as an overt effort to create unease among your ranks, with the ultimate aim of demonizing your free expression.

The "report" contains four fatal flaws throughout the entire eighteen pages of poorly researched and sensationalized content.

Context: Misrepresentation of Online Commentary

The report includes brief, out-of-context, snippets from three members of ATS. A casual look at the actual postings and opinions of those members provides a significantly different opinion than the expressions characterized by the report.

A brief sampling of several other comment snippets used in the report provides a similar result: nearly every comment used in the report is out of context and expresses opinions not compatible with the "findings" of the ADL report. In fact, some of the commentary snippets used in the report are simply people placing current events in historical context, and not advocating violence in any way.

Context: History

Deep disaffection, by ordinary people, over the operations of this nation's government goes all the way back to the colonial government of the revolutionary war. At certain times in history, that disaffection becomes more acute as events of the day inspire anger and feelings of despair. We are currently experiencing one of those points in history. As a result of a long-list of grievances, from economic to border security, the population is increasingly feeling their government is letting them down.

Throughout history, this nation has experienced a broad range of political commentary that ranges from extreme anger over the operations of the government, to calls for "stringing them all up" in reference to the politicians believed to be responsible for the failures of government. Indeed, there are hundreds of examples of political cartoonists depicting violence against politicians in various forms, most of which have been published in mainstream newspapers and magazines.

And, lest we forget, this nation was founded on the intense rhetoric of violence focused on the British monarchy. We are a nation forged of strong opinions by people who (until now) have not been concerned about the repercussions of such intense sentiments and editorialization.

Context: The Internet

The report completely ignores the evolution of the online culture, that of a new-found bravado associated with posting opinions anonymously. Huge segments of the population are participating in online discussions in a manner in which they may not behave during live person to person exchanges. Several academic studies from credentialed universities and sources have concluded that the higher-degree of intensity of online commentary is nothing more than braggadocio for the purpose of personal entertainment. And more importantly, those blustering opinions should not be given the same credibility or importance as published opinions that utilize one's actual name.

Vacuum: No Citation or Bibliography

The omission of source citations in any report that attempts to analyze published opinion is not just rare, it's unprecedented. This exclusion of any means whereby the reader may confirm the findings of the report is not only suspect, it renders it little more than a work of sensationalist fiction.

Of course, given current events, we can conclude that the negligence is not the accidental act of an inexperienced researcher, it's the decisive act of someone with an agenda. That agenda is broad-based libel focused on people who take to the Internet to express their disaffection with the government.

Certainly, as intelligent and passionate people finding fault with our government, we must take care not to use words that may inspire violence. Such should be the nature of we who seek meaningful change instead of being firebrands for angry action. However, this report from the ADL uses out of context quotes with no confirming citation to categorize these types of people, and certain types of web sites, as dangerous. The conclusions are not just wrong, they're an assault on the fabric of free expression and the right of people to assemble and discuss government grievances.

No person who expresses their political opinion online should accept the findings in this report.

The report is much more dangerous to the founding principals of this nation than any of the inflammatory commentary the authors selected.

Internet users, you have been defamed by the Anti-Defamation League.

posted on Apr, 26 2010 @ 12:26 PM
reply to post by SkepticOverlord

And with that said , this is where the gavel strikes the block in rapid succession and the judge shouts 'ORDER in the COURT' !

Good job SO .

posted on Apr, 26 2010 @ 12:29 PM
I simply couldn't believe seeing ATS members in this report.

I was shocked and appalled at this blatant agenda setting. It seems our free speech and our little conspiracy haven here might be under threat.

What is the ADL thinking?

posted on Apr, 26 2010 @ 12:31 PM

Wake up call!

posted on Apr, 26 2010 @ 12:33 PM
Wow nice post SO. Kind of a surprise that you are making this thread today.

I agree though. I think that judging by how sloppy the report was done, that the people working at the ADL need to go back to school at the very least.

But then again, I know they messed it up on purpose, so they could push their absurd agenda forward.

Their agenda seems to be something like this : No one is allowed to have an opinion except the ADL and those who are on it's side.

That is what it sounds like to me at least. In a subtle and sneaky way.

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posted on Apr, 26 2010 @ 12:33 PM
reply to post by belial259

We are "shocked and appalled" as well. Make no mistake, this will not stand as long as there is ANYTHING we can do about it. So far the ADL has ignored our attempts at dealing with this the easy way.

I've called them and left a voice mail, if we don't hear back today we will take it to the next level.

Sad really, I've always had a great deal of respect for the ADL and have donated to them in the past. They seem to have lost their mission over the last few years.


posted on Apr, 26 2010 @ 12:35 PM
reply to post by SkepticOverlord

Didn't Rockerfeller say that the internet is a danger to the planet or something??
Seeing these lowball tactics comes as no surprize after what he said.

It is against the T&C to incite illegal activities and for me that should say it all.
Are we not allowed to question our governments actions without some kind of spin being put on us??

For me it is just another slimeball tactic to make internet users and anyone who questions what our governments are doing look bad.

You are exactly right...this is against what your forefathers had in mind and they would be rolling in thier graves if they were here today.

posted on Apr, 26 2010 @ 12:37 PM
I don't blame SkepticOverlord for this thread if i was a site owner of an impressive site like this i would be angry and scared of those who try to make my site look 'evil'.

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posted on Apr, 26 2010 @ 12:38 PM
reply to post by SkepticOverlord

The INTERNET is the tool that scares the Hell out of People in Power.

It enables us to uncover their Lies , and SPREAD our findings to other

No longer are MSM Stories taken at Face Value, and People with a
conscience can act as Whistleblowers to a audience who won't belittle
them, but will listen, and research, and compare.

[edit on 26-4-2010 by Sean48]

posted on Apr, 26 2010 @ 12:40 PM
Great post, SO.

Please keep us updated on the progress of your case.

posted on Apr, 26 2010 @ 12:42 PM
reply to post by SkepticOverlord

I'm trying hard to join the ranks of EEEEEVIL DOERS with my sig!

The ADL is a disgrace to all Jews. Period. I guess you become what you hate?

God help me then! I may end up an ADL'er

posted on Apr, 26 2010 @ 12:42 PM
Are any of you surprised?

The Domestic Terrorist is the new fear in America. They've been playing on it all year and it will certainly continue and most likely conclude with some militia attack or something similar to 9/11, to be blamed on American Patriots.

Kind of ironic this is coming from the ADL.

No sources either. Is anybody calling them out on this? I haven't seen any MSM coverage of the report, although I don't watch much of it anyway.


posted on Apr, 26 2010 @ 12:43 PM
I think as SO pointed out, the lack of legit citations or bibliography is a major red flag. It means "not a legit report".

When I was in College, sourcing your references was the MOST IMPORTANT THING OF ALL!!!!

If you don't do it, you FAIL your courses.

It was the central component of getting anywhere at the University.

It is probably the most important aspect of academia bar none. We need sources...

+1 more 
posted on Apr, 26 2010 @ 12:44 PM
I would love to know if there is any evidence of a deep relationship between Cass Sunstein and the ADL. Reading this report certainly brings Mr. Sunstein's ideas to mind.


posted on Apr, 26 2010 @ 12:46 PM

Originally posted by jonnyc55
I don't blame SkepticOverlord for this thread if i was a site owner of an impressive site like this i would be angry and scared of those who try to make my site look 'evil'.

I think SkepticOverlords reaction to this is well thought out and very mature. It's certainly better than Alex Jones reaction, which involved him foaming at the mouth about using his lawyers and saying something about taking a month off to go to a cabin in the woods.

Perhaps SkepticOverlord could liaise with these other parties mentioned by this report from the ADL, like Jones and combine their efforts against this slanderous piece by the ADL.

posted on Apr, 26 2010 @ 12:48 PM
What scares me the most is that...there are so many ignorant people that will just take EVERYTHING at face value.

The internet can be a tool just as much as it can be a weapon.

Thing is, if the government starts taking action and somehow enacting a law on censorship (Wouldn't exactly be too hard if there's enough money in it) then we're screwed.

We already have a balls hard time enough trying to decide on what's real and what's not. What's true and what's false. Just take a look around on several topics and the bickering and indecisiveness is ridiculous.

And this is WITH the internet with answers out there. Imagine what happens when they take this away...and even worse target us one by one.

With probably the majority of people not thinking for themselves and just listening to the media and claiming it's automatically true/real because it's on TV, it's going to be few vs many.

Hopefully, while we have this luxury of mass communication with minor censorship, we use it to the best of our abilities.

And by the best of our abilities I don't mean constantly trying to be right, but by building this community as strongly as possible and getting as many people into this community as possible.

Deny Ignorance.

posted on Apr, 26 2010 @ 12:49 PM
Its good to see you guys picked up on this. ADL is a great resource to see what the next big attack on our freedoms will be. I like the idea of ADL, just not the implementation.

Edit: What bothers me is that they don't see more of us as a threat. They need to be more afraid of us. We need to up the level of intelligent discussion of real topics, remain advocates of nonviolence, and question the very premise that these ADL worms thrive upon. We need the Deny Ignorance to get to 11.

[edit on 26-4-2010 by DINSTAAR]

posted on Apr, 26 2010 @ 12:49 PM
I bet the joe stack incident sparked this report. Honestly though, if you take a look at that specific example, it goes to show that these "extremists" MAY be dangerous after all.

posted on Apr, 26 2010 @ 12:50 PM
This is ridiculous, absolutely ridiculous.
It's disgusting, we've been blatantly profiled.

But...despite all of that, is that truly going to stop us from speaking our minds?
I think not.

Sean48, I agree, the Internet has brought the world together in one place to write, read, and discuss anything.
And that keeps TPTB up at night.


posted on Apr, 26 2010 @ 12:54 PM
66 flags already and barely half a page of replies.

I wish I could start a thread that would have such a uber response.

I know I can't nor will ever be able to though. I simply have no popularity at all around here. Nor do I have any idea how to gain it. Call me socially inept I guess.

Hell I could probably post video of Bush meeting with aliens or something like that, and it still would not get this kind of immediate response from the ATS community.

Just saying, it is very impressive how far this thread has gone already.

By the end of the day there will be like 250-300 flags...
I envy your "magic" SO....

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