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What's going on with Epik and Rob Monster?

Located in Reviews started by MapleDots, Mar 20, 2019.

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  1. TCK

    TCK NameOptions.com VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    @Ghodeous

    Very interesting points you raise. I usually don't read long-winded posts. But I read yours in its entirety. What are your thoughts on the following, and anyone else can give their feedback too. (And sorry it is long.)

    There is no such thing as absolute freedom. You just have to walk off a cliff to know that's true. We are all bound by laws placed there for our benefit by our creator. Natural laws, such as gravity and oxygen. But also laws surrounding conduct and our relationships and codependency on others.

    When it comes to natural laws, human lawmakers don't need to create legal statutes on specific application of or punishment for breaking such laws (except maybe for speeding). Everyone knows that if we jump off a tall building, or an airplane without a parachute, or go deep-sea diving without proper gear, we will die.

    Other laws surrounding the unalienable rights of every human, unfortunately human authorities had to step in and clarify some things. Things such as love of neighbor (i.e. the Good Samaritan law), killing or injuring of fellowman, what constitutes accessory to murder, levels of murder (1st, 2nd, 3rd degrees, etc). I am not a lawyer so I write as a layman.

    And it seems from history, that new laws are created as a reaction rather than prevention. And in democratic societies it is a painfully slow process for obvious reasons.

    But the more people try to push laws to their limits, try to test what the red line is, more new laws are created as a reaction. The problem, IMO, with human lawmakers is the danger of overreaching. The more laws that overreach, the more oppressive it becomes for businesses and entrepreneurs. This is where the topic of online freedom of speech comes in and general laws affecting online business and conduct.

    When a CEO of an online company (whether it is Rob of Epik or someone else) says that he's ok with free (actually hate) speech, as long as no US law is broken, this, to me, is a scary position to take given the climate we are in today. When social networks and search engines are under a microscope. When lawmakers are rolling up their sleeves to see what new Internet laws to enact.

    By encouraging lawmakers to create more laws along the lines of free speech is a dangerous road to go down. Do we really want more laws to control online conduct. Laws that could impact even businesses, that can be misused to sue an entrepreneur or small business for a misconstrued attack, or simply to get some easy money?

    In the US, like Canada and the UK, there are many laws never applied until someone decides to sue. Do we really want to be under that cloud?

    Rob says that he has a legal team ready to respond in such situations. Thanks Rob, but what about the rest of us?
     
    Last edited: Aug 22, 2019
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  2. frank-germany

    frank-germany domainer since 2001 / musician Gold Account VIP

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    what I find difficult to tolerate

    is the fact that someone uses the so-called "tolerance" of hate speech
    to create buzz to grow the company
     
  3. Rob Monster

    Rob Monster CEO, Epik Epik.com Staff PRO Gold Account VIP

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    Frank -- just keep in mind that I did not start this thread. I became highly visible on NamePros in part because of the need to defuse defamatory disinfo being propagated by subversive people who were hoping Epik would go away. All they did was make Epik stronger. A lot stronger.
     
  4. Cal2

    Cal2 Established Member

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  5. Rob Monster

    Rob Monster CEO, Epik Epik.com Staff PRO Gold Account VIP

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    Useful article.

    The academicians are finally waking up -- if you try and take out all of Gab, or all of 8Chan, you simple embolden those who feel like they were wrongly judged. They re-tool and return resiliently and defiantly. It is much better to work with those communities to implement and enforce reasonable ToS. You don't need a Ph.D to figure this out.
     
  6. Internet.Domains

    Internet.Domains Top Member VIP

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    The term "reasonable" is really important. Very often ToS are NOT written in a reasonable manner. The ToS of many companies are written using language that not only is hard to understand, but language that can be twisted and turned. We see that alot in technology such as Facebook and Google.
     
  7. Rob Monster

    Rob Monster CEO, Epik Epik.com Staff PRO Gold Account VIP

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    You can read the Terms of Service and Acceptable Use Policy. Alternatively, you can simply observe if their actions display a disdain for law-abiding contributors with competing narratives.

    Earlier today I encountered a supplier enforcing an action against a customer for violation of AUP when the AUP was not even violated. The reason is because the "My way or the highway" crowd keeps moving and expanding the highway. :)
     
  8. Ghodeous

    Ghodeous Established Member

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    Ummmm @TCK You raise some serious questions and observations that deserve serious conteplation. I am going to ask you for a day or 2 to get back to you on this one. Meanwhile, you all are welcome to chip away on this one. Its going to take a board or a bench.
     
  9. Ghodeous

    Ghodeous Established Member

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    Point taken. Maybe we can all talk sometime in the future on something constructive like the online bill of rights
     
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2019
  10. TCK

    TCK NameOptions.com VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    @Rob Monster

    Thank you for mentioning DN Playbook and giving me the opportunity to offer some clarity.

    DN Playbook is not intended to be a dedicated news resource for the domaining industry. However, I personally feel there is too little accountability in this industry. Too many people inside and outside domaining were hurt by industry players that were propped up through accolades from popular bloggers and other vocal domainers that in turn used their popularity to sell, essentially, what turned out to be false promises. People trusted the cover stories, interviews, and testimonials. Only to be left in the ditch.

    The main purpose of DN Playbook is to publish successful domain strategies for investors and businesses. Part of this goal is also to publish curated news and, occasionally, original investigative reporting, as it pertains to the domain industry. But the latter is a very small part of the site. One day, perhaps DN Playbook will be a downloadable extensive resource for selling domains and making recurring revenue.

    Now, when it comes to the reporting of your's and Epik's roles in the scandals earlier this year, I would strongly push against your accusations of judging, condemning, lacking context, no direct inquiry, being a propagandist, and lacking journalistic skills.

    First, you will recall that we, you and I, did indeed speak on the phone at length. Albeit after the first piece was published on DN Playbook, but we had a direct conversation that was very cordial and professional. However, at the end we failed to convince each other.

    Regarding your charge of "very little context", I will have to strongly disagree as well. Any reader will be able to notice quite a number of external references, screenshots, and links as supportive material. Even in the second story.

    I would invite any person to visit DNPlaybook.com and read the stories you are referring to and see whether what I mention above is not what it is.
     
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2019
  11. Rob Monster

    Rob Monster CEO, Epik Epik.com Staff PRO Gold Account VIP

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    Thanks but I still call your blog propaganda.

    The tone is judgmental and decidedly supportive of censorship and generally dismissive of Epik's significant and ongoing contributions to the domain industry as well as the need for a balanced approach to free speech.

    Instead, when it comes to Epik, you choose sensational titles that use terms like "brazen hypocrisy", "hate" and "scandal". Maybe a tad judgmental? You could go write for HuffPo or Vice.com. Lots of Canadians work there too.

    Thankfully there is free speech which allows people to evaluate all sides of the story. Those with the mental capacity to do it, can conclude as they like. Those with the stomach can also elect to be declarative about what they conclude and why.

    Our business is surely not suffering and for the moment free speech does still reign on the public Internet, though that job is getting harder in part because people are being brainwashed and manipulated into welcoming their imprisonment.

     
  12. TCK

    TCK NameOptions.com VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    Facts are what allow people to evaluate the veracity of any given story. Free speech, on the other hand, allows for a vast array of differing opinions. You have the right to your own opinion but you don't have the right to your own facts.
     
  13. Rob Monster

    Rob Monster CEO, Epik Epik.com Staff PRO Gold Account VIP

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    Truth is absolute. Unfortunately, too much truth has been concealed. You can either wake up to that, or you can choose to be (1) blissfully ignorant, or (2) willfully complicit.

    My challenge to anyone that puts forth a competing narrative versus the official narrative is that they should also bring incontrovertible proof. Those who don't get ignored.

    Now, if you will excuse me, I have a cute wife whose feet need massaging after a busy week of doctoring!
     
  14. TCK

    TCK NameOptions.com VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    How do you differentiate (or do you) between truth, fact, and free speech? Do you think that being fed unsubstantiated speech ad infinitum will lead to the truth? Or do you think there is a lot more work involved at getting to the truth than just listening to other voices? I take the stance that one needs to do their homework if they really want the truth. Along those lines, you have not addressed any statement as being incorrect here.

    TMI
     
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2019
  15. Rob Monster

    Rob Monster CEO, Epik Epik.com Staff PRO Gold Account VIP

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    All work and no play would make Rob a dull boy.

    Besides, for 56 years young, you have to admit that she is still an all-natural cutie as you can see from a recent photo while cruising among Greek islands. Yes, I know, I am not aging as well. Fortunately she still thinks I am a nice guy, even if you think otherwise.

    [​IMG]

    Hugs Bro.
     
  16. TCK

    TCK NameOptions.com VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    Still judgemental. So Rob Monster. So not surprised. Go to bed already.
     
  17. Rob Monster

    Rob Monster CEO, Epik Epik.com Staff PRO Gold Account VIP

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    I appreciate fellow registrar CEO @easyDNS because he is a smart pragmatist and because he has held the line on lawful free speech along with a very short list of capable registrars that have industrial strength technology and direct accreditations.

    One of the EasyDNS clients is Zerohedge, which is known for publishing anti-establishment articles that have a decidedly Libertarian slant. The comment streams are often politically incorrect. Some times they are downright racist.

    Here is an example today:

    https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2019-08-24/us-becoming-third-world-nation

    This is a good example of a site that I believe does deserve to exist but also needs some basic standard of moderation. I have no ideas about the moderation policies there but I think there are more "Edgelord" personas holding court there these days.

    They broke a story on Friday about the push to make a one-world crypto currency.

    https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2019...boes-mark-carney-urges-replacing-dollar-libra

    As the article notes, this is the active/sitting president of the Bank of England commenting speculatively in the midst of policy-makers and policy-watchers gathered at an annual summit in Jackson Hole Wyoming.

    The WSJ did cover it too:

    https://www.wsj.com/articles/boes-carney-floats-idea-of-new-virtual-reserve-currency-11566586800

    However, the article is behind a paywall and there is no color commentary.

    The challenge of course is that you have to sift through the garbage. For some people that is a worthwhile endeavor. Others just want to throw the baby out with the bathwater!
     
  18. Ghodeous

    Ghodeous Established Member

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    @TCK
    I’d like to convince you of the need for regulations by making an argument herein.


    In the symbolic narrative of how the world began, there is a story of man from the beginning. We are told that man was created in the image of God (Genesis 1:26–31 and Genesis 2:7-15,).


    Untested, he was given dominion over all living things. No sooner than man multiplied to variety, had he broken the first and only rule. The rule, we are told, was “you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil” (Genesis 2-16-17) But he did eat from the tree anyway. (Genesis 3:6).


    The point I am going to make, from a primitive point of view, is that, if the story of creation is somehow historically true, then I am inclined to think, that original man (I use man to include woman), the one who disobeyed his creator, the creator that gave him all the sustenance to prosper, was fallible in the beginning.

    His creator’s naive belief in “the goodness of all that he had created” (Genesis 1:31) afforded man undeserved power and influence that it didn’t take him long to offend.

    Today’s man is even worse.

    Today’s man’s needs are beyond just feeding and flourishing. Even with plenty, he steals, pillages species to extension in the name of trade and sport, amasses weapons of mass destruction and builds walls. But that same man, is capable of doing good. We see everyday acts of evil and everyday acts of kindness. I am using the Judaic Christian argument because of your mention of such and we can all agree that "natural law" eminates from such traditons.

    I think, in our daily interactions, it is of utmost importance to have rules, agreed upon; such as in the case of agreements or codified, such as is case for laws for the purpose of perfecting the exercise of living alongside one another harmoniously.

    I think too, that the exaggerated dominion of man over EVERYthing must be demarcated by rules. Rules insure that arbitrary interpretations of what is wrong and right is avoided. Rules define absolute standards expected of all reasonable people.

    Without rules, we risk falling into lawlessness, victimization, impunity, anarchy and chaos.

    As we evolve new technologies and new methods of doing things, too often, sources of discord appear. The laws themselves being slow fail us. We end up needing new ones.

    It is the reason why we expect our legislators (the people we gave the power to enact rules) and those in position of trust and of power to act. The only way they can act, in a democracy is to have new rules for the purpose, again to prevent an environment of lawlessness, victimization, impunity, anarchy and chaos.

    As long as the rules are vigorously debated, agreed upon, accepted by reasonable persons, enacted and enforced with zeal and blindness, they make for Just (justice) regulations.

    Trusting man to do the right thing as was in the beginning is an invitation for him to do what is right, only for himself. We see this come true when we “deregulate” and water bodies end up polluted. We also see this when financial institutions come up with creative ways to screw us. You can see this too in the unregulated or minimally regulated economy of gTLD’s. Protracted, predatory price changes are common with ZERO protection for end users.

    We also see this in societies where strong men (dictators) and enforce arbitrary rules.

    I think that society must be organized in order and its in only under a democratic and regulated environment that we can achieve just order. The kind of order that applies to kings, legends, presidents and everyday man.

    So no there is no such a thing as “too much regulations” as long as the regulations where informed by necessity and where vigorously debated, agreed upon, enacted and enforced with zeal and blindness.

    Think about it
     
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2019
  19. frank-germany

    frank-germany domainer since 2001 / musician Gold Account VIP

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    don't forget your "if"

    webcams was not watching
    neither were any reporters
     
  20. oldtimer

    oldtimer Do some good for humanity and the environment VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    Common sense based on logic and compassion and certain Universal rights and values is what guides my opinion and judgment.

    Free Speech is needed to empower people, but common sense also tells us that while it's okay to believe in harmless things such as fake moon landing or a flat earth or even believing that there are aliens in area 51, but crossing the line into promoting or engaging in hate and violence should not be accepted as a norm for people who want to advocate for free speech. While a person of faith who wants to be a force for good can get involved with any extremist group in order to try to make them repent from their ways, but it's important to not lose track of the fact that you are there to change their ways and not the other way around, your faith should be strong enough as to not to give in to any extremist ideologies. IMO

    Testing Edit Option
     
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2019
  21. Ghodeous

    Ghodeous Established Member

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    One has to believe without question. Faith. And yet everything can be questioned.
     
  22. Ghodeous

    Ghodeous Established Member

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    I think it is possible to be a strong believer in free speech but also believe in a safe, welcoming and accomodating online space for everyone. The trick is figuring out what goes way outta line. Speech for the sake of controversy is okay and dissent should be welcomed but incitement, violent extremism and anarchy should give us all cause to worry if free speech is intended to work that way.
     
  23. Cal2

    Cal2 Established Member

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    From the latest blog post from Seth Godin, on shunning:

    "Shunning is a powerful tool, it is a sanction that society uses to maintain norms. But it’s an absolute tool, a final resort.

    It’s possible to connect with people without endorsing their worst actions. In fact, the best way to undo negative actions may be to engage with people to persuade them that there’s a different way forward."

    Does anyone have a 'better best way' to try and undo hate talk and any resulting behaviour from it? One that actually works?

    His post: https://seths.blog/2019/08/the-shunning/
     
  24. oldtimer

    oldtimer Do some good for humanity and the environment VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    We need to get to the root cause of hate and violence that is being promoted and carried out by certain groups. As Rob has already mentioned it might make the situation worse if people are silenced and censored in expressing their grievances and point of views. We have to figure out why there are extremist groups in the first place and the fact that we want to put a stop to some of their tactics and activities that are considered antisocial or inhumane should not mean that their voice should be silenced completely. After all there are many other people in the society that also engage in antisocial and inhumane behavior, but we tolerate their actions and in some cases even employ them to do our bidding as our interest and agendas require. As I have said before I like to hear all sides to the story absent hate and violence. IMO
     
  25. Rob Monster

    Rob Monster CEO, Epik Epik.com Staff PRO Gold Account VIP

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    Thanks @Ghodeous @Cal2 and @oldtimer for the weekend commentary.

    These latest comments highlight the delicate balance of censorship, shunning and isolating those with competing narratives versus the alternative of defusing, engaging and moderating these competing narratives. The former worked for a while, but it also has prompted a counter-revolution on the digital playing field.

    As for what is acceptable behavior online, we can likely agree that vvigilante justice without due process vis-a-vis established law is not something to empower. There is a thick line there that I think rational people would likely embrace. The acid test for me is what is the call to action.

    For example, and as stated a few times in this thread, I have no issue with empowering the search for truth. This act is harmless because I believe the end of that journey is love, not just for your self and your family, but for all of humanity. The Bible says to love your enemy and to seek peace with everyone to the extent possible.

    On the other hand, I have a big problem with those who would advocate for imposing their views through violence.The people who choose generic labels to direct indiscriminate hate towards entire groups without capacity for respecting the rights of each individual to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, are imposing their will.

    However, the root issue we are running into in the Digital Age is actually not about HATE. That is the air cover. The real issue is that the truism that "the pen mightier than the sword" is proving more valid than ever. A viral message with incontrovertible evidence that changes minds is now as potent as any military ordinance known to man.

    The people who think this debate is actually about containing isolated nutcases are not grasping what is truly at stake. The real debate is not about preventing more Columbines. The real debate is about restoring boundaries around acceptable attitudes and beliefs and about restricting the ability to ask questions and seek answers.

    Some people might find this idea shocking. However, if you were paying attention, tthe Bible told you this day was coming about 2600 years ago:

    upload_2019-8-25_9-36-37.png

    I personally don't see the attempt to turn the world back to some kind of New Dark Ages as panning out. There are simply too many people who have now had a potent taste of the vast amount of information that have been held in private silos for a very long time. There really is no going back.

    So, if folks want to work together to identify and root out actual psychopaths whose intentions are violent, count me in for that. However, if folks actually have a subversive agenda to burn the books, so to speak, you can count on some fairly vigorous resistance from a lot of very intelligent and fearless people.
     

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