Who do you think, if anyone, should control online content and how?

It’s a curious thing about freedom, and policing and moderation, it seems the balance is very difficult to get right. Too strict a patriachical hand and cries of “censorship” are heard. Too lax a hand and cries of “perverts” are heard.  This is of course a huge topic, especially for naturists, touching as it does on freedom of personal expression, my opinion as opposed to your opinion, social morality, online conduct and so forth.

Take for instance the Naktiv site, built originally to provide a safe place for people to post and share their naturist and non-sexual naked content because Faceache was and still is such a haven of puritan censorship. We used to have a team of moderators to “watch the content”, and the amount of arguments between the moderators as to what was deemed “suitable content” for the Naktiv site was extraordinary. You’d think it’d be easy, everyone would agree, and we’d be able to ban the porno accounts and keep the naturist content. No, no, no, political correctness comes into every decision. Is the moderator being anti-gay, anti-male, anti-female, anti-trans…? Is the membership anti-trans, anti-… well, you get the idea. Never was a mill pond more disturbed than by the raging fervour of the righteous moderator.

The latest furor over Tumblr banning all nudity, and following the likes of Faceache, Flickr et al, is another in a long line of major social media networks which remove naturists and the free-to-be-naked contingent from mainstream media. MeWe which is everyone’s current favourite will probably follow suit in it’s own sweet time, when it’s big enough to be noticed by the puritan corporate fist.

At the Naktiv site, we have moved on to a more egalitarian moderation model. Every site member has the facility to report every other member and their content for being “unsuitable”, if necessary. Wait, unsuitable for whom/what/why? Well, the Naktiv site has a Mission Statement and a set of Rules, which of course everyone has read, and agreed to, when they signed up, it’s part of the process. If your posted content runs foul of the latter, then you run the risk of the content being flagged (reported), perhaps removed and perhaps having your account suspended. Mostly this strikes fear into spread-legs waggling-cock brigade, and it’s not really very complicated. Still, you’d be surprised at how many outraged responses the site receives from people who have been called out for posting inappropriate content (which is clearly defined in the fairly short page of Rules). Which approach is the better, do you think, what is the solution for online social media networks like Naktiv who explicitly include naturists in their remit? How should we deal with offenders? Should it be a free-for-all, anyone can post anything, or should there be some kind of filtering in-place, tailored to the community?

The question remains: who do you think, if anyone, should control online content and how?

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