Facebook’s hypocrisy when it comes to the word “dyke”.

July 6, 2017

There’s a story on ABC News about Facebook not coping with the word “dyke”:

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-07-06/facebook-banning-algorithims-block-lesbians-from-using-dyke/8676284

There’s a page on Facebook called “Dykes on Bikes Melbourne“.

If you point out to Facebook that this page has the word Dyke in it, you’ll be in breach of the Facebook Community Standards:

Dykes on Bikes Melbourne

which will result in a block on posting for a 30-day period:

30 day ban

Seems more than a little hypocritical to allow the word “dyke” in a page on Facebook but not let people talk about it.


Facebook playing the man, not the ball.

June 17, 2016

Last night Facebook slapped another 30-day ban on my account for sharing this photo of a graffiti’d bill-board of Jason Ball, candidate for the Australian Greens in the Melbourne seat of Higgins.

 

I have been advised to contact Facebook’s PR agency N2N in Sydney to resolve this matter:

N2N

So I sent them an email and await their reply:

From: Michael Barnett
Date: 17 June 2016 at 10:50
Subject: Fwd: Facebook repeatedly banning my account for 30-day periods
To: facebook@n2n.com.au
Cc: …

Hi Jack,
Thank you for taking my call.
Below is the email I sent to your main email address.
As I said on the phone, I run the Facebook group “Proud to be a Second-Class Australian“, that I started in 2009. This group has an immediate reach of over 3,000 people, all keen equality advocates, including a range of media contacts and other high-profile community members.
I have documented two of my previous Facebook bans here:
As you can see, there is no logic for the bans on my account given the content posted.
I can be contacted on ….
I hope you can assist in a prompt resolution of this unpleasant matter.
Regards,
Michael.

———- Forwarded message ———-
From: Michael Barnett
Date: 17 June 2016 at 10:30
Subject: Facebook repeatedly banning my account for 30-day periods
To: info@n2n.com.au
Cc: …

Dear N2N,

I write to you as a well-known activist in the LGBTIQ community in Australia.
I have just received a 30-day ban from Facebook for sharing a photo of a bill-board of Green’s candidate Jason Ball graffiti’d with the word FAG on it.  Please see attachments.
I have received 2 similar 30-day bans in the last year for similar issues, ie sharing content raising awareness of hate content.
I find this response from Facebook outrageous, especially as I have no recourse.  It damages my mental health and causes me great personal distress.
I am in constant contact with the LGBTIQ media who are very keen to understand why I am receiving these 30-day bans for sharing content that is deemed to be unacceptable, yet is simply raising awareness of attacks on LGBTIQ people.
I will follow this email up with a phone-call to your office.
Sincerely,
Michael Barnett.

UPDATE: N2N managed to get my 30-day ban overturned and my Facebook account was restored to normal the morning of Saturday June 18.


Carl Katter, meet Barbra Streisand

August 16, 2015

On February 1 2013 Same Same published a story on Carl Katter’s political aspirations.  On August 10 2015 Crikey also published comments on Carl Katter’s political aspirations.  Crikey referred to the Same Same article:

Carl Katter has long flagged that he’s interested in a political career, saying he wanted to run before the 2013 election after joining the party in late 2012. We hope that preselection won’t tame Katter’s honest Twitter presence, including this exchange with Freedom Commissioner Tim Wilson in 2013 that was later deleted (and caught by SameSame):

The following snapshot of a Twitter exchange appeared in both articles:

Carl Katter Tim Wilson Twitter exchange

I run a public Facebook group called “Proud to be a Second-Class Australian“.  The aim of the group is to stimulate awareness of discrimination and to motivate people to campaign for LGBTIQ rights.  I post a significant amount of content as part of my activism.  Members can also post relevant content freely.  I like to ensure what I post is “warts and all”, in an effort to eliminate bias.

On August 10 I posted the aforementioned graphic to the Facebook group, including a link to the Crikey article.  I captioned the image “I said love, I said pet, I said princess.”  Shortly after posting the image I received a message from Carl Katter and then he blocked me.  Fair enough.  He’s entitled to do this.  He did this a couple of years ago too.  Some time in the middle he unblocked me.  I guess at that point he felt he wanted me back as a Facebook friend.

Here is what he sent me on both occasions:

Carl Katter Facebook messages

A little after receiving this message I got a warning on Facebook that I had breached their “community standards” and notification of a 7 day ban on posting to Facebook.  This means that someone had reported content I had posted on Facebook and Facebook had decided it was somehow inappropriate.  This is the message Facebook sent me:

Facebook message on Katter Twitter issue

I’m about 6 days through the 7 day ban:

Facebook 7 day posting ban

It’s been a frustrating week for me as this ban has severely limited my capacity to do my activism.  It’s been the busiest news week in 11 years on marriage equality.  It’s been the week in which I was the key player in breaking a story on a controversial reparative (“gay cure”) therapist coming to talk to a Melbourne Jewish child sexual abuse group.  It’s been the week one the biggest marriage equality rallies ever happened in Melbourne.  It’s been the week Carl Katter probably needed some good publicity in his election campaign.  It’s also been another week I’ve not needed more unnecessary distractions in my personal life.

So I ask the question why Carl Katter would not want me to post a picture that is already in the public domain, about comments he posted on Twitter two years ago.  Why would he block me on Facebook for doing this?  Why would someone concerned about Carl Katter’s reputation report a photo of a public Twitter conversation including him to Facebook that resulted in me copping a harsh 7-day posting ban?  I get no say in this outcome on Facebook.  I just have to cop it sweet.  I’ve mostly managed to work around it but it’s wasted my time and significantly diminished my capacity to fight for LGBTIQ equality during a particularly important week.

If Carl Katter is concerned about his image and if he wants to maximise his chances of winning the seat of Higgins, it certainly doesn’t bode well for him to piss off gay rights activists.

Why am I so harsh on him?  He’s abused me.  He’s abused my husband Gregory.  He’s abused other people in the LGBTIQ community.  If he is going to stand for public office he needs to stop abusing people.  Actually, he needs to stop abusing people irrespective of whether he is standing for public office.  But he is not going to get away with abusing people when he stands for public office.  Carl Katter needs to be accountable for his words.

Carl Katter, meet Barbra Streisand.


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