Friday, January 14, 2005
First Annual Call for Indymedia Seppuku
Seppuku was a key part of bushido, the code of the samurai warriors; it was used by warriors to avoid falling into enemy hands, and to ameliorate shame.Indymedia attempted to be a viable alternative to the corporate media. It attempted to encourage a diverse range of opinions. It attempted to be "a democratic media outlet for the creation of radical, accurate, and passionate tellings of truth" (What is Indy Media). It attempted to be honest. It attempted to be accurate. It attempted to be fair.
It was also permissible as a form of repentance when one had committed an unforgivable sin, either by accident or on purpose. Finally, in the feudal period (1190–1867) it was the form of punishment preferred in cases where the subject required an honourable, but necessary, death sentence, such as the 47 Ronin.
It is now nothing less than a breeding ground for the exact opposite of what it set out to achieve. It contains no content which offers any tangible value that even begins to outweigh the negativity, hostility and downright ignorance of its usual content. Racism, sexism, anti-Semitism, fraud, defamation, lies and hate-speech are the norm and this is apparent to anyone who takes even the most cursory look. Serious readers have vanished, serious contributors have left. At best Indymedia sites syndicate (plagiarize) and repeat content written and readily available from elsewhere. At worst it encourages publication of content fair-minded people would run away from quickly and with good reason.
I am not the first to identify the problem and it is abundantly clear a solution or fix is not imminent. The prognosis is negative. Indymedia will continue to wither and any disbelief is merely denial. I propose Indy Media die with honor.
I therefore formally call on Indymedia to salvage whatever honor it ever had by commiting seppuku.
I will repeat this call until it is heeded and ask you all to join me. We implore Indymedia to do the honorable thing and fall upon its sword.
I'm unsure whether you were making a comment about Indymedia or attempting to correct me. In case it was the latter, just for the record:
"The Independent Media Center (www.indymedia.org), was established by various independent and alternative media organizations and activists in 1999"
Irrespective of what they are, it's appropriate to note what they have stated their mission was. What they 'are' of course is horrible...
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