Stamp Out Trolls Condemns "Truthy"


In Our Opinion, "Truthy" is the Ultimate Troll


When we say we want the GOP Congressional House Oversight to investigate Twitter user and safety, it is so people can enter a site that has no up-front warning of the horrors one can encounter with cyber-bully and rape and death threats, and speak freely without fear of attack or, we are sorry to postulate, concern about being socially or politically censored by Twitter itself via its admins, the chief of whom, Del Harvey, used to co-operate an vigilante organization called "Perverted Justice", which one critical website reports identified over 2,000 men incorrectly as "potential child molesters" and presumably made their lives hell. 


Truthy is an entirely different kind of thing from demanding congressional action against trolling (which is already a crime) and appears to be a far-left radical endeavor from the University of Indiana to apparently control political discourse, perhaps to re-align public communication "correct" President Obama's record-low poll numbers - 39% favorable, a mind-bending 57% unfavorable (this means that many of the people who voted for him no longer like or approve of him). Truthy is an online code which it seems looks specifically for political smears and identifies them. The problem is, there is no such thing as an intelligent computer - that remains the "pathetic fallacy" - the attribution of human characteristics to inanimate objects. A program can only recognize what it is programmed to recognize. If it is is programmed to censor attacks - by noting combinations of certain words like "bad", "dishonest" etc against party A while letting the same word combinations against party B go uncensored, then that is exactly what it will do. That's called censorship, only when applied to Twitter's 500 million users, it becomes censorship on a massive scale.


Truthy's primary mover and shaker, Filippo  Menczer, claims Truthy will be non-partisan, but admits the program will be mostly political in its data mining and analysis. The problem regarding Menczer's claim that Truthy will be political but non-partisan is that Menczer himself has (or had) on his web page links to Obama's Organizing For Action, Moveon.org, Greenpeace and others. In other words, the man who claims Truthy will be politically neutral clearly cannot make the same claim for himself, and we find the dichotomy between Truthy's non-partisan claims and Menczer's obvious partisan activist outlook to not stand the eye of scrutiny when the First Amendment is literally at stake.


Menczer enthusiastically albeit probably inadvertently describes a chilling implication: "... we rely on users like you (while training the program) to flag injections of forged grassroots activity (we read that to mean, anyone talking dirt about the government, which is at the heart and soul of the First Amendment/free speech). Therefore, click on the Truthy button when you see a suspicious meme!" (We regard that as a very cheery but blatant way of saying "rat on the opposition like the Nazi brownshirt youth who turned their own parents in to the Gestapo for torture and death". Unfortunately, minus the death camps, we see little to distinguish the two. The idea is the same).


Truthy, in our opinion, is such a patently obvious political propaganda and censorship machine that we regard any other description of it as laughably disingenuous. And they now have a million dollars to turn this monster into a mechanism on Twitter.... Twitter, of which virtually every executive is close to President Obama's Administration. This is perhaps the most chilling "social media idea' ever to have been devised, being, as is admitted by the creators, entirely political.


Stamp Out trolls, while we call for Congress to investigate Twitter, is generally non-political and want to warn everyone that today's political landscape may not be the same tomorrow. People on the right will hate Truthy under Obama. People on the left would hate Truthy under Bush and 2016 could easily see a Republican President if the elections of 2016 mirror what is expected of this coming November, 2014. That makes childishly/innocently-named "Truthy" a true horror show to people of any political outlook.


We urge the GOP Congress House and the FCC to look deeply into Truthy and stop it just as we feel it is critical - perhaps more so with Truthy now funded to the tune of a million dollars - to look into the seemingly "Perverted Justice"-run "safety" department at Twitter.


In our opinion at Stamp Out Trolls, "Truthy" is nothing less than the ultimate troll.