Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Irfan Ahmed, bureaucrats and censorship




I seem to have set off something of a storm in the blogosphere. Curious, really, as it increasingly seems that my words are being tortured for subtext that doesn't exist.

So let's start at the beginning...

Originally, I 'called out' Irfan for possible homophobic comments. I wasn't absolutely certain, more the possessor of a sense that his language was, at best, clumsy, and, at worst, offensive. The emerging viewpoint veered between the two, so I feel utterly justified in my initial stance.

Featured on Liberal Democrat VoiceI then wondered out loud about whether the Aggregator needed a 'community policing strategy'. At no point did I call for a named individual to be banned, although, in retrospect, one can easily see how the two pieces could be conflated.

So, let's summarise. I have not called for anyone to be banned from Lib Dem Blogs. I have not called for anyone to be expelled from the Party. As witchhunts go, it lacks most of the key elements required (the witch, the firewood and the scary guy with the bulging eyes and the religious text spring to mind most immediately).

Irfan has responded initially by denying his intent to cause offence and, eventually, by apologising in the comments of the offending blog entry. I am content that he has clarified the position to my satisfaction (the rest of you must draw your own conclusion), and I will, when I get a chance to do so, reverse the mute on his blog.

From a personal perspective, were I to be in his position, I might choose to post a discrete blog entry clarifying my position, but that is a style point, not a demand.

I have, in the past, noted the caution with which one should write for a public, unfiltered audience. Irfan has provided an object lesson in the risks of the medium... And, perhaps, so have I...

3 comments:

Irfan Ahmed said...

The Post has been removed that caused all the speculation.

Jennie said...

discrete = different
discreet is the word you were looking for, I think ;)

* slips of into pleasant reveries of Vincent Price in Witchfinder General *

Mmmm Matthew Hopkins...

Mark Valladares said...

Jennie,

Beware of mathematicians bearing blog postings :-). Discrete is, in this instance, what I intended... and what has come to pass...