Twitter harassement?

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takeitslowly
Twitter harassement?

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takeitslowly

Three women are accusing Gregory Alan Elliott of criminally harassing them on Twitter but as the convoluted trial continues the defence is suggesting the alleged online abuse actually went the other way. In one instance, a complainant shared a conversation where a Twitter user falsely alleges that Elliott, 54, is a pedophile, Elliott’s lawyer Chris Murphy told the court Wednesday. Heather Reilly, the second complainant to take the stand, has testified she felt threatened by Elliott, who continued to tweet offensive comments about her despite her objections and “obsessively” monitored her Twitter feed even after she blocked him.  

 

   http://metronews.ca/news/toronto/1211140/twitter-harassment-trial-defenc... <p> A male friend of mine sent me a petition in support of Geregory, I do not know if i should sign it or not.

http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/i-support-gregory-alan-elliott

 

The petition reads , "Greg Elliott disagreed with feminists on twitter, like many people have done before and should have the right to do. Greg lost his job and is now having to go to court because of these ladies' vendetta against freedom of speech and those who disagree with them. Regardless of your views on feminism or Greg's actions, if he loses this trial it sets a precedent for future similar cases. A precedent that will put people in prison for having different opinions and expressing them online."

Catchfire Catchfire's picture

Steph Guthrie is limited to what she can say about this creep because of the trial, but the idea that this is just "men disagreeing with feminists" (which by itself is a very creepy and very loaded phrase) is completely bogus. It is also not just limited to Twitter. To wit:

jas

takeitslowly wrote:

The petition reads , "Greg Elliott disagreed with feminists on twitter, like many people have done before and should have the right to do. Greg lost his job and is now having to go to court because of these ladies' vendetta against freedom of speech and those who disagree with them. ..."

And you don't know whether to support this or not?

Unionist

Why do people feel compelled to take sides on individual issues like this, where we may or may not know all the facts? Is there a shortage of social collective sins to organize against?

Pondering

Unionist wrote:
Why do people feel compelled to take sides on individual issues like this, where we may or may not know all the facts? Is there a shortage of social collective sins to organize against?

Because feminists are under attack on the internet and twitter and it crosses over into real life. Feminists have had to cancel appearances for safety. I'm sure you've heard of gamergate. That's a major example but there are many more smaller ones like this.

Elliot would not have lost his job just for saying a few mean things to a couple of women on twitter. If he did it is the fault of his employer not the women for taking action to stop his harrassment of them.

Catchfire Catchfire's picture

Unionist wrote:
Why do people feel compelled to take sides on individual issues like this, where we may or may not know all the facts? Is there a shortage of social collective sins to organize against?

My guess it has something to do with Christie Blatchford's column on it, accusing Heather Reilly, Steph Guthrie and "feminists" in general of destroying free speech. I don't think there was much talk, except around Toronto social circles, of this case before that.

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Remember when transpeople and sex workers tried to destroy free speech by getting someone fired for their controversial opinions?

Unionist

Catchfire wrote:

Unionist wrote:
Why do people feel compelled to take sides on individual issues like this, where we may or may not know all the facts? Is there a shortage of social collective sins to organize against?

My guess it has something to do with Christie Blatchford's column on it, accusing Heather Reilly, Steph Guthrie and "feminists" in general of destroying free speech. I don't think there was much talk, except around Toronto social circles, of this case before that.

Ok, I didn't know. Well, that's worth getting worked up about. But the details of this harassment case? Not so much. Let the courts decide.

 

voice of the damned

QUOTE: Heather Reilly, the second complainant to take the stand, has testified she felt threatened by Elliott, who continued to tweet offensive comments about her despite her objections and “obsessively” monitored her Twitter feed even after she blocked him. UNQUOTE

if this is what they're basing the harassment allegation on, ie. she blocked him, but he continued to comment on her tweets, I really don't think they have much of a case. Even if one particular individual has been blocked from seeing the tweets, twitter reamins pretty much a public forum, and unless he was somehow monitoring her tweets illegally, I don't see that there should any problem with it.

Suppose I, VOTD, get blocked by some politician from seeing his tweets. But lots of other people can still see them, and they get reproduced all over the media(screengrabs, whatever), and regularly posted to babble. Do I have to avoid commenting on them, or run the risk of a harassment charge?

Unionist

This sounds more and more like a tempest in a tweetpot - unless there's some actually, like, real threats or harassment that haven't been made public yet. But that's why I think it's risky for the public (i.e. us) to try lawsuits or criminal charges parallel to ongoing court proceedings. Unless there's some patent injustice unfolding in the court system before our eyes, how exactly do we judge this from afar? We don't like the accused? I don't like the accused. Full disclosure. But I don't know if all this is worth re-designating free speech as some criminal or quasi-criminal offence.

 

Pondering

Unionist wrote:

This sounds more and more like a tempest in a tweetpot - unless there's some actually, like, real threats or harassment that haven't been made public yet. But that's why I think it's risky for the public (i.e. us) to try lawsuits or criminal charges parallel to ongoing court proceedings. Unless there's some patent injustice unfolding in the court system before our eyes, how exactly do we judge this from afar? We don't like the accused? I don't like the accused. Full disclosure. But I don't know if all this is worth re-designating free speech as some criminal or quasi-criminal offence.

But we aren't doing that. We don't have the power to convict him and send him to prison. We aren't holding a parallel trial. For the sake of argument, let's say he is not found guilty of criminal harassment.

That doesn't make him innocent in the eyes of feminists.

He was fired by his employer for the things he said. Why isn't he suing them?

This isn't the national news forum it's the feminist forum. This case is of interest to feminists. Why shouldn't we discuss it?

Pondering

http://cbabc.org/For-the-Public/Dial-A-Law/Scripts/Criminal-Law/206

1.  A person does one or more of the following things:

  • repeatedly follow you, or anyone you know.
  • repeatedly communicate with you, or anyone you know, directly or indirectly.
  • repeatedly watch you, or anyone you know, or lurk around your home, workplace, or any other place you happen to be.
  • engage in any threatening conduct directed at you or a member of your family.

2. The person knows that their conduct is harassing you or they are reckless about whether their conduct is harassing you. “Reckless” means they know their conduct may harass you, but they don’t care.

3.  The person’s conduct causes you to reasonably fear for your safety or the safety of someone you know. Your fear has to be reasonable. The person does not have to realize that their conduct is scaring you for it to be criminal harassment.

A person can be stalking even if they don’t physically hurt anyone or damage any property. The law is designed to protect psychological, emotional, and physical safety.

Stalking may start with conduct that seems more annoying than dangerous. Often, the conduct is legal and even socially acceptable, if it’s just an isolated incident. But when it’s repeated, it may scare the victim. Conduct such as following someone, or sending gifts or letters, may become intimidating if done continually and against the person’s wishes.

What is cyberbullying? 
Cyberbullying is a type of harassment using new technology. Whether it is criminal harassment depends on the facts of a case. Cyberbullies use social media (such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, and YouTube), blogs, texting, instant messaging, and other internet avenues to engage in deliberate, repeated, and hostile conduct intended to harm, embarrass, or slander someone. Although their work is public, cyberbullies are often anonymous and it is often harder to identify and stop them.

Starting in March 2015, another type of cyberbullying has been outlawed. It’s illegal to distribute intimate images of a person if you know that they did not consent to that image being distributed—or if you are reckless about whether the person gave their consent to that image being distributed. “Reckless” means you know the person may not have consented to the image being distributed, but you don’t care.

Cyberbullying may also be defamation. The Criminal Code (section 300) outlaws publishing a defamatory libel – material published, without lawful justification or excuse, likely to injure the reputation of any person by exposing them to hatred, contempt or ridicule, or designed to insult the person. But criminal defamation is rare. More common is civil defamation – communication about a person that tends to hurt their reputation. Script 240, called “Defamation: Libel and Slander”, has more on this.

It does not require sexual or physical threats.

It does not require the victim to fear for their safety.

Unionist

Pondering wrote:

It does not require the victim to fear for their safety.

Geez, Pondering, you quoted the Canadian Bar Association accurately, then misrepresented the Criminal Code threshold? Did you read what you quoted?

The CBA lists 3 conditions for criminal harassment - all three conditions must be present. And condition #3 is:

Quote:
3.  The person’s conduct causes you to reasonably fear for your safety or the safety of someone you know. Your fear has to be reasonable. The person does not have to realize that their conduct is scaring you for it to be criminal harassment.

So, if the Crown can't prove the victim feared for their safety - and that the fear was reasonable - not guilty.

The only thing I see is, maybe, defamation - but that's a huge door to open. If I were to tweet, 10 times a day, that "Justin Trudeau is an effete asshole" (just picking something at random) - am I guilt of criminal libel? Civil defamation? Don't know. But I would be very hesitant to start banning speech in society the way we (legitimately) ban it in a forum like babble.

DISCLAIMER: What I've said above is based solely on the tiny amount of information I've read about the case so far.

In fact, I'm puzzled a bit by why this has re-surfaced now. Has anything actually happened in the trial, or been reported, since last November?

ETA: Forgot to quote the Criminal Code section on "criminal harassment":

Quote:

Criminal harassment

  • 264. (1) No person shall, without lawful authority and knowing that another person is harassed or recklessly as to whether the other person is harassed, engage in conduct referred to in subsection (2) that causes that other person reasonably, in all the circumstances, to fear for their safety or the safety of anyone known to them.

  • Marginal note:Prohibited conduct

    (2) The conduct mentioned in subsection (1) consists of

    • (a) repeatedly following from place to place the other person or anyone known to them;

    • (b) repeatedly communicating with, either directly or indirectly, the other person or anyone known to them;

    • (c) besetting or watching the dwelling-house, or place where the other person, or anyone known to them, resides, works, carries on business or happens to be; or

    • (d) engaging in threatening conduct directed at the other person or any member of their family.

My emphasis.

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

I totally get how following someone around, or banging on their door, or calling them repeatedly might constitute harrassment.

But how do you harrass someone via Twitter?  How do you make them read your tweets?

Don't you have to make some kind of effort to read someone's tweets?

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

What specifically would it mean to "sic the internet" on someone?

Because that sounds an awful lot like encouraging "the internet" to harrass someone.

I'm certainly not defending Spurr or his game, but that doesn't stop the irony.

voice of the damned

Mr. Magoo wrote:

What specifically would it mean to "sic the internet" on someone?

Because that sounds an awful lot like encouraging "the internet" to harrass someone.

I'm certainly not defending Spurr or his game, but that doesn't stop the irony.

Well, let's put it this way. I admit to getting a pretty guilt-free chuckle when some idiot who writes something stupid or offensive on the internet gets hounded by netizens, even to the point of a psychological breakdown.

Recent example: Did you see the articles about that stalker-like supervisor who sent an e-mail to the office newbie telling him to stay away from a woman in the office that the supervisor liked? The recipient then sent it viral. I don't know how it all turned out, but if the supervisor ends up getting flooded with hostile e-mails and fired from his job, I'll consider that a happy ending.

But I don't get any such pleasure from seeing the Beat Up A Feminist video game, because there is virtually nothing that the feminist could have said or done to warrant such a response. In that case, it's the guy who made the video game who would be the equivalent of the stalker-boss in the other example, and the feminists who responsed who'd be the equivalent of the netizens roasting the boss.

Having said that, the defendant in this case, Elliot, is not the guy who made the video game, and as far as I can tell, he wasn't even defending the game, just disagreeing with the feminists over how to respond. Whether that crossed the line into harassment, I don't know. My main point here has been that I don't think his being blocked by Guthrie on twitter obligated him to stop commenting on her tweets(as seems to be one of her legal arguments), given that twitter is a public forum which anyone, blocked or unblocked, can look at.

voice of the damned

https://ca.news.yahoo.com/stay-hell-away-julia-man-124803541.html

Reading it over, it might be possible for the supervisor to maintain anonymity, since the harasee did block his name. But you get the point, if the creep did end up getting publically shit on all over the place, I wouldn't care.

Pondering

voice of the damned wrote:

Having said that, the defendant in this case, Elliot, is not the guy who made the video game, and as far as I can tell, he wasn't even defending the game, just disagreeing with the feminists over how to respond. Whether that crossed the line into harassment, I don't know. My main point here has been that I don't think his being blocked by Guthrie on twitter obligated him to stop commenting on her tweets(as seems to be one of her legal arguments), given that twitter is a public forum which anyone, blocked or unblocked, can look at.

The courts will decide whether or not what he did amounts to legal harassment but even if it doesn't that doesn't mean he is innocent.

It is my understanding (which could be wrong) that his intent was to give her a taste of her own medicine, do to her what she did to the videogame producer. In his opinion what Guthrie did was just as bad as creating that video game therefore she deserved to suffer the same fate.

Paladin1

Mr. Magoo wrote:

What specifically would it mean to "sic the internet" on someone?

Because that sounds an awful lot like encouraging "the internet" to harrass someone.

I'm certainly not defending Spurr or his game, but that doesn't stop the irony.

 

That's exactly what it is. 

It encourages people on the internet to single someone out and harass them with emails and private messages. Phone calls at home. Having people stalk them over social media and engage someone anytime they make a post thread or comment. Email their place of work, email or call their boss. Message and call associates with the person. Dig through their online pictures and make ridiculing phtoshops of them.

It can even go so far as people anonymously swatting the victims, which if you don't know involves someone calling the police and having a swat team kick down someones door. Quite a few examples of pets or innocent people getting shot, even police going to the wrong address.

It's absolutely brutal and should be a criminal offense if it's not already.

Unionist

Cool

Paladin1

Surprised

 

jas

Is the image in post #15 absolutely necessary? We've had threads closed down for less than that.

Pondering

jas wrote:

Is the image in post #15 absolutely necessary? We've had threads closed down for less than that.

I think so because I felt the topic was being minimized when Unionist said this:

Why do people feel compelled to take sides on individual issues like this, where we may or may not know all the facts? Is there a shortage of social collective sins to organize against?

I feel that the change of events makes it a feminist issue big enough for feminists to discuss it in the feminist forum without "knowing all the facts".  We don't know "all the facts" about a lot of things discussed here.

I did go back and shrink the size way way way down. I hope that will suffice.

Nevermind I will take it out.

Pondering

http://www.torontostandard.com/industry/toronto-tweeter-causes-twitter-u...

Toronto Tweeter Causes Uproar Over Violent “Beat Up Anita Sarkeesian” Game Players punched feminist pop-culture critic in the face, causing lesions and horrifying bruises

(picture removed)

 

Women in TO Politics organizer Stephanie Guthrie isn’t known for keeping quiet. When gamer Bendilin Spurr launched the violent and sickening “Beat Up Anita Sarkeesian” game, Guthrie took to the Internet: “So I found the Twitter account of that fuck listed as creator of the ‘punch a woman in the face’ game. Should I sic the internet on him?”

The Internet said ‘yes,’ but not without its own share of misogyny. One user called Guthrie “a cunt.” Trolls tried to scare her. She continues to receive death threats.

But Guthrie wouldn’t be deterred. She called out the Sault Star newspaper, which has since picked up the story (kind of), warned potential employers not to hire Spurr, and sparked enough conversation to further increase her ranking as a prominent local tweeter on politics and feminism.

“My primary motivation for confronting Bendilin Spurr on Twitter was to hold him accountable as a person for his actions behind an Internet avatar,” she says. “I felt frustrated knowing that he leads a whole ‘real life’ where it might be unknown that he spends his spare time on the Internet doing things like making a video game about punching a woman in the face for having an opinion. What happens on the Internet has consequences off the Internet.”

 

That is why Elliot went after her.

He and Guthrie, for instance, initially fell out over his refusal to endorse her plan to “sic the Internet” upon a young man in Northern Ontario who had invented a violent video game, where users could punch an image of a feminist video blogger named Anita Sarkeesian until the screen turned red.

Guthrie Tweeted at the time that she wanted the inventor’s “hatred on the Internet to impact his real-life experience” and Tweeted to prospective employers to warn them off the young man and even sent the local newspaper in his town a link to the story about the game.

Elliott disagreed with the tactic and Tweeted he thought the shaming “was every bit as vicious as the face-punch game”.

http://news.nationalpost.com/full-comment/christie-blatchford-ruling-in-...

So in Elliot's world there should not have been any real-life repercussions for Bendilin Spurr based on having created this "game". 

In my opinion Elliott did decide to punish Guthrie and used harassment to do it. Whether or not it rose to the level of criminal harassment is for a judge to decide.

As a feminist I can come to my own conclusion that this is about misogynists harassing women who dare to stand up for themselves online against the misogyny of the gaming world.

The legal system obviously felt there was enough evidence to go to trial or it wouldn't have happened. Regardless of whether or not he is criminally guilty he is, in my opinion, guilty of fomenting hatred against feminists and feminists get to judge him for that.

jas

Thanks, Pondering.

Pondering

jas wrote:

Thanks, Pondering.

Thank-you for the heads up, I wasn't thinking.

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

You were thinking.

You were thinking "who's going to argue with this huge photo of a beaten woman?".

Pondering

Mr. Magoo wrote:

You were thinking.

You were thinking "who's going to argue with this huge photo of a beaten woman?".

You are no Patrick Jane sir.

I was thinking that people don't know the whole story, don't realize what this is connected to. I reduced the size of the picture, as I do with all pictures, to be no wider than the text. Yes, I do find it shocking, and I think there was nothing wrong with Guthrie making sure this public knowledge was known to his employer. Personally I wouldn't want to work with someone who thinks this "game" is an appropriate way to handle anger or disagreement with a woman receiving real life death threats.

Life has been unfair for abused women for centuries.

I really don't care whether whether Elliot's efforts at payback did were legal or illegal. That is for the courts to decide. If they didn't have enough evidence to proceed they would not have.

Elliot earned whatever social censure he is receiving far more than the feminists he was attacking. I think maybe he will stop doing that now.

P.S. What I wasn't thinking of is the triggering aspect of it.

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
You are no Patrick Jane sir.

OK, +1 for that.

Quote:
Yes, I do find it shocking, and I think there was nothing wrong with Guthrie making sure this public knowledge was known to his employer.

By way of a private e-mail, though... Right?

Not by way of encouraging others to harrass him, because that's WRONG.  Right?

ed'd to add:

Here's the thing.  The defendant didn't make that game.  And apparently he didn't even defend that game (nor has any babbler I've seen).  He just thought that the maker shouldn't have the internet "sic'd" on him for it.

So why did we need to see a screenshot from it?  So we could decide for ourselves whether he really did, in fact, deserve to have the internet "sic'd" on him??  To decide for ourselves -- based on the screenshot -- whether the defendant must be a horrible person indeed, if he didn't support harrassing the game maker?

Can you just tell us plainly why we needed to see that screenshot?  What actual bearing that had on this case?

quizzical

magoo your etd comments make me feel uncomfortable here in the feminist forum, which pisses me off as now i feel like i'm defending pondering and i'm not. i'm defending all women from harping men especially in the feminist forum.

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Ok then, I'll go. Please continue not defending Pondering, though.

milo204

I think the media has done a pretty terrible job covering this case.  I've spoken to a couple people from the area who know Guthrie and it really isn't about a "disagreement" or a twitter war. 

What (apparently) happened was the two met in a business setting, and the guy used that info to contact her personally, including on twitter.  She asked him to not contact her and he didn't stop.  she blocked him, and he kept at it.  Then he was apparently posting her location on twitter and was possibly following her movements i.e. stalking her/obssessed with her.

That's the basis for the criminal charges.

Unionist

milo204 wrote:

I think the media has done a pretty terrible job covering this case.  I've spoken to a couple people from the area who know Guthrie and it really isn't about a "disagreement" or a twitter war. 

What (apparently) happened was the two met in a business setting, and the guy used that info to contact her personally, including on twitter.  She asked him to not contact her and he didn't stop.  she blocked him, and he kept at it.  Then he was apparently posting her location on twitter and was possibly following her movements i.e. stalking her/obssessed with her.

That's the basis for the criminal charges.

Well then, guilty as charged!

But what about all the posters above who thought he was guilty without having the privileged information you just provided?

I'm curious as to why the guy can't be a creepy misogynist with discriminatory opinions that he expresses publicly - without necessarily having violated any laws? Or should the laws be strengthened in that regard?

In what was reported publicly (until your revelation), I had a hard time understanding why, besides hating the creep, I should call for his imprisonment.

alan smithee alan smithee's picture

Does Canada even have stalking laws?

And if it does,how useful are they?

Unionist

alan smithee wrote:

Does Canada even have stalking laws?

Yes, alan, I quoted the legislation [url=http://rabble.ca/babble/feminism/twitter-harassement#comment-1515109]up here[/url].

Quote:
And if it does,how useful are they?

How useful are the theft or murder or speeding laws? I guess it depends on evidence, proof, enforcement, deterrence.

The murder laws haven't been very useful to indigenous women.

 

alan smithee alan smithee's picture

Unionist wrote:

 

The murder laws haven't been very useful to indigenous women.

 

Touché

Pondering

Unionist wrote:

milo204 wrote:

I think the media has done a pretty terrible job covering this case.  I've spoken to a couple people from the area who know Guthrie and it really isn't about a "disagreement" or a twitter war. 

What (apparently) happened was the two met in a business setting, and the guy used that info to contact her personally, including on twitter.  She asked him to not contact her and he didn't stop.  she blocked him, and he kept at it.  Then he was apparently posting her location on twitter and was possibly following her movements i.e. stalking her/obssessed with her.

That's the basis for the criminal charges.

Well then, guilty as charged!

But what about all the posters above who thought he was guilty without having the privileged information you just provided?

I'm curious as to why the guy can't be a creepy misogynist with discriminatory opinions that he expresses publicly - without necessarily having violated any laws? Or should the laws be strengthened in that regard?

In what was reported publicly (until your revelation), I had a hard time understanding why, besides hating the creep, I should call for his imprisonment.

Other than the women who have taken him to court who is calling for his imprisonment or assuming the judge will find him guilty?

 

Takeitslowly asked, within the feminist forum, if she should sign a petition in his defence. So, some feminists gave their opinion. I think we have a right to do that.

The courts will decide his legal fate, as you noted, that doesn't mean he isn't a misogynistic creep and feminists get to discuss that.

Your comment:

Unionist wrote:
Why do people feel compelled to take sides on individual issues like this, where we may or may not know all the facts? Is there a shortage of social collective sins to organize against?

Suggests that this is a topic too minor to be worthy of discussion. I think it is for us to judge if an incident is significant enough to discuss amongst ourselves as feminists and viewed through the lens of Gamergate and the very real life reprocussions on feminists who dare to openly defy men in the digital world. 

The Tropes vs Women project triggered a campaign of sexist harassment against Sarkeesian. Attackers sent Sarkeesian rape and death threats, hacked her webpages and social media, and distributed her personal information. They posted disparaging comments online, vandalized Sarkeesian's article on Wikipedia with racial slurs and sexual images, and sent Sarkeesian drawings of herself being raped by video game characters.[26][27][28][29][30][31] One attacker created the computer game Beat Up Anita Sarkeesian, which prompted players to bloody a picture of Sarkeesian by clicking the mouse.[28][32] Toronto feminist Stephanie Guthrie received death and rape threats for criticizing the Beat Up Anita Sarkeesian game.[27][33][34][35] Sarkeesian responded to the threats against Guthrie in a statement to the Toronto Standard, condemning the widespread harassment she and other women have faced online.[36][37]

......

In August 2014, Feminist Frequency issued a new Tropes vs Women in Games episode. This coincided with the ongoing harassment of Zoe Quinn as part of the Gamergate controversy. The increased volume and specificity of the harassment (including death threats) prompted Sarkeesian to leave her home. San Francisco Police confirmed that they had passed the case file to the FBI for investigation.[44][45]

On October 14, 2014, Sarkeesian and Utah State University received terrorist threats pertaining to her planned lecture at the university the following day. The threats, one of which was issued by a person who claimed to be affiliated with Gamergate,[46] specifically cited the École Polytechnique massacre as inspiration. The university and police did not believe the threats were credible inasmuch as they were consistent with others Sarkeesian had received, but scheduled enhanced security measures nonetheless. Sarkeesian canceled the event, however, feeling the planned security measures were insufficient given that the university could not prohibit handguns in the venue per Utah state law.[47][48][49][50][51][52][53][54]

This is the feminist forum. If we think something is important enough for us to discuss then it is. Men get to decide what is important enough to discuss in plenty of other places. Here, we get to decide if harassment is worthy of discussion whether or not it rises to the level of legal conviction.

"sic the internet" from a feminist perspective is not the same as what men do. I interpret it as publicizing what a man has done, such as the troll on Reddit, so he can't hide behind the internet to harass women. 

Guthrie did nothing to Elliot or to men in general. Revealing the identity of a man who publishes a game in which the goal is to beat up a specific woman who receives death threats does not justify harassment and stalking of Guthrie even if those activites do not rise to the level necessary for conviction due to lack of specific death threats.

Unionist

Pondering wrote:

This is the feminist forum. If we think something is important enough for us to discuss then it is. Men get to decide what is important enough to discuss in plenty of other places. Here, we get to decide if harassment is worthy of discussion whether or not it rises to the level of legal conviction.

That's correct. Women get to decide. And I get to ask why - and I'm very content to hear the explanation and accept it.

For example, I asked why this story is resurfacing now. No one replied. So finally, I managed to find the answer. This seems to be the only reported development in the past year:

[url=http://metronews.ca/news/toronto/1433756/women-had-a-right-to-fight-back... had a right to fight back, Crown argues in Toronto Twitter harassment trial[/url]

Quote:

The women at the centre of a groundbreaking Twitter harassment trial had every right to fight back against the man accused of harassing them, the Crown has argued.

Gregory Alan Elliott was charged in November 2012 with criminal harassment for Twitter conduct aimed at Toronto feminists Steph Guthrie and Heather Reilly. It is believed to be the first case of alleged criminal harassment to spring from Twitter behaviour.

Crown lawyer Marnie Goldenberg submitted her arguments to the court in writing and declined media requests to release copies. She granted Metro permission to read them on Tuesday.

And Pondering, I trust you'll acknowledge now that the targets reasonably feeling afraid is vital to the charge:

Quote:
Whether or not Guthrie and Reilly were reasonably afraid of Elliott is central to the legal claim of criminal harassment. Both said they were, and testified that some of Elliott’s tweets made it obvious he knew where they were and what they were doing.

And this is a criminal proceeding.

Pondering

Unionist wrote:
Why do people feel compelled to take sides on individual issues like this, where we may or may not know all the facts? Is there a shortage of social collective sins to organize against?

Catchfire wrote:
My guess it has something to do with Christie Blatchford's column on it, accusing Heather Reilly, Steph Guthrie and "feminists" in general of destroying free speech. I don't think there was much talk, except around Toronto social circles, of this case before that.

Unionist wrote:
Ok, I didn't know. Well, that's worth getting worked up about. But the details of this harassment case? Not so much. Let the courts decide.

Unionist wrote:
This sounds more and more like a tempest in a tweetpot - unless there's some actually, like, real threats or harassment that haven't been made public yet. But that's why I think it's risky for the public (i.e. us) to try lawsuits or criminal charges parallel to ongoing court proceedings. Unless there's some patent injustice unfolding in the court system before our eyes, how exactly do we judge this from afar? We don't like the accused? I don't like the accused. Full disclosure. But I don't know if all this is worth re-designating free speech as some criminal or quasi-criminal offence.

Posts 4, 8 and 10 were all you suggesting that it is inappropriate for "us" to even discuss this case until the judge decides if his behavior rises to the level of a crime or if there is enough evidence to convict. 

Unionist wrote:
That's correct. Women get to decide. And I get to ask why - and I'm very content to hear the explanation and accept it.

For example, I asked why this story is resurfacing now. No one replied. So finally, I managed to find the answer. This seems to be the only reported development in the past year:

Catchfire replied but the opening post was your answer. Because there is a petition going around in his defence and advice was wanted as to whether or not it should be signed. I have no trouble expressing the opinion that "no" is the appropriate response. I would say that the onus is to prove that such a petition is justified.

You say we shouldn't presume guilt but I see no reason why we should presume his innocence and try to sway public opinion in his favor and against Guthrie. We haven't started a petition against him. We are not in control of whether or not the courts convict him.

Unionist wrote:

And Pondering, I trust you'll acknowledge now that the targets reasonably feeling afraid is vital to the charge:

...Whether or not Guthrie and Reilly were reasonably afraid of Elliott is central to the legal claim of criminal harassment. Both said they were, and testified that some of Elliott’s tweets made it obvious he knew where they were and what they were doing.

And this is a criminal proceeding.

Yes, it is, so? Since when does a case have to be concluded for us to express opinions on events? Maybe the court will find him innocent of criminal harassment that doesn't mean we don't get to judge him guilty just like we judged the Reddit troll. And when people find out what these men have done and fire them

The fact that this is a criminal proceeding is not the most important aspect of the discussion from a feminist perspective nor are the principles of free speech.

From a feminist perspective the most important aspect of this case is the threat to feminists not the threat to free speech.

It is not easy to get a case like this heard in court. There had to be sufficient evidence to get past a preliminary hearing.

Your focus is whether or not he is guilty of the specific charges. My focus is whether or not he is guilty of harassing Guthrie regardless of whether or not it rose to the legal definition required for conviction.

I don't think anyone should be signing a petition in defence of this man unless they have good reason to believe there is some injustice occuring.

I trust the court's ability to be fair to this man.

milo204

I think an interesting and enraging perspective on this is how the media has twisted a criminal harrassment trial which really has nothing to do with free spech into a "women are trying to take away your free speech" narrative, and making it seem like it has something to do with a person being charged with a crime for having a political debate on twitter,  when clearly that is not the case.

Really is eye opening for me (a man) seeing such a glaring example of anti-feminism at work, and it's resulted in more death threats etc for the women involved because of it.

 

 

Pondering

http://canadalandshow.com/article/christie-blatchford-worst

Blatchford is savvy enough to know how to create click-bait that generates hits both from misogynist trolls as well as from those who vehemently disagree with her. It's a smart business plan, but one that has had unfortunate, and foresseable consequences for Elliott's alleged victims. Ever since the publication of Blatchford's latest article, Guthrie and Reilly have been inundated with vile, explicit threats. Their inboxes and twitter are full of men explaining in detail how they plan to rape and kill them. And as more and more people share Blatchford's posts – reality star Joe Rogan recently tweeted Blatchford's video on the subject to his 1.6 million followers - the harder and faster the threats come.

Indeed, after Rogan mobilized his mob, Guthrie was flamed wherever she has been mentioned. A CANADALAND video featuring Guthrie had no comments more recent than one year old. Then, four days ago, it was flooded with comments like these:

Because the verdict in this case is not expected until October 6th, neither Reilly nor Guthrie can speak out about what is happening. They cannot correct Blatchford's misrepresentation of the case, they cannot refute any of the untrue assertions about them that are flying around twitter, they cannot  make any kind of comment on what is being said about them. Blatchford knew this. The fact that Blatchford used her platform to go after two women who are unable to defend themselves is what makes her piece especially unethical. She is basically offering internet trolls a free shot.