Seeing hidden posts on Indymedia UK

One of the principles of Indymedia is that posts the editors think are not conducive to the goals of Indymedia are not removed but hidden, placed in a sort of purgatorial limbo — not deleted, but not immediately visible to the general readership. This limbo is designed to prevent, in principle, the possibility that Indymedia editors can become censors or gatekeepers, since they are not empowered to actually remove any posts.

Unfortunately, Indymedia UK does not make it easy to see comments that have been limbo’d. For most readers, the comments might as well have been deleted, because it’s not common knowledge how to see the hidden posts. Many IMC sites have a link on their front page leading to a list of hidden stories; to reach a corresponding page on Indymedia UK one needs to know an unpublicised URL.That URL is http://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/viewallposts

To see the hidden comments associated with any post — comments one otherwise would have no indication had existed and then been moved to limbo, it is necessary to add “?c=all” to the URL.For example, suppose that clicking on a link on the Indymedia UK front page took you to this location: http://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2007/12/387175.html. The story is there, but there is no indication that the story has created anything but agreement and support from the readership.

If, however, “?c=all” is added to the end of the URL, giving http://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2007/12/387175.html?c=all, a much different story emerges. This is only one recent example of Indymedia UK hiding comments it finds awkward; you’ll have no difficulty finding many, many more. 

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One Response to Seeing hidden posts on Indymedia UK

  1. geniza says:

    Here is a more recent example. At the moment, an interesting comment from Mike Novack has been “disappeared” for, as far as I can determine, no valid reason. Presumably, the comments criticising Indymedia UK’s grievous mishandling of the anti-Semitism issue will similarly be “disappeared.”

    Which is a pity, because one of them at least seems to me to be spot on:

    “I have been reading Indymedia for some months and 90% of what is written and produced here is excellent but the ambiguity displayed by some when it comes to Jews is not welcome. Anti Semitism and what used to be called the left have long been bedfellows I am ashamed to say and there are some here who are continuing it. Before we also get the well worn cries of how I must be a Troll or Neocon or Zionist I want to make clear my stong objection to the illegal Israeli occupation and the treatement of the Palestinian people over the past 50 years. I am no defender of Israeli actions when Israel is in the wrong.

    Too many recent contributions to Indymedia are from people we should not give house room to. It is disappointing that this needs to be spelled out and explained to individuals who really should know better.

    That really is the issue, I think. Indymedia UK really should know better. Unfortunately, they — or at least enough editors to paralyse the editorial collective — are instead locked into the illusion that the mountainous criticism they have received on the anti-Semitism issue is mere crypto-Zionism raising its insidious head, and that therefore their loyal duty is to ignore it all at best and mock it all at worst. The damage they do to Indymedia is palpable.

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