Yesterday there were two items appearing in the Dutch news almost simultaneously: the famous Dutch television host Paul de Leeuw ‘would not be put in court’ for putting the following tweet on twitter when the marriage of Swedish crown-princess Victoria took place:
‘Are you also secretly waiting for the moment a black Saab crashes itself into some sort of monument? Not that I wish for it to happen, but at least something would happen then!’
The OM, the ‘National Prosecutors Office’ (website) the next day said Paul the Leeuw would not be sued for making this tweet on Twitter. Would not be sued? Can you be sued for just saying something, an innocent joke? What the hell has the National Prosecutors Office to do with an innocent tweet? Don’t these people have anything better to do? Are we supposed to feel better now that we know they actually investigate tweets, to see if they can be legally sued? The guy made a joke, for christ sake.
Then, simultanously, this item appears in the dutch news. Dutch Broadcasting Network ‘TROS’ fires Cornald Maas for putting the following tweet online:
‘What nice export products we Dutch have, Sieneke, Joran van der Sloot and the PVV’
Cornald Maas was working for the TROS as a commentator and he also commentated the Eurovision songfestival for the Netherlands. So this guy is FIRED for making a joke on twitter? What is wrong with these people?
Isn’t it obvious that social media are becoming increasingly more dangerous and narrow minded. Yesterday I took a peek at a fake facebook account i created after not having looked there for about two months. Now every post you make there says ‘flag’ under it, so you could be nicely reported for anything you could possibly say.
I am actually glad they threw me out of facebook. It is becoming a very narrow minded instrument of moralistic social control and twitter doesnt seem any better judging by these news items. Think about it, I am a well known dutch author, and they simply deleted all my work ‘because someone complained’ and they wouldnt even tell me what the reason was for deleting my profile!
I dont want weird government agencies to gloat over my family pictures, thank you very much. I dont want ‘prosecutor agencies’ weighing every joke and remark I make on the scale of their legal apparatus. Having such agencies controlling everything you say in your own home is RIDICULOUS and UNACCEPTABLE. Yes, I articulate that, because people somehow seem to start to think this is all normal.
My book was one of the bestly reviewed books of 2008. I was nominated for the Buddingh price and won two other poetry awards. It means nothing to facebook: it simply deletes all my work, all my poems, all my thoughts, because some monkey had some moralistic issue with something I wrote. And they wouldnt even tell me what it was. There was no chance of appeal, nothing. Justice doesn’t exist in their world, just low-brow moralism.
That seems exactly the road we are on: a road that leads to a world where low-brow moralism of the most stupid sort rules and justice is simply a thing of the past. Too complicated, too nuanced, to much maintenance costs.
Facebook and Twitter increasinly are becoming control instruments. I actually started to develop a new social environment, called ‘Soulsat’, because I do like the technology, I just dont like the morons who happen to control it. I will try to get it online in the coming months.