James Leroy Wilson's blog

Monday, January 02, 2006

Jews for Jesus Sucks

An evangelistic organization called "Jews for Jesus" is suing Google. It may have been because Google-owned Blogger allowed a critic of the organization to take the jewsforjesus.blogspot.com domain name. But it had been a little-posted, no traffic site for months -- until the lawsuit which has led to its revival. The blogger there, known only as "whistleblower," wonders if it might be on account of some other site, such as Ex Jews for Jesus. In any case, he raises a good point:
I really wondered why a multimillion dollar non-profit Christian organization would be suing for profits and triple damages, especially when this little site o' mine had no traffic. If JfJ only sued for control of this site, and they really wanted to control or eliminate another site(s), they would possibly have to go through the entire exercise over again. Every time a site popped up, back to court they would have to go. But money, by way of damages, makes things a lot easier. If JfJ wins money, then the next time they don't like a site, they can tell the host company, "Take down that site or we'll sue you like we sued Google. We beat Google, and we beat 'em good. You think you are bigger or better than Google?" JfJ would be no whimpering dog, it would have teeth, and it would have bite.

As an aside, bloggers might want to beware. If JfJ wins this case, our service providers will have to operate under entirely different rules. With large liability, they'll probably have to put in place expensive protective steps. They'll have to charge for blogging. And bloggers will most likely have to pay. The services will probably want to distance themselves from any liability stemming from what a blogger says. Thus they won't necessarily protect our anonymity. If Jews for Jesus wins, say goodbye to free anonymous Free Speech. Wouldn't it be ironic if we lost our free speech rights on account of some American religious organization who themselves thrive from the benefit of free speech provisions?
[emphasis added]

5 comments:

  1. No, it would not be ironic at all. There is no need for us to lose any free speech rights. The constitution bestows no rights, it limits congress. Rights are either god given or self evident based on natural law - neither requires grubbermint sayso.
    So why do we feel that there is valid jurisdiction at the national level, given that reality is what we choose it to be.

    How can we measure moral fiber? Perhaps by the list of secrets that we keep from our spuses, parents and kids. The more secrets, the less morality. But : morality does not equate with ethics. We need to sandbag those folks with bas ethics - pronto.

    Nothing like a good thought provoking prohibition to get one's dander fired.

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  2. if blogspot service improved with a pay status, that part might be cool beans. as for the free speech part, i am writing under the banner of parody for just that reason. if i said half i the things i do under a straight up banner, i would have alreay been nailed to the cross.

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  3. James, check the spelling on your link to that blog. You left out an "s", and this threw me as to what the whole big deal was about because I first realized the spelling in your link and ignored it on the blog. Unless of course I should know you well enough to know it was satire... ;)

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  4. James - Jews for Jesus does seem to be threatening our free speech on this one. Thank goodness no one's ever trademarked "Lemonholm," or I'd be out of luck. Although I can see going after cyber squatters to protect your organization's name, as well as unwitting web surfers, there has to be a limit - you cannot keep every instance of your name from popping up on the Internet. That's like Jews for Jesus sueing you for writing "Jews for Jesus Sucks."

    It's great to see that one of your topically focused "ads by Google" on this page is for a Jewish singles website.

    That's the thing about Google's Blogger - I once tried to see if I could pay them money by upgrading to a 'gold' or 'platinum level' (or whatever), but it's just free. I could find no way to pay them money at all. It's also weirdly refreshing that they never email me about special features or upgrades or whatever.
    All the same, I just tried signing up for www.blogger.blogspot.com, and, even though, apparently, no blogger is using it, it's off limits. So they do protect their brand name.

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