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View Diary: Liberal blogger blocked from Kentucky state-owned computers (192 comments)

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  •  Well (7+ / 0-)

    It is the government's computers. In theory they are to be used for work purposes, not political blogging. That being said, if they are going to block political sites, they should be bipartisan.

    •  Um, no... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      xebecs

      The computers belong to the people of the State of Kentucky.

      "[A] 'Sharecropper's Society' [is] precisely where our trade policies, supported by Republicans and Democrats alike, are taking us." - Warren Buffet

      by RichM on Wed Jun 21, 2006 at 08:34:58 AM PDT

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      •  Yes (5+ / 0-)

        Computers are work are meant to be used for business purposes, not for personal use. Most companies generally don't care, though, as long as an employee's work is done on time and company assets aren't put at risk. But the first purpose of a computer at an office, especially one paid for by taxpayer dollars, is for work-related use. Thus the Commonwealth of KY is well within its rights to restrict personal use of its governmental computers.

    •  I agree with jiacinto (0+ / 0-)

      He who owns the Gold, rules.

    •  strange (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Jett
      Government 'work' is to limit what what you can read.  Darn, I guess I never understood American values after all.

      In God we trust. All others must pay cash.

      by yet another liberal on Wed Jun 21, 2006 at 08:43:09 AM PDT

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      •  good point? (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        bobbobgirl

        It may very well be part of someone's legitmate job duties to read a website like this. I had a friend who worked for the AG and part of her job was to read local news sites (including blogs) and create summaries of them.

        Not sure if you were actually implying this, but it seems that way!

        Howard Dean has a posse (buy my t-shirts so I can afford YearlyKos!)

        by Jett on Wed Jun 21, 2006 at 08:48:51 AM PDT

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        •  job duties for little kiddies (3+ / 0-)
          Do not include reading political opinions the king disapproves of.

          All self-respecting rulers need to control ideas.  That means book bannings, and nowadays, blocking of internet sites critical of our rulers.

          "You have job duties" is simply the latest excuse from the book banners.  But at least it's an effective way of throwing their own doo-doo back in their face.

          Book banners make me ill.

          In God we trust. All others must pay cash.

          by yet another liberal on Wed Jun 21, 2006 at 08:59:29 AM PDT

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    •  working for the man (6+ / 0-)

      My philosophy on this is that filtering is a waste of time and money and causes more trouble than it is worth. Even assuming it is legitimate for them to say "you may not visit these specific websites from your state-owned computer", implementing that policy by filtering is stupid. It's not hard to get around the filters - in theory people visiting "bad" websites should be a discipline issue between the worker and their supervisor. Censorware is a technical fix to a non-technical problem: discipline. What filters like these are really about is totalitarianism. Every single time people have reverse-engineered the filter lists they find that legitimate websites have been "miscategorized". The rhetoric of those who control the filters and the results of their actions don't match.

      Howard Dean has a posse (buy my t-shirts so I can afford YearlyKos!)

      by Jett on Wed Jun 21, 2006 at 08:46:03 AM PDT

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      •  Back years ago I worked for the federal gov't (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Jett

        I have been involved in statistical research my whole career, and I tried a stint with the Federal Government. That didn't last long. I am not a conformist!

        Anyway, they tried, even back then, to limit what we could do and how much freedom we had.

        They tried to enforce discipline in similar ways, and it failed miserably and employee morale plummeted.

        The whole totalitarianism (man that's a hard word to type!) in the structure of state and federal governments inhibits their ability to do a good job and do it efficiently. It's counterproductive, but they don't readily recognize that!

      •  Again (0+ / 0-)

        I don't necessarily like filtering either. But my point is that it's the government's computers. And at work they have every right to issue policies regarding the use of government-owned computers for employees who work there.  

        •  the govt computers are our computers (0+ / 0-)
          And blocking access to protected speech is un-American.  I'm done beating around the bush here.

          In God we trust. All others must pay cash.

          by yet another liberal on Wed Jun 21, 2006 at 10:13:23 AM PDT

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          •  Again (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Geotpf

            At work companies are well within their rights to restrict employees' usage. You can't go to a job and surf at pornography. If you want to do it on your own time, that's fine. But at work the company does have the right to restrict employee usage on its on computers.

            The same thing applies to government employees. The Commonwealth of KY is well within its legal rights to restrict how its computers are used. If they want to block political blogs, it should be bipartisan. But frankly KY does have the right to regulate how its governmental employees use their computers. I'm sure that employees looking at porn would be fired.

            I'm not saying this is right. Just saying that KY is within its rights to restrict access to certain websites on computers paid for by taxpayer dollars.

            •  good job (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Shapeshifter, Fabian, snacksandpop
              political speech == porn.

              I'm afraid not Jaicinto, not in this country.

              And since this diary is about blocking only certain web-sites your arguments are nothing but strawmen.

              They are easy to defeat.

              In God we trust. All others must pay cash.

              by yet another liberal on Wed Jun 21, 2006 at 10:21:20 AM PDT

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              •  it is a valid point (0+ / 0-)

                The government acting as an employer can restrict what employees can do in ways that it can't restrict what citizens can do. It is within their rights as an employer to regulate what employees can do with computers. Where it gets complicated is with employees whose jobs require unfiltered access and in places where state-owned computers are legitmately used by non-employees. The point I was trying to make is that filtering is a stupid way to regulate employee usage - it costs a lot of money, causes a lot of problems, doesn't really work, and invariably is used to regulate websites in a biased way. I think misuse of the internet/computers by employees should be handled as a per-individual discipline issue the same way misuse of any other infrastructure at work would be.

                "The power to dominate rests on the differential possession of knowledge" -Foucault

                by Jett on Wed Jun 21, 2006 at 10:27:31 AM PDT

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                •  So, let's say, instead of filtering ... (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  snacksandpop
                  ... they do logging.  THEN, when they see you visited dkos, you get fired.

                  Employers don't own me.

                  We can parse legal strawmen all day, but we evade an important question ... what is the true spirit of freedom?

                  Certainly, it doesn't make your employer your new tyrant watching what you read!

                  If you aren't getting your work done, that's one thing, but this is another.  This is effectively censorship and intimidation and it is utterly un-American.

                  In God we trust. All others must pay cash.

                  by yet another liberal on Wed Jun 21, 2006 at 10:35:24 AM PDT

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                  •  Again (0+ / 0-)

                    If it were my company I probably wouldn't care what sites my employees visited as long as they didn't go to porn and/or gambling sites and or posted information that could damage the company's reputation or assets. However, again, companies are well within their right to restrict their employees' Internet access and/or web sites they visit. It's their computer so they can tell what their employees what they can and can't do with their property. If you don't like the company's rules, then go work somewhere else.

                    I don't necessarily agree with some companies that are very restrictive with Internet access, but they do have the right to devise those policies. And again, if you don't like the rules, go work somewhere else.

              •  Hey... (0+ / 0-)

                Pornography could be political speech, if it weren't for our totally brain-dead "definition" of pornography.

                The Shapeshifter's Blog -- Politics, Philosophy, and Madness!

                by Shapeshifter on Wed Jun 21, 2006 at 12:05:10 PM PDT

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