KiwiFarms: An ongoing hate campaign

The story of KiwiFarms is something that is awfully fascinating. As most folks know who are reading this, it started as a forum dedicated to the ridicule of one man, Christian Weston Chandler. Since then, it's moved owners, hosting providers, forum software, and more recently DDoS protection providers.

As you are probably aware, #DropKiwiFarms was (is?) a campaign to, well, drop KiwiFarms from DDoS protection by Cloudflare. Some fascinating stuff happened there, the CEO of Cloudflare initially was in favor of protecting KiwiFarms not because he liked the site or agreed with the content on there, rather he wanted to protect them because it is not a backbone provider's job to police the content that goes through their servers. That's like asking a highway authority to stop murderers using the highways.

Yet, two days later, he reversed his decision and routed connections to to a landing page explaining his issues with the site. He claimed that the content on the KiwiFarms is something that is so reprehensible and such a "threat to human life" that he had to take it down. I of course doubt this, to my knowledge no real-world harm (real harm, not feelings hurt) has been done by the KiwiFarms. It's a gossip forum. Anybody who thinks it carries weight is delusional. It's a couple thousand retards online talking about retards online. While the coat of paint might be offensive, it's no different than 4chan or even Twitter/X. Hell, the paint is almost exactly X now that Elon took over.

Whatever you think about the site, it does not change the fact that a backbone provider should not stop "serving" content (they don't actually serve the content, just act as a caching/proxy system) just because a few hundred people don't like a website. Internet backbone providers like Cloudflare (as sad to say that as it is) should work and behave exactly like phone companies in the US. Phone companies are not liable for the content that travels their phone lines; they are forced to route all traffic. No matter how offensive or annoying a phone call you just got was, it is still legal to send. (In some states, like Oklahoma, the state government has blocked "robocalling". I'm not super sure how this ties in with the forced routing, talk to a lawyer if you are interested in that.)

KiwiFarms has since been a target for a continued hate campaign at the hands of Liz Fong Jones. She's an ex-Google systems engineer, now the CTO of Honeycomb. Due to this, she's got a lot of power and money to throw about. She has been able to convince two Tier 1 ISPs to null route KiwiFarms addresses and even convinced the .st root registrar to drop DNS for KF. This is a scary amount of power. If you have any interest in maintaining a healthy, working Internet you know why.

Having the power and influence to have multiple backbone providers #DropKiwiFarms should not be in the hands of one individual, let alone anyone. I say this from the position of a free speech absolutist, but anyone should get what I'm saying here. Your disagreement with someone's opinion or speech does not make what they are saying wrong or morally reprehensible. No matter how homophobic, transphobic or mysoginist someone's speech is, they are allowed to say it. Don't let your anger get the best of your reasoning.

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