MySpace Censorship?

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According to the UK’s Independent, it appears that MySpacers near and far are beginning to see glitches appearing in their favorite social networking site. Ask some users and they’ll tell you that the News Corp-owned site recently has been guilty of not only censoring postings but blocking access to MySpace rivals as well.

I can’t vouch for how true these complaints may be (I’m a guilty-pleasure, loyal MySpacer user who’s never encountered any problems on the site), but according to a handful of blogs there’s may be problem brewing. Apparently, company names like video-swapping site YouTube were deleted on MySpace user messages and attempts to download videos from the site landed the user on a blank page. Even the MySpace blog forum was shut down when the complaints started to rack up. Though the company claimed it was merely a “simple misunderstanding”, one blogger publicly complained to Blog Herald that, “This is soooo like Fox and News Corp to try and secretly seal our mouths with duct tape.”

If all this is true, clearly there’s an issue with the concept of open-source at stake here. Perhaps it’s becoming a bit too open…especially if Big Brother can tell you what not to chat about. If this censorship proves true, I should probably schedule a one-on-one with Murdoch.

5 COMMENTS


  1. I can’t vouch for how true these complaints may be…

    At first I was excited to see you reporting on this, but then disappointed in the lack of “story” that is here to read.

    Are we to guess that you did nothing to fact check the story yourself, even as a myspace user? Was it somehow difficult to try posting the names of competitors or practice some other methods which are supposedly banned or censured? If you did this, and then found no censure, wouldnt that make this a non-story?

    How is this really newsworthy then? There are also a lot of blogs out there discussing how Sharon’s stroke is the coming of the antichrist, but that is just chatter, right?

    Sorry to be pokey, but I am a bit surprised.

  2. I’d like to talk to someone about this, and get this out in the press.
    MySpace has censored my profile picture for its nudity content. The pic was a pre-raphaelite painting. A classic 100 year old painting.
    I did a search and found profiles with pics of guys ejaculating. Those pics were still up (no pun intended) while mine was taken down by them.

  3. Nico and The Velvet Underground were kicked off Myspace.com on February 13, 2006. This is the 8th time the band has been censored by Rupert Murdoch’s popular yet controversial site. Even as the shadow of New York State Attorney General Eliot Spitzer looms over Myspace, and U2 and Madonna build a web presence, Nico and The Velvet Underground enter 2006 as the most censored band on Myspace.com

  4. Freedom of speech is very important to me and when individuals become silenced for speaking their minds, it makes me wonder how truly free this country is and if we are still the purveyors of justice and freedom for all as we so casually claim to the world. I have become friends with many individuals who always push the envelope and stand up for what they believe in, no matter the mountains they must surmount. Its ironic that Myspace has become another mountain to surmount! Its very ironic. I covered Nico and the Velvet Underground in my blog and the next day they get banned, yet again! It makes me wonder who is watching!

    The band’s images are less offensive than the random here-are-my-cock shots that are common in many profiles. The fifth time, they were kicked off due to their usage of Cindy Shermans Untitled ..256, courtesy of Sammlung Goetz, Mnchen. I have found more offensive pictures on Myspace through my random searches than on their Myspace link. I am infuriated that a band cannot post the images that they want to show for who they are because the pictures are supposedly lewd, offensive, and violent even when Myspace posts ads encouraging people to hit George Bush in a trivial high school game.

  5. 2/25/2007. Universal Music Group subsidiary Verve Records dealt a serious death blow to Nico and The Velvet Underground by hijacking its website on Myspace on February 25, 2007. The band’s Myspace page was deleted on February 24, 2007 and replaced by the folk band Velvet Underground

    Compare the origianal Nico and the Velvet Underground myspace website at:

    http://64.233.167.104/search?q=cache:kj3zpMxcYGsJ:profile.myspace.com/index.cfm%3Ffuseaction%3Duser.viewprofile%26friendID%3D108384181+myspace+nicoandthevelvetunderground&hl=en&ct=clnk&cd=1&gl=us

    with Universal Music Group’s Hijacked version of The Velvet Underground: (http://www.myspace.com/nicoandthevelvetunderground)

    Spokeswoman Anna Astley is concerned about these recent developments and commented on the censorship fiasco. “Myspace.com and Fox News made no warning that the band’s account was being cancelled. Canceling Nico and The Velvet Undergrounds’ Myspace.com account is tantamount to censorship and a violation of their First Amendment rights.”

    Amidst the controversy and swirling allegations, Nico and The Velvet Underground had accumulated thousands of fans, with hundreds of thousands projected for 2008-2010. PR spokeswoman Anna Astley also spoke of Nico and The Velvet Underground’s projected lost revenues from the XM and Sirius Satellite Radio MTV tributes scheduled for 2007-2008. Fox News’ censorship of Nico and The Velvet Underground will likely threaten their efforts for their much-anticipated Video iPod syndication in the EU, American, and Asian markets.

    New York State Attorney General Eliot Spitzer has accused Myspace.com of false advertising and deceptive business practices. Within the last year, Myspace was fingered for spyware attacks to redirect members to its search engine.

    Intermix Media agreed to settle for 7.9M, having admitted no wrongdoing.

    Anna Astley refused to comment regarding any future legal action against Universal Music Group subsidiary Verve Records, News Corporation, Fox News, and/or Myspace.com regarding Nico and The Velvet Underground’s First Amendment rights. Nico could not be reached for comment.

    In 2005 and 2006, Myspace.com’s censored Nico and The Velvet Underground’s artistic use of Cindy Sherman’s 1992 Untitled #256, Courtesy Sammlung Goetz, München. In the most recent spat with Rupert Murdoch’s baby, Nico and The Velvet Underground were kicked off Myspace.com on Monday 19, 2005. The Chicago outfit has been censored off Myspace nearly 14 times. In this latest attack of dark sleuthery, Verve Records has challenged Nico and The Velvet Underground’s message of gender equality, including artists like Andy Warhol, Annette Messager, Louise Bourgeois, Barbara Kruger, the Guerrilla Girls and the Vienna Aktionists,

    Anna Astley suggests that everyone reflect on Supreme Court Justice Robert Jackson’s 1943 opinion that “The very purpose of a Bill of Rights was to withdraw certain subjects from the vicissitudes of political controversy, to place them beyond the reach of majorities and officials and to establish them as legal principles to be applied by the courts. One’s right to life, liberty, and property, to free speech, a free press, freedom of worship and assembly, and other fundamental rights may not be submitted to vote; they depend on the outcome of no elections.” – West Virginia State Board of Education v. Barnette, 319 U.S. 624 (1943)

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