Wednesday, October 14, 2020

Another area of free speech squelched -Yahoo is closing groups

 October 14, 2020

All good things come to end, or so they say. Yahoo has announced it is closing Groups effective December 15, 2020. It's no surprise. The writing has been on the wall for some time. Yahoo has systematically encumbered the Groups feature over the last few years to the point the groups became impossible to employ for any promotion. 

Now they say, "Yahoo Groups has seen a steady decline in usage over the last several years." Well, duh. That was the goal, apparently. 

In the beginning, Yahoo Groups was about free speech. If you had a group, you could pretty much say whatever you wanted to within the group. Yahoo touted groups as connection builders, but I suspect people made a few of the wrong connections.

Yahoo has also disabled comments on its "premium, trustworthy content." Why would they disable comments? Don't we live in a society where free discourse is to be encouraged? Apparently not. 

I'm alarmed at the growing trend of censorship on the Internet. I find I don't take anything at face value now. I look for the motive behind every action and I see companies like Yahoo, Facebook, Twitter, Google, and YouTube becoming subversive in their actions to control content and thereby free expression and speech. 

Perhaps Neal Peart, Alex Lifeson, and Geddy Lee said it best way back in 1982 when they recorded, "Subdivisions."  We must conform or be cast out. 

When I embarked on my writing career, Yahoo Groups were an invaluable source of information. I did make connections with other writers and develop relationships in a secure forum. In my personal life, a Yahoo group led me to meaningful friendships that continue to this day. 

I view the closing of Yahoo groups as another step in a grander plan to control people. Could Facebook groups be next? We all know Facebook rewards like thinkers and punishes opposing views. YouTube censors monetized videos that mention Christian views. I watch a cooking stream called The Hillbilly Kitchen and I know this to be true even though the cook's beliefs are quite harmless to the general public.

It's easy to shrug the Groups closing off as a business decision, or that it simply ran its course and it's time to end it. I'd really like to believe that, and I would have had the comments on Yahoo news articles not been disabled a few short months ago. 

Who and what controls you, and how? For what purpose is this done? Who determines what is for YOUR greater good and what do you gain, or lose, at their hands? These are important questions to ask.


 KC Kendricks

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