mgk / suki has an opinion down after complaint by local white supremacists to MD Webhosting

    Update : OK, so the balding villain in the piece appears to be Darrin ‘Sleeping Dragon’ Hodges. According to Weezil: “Eagle-eyed mgk readers will have noted that this site was ’suspended’ from about 1AM to 9AM AEST today. This was due to a false complaint of child pornography on this site, lodged by Darrin Hodges, one of our beloved local white supremacists/neo nazis, about the Bill Henson image accompanying the immediately preceding post.” In addition to once declaring that Hitler had the requisite views on multiculturalism, on Stormfront Down Under, in 2005, concerning the racist pogrom in Cronulla, Dazza declared: “Friends, today was an historic day, the day Australians stood up against state-imposed multiculturalism”… Accompanying his posting is a series of photographs he took at Cronulla that day, including one of a T-shirt emblazoned with the words “wog free zone” and another of a sign offering free sausages to the crowd, with “no tabouli”. Cretinous yes, but credible? Not especially. Darrin even fancies himself as being something of an anarchist nowadays!

Over a month ago, my blog was the subject of a complaint. To cut a long story short, it took a few weeks for it to come back up. At the time, credit for this interruption in our regular broadcasting schedule was taken by a member of a local fascist group, known as the New Right. One of those who supported my blogging efforts was Weezil, a blogger from NSW, and the blogger behind machinegunkeyboard. Unfortunately, seemingly as the result of a complaint by another fascist, Weezil’s blog has just now been suspended by MD Webhosting. In addition, feminist blogger suki (suki has an opinion) has also been shut up.

We cross now to Weezil:

For those of you unfamiliar with my blog, the main topics of mgk:Machine Gun Keyboard, normally located at http://machinegunkeyboard.com, are social justice, civil rights, civil liberties, anti-racism, media vs. democracy and freedom of speech. I have my own website because my views are not always popular and I wanted a site where I had final editorial control- within the broad and reasonable limits of the terms of service agreement with my host.

My hosting company, MD Webhosting, have suspended access to http://machinegunkeyboard.com. My email program started throwing errors at about 1.16am this morning. Everything’s down, email, FTP and the website itself. There was no reason given. MD Webhosting made no attempt to contact me. I really don’t know specifically at this point WHY the site has been suspended- but I have a VERY good suspicion.

On Thursday, 22nd May, I put up a post on mgk entitled ‘Paedophilic pornography paranoia’ where I lambasted the NSW Police for taking seriously a complaint of child pornography against world-renowned photographer Bill Henson, whom you will know (unless you live under a rock) has had his most recent exhibition of nude photography closed after a complaint from Hetty Johnston of an anti-child abuse group called ‘Bravehearts.’ Police have seized 21 of 40 images from the Henson exhibition at the Roslyn Oxley9 gallery in Paddington. Police also say they expect to lay charges regarding the ‘depiction of a child under the age of 16 in a sexual situation.’

Henson is a photographer of international renown, with works exhibited in museums worldwide. His images are used in NSW high schools as part of the photography curriculum. We are not dealing with a common pornographer.

Amongst educated people, there is no controversy. Hetty Johnson and NSW Police have not just gone overboard but are sinking to the bottom- FAST:

Under fair comment (Aus) and fair use (as mgk is physically published from server facilities in the USA) guidelines, I normally host a copy of an illustrating image to go with my blog posts. This post about paedo porno paranoia was accompanied by a Bill Henson image I found out on the web. That image is attached. The image is also available at http://xupacabras.weblog.com.pt/arquivo/BillHenson.jpg

I specifically chose a Henson image that could in no way be construed as ‘pornographic’ nor ‘sexualised.’ A supine model, alone, possibly sleeping, in soft, ‘painterly’ focus. A nude model under the age of 16 which is NOT in a sexualised context can in no way be construed as child pornography. The gist of the blog post itself (the text of which is presently locked up by MD Webhosting, so I can’t even copy it for you here) is that ‘neither nudity nor pubescence alone constitute pornography.’

Is it a confronting image? You bet it is. That is largely due to the cultivated paranoia regarding child pornography. The viewer must take a moment and think about the image. Is this a sexual situation or simply a lovely image of an adolescent form? This is what art SHOULD do. It should make us THINK about what we’re viewing. What is this young girl’s story? Is she actually human or something supernatural, a woodland faerie at rest perhaps? Is she even alive? Could this be an image of a body thrown from an airplane crash? There’s any number of possible stories that could go with this image, but absolutely NONE of them would include titillation or prurience- UNLESS the viewers themselves had some sexual interest in adolescents! If sexual interest in an adolescent is part of the viewer’s story, that simply has to come from the viewer- because it is not present in the image.

Some argue that nude depictions of adolescents should be banned because they are arousing for paedophiles. If this is so, Bondi Beach should be shut at once. Museums should require ID cards and psychological examinations for those who want to view nude artworks.

We can not, should not and DO not alter our entire society to compensate for every specific human failing or shield us from every danger- or there would be no cars, bars or casinos. Healthy humans don’t pursue every urge, to excess or otherwise. You don’t protect children from drowning by banning water- you teach them how to swim.

This foolish attack on nude depictions of adolescents- which are very clearly NOT pornographic- vastly devalues the case of Hetty Johnson and other child protection activists. The boy has cried wolf.

Johnson has elected to take on the art world as well as civil libertarians. If Henson and myself are child pornographers, Johnson will necessarily use the same standard to trawl museums and libraries, seeking to eradicate ALL nude images of adolescents and children, in sexualised context or not. This is very clearly not just unacceptable but well beyond the pale. I normally would support Johnson’s stances when she comes to the aid of exploited children- in a reasonable manner. I’m FULLY disappointed that someone who could be doing something useful has pulled a stunt that has not only backfired but will set back the cause of child protection for DECADES.

Depiction of nude human forms of all ages has been around since the most common medium was a cave wall. Of all the obvious subjects for art created by humans, humans themselves must be the most obvious. Nude cherubs, based on human infants, flit about in Renaissance paintings from numerous artists. Sylphs, faeries and goddesses often take androgynous, prepubescent forms. We don’t see libraries and museums conducting cleansing bonfires- and for very good reason. Nudity alone does not constitute pornography. Adolescence is as fair a subject for nude depiction as any other phase of human existence. To deny that we have human form between infancy and adulthood is patently absurd.

Despite numerous contacts with MD Webhosting via trouble tickets filed via the customer control panel, they have YET to contact me, in spite of the MD Webhosting commitment to 24 hour customer service. I have yet to confirm that this kerfuffle is precisely why mgk is presently shut off, but it could SIMPLY be nothing else. The hosting fees are paid in advance and the domain registration has recently been renewed til 2009. I’ll update you with some certainty once I have heard from them. Until this is sorted out, I am contactable only via my optusnet account.

This much I’ll tell you- mgk will go back live with NO content changes. If that means I have to move hosts, so be it- but I’m LIVID- and hell hath NO fury like a censored writer.

Regards

Brian aka ‘weez’
mgk:Machine Gun Keyboard

http://machinegunkeyboard.com

About @ndy

I live in Melbourne, Australia. I like anarchy. I don't like nazis. I enjoy eating pizza and drinking beer. I barrack for the greatest football team on Earth: Collingwood Magpies. The 2015 premiership's a cakewalk for the good old Collingwood.
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11 Responses to mgk / suki has an opinion down after complaint by local white supremacists to MD Webhosting

  1. weez says:

    Thanks for the support, @ndy.

    While mgk is back on, it’s not yet the full quid. SHAO and a couple other of my web facilities are still down. We can attribute this to incompetence and recent support quality downgrades at MD.

    Our little balding nazi mate down in Sutherland Shire may come to regret drawing my undivided attention for a few hours today. I can assure him and all his racist hairbag mates that my undivided attention is the last motherfucking thing on earth they want.

  2. eatme says:

    damn inbred wankers.

    this shit will probably only get worse. time to mirror your db locally so you can move servers in an afternoon dns propagation.

  3. Whitemore says:

    Are you kidding me, Weez?

    Sorry, fully naked 13 year olds are way too young to be displayed for public viewing.

  4. weez says:

    Suki Has An Opinion is back up at http://machinegunkeyboard.com/shao but the redirect from http://sukihasanopinion.com is still dead. MD have recently sent their technical support offshore to India. Quality of service has suffered dramatically, notably on weekends, when there’s no one in MD’s Melbourne offices to sort out the cut-rate offshore tech support…

  5. weez says:

    OK, MD have pulled their finger out. Suki is back up as is everything else.

  6. Stolz patriotisch says:

    [Blah blah blah...]

  7. Pingback: Bill Henson and The Eye Of The Beholder

  8. Lumpen says:

    http://www.artchive.com/artchive/m/munch/puberty.jpg

    Last time there was art depicting naked children, Europe collapsed, there was human sacrifice, dogs and cats living together… mass hysteria!

  9. Liam says:

    Whitemore, because you look at a naked kid and immediately think of sex might suggest something is wrong with you.

  10. Darrin Hodges says:

    “Our little balding nazi mate down in Sutherland Shire may come to regret drawing my undivided attention for a few hours today. I can assure him and all his racist hairbag mates that my undivided attention is the last motherfucking thing on earth they want.”

    Still waiting Bwian. BTW, nice photoshop of the pope on your website. It looks just like the anti-semitic caricatures the Nazis published (and Muslims still do). You must be very proud Bwian.

  11. Pingback: Article: Bill Henson & The Eye Of The Beholder | Stuart Buchanan

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