MIDDLEBURGH

To inform entertain and excite my kids, Jamie, Patrick, Aaron & Sarah Middleburgh, our family and friends.

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MIDDLEBURGH FLAMES

OK... it was Mid-Autumn Festival and I had a day off work. Before lunch we went for a relaxed walk in a country park with friends. After lunch I continued to identify my active internet accounts with the intent of shutting them down. I discovered that 2 years ago I opened an account on IMGUR, uploaded 1 picture, didn't share it and then .... nothing. Since I have some memes on hand I thought why not...

North Korean leader seeks personal grooming tipsThe first one uploaded (North Korean leader seeks personal grooming tips) got a favorable response (and compared to this blog, lots of views). True there were understandable comments about his "weight problem", and the North Korean regime's abuse of it's own people. However, buoyed by the responses and views I put up three more images. Two (sighting of Ninja Turtles and a comment on recent eBay outage) also featured Kim. The third (Putin seeking partner) leveraged some copy from a "dating" site that seemed "appropriate". Frankly I was disappointed with the response to the latter . It was neither trashed nor applauded although there was an enigmatic comment appended stating that 'in Russia, we have a saying " don't be a pussy"' (I didn't get it either - obviously something doesn't translate well)

Meanwhile I caught reports on the TV that 4 NATO countries were going to supply weapons to the Ukraine (which was subsequently repudiated). This moved me to post another meme (where Poroshenko asks KIM for a nuke). This was not received at all well. I was challenged as to whether I was comparing Ukraine with North Korea. I pointed out that if someone invaded your country it might be appropriate to take fight to them. (Not saying it would be right or wrong or actively inciting etc ) The intention had been to point up the fact that Ukrainians in practical terms stand alone against Russia whatever the West may say. The challenger (fair do's to him) conceded that perhaps there was more that the US could/should do.

I then noticed that the Poroshenko and Ninja Turtles images had been retagged by a troll as "Propaganda Bullshit". Now I have no problem if someone thinks jokes of mine are not funny and scores them down. I can live with that!! I am frequently told that my sense of humour is an acquired taste (if that)..and I can't sing either!!. But I do take exception to this "tagging". Bullshit it may be .....but propaganda it is not..... sorry ah.

Propaganda on whose behalf ??... The Russians, Ukranians, North Koreans, .... or God forbid...the Ninja Turtles ... I ask again ... WHO?. The fact I have "value added some images neither endorses nor critises the DPRNK regime (nor any one else). True because the content may be construed as political in nature but where is the propaganda message in the ninja turtle image ?? and any message inferred from the Poroshenko image is clearly ambiguous as previously indicated. At worst I have lampooned a despised leader of a rouge state - cartoonists do this sort of thing all the time .. take as an example Barak Obahma.

I concluded that the troll was probably objecting on principle either to the use of images of "KIM" or more generally to the use of images from/about North Korea. I wasn't sure if the troll was pro or anti (not that it matters). I took it as a given that futher similar images would be similarly tagged. Such tagging is factually incorrect, disparaging and may constitute defamation. I believe it's intent was to intimidate and discourage the use of such images. This I consider to be an attempt to constrain my right to free speech.... which is never going to happen.

 photo politicalsatire_zpsb68cc2c1.jpgI superbly crafted and uploaded an appropriate meme. On one level it was a legitimate political satire about propaganda pictures put (who could fault that??), and on another level it was a pointed message mocking and preempted the "troll" . Regrettably it was received badly !! There was a quick burst of hostile(?) comments then the image appeared to be pulled down !!! I could see it in maintenance mode - except for the comments but it was no longer visible in shared public mode. It was as if it had never been.... I had been silenced!!!

Not clear if it was officially pulled down by the IMGUR administrators - I checked the T&Cs and User Rules but to be frank could not see where it breached any rules. The other thought that crossed my mind was that the image had simply been hacked by persons unknown. Anyway... it all smacks of censorship .. and repression ....something you might expect from agents of a totalitarian state like the KGB .. or the ayatollah's morality police or ISIS enforcers.

Whilst contemplating this situation I noticed a message displayed against my gallery referring to me as "Scumbag Middleburgh" because I had not Favorited any images yet. My first reaction was "how disrespectful" but under the circumstances I felt I could hardly complain (for all I know they are a rude load of tossers over at IMGUR - and I have a very thick skin), second reaction was "screw you.... not going to favorite anything now" and the third was to closely look at images on site to see if there was anything worth favoriting. So I browsed and searched high and low and yes..... plenty there to amuse or interest me ... but to favorite ? ... sorry .... NO!! Favoriting should say something about the person favoriting ..... So here's the thing .. I don't feel like following the crowd, conforming and favoriting something because some pimple arsed prat tries pressuring me by calling me names ... and I don't mind being in a crowd of one ploughing my own path. It has been said that if I was political and left wing I would be the sort of person that would make Trotsky nervous...(don't you just love it !!) So I imported a picture of Michael Collins, the founder of asymmetric warfare and favourited it ..... then reinstated KIMS poo'y picture that had been taken down..... and Mr President ......I believe Denis Rodman may have KIM's cell number, should you need it ....


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