In my opinion, this post is relevant to this community because I fear that some ed_ucate and proanorexia members may believe that this petition is a result of the spitefulness of the HP fandom as a whole. I want to stress that these few, spiteful individuals do NOT represent the majority of our fandom, and that most of us aren't spiteful and vindictive.
I don't post here very often because my interest is more academic and psychological than first-hand, but I felt the need to pipe up in light of the unfolding drama.
I am a Harry Potter fan. I read it, I roleplay it. Sometimes the subjects I delve into are the kind that allegedly violate LJ's ToS, and I'll say flat out thatI think SixApart's actions with regard to censoring the fandom are ludicrous and without basis. In particular, I've seen the three pieces of artwork that elicited bans of some fan artists, and I can tell you that when I first heard about it, I thought I'd be looking at blood and gore. I'm not going to reproduce the links here, but one of the pictures was consensual but "ambiguous" with regard to character age, another was consensual and adult, but incestuous, and the last implied eventual rape in a non-explicit manner. I don't condone censoring artwork of any kind, but I was particularly offended by the willingness of the powers that be to suspend accounts over pictures that didn't clearly depict a crime. In that respect, I'm personally disgusted and completely understand the bitterness of a few fandom people who have suffered because of these ridiculous suspensions.
But that doesn't make their actions okay.
If you come away from this thinking anything, please understand that we, as a fandom, are not a bunch of bitter, persecutory individuals who want to make others suffer because we have. These are a handful of people who are rightfully angry, but expressing it in an unacceptable, vengeful manner that does not represent the feelings of the fandom.
I will admit flat-out that I don't like pro-anorexia communities and I do worry about the harm that they can cause. But it isn't my place, or anyone's place, really, to ban discussion communities because of my personal feelings about them. As a lesbian, it also angers me greatly that these bitter people are using TOS excerpts that were meant to protect against hate speech and the facilitation of crimes against minorities, to further their quest to get revenge because they were wronged. No matter how harmful some of the posts in these communities may be, they do not embody the spirit of the TOS, nor even approach the potential danger of communities that encourage sodomizing homosexuals or lynching African-Americans. It OFFENDS me that anyone would try to compare "lets talk about fasting" and "lets go castrate a fag."
The answer to the destruction to liberty isn't the destruction of more liberty. We should ALL be focusing our energy into opposing the treatment of SixApart. Yelling at each other and trying to make others suffer the way we have is not only a wasted effort, but a community-breaking one. In a time where we should all be vigilant against censorship, people are turning on each other in misdirected rage. To anyone reading this who supports this petition out of bitterness, I say this: stop it. You are perpetuating an endless cycle. If a few angry pro-ana people don't turn around and petition to ban you, they'll do it to some other group, who will in turn turn around and take their revenge out on somebody else. Don't you understand that you're diverting attention and energy from the people you should really be angry about? And yet, it would be equally foolish to scorn these angry people as a whole because of the actions of a few.
Losing a forum for support and discussion would be horrible, and your anger toward the individuals responsible completely justified. But I ask you to separate the person from the interest, to please recognize that there are bad eggs in every dozen, and to resist the urge to make the situation more unfortunate by lumping us all in with the rotten ones.
They don't speak for us, and they don't speak for me.
Note: In the context of defending the fandom, I think I failed to reiterate that i'm referring to bitter fandom petition signers - not everyone who signs the petition. I fully believe that the petition WAS created out of bitterness, as was the complaint filed with LJ, and that a lot of people signing it ARE bitter. That said, there are people who are against pro-ana communities and have nothing to do with the fandom. While I still oppose closing them down, none of this is directed at you, because you're acting for your own reasons. To people who are allegedly fans who are "objectively" signing this petition, I convey my doubt, not only because it's a little too coincidental for my liking, but because people are subconsciously affected by things they think they're being objective about. If you truly separated yourself completely from the two issues, then my kudos to you, but I remain firm in my belief that the petition was started out of bitterness and that many - not all - of the petition signers are signing it out of bitterness.