YELP Forced to Identify Anonymous Users; Elite to Launch "World Post" Online Publication

Thu, Jan 9, 2014 - 12:17pm

This will be short and sweet. This morning I ran across two headlines that I felt were important to share:

1) YELP critics must be identified, court rules in online landscape altering decision

I'll write a longer article at some point about privacy and the Internet, but this ruling is bad news for individuals as well as content providers. It irks me, because most of these judges and politicians who try to write rules for the Internet are clueless about the underlying technology, and I'll bet half of them can barely handle sending out an email.

I also question how YELP Is actually going to identify their anonymous critics, because an IP address isn't a person. Though, more and more, websites are identifying individuals not just on IP address, but by the unique signature created by their browser plug-ins.

Question to you, Turdites: If Internet users are someday required to identify themselves through a federal centralized database, would you stop using the Internet entirely?

2) Arianna Huffington announces launch of World Post news website

As if the world doesn't have enough propaganda benefiting the people on the top, Arianna Huffington is starting a new online publication to give voice to the 1%. Seriously! And let me remind you: This is the woman who made a mint off of the AOL/Huffington Post merger, off the backs of bloggers who wrote for free, and HuffPo still isn't making a profit!

The new "World Post" won't just be for Americans, but will be designed for an international audience. The publication will be launched at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland this month.

Why not just call it the "New World Order Post" and be done with it?

Aren't you super excited about reading blog posts by Bill Gates? I know I am! (sarcasm off)

So what's the reasoning behind providing a platform for the uber-rich? Billionaire investor Nicolas Berggruen says: “You have to start somewhere. A lot of these people are knowledgable."

Uh huh.

Oh, and supposedly, the site will have some non-billionaires writing too. Any chance Turd will be invited to contribute?

Stephanie blogs sporadically at a number of websites, including Freeople and Free Thinking Christianity.

About the Author


Jan 9, 2014 - 12:20pm


My moral has improved, they can stop the beatings!

Jan 9, 2014 - 12:25pm


I'm not planning on posting here daily. I just saw these headlines and was like...ARRGHHHH...gotta share. :-)

Jan 9, 2014 - 12:32pm

your first question...

the day that you are going to need a national internet ID will be the same day some smart kid will have found a way around it :-)

Big L
Jan 9, 2014 - 12:37pm


Thanks for the 'reading' on that news Steph! Was wondering what the inside story was and now I know.

I'm pretty confident there will be a work around, somewhere, somehow for contributors and bloggers and communities alike.

The internet is out of the box now, as an unstructured organization it will adapt and survive.

Having had this level of access to the world and each other, the internet communities will never stand for a restriction of truly free speech.

Jan 9, 2014 - 12:44pm

Stephanie-answer to Your

Stephanie-answer to Your question:

I will not stop using Internet if I am required to identify myself. I am in fact almost identified here, my e-mail submitted contains my full real name, and totally identified in some other sites.

Jan 9, 2014 - 12:45pm

My company was a victim of Yelp.

My company was a victim of Yelp. I had bad reviews from people who had never used my services. A few of them came from the Bay area and my business is located in Seattle and Portland. I got into an argument with some of the people in the forum and it turned out that one of them was a Yelp plant. He latter PM me and said he understood my position and if I was to advertise with Yelp they would go away. I told him to go F himself. This was all before the lawsuit. I wish I had kept the message.

Jan 9, 2014 - 12:49pm

Arianna Huffington....

...should be dipped in sh!t and set on fire !


(I don't like her very much)

Jan 9, 2014 - 12:55pm

@woofwoof & YELP's alleged bad business practices

I did see on some comments that other businesses have charged that YELP allegedly posts fake negative reviews and extorts advertising money to get rid of them. Note how I wrote "allegedly." What if YELP came to TFMR, saw your post, and then demanded that we provide your personal information because they feel you've defamed them here?

If an online business was extorting users with fake reviews and engaging in racketeering, that would be a different issue (and lawsuit) than requiring online companies to provide the identities and personal information of their members. The precedent of this decision to force the release of personal information is far-reaching and doesn't actually solve the greater problem necessarily.

Jan 9, 2014 - 1:03pm

Let Huffington open her news site

1) I like hearing more viewpoints, including those with whom I do not expect to agree.

2) Let's hear their propaganda direct from the horse's mouth, rather than having been translated by the blow drys.

Jan 9, 2014 - 1:04pm


I say bring it. It don't bad mouth people unless it's true.

edit: to think of it I don't even badmouth my competitors. I always ask the customers to check around for what will work for them. I spent years to build my business and in one swoop"Mrs. Cravis" tears it down without ever setting foot in my establishment.

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