In response to the criticism of the Chicago Independent Media Center (chicago.indymedia.org) in last week's letter by a ProtestWarrior [August 26], we would like to call attention to our editorial policy, which is on our Web site:
"The collective that maintains the CIMC website can hide posts if the material is far outside of, or in conflict with, the principles of the project and this website. Examples of material that may be hidden include newswire posts that are racist, sexist, homophobic, or that clearly fly in the face of our mission to serve as a space for the exchange of news, dialogue, and opinion that advances economic and social justice.
"In addition, posts that serve as commercials for for-profit companies will be removed. We respect and support a diversity of opinion, but our site, as well as other sites in the Indymedia network, have unfortunately been increasingly targeted by quantities of right-wing disinformation and hatred-promoting messages. We would appreciate it if such persons would instead use [other Web sites], or set up their own...rather than subjecting our readers and posters to their objectionable cant."
However, when we find postings which violate our editorial policy they are not erased; they're merely moved into the "hidden articles" section of our Web site. Those articles can be viewed by selecting the "hidden articles" link on the lower right of our home page. The articles, which Mr. Fleming says we are "deleting," can be found there.
We should also say that ProtestWarrior is notorious for harassing bona fide left organizers during protests, rallies, events, and in the digital realm. While we welcome civil, honest, and constructive dialogue from a variety of perspectives, we do not tolerate abuse, but we have yet to hear anything besides incessant abuse from ProtestWarrior and their ilk.
Chicago Independent Media Center