LiveJournal: When the LJ abuse prevention team become the abusers, who will protect the LJ users?

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

"Like you, though, I just don't trust LJ abuse" - Founder of LiveJournal

Remember when Brad said "Like you, though, I just don't trust LJ abuse, because I hear so many horror stories"?

How much has changed with how LJ Abuse works?

Very little. LJ Abuse is inconsistent in its application of the TOS to the point of shameless favoritism. They take actions that go against their Abuse Policy. They invent new offenses that aren't listed.

"Invasion of Privacy" and "Harassment" are two of their favorite excuses to fall back on. Both terms have legal meanings which the abuse team neither knows nor cares about. You can fall foul of the LiveJournal Abuse Team's definition of invasion of privacy by posting public information, such as someone's name, or even their website which would allow people to pull public information from the WHOIS database. They may have posted this information publically on a site outside of LiveJournal, but it doesn't matter to LJ Abuse.

Under Harassment we read that they will suspend journals used "solely for the purpose of entries [or comments] about a particular user and/or community that fall under the definition of harassment or invasion of privacy." No where do they provide a definition of harassment, so we might reasonably assume that they are refering to the legal definition, but no. Harassment is whatever LJ Abuse decides it is if they want to suspend an account.

Recently there has been a rash of suspensions of communities deemed to exist soley to "incite harassment" and members posting in these locked communities have received threats against their personal journals. No where in the Abuse Policy is this "incitement to harass" mention, let alone defined. The Abuse Policy Document says that LJ Abuse does not actively seek out violations and will act only when a complaint is filed. If you file a complaint against someone for an entry which they lock before LJ Abuse gets to your complaint, they will tell you they can't look at it because it is locked. Post something in a locked community that the abuse team decides is incitement to harass though, and they will take action, even if the post goes something like "hey look at these losers in stupidproana community," and someone leaves "harassing" comments in the community.

Have you had a run in with LJ Abuse? Have you had a journal or community unfairly suspended with no appeal? Are you afraid to discuss it on LiveJournal for fear of retaliation by LJ Abuse?

Email us your story at
We will remove identifying information about your account unless you tell us not to.

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Blogger Colin said...

I did like that they got theljcirclejerk by claiming incitement to harass, despite the evident lack of actual harassment. I'd call that funny shit. The best part was that the community was more or less dead. I think the last post, after they finally took action, was, like, 7 days prior.

1:18 AM

Blogger Colin said...

Oh, and they stopped replying to my emails as soon as I called them on their bullshit.

1:19 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

LJA has such a stick up their ass. How old are most of them, 19?

12:51 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

THANK YOU! The abuse team are completely ignorant of the law, completely. They should not use words in the TOS and abuse policy which have defined legal meanings if they are going to interpret them according to the Dictionary of What I Want to Think Right Now.

As well as enforcing rules that aren't written down anywhere, they also refuse to enforce other parts of the TOS.

3:06 PM


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