“It’s, like, the marketplace of ideas, but without Nazis”

I have a latent fascination with online dating. The idea that our generation’s experience with love and romance is heavily shaped by human-designed software is fucking wild.

See, software can get better at its job much faster than human culture can. It seems entirely possible that fifty years’ worth of innovation in dating apps could get so good at designing social interactions between two people that the process of looking for love could be “solved” or maybe just simplified or made safer.

Software gives people the chance to create new social context; it becomes a way to build and design relationships. Think about how many people you’ve met in-person through the Internet — your first WoW guildmate (whoa!), to the strangers whose cars you’ve hijacked with your phone in the last couple months. That shit is pretty cool.

People also built software that has enabled the President of the United States to flagrantly display his idiocy. That’s probably not good for anyone and you all over there at Twitter should really ban his account before that stupid fucker subtweets us into nuclear death.

There is also software out there that helps Nazis get together and talk about white supremacy stuff.

You do not have to let the Nazis use your thing, guys.

I know you’re worried about, like, falling down a slippery slope of censorship, but listen, there are already plenty of people who you don’t want to use your thing (child porn traffickers, drug dealers, hackers who steal people’s money, people who haven’t paid for your thing, that kind of stuff). “Maybe I shouldn’t let just anyone use this thing I made” is a line we have already crossed well before we got to Nazis, like, the first time around. If your thing all of a sudden implemented a new feature that stopped Nazis from being able to use it, I’d consider that getting better at its job.

“But what if I wanted to use the same logic to stop gay people from using my thing?”

Then you’d be a horrible bigot because only bigot logic lets you equate gay people with Nazis. Cut that shit out immediately. And stop hiding behind this farcical devotion to absolute free speech that a) basically is only extended to white dudes and b) assumes that humanity shouldn’t be allowed to decide that certain ideas are bad for our collective well-being. Humanity minus Nazis is Humanity 2.0 as far as I’m concerned.

So please, help Humanity hit 2.0. Stop letting the Nazis use your thing, and stop letting Donald Trump use your thing, before any more people fucking die over this shit. OKCupid’s already on board.

patrick miller

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