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A disturbance in the force?

Written By: - Date published: 5:36 pm, October 9th, 2007 - 23 comments
Categories: blogs, dpf - Tags: ,

I might be coming to this belatedly (forgive me if you’ve already noticed it) but it seems the left/right blog war has heated up considerably in the last couple of weeks, and there’s some palpable right wing cyber-paranoia going on.

It seems the right have got rather used to New Zealand’s blogosphere being their own preserve, but lately things aren’t going so well for them because (gasp!) some folk are daring to put up left wing sites and (double gasp batman) they’re daring to post left-wing comments on the National Party blog.

There’s a long, confusing conversation over at NZ Conservative about it here (choice quote: “We all need to discuss the attack kiwiblog is suffering from the left at the moment. The volume of leftist fucktard trolling has increased too dramatically for it to be unplanned organic growth”).

And at the moment every second response to (even vaguely) left-wing commentators on Kiwiblog seems to be of the “are you being paid by the Labour party?” ilk.

Here are some of my favorites:

Are you employed by the Government, the Labour Party or the Civil Service?

Time to go methinks. Another promising thread about to be disrupted by the imported professional blog poster.

Oh and the one on the thread about new blogs (we got a mention!):

So to recap. Robinsod and his spontaneous friends all simultaneously and separately decided that DPF’s “media space” was getting too influential. and Separately and Independently (despite sharing IP addresses) decided that it was necessary to try and break up any debate and to troll until the site no longer had any influence.

At the same time someone else, completely independently, set up an attack site to undermine DPF’s message. Again completely independently and without in any way coordinating with that effort Robinsod starts marketing the attack site.

yup. All a coincidence. Nothing to see here. Move along.

To make matters worse, Bill Ralston let it be known in the Herald on Sunday that the left is “out gunning” the right in cyberspace. As you can imagine that’s only made the paranoia worse. I can imagine it’s also putting a bit of pressure on National’s web strategist David Farrar as well especially in light of the “ramshackle PR fiasco” (hat tip Tane) that Farrar’s Kill the Bill site has become (why oh why would anyone publicly associate with the abomination that is Whale Oil??)

I think it’s worth saying here that here at The Standard we actually have no idea who’s behind Kiwblogblog (but we really, really like their work) nor are we running a campaign to “troll” Kiwiblog (but again we really, really like some of the posting that’s going on over there).

Given the right’s a bit funny about seeing cyberpace as their own property I guess I can only offer them my sincerest condolences on their illness and remind them to keep on wearing their tinfoil hats…

[Update: it’s still going on here’s Burt on Kiwiblog this morning –

DPF (and Sam and/or Tane)

Have you ever noticed that when Tane gives his “Labour good – national Bad” posts if you ever question him it’s always Sam who answers for him.

Are they one in the same ?

It just astounds me that the right can’t seem to fathom there might be more than one person out there that disagrees with them.]

[latest paranoia update: “is it really true that Tane’s being paid to act as an official Labour blogger?” – I’ve gotta say as far as I know the only pro in this game is National Party blogger David Farrar but damn if someone’s getting paid to sit on their arse all day and slap righties down on Kiwiblog then I want me a piece of that!]

23 comments on “A disturbance in the force?”

  1. illuminatedtiger 1

    The right have had a long history of planting things in the media. Even university papers are not exempt. I tracked down one of the authors and he turned out to run the local Young ACT chapter.

  2. r0b 2

    I’ve been reading Kiwiblog for a long time (never posted there). Time was when there was the occasional intelligent debate. But it gradually became a sewer (really fell apart after the last election). Now it is a paraody of itself. People like dad4justice and redbaiter have destroyed it. It’s quite sad. Same sort of arc as Usenet, when the spammers and trolls took over.

    I’m actually worried about DPF’s health. In a recent post he claimed to be working 5am to 1am. That’s not sane. And his behaviour lately has been increasingly erratic. David, should you happen to read this – consider taking a holiday. A real one. For your health.

  3. Shane 3

    I am glad to see this post. Good to see some balance starting to occur in the blogosphere. Some of these rightie bloggers can really apply their bully tactics to people with a different view to them.

  4. Shane 4

    Not to mention the rightie’s selfish attitude…..”MY taxes being spent on this on that” etc.
    I’m proud to pay my taxes and I really think it’s not THAT bad in in this country.

  5. Robert owen 5

    Funny that the weird NZ Conservative site cannot see that the fall of the DPF site is more to do with the constant ravings of d4j and RB.
    Its is even more strange that they aren’t banned seeing the damage they are doing.
    And as for the KTB site Fuck what a train wreck. Outgunning ? fuck it would be hard not to

  6. It is nice to see quite a few improvements in the political balance. Not a moment too soon, in my opinion. The right will get angrier and angrier as they begin to lose their former huge advantage in this space.

  7. …we actually have no idea who’s behind Kiwblogblog…

    I’ve got some suspicions but nothing concrete…

  8. Nih 8

    Don’t tell anyone, but I am Tane, Robinsod and Peak Oil Conspiracy. Dad4Justice and his hegemony of logins is a random-word generator that sits in the corner.

    In reality I’d seen DPF’s site several times in the past but only recently took an interest in it. It’s just like fascists to identify real public support for an opposing mindset as a fabrication.

  9. Robinson 9

    You’re so not Robinsod and I oughta know ‘cos I’m Nih – no, hold on, I’m redbaiter, no I’m David Farrar, shit! I am David Farrar… what am I doing posting on this blog I’m s’posed to be pretending it doesn’t exist. Can we just ah, forget this ever happened? Anyway I’ve gotta go have a beer with Matthew Hooton (he’s pretending to be Bill English who’s pretending to be the deputy leader of the National party which is pretending to um…ah..Oh this is all so confusing! Why are you doing this to me!!!)

  10. John 10

    Love The Standard. Go get’em guys. Keep up the good work.

  11. r0b 11

    “Love The Standard. Go get’em guys. Keep up the good work.”

    We can all help, by trying to make this a place for informed debate (and no frothing rants).

    Although the quality is painfully low, places like Kiwiblog are very active at the moment because the right is so angry. And anger is a powerful motivator. We on the left have been more complacent, letting things slide. Well, the next election is ours to lose. With recent polling I think we have very much woken up to that fact, and one of the effects is the emergence of blogs like The Standard. Great!

    But blogging probably won’t be enough. I think now is the time to be getting active with practical support for the party of your choice. Otherwise folks, it’s a giant step backwards for NZ.

  12. Span 12

    Well I find all this left “revival” a bit interesting. Bloggers like Idiot/Savant, the Public Address team and Jordan Carter have been arguing the red corner for several years. Most of the oldies have had their turn wasting their energy in the Kiwiblog sewers and eventually ended up focusing more on their own writing, on their own blogs.

    While it’s good to see more people challenging the dominant mindset on Kiwiblog there’s still a long way to go in the NZ blogosphere – we need more lefties, more women, more people with different backgrounds and experiences from those who are the majority in forums like Kiwiblog, and even on Public Address. The Standard and other blogs like it are another step forward 🙂

  13. Sam Dixon 13

    I think what is attracting people to The Standard is its production values (everyone likes pretty colours), its aggressive anti_key main line, and having multiple posters helps too – allowing greater volume of posts.

    There’s this weird parallel universe in the rightwing blogs. Tane, Robinsod and I are somehow in this conspiracy, a concerted (no doubt at Helen’s personal direction) to suddenly luanch attack on Kiwiblog – but if you look at the facts it just ain’t so. I’ve been posting there for about a year, Robinsod, it seemed like he was only around a month or two before he was banned, legend has it Tane has been around since Al Gore invented the internet. There has been no explosion in leftwing posting on Kiwiblog, a gradual increase though, – we often don’t post on the same topics and rarely share the same line of argument.

    Its fasinating to see them getting desperate so quickly – all of a sudden we’re all trolls, bans are being handed out, we’re called professional bloggers (DPF should know a bit about that, being the Nat’s blogger and their pollster) they’re trying to personally identify us and uncover ‘who funds The Standard’ (becuase you know a blog site and photoshop, they cost a fortune), trying to find some link to Labour – which is pretty bloody rich – I’ve said time and again I’m not even a Labour voter, whereas DPF works in National HQ.

  14. r0b 14

    “The Standard and other blogs like it are another step forward”

    Yup! Greetings Span (I’m guessing of Spanblather fame? http://spanblather.blogspot.com/ ). My student days are long long gone, but it was interesting to read that very reflective last post on your blog.

  15. ak 15

    The anger from the right is quite understandable: their core belief in individualism and the “natural order” of the strong dominating the weak grates excrutiatingly with the fact that they have now lost three elections in a row – and to a woman at that!
    This blow to their central ethos can’t be the result of their own shortcomings (that would put them in the “weak’ camp – by their own definition they would deserve to be losers), so there must be another reason. Eureka – the game is rigged! Labour “stole” the election and are “corrupt”, tell lies, have “professional bloggers” etc etc. Hence the frenzied and nasty campaign of “blame the ref”, repeated ad nauseam, based on the flimsiest of evidence or justification.
    All of which makes great entertainment, but is ultimately useless in gaining lasting public approval for National. The “success” (as in volume of posts and views) of kiwiblog is more a result of prurient curiosity than any substance, and hoping for any political gold for the tories from that source would be like standing at a sewer outfall watching for the odd gold ring that gets flushed. The increasingly vile and mindless ranting is also tarnishing the desired image of a mild and responsible “government in waiting” that the innoculations have been trying to build.
    I think Farrar and co have started to realise this – hence the recent posturing with more “balance’, and the bannning of goaders like robinsod (a huge compliment to you!).
    Span and rOb are right: Kiwibog’s reputation is firmly and irretrievably in the cess-pit and there is an appetite for something more palatable. The Standard, kwiblogblog and more like it are the way to go. Telling blows delivered with wit and humour and increased extra-blogosphere activity (love the poster campaigns) will be far more effective than any amount of angry poison-pen drivel. Well done and keep it up!

  16. Mike 16

    you could also note the timing of the rise in left wing blogs coincides with rising censorship on kiwiblog, and ironicly thier free(but expensive) speech campaign.

  17. mike 17

    Farrar’s blog is a liability to the National Party. Perhaps they should pay him to shut it down. He definitely over-estimates his ‘influence’ — only about 10 regular commenters — his unique visitors must be a fraction of his hits.

  18. Nih 18

    “Span and rOb are right: Kiwibog’s reputation is firmly and irretrievably in the cess-pit and there is an appetite for something more palatable. The Standard, kwiblogblog and more like it are the way to go.”

    I agree strongly. A week and a half ago when I started reading Kiwiblog I found the posts to be moderate, a bit fairer and generally informative. Now they’re basically attacks from the right to the left of the sort you’d find in the comments. Boring and unimaginative. I don’t read uninspired blogs for very long.

    On the plus side, mindless rhetoric doesn’t win elections.

  19. Sam Dixon 19

    ak – I like your theory, fits well.

    mike – I spoke to Farrar once, he didn’t know it was me, he was claiming 20,000 unique vistors a week and 100,000 hits that sounds a lot but he has been the main political blog a long time. would be intersting to know how the Standard is doing after only a month.

    Nih – wow that’s really interesting that you’ve seen such a decay so quickly. I guess being new to it you’ve seen it with fresher eyes than me. Although, to be fair, there’s less of the ‘Helen and her lesbian feminazi whores’ stuff these days – compared to a year ago, the rabid mysogyny has toned down a little for some reason.

  20. Murray M 20

    Okay, D4J is over the top. I object to criticism about redbaiter as I thing he is a very intelligent individual. More shit spews forth from the rantings of Tane, Robinson and Sonic than will ever spew forth from redbaiter.

  21. Robinson 21

    Murry – don’t you have a “damn the femnazis” newsletter to write or something? I mean Supporting Deadbait, really? That’s a vote winner I’m sure. Oh and you should grow the mustache back – the more of your face you cover the better for everyone.

  22. Murray M 22

    Robinson you have got the wrong “Murray”. I have never had a mustache in my life. You must be thinking of some other “Murry”.
    By the way a very juvenile attempt at being insulting.

  23. Robinson 23

    Um, it was a joke. ‘Cos I don’t really think our mate from the National Party is posting on the standard. But when you make me explain it to you it just doesn’t work. And Dude, I am juvenile – it’s like my m.o.

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