Saturday, January 8, 2011

Open letter to PayPal

Not long ago I canceled my PayPal account.  It wasn't easy, but I got it done.  I made sure to make it very clear what reason I had to cancel.  Here is a copy of the message I left them:

PayPal has deliberately damaged the ability of a legitimate and necessary website: Wikileaks.    Regardless of the social or political pressure placed upon your company to 'fight terrorists' or whatever it was that was dangled in front of your company as an incentive, any and all deliberate attempts to perform censorship-by-any-means-necessary are WRONG.    Perhaps you didn't spend much time reading about the 'power of the internet' back in the '90s.  The power of the Internet is its ability to level the playing field.  Governments become corrupt when they are allowed to have too many secrets.  They become corrupt when there is not enough accountability for their actions.  A primary motivator for encouraging the growth of the Internet was to create a system in which speech truly is free.  This was common and accepted knowledge during the early days of the Net.    Wikileaks is a major part of the ultimate realization of the power of the Internet.    I disagree with your company's policy of blocking donations made to Wikileaks.  Until you allow donations to be made to Wikileaks and other whistle-blower sites, I will not be doing business with you, and I will not recommend your site to others.


  1. I'm not sure how much control you have over such things, but I wasn't able to read this post in Google Reader, because the blockquote has explicitly white text. If you can, it'd probably be good to avoid such things.

  2. Hah. Figures. I changed the tags for the block text because it showed up as black if I didn't. I haven't found where to edit the CSS in blogger yet, so I don't know how to avoid an explicit white color.

    Basically, when I originally posted this, it was black and unreadable. I hadn't considered that people would be reading it with a white background.

  3. Fixed. The blockquote HTML itself was overriding the CSS. Removed the color assignment for the blockquote.