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About Literature / Hobbyist StarToursTravelerMale/United States Recent Activity
Deviant for 3 Years
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Rayon Meed by StarToursTraveler Rayon Meed :iconstartourstraveler:StarToursTraveler 7 1 Senator Pooja Naberrie by StarToursTraveler Senator Pooja Naberrie :iconstartourstraveler:StarToursTraveler 5 2 Talzin Kenobi by StarToursTraveler Talzin Kenobi :iconstartourstraveler:StarToursTraveler 8 1 The Circle of Influence by StarToursTraveler The Circle of Influence :iconstartourstraveler:StarToursTraveler 6 0 Aggressor Mk II Class Star Destroyer by StarToursTraveler Aggressor Mk II Class Star Destroyer :iconstartourstraveler:StarToursTraveler 7 0 Caption Needed by StarToursTraveler Caption Needed :iconstartourstraveler:StarToursTraveler 0 0 Ferroda Grey by StarToursTraveler Ferroda Grey :iconstartourstraveler:StarToursTraveler 7 0 Valence the Strong by StarToursTraveler Valence the Strong :iconstartourstraveler:StarToursTraveler 4 0 Uthedan Lionwall - The Westbrook Lieutenant by StarToursTraveler Uthedan Lionwall - The Westbrook Lieutenant :iconstartourstraveler:StarToursTraveler 3 0 The Florrum Firaxa by StarToursTraveler The Florrum Firaxa :iconstartourstraveler:StarToursTraveler 12 1 Nebula Class Star Destroyer by StarToursTraveler Nebula Class Star Destroyer :iconstartourstraveler:StarToursTraveler 9 0 KX-Series Security Droid by StarToursTraveler KX-Series Security Droid :iconstartourstraveler:StarToursTraveler 7 1 Malak Class Star Destroyer by StarToursTraveler Malak Class Star Destroyer :iconstartourstraveler:StarToursTraveler 22 11 Jedi Training Droid by StarToursTraveler Jedi Training Droid :iconstartourstraveler:StarToursTraveler 8 0 Battle of Jakku by StarToursTraveler Battle of Jakku :iconstartourstraveler:StarToursTraveler 9 0 God I Love Mods by StarToursTraveler God I Love Mods :iconstartourstraveler:StarToursTraveler 1 3

Favourites

Arrow Season 5 Artemis Concept Art by Artlover67 Arrow Season 5 Artemis Concept Art :iconartlover67:Artlover67 8 0 Infested Planetary Fortress by Phill-Art Infested Planetary Fortress :iconphill-art:Phill-Art 686 219 Cybros - Starcraft by PlanK-69 Cybros - Starcraft :iconplank-69:PlanK-69 11 0 Twi'lek Race - Star Wars Battlefront by PlanK-69 Twi'lek Race - Star Wars Battlefront :iconplank-69:PlanK-69 12 0 Reaper by MeanPete Reaper :iconmeanpete:MeanPete 12 15 Tea Break by MeanPete Tea Break :iconmeanpete:MeanPete 34 10 Battlefield Hoth by MeanPete Battlefield Hoth :iconmeanpete:MeanPete 145 34 Terran Ambulance Service by MeanPete Terran Ambulance Service :iconmeanpete:MeanPete 79 18 Starcraft 2: Tauren Space Mari by PhillGonzo Starcraft 2: Tauren Space Mari :iconphillgonzo:PhillGonzo 72 32 Starcraft 2: Terran Siege Tank by PhillGonzo Starcraft 2: Terran Siege Tank :iconphillgonzo:PhillGonzo 217 18 Jacksons Revenge by MeanPete Jacksons Revenge :iconmeanpete:MeanPete 59 27 Battlecruiser vs. Mutalisks by Gelvuun Battlecruiser vs. Mutalisks :icongelvuun:Gelvuun 48 5 The Hyperion by PeregrineStudios The Hyperion :iconperegrinestudios:PeregrineStudios 111 12 The Hyperion 2 by PeregrineStudios The Hyperion 2 :iconperegrinestudios:PeregrineStudios 43 0 Battlecruiser is ready (Starcraft II) by mrainbowwj Battlecruiser is ready (Starcraft II) :iconmrainbowwj:mrainbowwj 81 12 To  the Eternal Glory of the Confederacy... by Deep-Strike To the Eternal Glory of the Confederacy... :icondeep-strike:Deep-Strike 26 30
If you've followed me for long enough you know I rarely (if ever) make any sort of politics related posts. Only one that comes to mind was a post I made last year during the election (I have since deleted that post because it is no longer relevant since the election is over) but aside from that I've kept my content largely politics free with the exception being for in-universe politics as they relate to fanfiction universes (e.g. such as how the Mandalorian Government works, how the Republic operates, etc.) and I do have to give you all my respect, gratitude, and appreciation for keeping the comment threads clear of real-world politics and real-world issues. I do enjoy providing some form of escapism that people on all sides of the political spectrum can enjoy.

However this is an issue that I feel I cannot be silent about and I go into this post headlong knowing that this could cost me some readers. But this subject is far more important than mere fanfiction readership.

I consider myself a free speech advocate. I do not believe in censorship when it comes to ideology and intellectual diversity. Are there good forms of censorship? Depends on the context. I self-censor expletives which is for the sake of keeping my content family friendly (for the most part). We do, occasionally get into dark themes, but as I said in a prior journal entry, I will never go into explicit depictions. There is also comedic censorship, such as the infamous "the Count: Censored" video which is basically when censorship is used for comedic effect. That is acceptable. But when it comes to the censorship of differing viewpoints, that is where I draw the line.

I believe that to win the war of ideas for either side, you have to prove your points in open debate instead of shutting down debate and silencing the other side so that there is no debate. Even if I disagree with your views, you have every right to have them and to speak them openly and freely and the same is true in reverse. I believe that if there is a person giving a speech you object to, simply don't attend, change the channel, or maybe attend and quietly listen to the opposing viewpoint but don't try and shut the speech down or disrupt it. Be respectful of other's opinions. It's how free speech should operate. Don't agree with a subject? Debate it (without name calling or insults because one of the first rules of debates is, the first side to stoop to insults loses) or simply walk away/don't attend/change the channel.

What prompted this you might be asking?

Recently, YouTube announced a new program that would crackdown on "extremist" content. While most people would think that means a crackdown on known terrorist groups and keep them from using YT such as ISIL, Hamas, Al-Qaeda, and others, the reality of it is, that the true purpose of this move was to put specific channels that hold certain viewpoints into a sort of "limbo" where their videos are forced out of YT's recommended feed, they get their likes/dislikes bar disabled, their view count disabled, demonetized, they're barred from the trending page, and they get relegated to a sort of purgatory for YT and already the first waves of these "shadow bans" have hit with numerous YouTubers discovering (without any notification at all) that their videos have been hit with the aforementioned "disablings" and are effectively on their way to this YT Purgatory.

Have I personally been affected by this? Not personally, no. I have a YT account, yes, but I have no videos or content. I simply keep the account for keeping track of my favorite videos and YouTubers. But to see some of them being effectively told that "you aren't welcome because we don't agree with you" or "you aren't welcome because you hurt mine or someone's feelings" crosses several lines in my book.

Some of you are probably already saying "well, YT is owned by Google and Google is a private company so they can do what they want." Legally, that is true but they are a monopoly and they control one of the biggest platforms on the planet. But this action, as well as other actions taken by Google within the past week, are a clear message to the world that Google/YouTube does not support the concept of Free Speech. They've made it abundantly clear that they accept only a specific type of thought and only a specific system of beliefs and that anything that contradicts or opposes those thoughts or beliefs are not welcome on their platforms. They do not believe in the universal marketplace of ideas, they do not believe in intellectual diversity, and they will punish you if you oppose their stances on these subjects. Such a practice of shutting down debate should be universally frowned upon and discouraged by those who value freedom of speech. Debate should continue openly and freely.

For some of us, I think we saw this coming since hindsight is 20/20. I think the first red flag (that I noticed) that this could become a thing was back when Google was willing to allow censorship on their Chinese platform. If Google was willing to bow and drink the poison of censorship just to enter business with China, that should've been a red flag. Then there was the "YouTube Heroes" system which was roundly opposed for good reason as the potential for abuse was quite extreme. Then there was the "adpocolips" where YouTubers that had monetized content suddenly found their content demonetized all because the sponsors complained to YT that their ads were appearing on videos that they "objected to" or didn't want associated with their products (because technically the ads were randomly selected for monetized videos, the YouTubers didn't get to pick and choose what ads played), which caused some backlash, and now there is this.

I have gone so far as to close my Facebook account (which I already didn't like for different and unrelated reasons) over their willingness to censor when they rolled out their "Fake News Filtering" program. I personally believe that we have the right to believe what we want to believe. We have the right to choose who we trust and who we distrust. We have just as much right to believe the New York Times as real news as we do the National Inquirer as real news. It is our choice to trust these sources or not, not to have a 3rd party arbitrarily decide what is fake and what is real. We have the right to be wrong as well as right. Facebook's actions with the "Fake News Filter," regardless of their motivations and who was affected, was the first noticeable step on the slippery slope of censorship. For that I closed my account with them last year and haven't regretted it in the slightest. I similarly don't have a Twitter account due to their willingness to censor there as well.

So now there's the question of "what can we do?" I'll be honest, our options are limited. There are a few alternate video hosting services such as Minds.com (www.minds.com/) and Vid.me (vid.me/) that act as video hosting services. Granted, they don't have as big of a reach as YouTube does but given time and Google/YT's now full-throated opposition to free speech, these platforms might see a surge in users while YT sees a decline which will force competition. And I will say, my first impression of Minds is quite positive as it says on their main page that they are committed to Free Speech, which to me is important.

Additionally, use alternative search engines such as Bing or Yahoo. Are they as good as Google? Maybe not but as with the video services, as users leave Google/YT to these other platforms, their quality may start to improve to equal if not surpass that of Google/YT. Also, if you have a gmail account, close it and create a new account with someone else such as Yahoo, Hotmail, or other email services and don't forget to transition any user accounts on services such as Steam, EA Origin, Blizzard, etc. that might be linked to your gmail to your new account.

You can always support your favorite content creators directly, most of them have Patreon accounts or PayPal and so if you can and want to support them, by all means but don't feel obligated to help. Only contribute if you want to. Quick disclaimer: I don't have a Patreon or PayPal account because what I do, I do for fun and not for profit so I will never charge for my work. Your reading my work and enjoying it is profit enough for me (besides, I'm pretty sure making a profit off of fanfiction would get into copyright violation territory and I'd rather not be sued or slapped with a C&D notice :) ).

If there is some content on Google/YT that you don't want to stop watching (which I admit, there is some that I don't quite want to give up just yet), I encourage you to use adblock software (adblockplus.org/) which will make you invisible and will deny ad views to YouTube and Google which is one of the ways they make money.

So to conclude this longwinded post, I leave you with this quote by Wilfred Funk which I consider to be quite true as to why we need freedom of speech and the platforms to practice it...

"When words fail, wars begin. When wars finally end, we settle our disputes with words."

Keep R&Ring...

STT
  • Watching: Anything that's not on YouTube

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StarToursTraveler

Artist | Hobbyist | Literature
United States
I'm not talented when it comes to visual art but I am a writer. I have a profile on Fanfiction.net and regularly surf DeviantArt for fun and inspiration. DeviantArt is probably the first place I turn for inspiration when it comes to my writing.
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:iconsymbolar:
Symbolar Featured By Owner Jul 26, 2017
Question time! How Kento, X3, and ferroda get along with Rham Kota before the Eve of Shadows. Can we have details? Please?
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:iconstartourstraveler:
StarToursTraveler Featured By Owner Jul 27, 2017  Hobbyist Writer
Kento: Initially flippantly with his headstrong attitude, then with a little more respect over time, especially as he realizes Rahm was effectively his father's Master.
X3: Respectfully for the most part.
Ferroda: Arrogantly and flippantly at first but later with much more respect as she matured.
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:iconsymbolar:
Symbolar Featured By Owner Jul 24, 2017
Hey StarTour, have you seen the movie of ewoks?
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:iconstartourstraveler:
StarToursTraveler Featured By Owner Jul 24, 2017  Hobbyist Writer
You mean Caravan of Courage or the cartoon series. If Cartoon series I've seen a few episodes on ye olde VHS. If the other, no and probably never will.
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:iconsymbolar:
Symbolar Featured By Owner Jul 24, 2017
Then you know the ewok, Wicket. The one who met Leia, after the speeder fight. Was he or his kind going to make a appearance in your series?
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:iconstartourstraveler:
StarToursTraveler Featured By Owner Jul 25, 2017  Hobbyist Writer
Yes and I can confirm there will be an episode in the forward half of Season 3 that features Wicket and the Ewoks of Bright Tree Village. In fact it was going to be featured in the second half of Season 2 but got bumped due to the timing of the season finale. The Episode is fully written and ready to go but as I said it got bumped. And if you notice in Part one of Forces of Corruption (Season 2, Episode 20), that Jaina mentions that Hondo Ohnaka owes her a favor. This episode explains how Hondo came to be in her debt.
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(1 Reply)
:iconldragonslayerl:
lDragonSlayerl Featured By Owner Jul 22, 2017
Hey star tours . I have 2 questions for you.

1. Where would you rank Kento as a strategist? Do you think he is a master at strategy or an ameteur at it?
2. With the finalizer and the will of palpatine as well as the New death star. How will they the Republic even win? They are severely outgunned. The Lusankya is nothing compared to the two destroyers so what will the republic do to get back on top?
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:iconstartourstraveler:
StarToursTraveler Featured By Owner Jul 22, 2017  Hobbyist Writer
1: Not sure really.
2: Well they'll (redacted due to spoilers).
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:iconldragonslayerl:
I understand that you might not be able to answer the second.

But please can you answer the first. We have seen characters like Jaina and more and how good they are as strategists but we dont see as much with Kento.

(I don't mean any disrespect)
I am not gonna lie. I am kinda disappointed in Kento's growth as a character. I know and admire his care for friends and we know that he is pretty powerful and is going to get more powerful but we don't get to see more. We don't get to see what Kento is good at. We see that Jaina is good at being a pilot(which Kento is said not to be so good at). We see anakin solo and how good he is with fixing things. Jacen now owns a kriffing fleet along with his padawan.I geuss I want to see more than just his powerful force user side. For eg. With Anakin Skywalker in the clone wars, we got to see his love for Padme and how good he was at strategy and his relationship with Ahsoka and Rex. We saw Ahsoka grow from a small padawan to an amazing Jedi. We saw how close Anakin and Obi-Wan truly were. We saw what Anakin and all the characters were good at. (Excuse the blabering)
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:iconstartourstraveler:
StarToursTraveler Featured By Owner Edited Jul 23, 2017  Hobbyist Writer
Kento's lack of development is, on my part, a flaw. Part of me doesn't want to focus on my own characters too much over established canon characters (or Legacy Canon in this case). That's just my own issue.

Second, we kinda are seeing that Kento is similar to his Master in terms of leadership. Anakin even made a reference to this after Malachor V. He's forming strong bonds with the soldiers in his unit.

Third, you're going to have to trust me. I have plans for Kento. We've only seen his external behavior but we don't know what's happening on the inside.
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