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Censorship amid controversy over police on indymedia

indyl33ks | 25.01.2011 01:41 | Indymedia Server Seizure | Indymedia | Other Press | Repression | Birmingham | Sheffield

Last week the respected alternative news project SchNEWS published a story revealing long term malicious use of indymedia by elements within the states police apparatus. The piece was base on the so-called 303 Gateway article written collaboratively by a number of indymedia admins and proposed in secret as a feature for the UK site over six months ago. The proposal was blocked by London and Northern IMC. They claim they failed to get agreement on amendments aimed at distancing themselves from admissions within the article that indymedia admins had in fact had access to IP logs despite having repeatedly said the opposite in the past. Both London and Northern said that they would have no objection to the article being published as a feature on Indymedia UK if it was made clear within the article that the IP logging was a feature found within the MIR content management system used by IMC UK and its regional sites Birmingham, Cambridge, Liverpool, Oxford, Sheffield and South Coast, not those using alternative CMS such as Bristol, London, Northern, Nottingham and Scotland. However it seem tonight that their claim has be proven a lie...

The draft article stated, "what has never been openly stated before is that the CMS system we use has a number of anti-abuse measures which include the ability to monitor for particular IP addresses and log their behaviour." The draft goes on to say, "site admins believed that they would never be able to gain the trust of posters, if the range of anti-abuse measures were made public. As is often the case, once a body has failed to be completely open about something, it becomes 'the elephant in the room' and so a situation was created where the new and current admins were actively blocked from bringing these measures into the open. The stalemate continued until now, with site admins proposing a new approach of coming clean about the measures that are in place, and others in the collective blocking this."

Prophetically, that stalemate over coming clean about the IP logging meant that no consensus was possible on publishing the article. There was no way that the information about the governments disinfo campaign could be published without revealing that indymedia had been lying about IP logs. Apparently some suggested it could be published via a different alt media outlet while leaving out the info about indymedia but the story would have been weak without the evidence gathered by indymedia admins.

The impasse remained but then the draft article was leaked by a disgruntled admin using the name 'indyleaks'. The posts were repeatedly hidden from the indymedia sites it was posted to and a filter set up on IMC UK to automatically hide it whenever posted.

There remains no consensus about publishing the article which includes a frank admission that indymedia has misled its user since 2003. However the lack of consensus is now a moot point since SchNEWS has ran the story and Birmingham IMC has published the 303 gateway article as a feature on it's own site.

Both the story about the government running a disinfo campaign via indymedia, and the story that indymedia UK has been hiding the truth about IP logging for all these years, that is big news for activists at a time when trust is already in short supply.

As the article says "continuing to gloss over the reality in a misleading way was detrimental to Indymedia UK, and that there was no small likelihood that at some stage we could be outed." Now that the truth is out, lets hope indymedia can recover from the damage to its credibility and move on to become more open and honest with its users.


Tonight a new version of the article was published on the so-called 'open' newswires of London and Northen indymedia. The article had been rewritten so as to leave no doubt that the controversial IP logging by admins related only to those sites hosted on the IMC-UK. Despite this, the article was instantly hidden on both London and Northern.

Looking in the archives of their respective moderation lists we can see the excuses given for these acts of censorship. The anonymous moderator at Northern states, "this article does not have the consensus of the network to publish". (

Meanwhile the London moderator, Startx, gives the laughably circular justification, "repost of imc uk article" despite the fact that this was a new version of the article written to address the objections of the London collective and that attempts to post the original article on the IMC-UK newswire had been persistently frustrated by a filter set up by another London moderator which automatically hid the lot.

The censorship of the news about police use of indymedia has not been restricted to just moderators in Northern and London but some apparently more sane moderators did voice some concerns. Owen asked whether indymedia was "now in the business of information control rather than open publishing?" after a moderator using the pseudo name FTP reported that he had hidden a number of articles because they merely linked to the SchNEWS piece based on the article 'which is subject to blocks'. (

Owen replied, "That's not a valid reason for hiding. Schnews have published a story. Someone proposed making a feature out of it. The proposal to make a feature about it was blocked.

"None of that is a justification for hiding a newswire post. You can block a story from being made into a feature, but you cannot block *users* from publishing on the *newswire* unless they have breached the editorial guidelines."

"Unless I've missed something and we're now in the business of information
control rather than open publishing? Do those articles breach the guidelines in some way?"

He concluded, "I'm upset that we as a collective are exacerbating the loss of trust some
users will feel after reading this story, by trying to censor it when it's already out there."

To sum up, since at least June last year, people within indymedia in the UK have individually and collectively worked to prevent news of widespread abuse of the indymedia site by police. Those attempts at censorship are still ongoing. Something has clearly gone very wrong within indymedia.

For more on this issue see

- Homepage:


Hide the following 40 comments

Important stuff

25.01.2011 01:50

Here are the latest hidden versions of the article : (now seemingly unhidden?)

I've copied some extracts of it below for those who have so far been unable to get a look at it.

"Posts which incite others to commit violent acts are a risky business for Indymedia Collectives. In early 2009 Indymedia UK had one of its servers seized after a comment was posted to the newswire, with the home address of the judge from the Stop Huntingdon Animal Cruelty (SHAC) trial. An individual was arrested, and to this day the police continue to hold the server, along with personal belongings of the arrestee. "

..."we are able to state categorically that the comment containg the incitement was one of a long list of posts which have come from a Government Secure Intranet known as Gateway 303, a state network which provides a secure proxy network behind which state agents can maintain their anonymity. Other posts from the same government secure intranet have targeted individual activists, put out information about activists that is not in the public domain, attacked campaigns, and urged the disruption of peaceful protests with Direct Action. The main targets of these many articles and comments have been Environmental Campaigns and Animal Rights campaigns and activists."

"We have decided to publish a list of all posts that we know were made from Gateway 303 so that activists can see for themselves some of the tactics that agents of the State have used to disrupt, and provide disinformation on Indymedia, and which campaigns and activists they have targeted. With this information, we believe that the state should be able to identify their own agent-provocateurs, and furthermore that this exposure of the posts by State Agents undermines the state itself in a number of ways. It shows once again that the so-called "forces of Law and Order" are infiltrated with unprofessional individuals who are prepared to go to great lengths to set-up individuals and protest campaigns, and that despite all their many claims, parliamentarians are unable to take effective action to weed out the 'bad apples' they say are the problem. It undermines attempts by the Crown Prosecution Service to smear defendants by pointing to anonymous postings on Indymedia. Judges will now have to take into account that there is clear evidence that Indymedia UK is abused by State Agents to harass campaigns and individuals, and to incite the very kind of 'Domestic Extremism' that outfits such as NETCU were set-up to specifically stop."


What the hell is going on?

25.01.2011 02:00

At first it seems unbelievable that any indymedia people would try to sit on this information, unless they were cops themselves! But perhaps the confession about there having been a policy of misleading activists about the existence of IP logging might explain such shocking censorship.

"In the early days of Indymedia UK, which recently celebrated it's 10th Birthday, site admins believed that they would never be able to gain the trust of posters, if the range of anti-abuse measures were made public. As is often the case, once a body has failed to be completely open about something, it becomes 'the elephant in the room' and so a situation was created where the new and current admins were actively blocked from bringing these measures into the open. The stalemate continued until now, with site admins proposing a new approach of coming clean about the measures that are in place, and others in the network blocking this."

However, it seems strange then that the censors include admins from London and Northern IMC, neither of which use the MIR CMS with its inbuilt IP monitoring feature. It's also suspicious that they continue to hide the article even after it was amended as requested by their respective collectives!

We need answers, perhaps even an independent inquiry.


To be fair

25.01.2011 02:06

If you'd looked a bit further on in the archives you'd have seen that FTP later said the following.

"We are put in an impossible position when there are blocks in place - and especially when the blockers state:

Imc London will keep the block in place until the feature has been edited to accomodate the concerns raised. Until this has happened we will not participate in any further discussion.

Emails with the text of the draft feature were removed from the archives.

I agree that there is no point hiding the stuff when it is out - and I think the best move would have been to publish the amended feature which doesn't make false claims about an investigation.

However, had I not hidden the article, I would have been accused of "not respecting" the blocks.

And the next morning the block was clearly still in place...



It's obvious what's happening....

25.01.2011 07:26

Why this issue hasn't been raised yet, I have no idea...or maybe it has and it's been censored like virtually all the discussions on the subject...however, this quote from an article on Fitwatch sums it up: "In the words of Officer A, who admitted his role as a "hairy" for the Special Demonstration Squad in the Observer last year: 'Once the SDS get into an organisation, it is effectively finished'.

Now, let's consider all the quotes from admins saying that reaching "consensus" was impossible and the only option left was to "fork" the IM-UK project...added to the bizarre behaviour of certain admins supressing a story about police incitement, on the flimsy basis that users might lose "trust" considering they have been constantly lied to about the IP filters since 2003!

Add in the admissions that the IP filters are hidden deep in the control panel, most new admins didn't know they existed, (unless of course they were working for the state and were shown where to look by their handlers), that unless you got to the setting in the control panel you wouldn't know if they're active, (something I'm sure most admins never bothered doing). and that proper protocols for their use weren't being used and it's clear that something has gone VERY wrong over a long period of time!

"Lyn Watson" infiltrated the Action Medics, (presumably to get intel on the activists willing to get hurt on demos), and another strategic point of the activist community for the SDS to infiltrate, disrupt and gather intel guessed it, the Indymedia project!

It all points to the same thing,

Indymedia is heavily infiltrated!

A manufactured controversy

25.01.2011 09:16

This so-called controversy is a non-issue. Of course webservers can monitor IP addresses. Anyone who genuinely thought Indymedia was totally anonymous was being very naïve. They need to know IP addresses so police and other trolls can be blocked.

I wouldn't be surprised if all this hyping up is helped along by police or other trolls to distract from issues like the Stasi-style scum who infiltrate activist movements.

I'm nothing to do with Indymedia, by the way.


They need to know IP addresses so police and other trolls can be blocked.

25.01.2011 10:49

It is as easy for a troll or the police to use multiple proxies to post as it is anyone else. In a technological race over posts on a website IP addresses are not very useful.


Many trolls are not technically literate and wouldn't use a web proxy

25.01.2011 13:17

I take your point about it being a technological arms race, but many trolls aren't very technically literate and wouldn't even know what a web proxy was, let alone how to use one. Places like Wikipedia use IP addresses to block trolls, and whilst not perfect, it does stop a lot of them.

Until Indymedia implements some kind of pseudonymous trust system, I think IP blocking will have to be a part of it unless they have an army of people continually wiping off spam and trolling.


How it really works

25.01.2011 13:59

I'm not going to try to defend or justify what some people are calling censorship, a cover up or a conspiracy of silence. I am one of those who think we fucked up big time but what's done is done and beating ourselves up over it isn't going to help anyone except our enemies.

What I am going to do is outlines exactly how admin works in theory and practise on the sites served by MIR.

When anyone posts an article or comment to IMC UK or any of the regional sites which share the same MIR installation, the post should go live pretty much immediately on the publish server
and then as the mirror sites get updated it should become available on the address some time soon after assuming it is not subject to moderation.

Moderation takes two or three forms. The most common is that an article or comment is published, sits there for a while and is then removed by moderators for breaking editorial guidelines. Sometimes it may be noticed and removed so quickly that it only ever appeared on the address and didn't have time to become live on the www address as the mirrors hadn't sync'd with the publish site before the post was hidden.

When a moderator hides a post they are meant to report the hide to the appropriate moderation list, In the case of posts on IMC-UK that list is IMC-UK-MODERATION on but other lists are used by regional collectives. Not all hides are reported, for example, very few moderators bother to report hiding of comments and automatic hides are also generally not reported.

The automatic hides are the final type of moderation, triggered by one of several different types of filtering that form the MIR anti abuse measures. The filtering can be used for more than just automatic hidding, it can also be used to simply apply flags to posts which may need to checked by moderators because the filter suggests that the post may be from a known abuser or contains phrases or information likely to be present in a post which breeches editorial guidelines.

At any given time there may be hundreds of filters set up on IMC UK to either hide or flag a post based on things such as IP address or range, author field, regex pattern or other even more powerful indicators. The IP address is not the most useful of the filters as most peoples addresses change quite a bit and clever trolls are careful to use proxies. However it it is surprising how many people don't take such steps and the 303 gateway story shows that the tool remains useful.

It was the use of flagging specific IP address which enabled us to build a list of posts made via the government 303 gateway, In this specific case the IP address was supplied from logs retained by another activist website. However generally we obtain the IP address by using the monitoring tool built into the admin interface of MIR. To do this we go to part of the interface and toggle the logging feature on. The log is a rolling log and we can specify how far back it goes eg. the last twenty post, or fifty or one hundred etc. There is no general agreement on what setting to use but we are meant to leave a note on the noticeboard that all admins can see when they log in.

If the logging span is set too low then you might have missed the record for the poster you are trying to trap before you come back to check the log but if you use a large number then instinctively you know you are increasing the potential risk to people as these is no way of knowing that none of your fellow moderators are not infact cops or informers noting down the info from the log. Generally most people compromise at twenty records.

When you look at the log you can see all the posts be it article or comment, along with the originating IP address and other info I'll not go into. When you find the offender you are hunting you can then switch across to the filter settings and attempt to create a new one, or modify and existing one, so that the offender will be hidden or flagged in future. Having done so you might then switch off the log (and update the note in the noticeboard) or leave it on for a little longer to check your success.

Only a handful of admins seem to use the log as far as I can tell, if the notes left on the noticeboard are anything to go by. It is quite likely that most don't even know how to use the features as they are not part of any training normally given to new volunteers.

While what I've spoke about here relates only to the indymedia sites in the UK which use MIR, the same features are available to all other indymedia sites around the world which use MIR. Similar features are also found in the alternatives codesbases used by the sites not using MIR although their anti-abuse measures may not include IP logging.

There are currently moves in the IMC global process to introduce a policy which would prohibit indymedia systems from including IP logging features. A similar proposal within the IMC UK network was blocked.

I hope that clarifies some of the questions raised and I strongly recommend that if you continue to use indymedia, always use switch pm TOR before publishing!


Arms race

25.01.2011 14:11

What all our whistle blowing comrades have failed to mention but geeksec has touch on is that the anti-abuse measures available work best when the way they work is not known by the trolls and spammers they are employed against. This is an arms race and full of contradictions. If we had told everyone that we looked at their IP addresses and built filters around them, the people we aimed to filter would quickly learn and start changing their IP addresses. On the other hand, genuine activists were at risk so needed to be encouraged to hide their IP. It sounds stupid now but once caught up in the web of deceit there was no easy way out.


Where is a collective responce?

25.01.2011 14:35

All these individual confessions are very touching but could somebody please explain why the hell the collectives are not doing anything to resolve the ongoing censorship and official silence. Who are the people who have been blocking going public and why are they not chucked out of the collective?


In case of confusion

25.01.2011 15:16

I just want to point out the Danny on this thread isn't the Danny who has been posting elsewhere, ie me. No problem, I don't own the name and the Danny on this thread hasn't said anything outrageous, but there was just someone deliberately pretending to me whose comment was hidden on this thread:

I just wanted to make this Danny aware of that, in case he gets some abuse that is actually aimed at me. And maybe that anon's suggestion of authenticated log-ons on the other thread should be implemented sometime?

a different Danny

If the admins could see IP addresses, they would know it was a different Danny

25.01.2011 16:01

If the Indymedia admins could see IP addresses, they would know if people are trolling using other people's names.


Either that or implement logins or the ability to post PGP-signed messages.


Techniques of disinfo

25.01.2011 16:16

With so many other admins apparently thinking it's now okay to fess up here, I'll chip in my 2 cents.

Quite a few comments in related threads suggest that those voicing criticism of indymedia are probably cop trolls. That may be true but it extremely naive to think you can accurately identify a disinfo troll on the basis of whether or not you agree with what they are saying.

Over the last couple of year of doing admin I've learnt a few things about how trolls work. Monitoring the posts as they come in you can see that all is rarely what it seems on the comments page. Time after time you find multiple posts from a single contributor all presented as being different people and often arguing against their own previous position. You'd no doubt agree with some of what such a troll posted some of the time. Individual comments are not important to such a troll, neither is being hidden. The idea is to create the illusion of division within campaigns and by doing so, generate real division.

Sometimes these trolls use really information about real events and people, all information available to them through the public domain or perhaps other intelligence gathering, but it makes it seem like the poster must be involved and know people involved. Throw in a couple of truths followed by a big lie and some people won't realise they've fallen for the oldest trick in the book. Whether people believe the lies or not, as often as not they'll feel compelled to reply, argue the toss or even provide some kind of evidence for their own position.

The threads around the Mark Stone story are a classic example of this with people inadvertently supplying the newspaper with tit bits of additional info every time they were tricked into responding to what they thought was a raging debate but was actually the work of just a few clever players. Those who thought they could spot the cops in those threads would be surprised to hear that some of the comments asking people to shut up and stop replying, they then instantly replied to themselves accusing themselves of multiple sins against the wider community of activists by trying to with hold information critical to comrades. Nothing is ever what it seems on these comments pages!

Indymedia admins have always known this. We watch the patterns made and learn the behavior of the trolls week on week, month on month. Sadly with been able to do little to warn people of what is going on and hiding posts by known trolls is often counter productive since we then get accused of censorship. Most of the posts by these trolls do no actually breech the editorial guidelines in any obvious way. The guidelines do allow us to hide posts from disruptive posters but we've not been able to do that wholesale without first being open about the fact we can identify individual posters. We always knew that if we did reveal this fact then the trolls would become harder to spot and we thought it better to keep the secret and leave the trolls unaware of how much we knew about them so we could at least spot and remove the worst excesses of their disruptive postings.

It would be nice to think that somehow things could improve by arming users with this knowledge about disinfo trolls but we've been fighting internally about all this ourselves for ages now and it's hard to see how the trolls could be more disruptive and damaging than our own inability to come to any agreements.



25.01.2011 16:22

Someone else is now using the FTP pseudonym...


Optional registration on other indymedia sites

25.01.2011 16:24

All the new indymedia sites in the UK which are based on hyperactive; London, Northen, Nottingham etc,
they all allow users to register if they wish and when logged in the users can choose to post anonymously or not.
I'm not clear whether the system protects their registered user names from abuse or not but it seems an interesting progression. I wonder how many user choose to register and actually login in if they do. I also wonder what the security implications are since the database saved to the disk must record which articles are owned by which registered users if posted when logged in.


Something constructive

25.01.2011 16:24

Now we know the judge's address post came from a state agent, albeit anonymous, and this can be proved now the cat is out of the bag:

What is being done to get the nicked server returned?

The person arrested over it should be encouraged / helped to sue.

And best of all, the judge in question should be made aware that the leaking of her / his address was from a state source. All that's needed to do this is her / his name. Probably best done by a lawyer. Setting a posh state agent on the undercover incompetent ones should cause quite a bit of what they're trying to do to us -disruption.


Wasn't me!

25.01.2011 16:43

Seems pointless to point out but the person saying that another person was using the nick FTP wasn't me.

Somebody is having a laugh.


Thanks for your honesty

25.01.2011 16:57

At least there's finally a bit of honesty about what's been going on, but the fact that it has never been spoken of publicly and the idea that by not saying you were somehow outwitting the trolls is still ridiculous when presented for scrutiny.

I'm sure it's all made sense in meetings, where the factions have fought each other, but now it's time to work out how this mess came to be. I would bet a pound to a pile of shit that there's at least one SDS cunt who's also a senior admin, or deeply involved at the core of the Indmedia collectives, so whatever measures were being discussed would still have been being relayed to NETCU anyway and the divisions could be neatly sown to paralyse the admins and permit years of disinformation!

The operational policy for the SDS is to disrupt groups they enter, and it sounds like the Indmedia Collectives in the UK have been massively disrupted and corrupted. How can anyone have thought it was a good idea to allow trolls to create entire conversations with themselves to provoke reactions and information from people, without informing anyone that it was happening, is negligent in the extreme....unless people have been having their strings pulled in ways similar to those described in CAN's statement on "Marco Jacobs".

If I was an IM admin I would be scratching my head now and reassessing certain people's motivations for acting in certain ways, in light of all the recent news regarding the activities of the SDS and the seeming manipulation of the "consensus" system employed by the Collectives to completey block any action on this subject.

Still not convinced

q & a

25.01.2011 17:01

@anon I'm still posting using Tor here, and I suppose the person on the other thread who pretended to be me is doing likewise so that wouldn't help. Your previous suggestion of authenticated posts would make this clear, and I definitely agree with that. I could now post from my IP address to clear things up for the admins at least, but frankly from the editing of my reply on that thread I still have reason for distrust.

@Anna You say 'Indymedia admins have always known this' but regular IM posters also realised this long ago. Why not follow anon's advice and permit authenticated log-ons? It wouldn't cure all the abuse, and it raises other problems, but the status quo doesn't seem enough anymore. Tor anonymised posters would still be allowed, but just identified as anonymous. Then you could crack down on the abuse more openly while protecting the anonymous posters with valid if incriminating articles.

@Stroppyoldgit "Now we know the judge's address post came from a state agent, albeit anonymous" This is the first I've heard of this post, can you link to it? I've posted a few addresses here in the past from publicly published sources, and if that was me then I'll hold up my hand. I don't use my anonymity to hide from the bastards, but to hide from the undercovers within IM collectives. I think the Usmanov case proved that, as seemingly most admins wanted to pass my details across, and I had already volunteered for that. I don't want to destroy IM for providing me a service, I just want the freedom to point out when collectives are doing me a disservice.

a different Danny

This will go down as the "IP-Logging Gate" scandal

25.01.2011 18:14

Just like climate-gate, where lies were told, it will come back to haunt people


Yeah Great idea....

25.01.2011 18:23


Good idea - all we have to do is produce the server logs showing the post with the judges address coming from the gateway 303 !

And of course we've got the server logs - haven't we !


Gateway 303

My personal view

25.01.2011 20:07

I've been an IMC mod/admin for around 6 months, and involved with my local IMC for around a year. I was aware of the IP issue, and felt very uncomfortable about it for two main reasons:
1. I didn't feel we were being open with IM users, and could loose the trust of many.
2. If (more like when) the story broke, Indymedia was likely to become the story rather than the fact that NECTU were acting as agent provactor.

Item 1 was my main concern - and we don't know how much this will happen. But item 2 has definitely happened. That's completely understandable, but still a shame in my view. By that, I mean that the important internal look at IMC is crowding out an important story about how the police create situations to justify their actions. It would be nice if we could consider both stories at the same time.

Looking back, I wish I had done something differently, but I am still not sure what. Keeping quiet was not the right thing to do. But autonomously breaking a decision that had been discussed a lot using a consensus process would not have been the right thing to do. Both would have breeched trust.

In trying to find ways forward, I think there are two useful avenues.

First, those techies within the activist community could try and share more of their knowledge with other activists. A fairly basic understanding of how the internet works might help others to understand security issues. HacktionLab [ ] have done quite a bit on this, but maybe more is needed?

Second, maybe people want to get more involved in their local IMCs? Indymedia is less of a service that is provided for people, and more of a service that comes from a DIY culture. If you have strong (or any) views about how Indymedia should run, the door is open for you to get involved.

Another IMC Mod

Censorship continuing on London Indymedia

25.01.2011 20:09

An anonymous london moderator is still censoring the story about the cops using indymedia and other activist sites as a disinfo tool. This time the moderator gave the excuse "Not related to Imc London". Funny excuse since most articles on the London wire don't relate to IMC London, they are about campaigns, actions and project happening in London. The idea that the story has no relevance to London is laughable and the justification "Not related to IMC London" is doubly laughable considering that it was the London collective who blocked the publication of this story as a feature on IMC UK on the grounds that it needed to specify that the IP logging issues did not relate to IMC London. Now the article has been amended to say the problem does not relate to IMC London, they are continuing to censor the story on those very grounds!

Hidden article
Moderators comment


London Bullshit

25.01.2011 20:19

Whats up with those guys? They are the longest running collective in the UK and yet they are allowing this shit to happen. How can they excuse this censorship on the grounds of it not relating to London? Do they imagine for a moment that none of the cop troll posts were attacks on activists in Londons or campaigns centered on this countries capital? For fucks sake!!! They were happy to post their own bullshit 'statement' about the SchNEWS story as if that is somehow more relevant than the article itself.

I don't know about anyone else but I'm getting really pissed off!


Nottingham any better?

25.01.2011 20:39

They've just posted their own statement washing their collective hands of any involvement, just like London claimed.

Have they also been active in blocking publication of the story while saying the opposite?

How deep does that rabbit hole go?

It's Working

25.01.2011 21:44

I don't know about all the highly testicle stuff, but the cops divide and rule scam seems to be working out quite nicely.

Zadok the Priest


26.01.2011 12:29

I don't think you can call the statement from notts handwashing!

I think it's time all Indymedia websites stated their position clearly on what they do with our ip addresses. There are several different Indymedia websites and we need to be clear on this.

We need to know as users. And it might be useful if the police are told too.

Never take anything for granted on the web, always protect yourself when publishing.


Good idea, statements from all

26.01.2011 13:16

It would be useful if all indymedia collectives could answer the following questions:

1. What CMS are you currently using and does it contain features allow admins to monitor IP address in any way?

2. Are you planning on switching to a different CMS in the near future or modify your existing CMS so that it contains no such feature?

3. What position(s) has your collective taken on the proposal to publish the 303 gateway story?

4. What position(s) has you collective taken on the proposal to remove IP logging from MIR / IMC UK?

5. Have any of your collective members been responsible for hiding posts refering to the 303 story?

6. Have any of your collective members been responsible for hiding posts relating to IP logging by IMC UK admins?

7. How long has your collective existed and what knowledge or discussion was there about the IP logging feature?

8. How many IMC UK admin logins is your collective responsible for and are you aware of any of your collective members have use the IP logs and/or filters?

9. Is your collective planning on being involved in the proposed MIR based 'mayday' indymedia site when shuts down?

10. Have you taken any measures to check the volunteers in your collective are not cops or any other kind of malicious infiltrator?

Answers on a postcard

Re: "Answers on a postcard"

26.01.2011 13:28

Anyone could be hiding behind that veil of anonymity.

A cop, a journalist, an IMC insider with a vested interest.

Didn't this all start because posts which reflect the NETCU agenda were being posted from secure state gateways?

postcard vendor

London admin continues censorship

26.01.2011 13:33

IMC UK admin FTP from Lodon is continuing his censorship drive against the 303 gateway story and discuss of the issues raised. This time hiding a link for an article posted on the Bristol site titled "Why are articles about UK Indymedia and grey propaganda being deleted?" (article 472781) by Boyd

FTP excuses the censorship on the basis that it is a 'question about moderation on another site'.

See his censorship report here

No point in asking the London collective to do anything to reign in FTP as apparently he is not a member of any indymedia collective but is one of the currently informal group hopping to form the new 'mayday' indymedia when is shut down as agreed at the last network meeting.


@ indyl33ks

26.01.2011 13:45

If it is reported on a list so you can find it. And you can read it on the link provided by view all posts. And on the Bristol site where it was originally posted. And indeed you can read this thread:

Maybe ftp (rather than FTP) is following the editorial guidelines which state:

Concerns about editorial guidelines or queries about moderation are dealt with on the imc-uk-moderation list. These issues are not dealt with through the newswire, and newswire posts on these topics will be hidden.

The address for that list is: imc-uk-moderation[at] but you probably already knew that if you looked at the archives.

Not very effective censorship

Hang on a minute - the first comment says the Butterfield comment was a troll

26.01.2011 15:05

this is from the first comment, which quotes the seemingly official article here:

"In early 2009 Indymedia UK had one of its servers seized after a comment was posted to the newswire, with the home address of the judge from the Stop Huntingdon Animal Cruelty (SHAC) trial. An individual was arrested, and to this day the police continue to hold the server, along with personal belongings of the arrestee."

..."we are able to state categorically that the comment containg the incitement was one of a long list of posts which have come from a Government Secure Intranet known as Gateway 303, a state network which provides a secure proxy network behind which state agents can maintain their anonymity."

Is this article mistaken, or is the second quoted paragraph referring to a different incitement?

It's not on the list of Gateway 303 posts, it's true, but it could have just been left off accidentally.


There are no logs

26.01.2011 16:52

There are no logs because if there were more people would get nicked and others for obstruction - so naturally there are no logs


No Logs


27.01.2011 01:16

Look, what's the point in continuing to lie? Already London, Nottingham, Birmingham, Sheffield and Northern indymedia collectives have taken some form of collective action to confirm that the rhetoric of 'no logs' from IMC UK has been at best a half truth since 2003.

It take very very little effort to confirm this to be the case even without being having access to an installation of MIR. For example, a google search provides as list of string names and values for the localization of the MIR admin interface. Listed below in english are some of those string and you can see that the IP monitoring feature is even refered to as an IP log.

Just by looking at the naming of these strings it is possible to get a good idea of what options the MIR admins have available to them. List below are just those relating to the anti-abuse measure.

You can see that the admins can switch on and off open posting, in other words they can switch the site to pre-moderation rather than post-moderation. They can also turn on and off the function described as 'Log IPs for open postings'. Additionally they can see the status of, or view the content of the IP log, and also set its buffer size.

Records in the log include the time of post, the IP address associated with the post, object number (which would be a reference to the database for the article or comment posted), data about the browser type used by the poster, and a couple of others which have somethings to do with filters (perhaps flags or markers inserted only when a post has triggered a filter).

From what we can see it is clear that the filter options also include regular expression pattern matching as well as simple IP addresses. Another option involved some trick with cookies which probably helps the system identify when posted who have been subject to a filter attempt to bypass the filter by using a proxy etc.

To continue to lie about IMC UK admins having access to IP logs is like claiming the earth is flat and any one involved in an indymedia collective who continues to lie like this should be kicked out before they do indymedia any more harm.

abuse.htmltitle = anti-abuse measures
abuse.disableopenpostings=Turn off open posting
abuse.showlog=Show the IP log
abuse.showfilters=Manage filters
abuse.logpostings=Log IPs for open postings
abuse.logsize=Logging buffer size
abuse.log.address=IP number
abuse.log.filtertype=Filter type
abuse.filtertype.ip = IP Number
abuse.filtertype.regexp = Regular expression
abuse.filters.htmltitle = Anti-abuse filter rules
abuse.cookies=Use cookies for blocked users


re: Hang on a minute - the first comment says the Butterfield comment was a trol

27.01.2011 09:26

If you look at the html version on Birmingham Indymedia (, you will see that the claim "Today however, we are able to state categorically that the *comment containing the incitement* was one of a long list of posts which have come from a Government Secure Intranet known as Gateway 303" has a link (on the text which is starred) to the comment in the first paragraph:

The Butterfield comment, was not on the list and it is not claimed that it came from Gateway 303. The origin of the Buttefield comment remains unknown and it is pure speculation as to where it came from.


OK, so Butterfield post was genuine after all

27.01.2011 10:28

That article was a bit misleading, the "inciteful" post it links to is actually someone just saying that a campaign should be modeled on the Hillgrove Cats or Newchurch Guinea Pigs campaigns, which actually isn't necessarily a bad idea - they were very intensive and successful campaigns, even if you exclude any illegal stuff that went on.

That has restored my faith in animal rights activists as the most kick-ass group around! Even if targeting a judge before people get sentenced is a bad idea tactically, and posting on Indymedia might not be sensible, you've got to admire the tenacity and sentiment.

Judges have so much power over people that you could argue they should have their addresses publicly known.


Butterfield Post

27.01.2011 11:04

Just because the Butterfield didn't come from 303 it doesn't mean that it wasn't posted by the cops.

There are a lot of posts that are in exactly the same vein as the 303 posts but which are not on the list -- the 303 list of posts is clearly just some of the posts by cops...

Just Because


27.01.2011 13:38

Oh for christ's sake...

The police have been disrupting this site for years.

As have the Government, the newspapers, foreign corporations and political parties.

Its a game we play with them and they play with us. Usually we win, which is why they are forced to keep trying to do the impossible.

I don't know who the fuck you people are but its certain that some comments here are also state agents in one guise or another, probably posting to draw attention away from the fact the police have been breaking the law with gay abandon even to the point of publishing the home address of a British judge...very very unsporting by the way...and very very illegal.

They have also been caught out by the Mark Kennedy fiasco. That is supremely embarrassing and clearly shows that the police are a long way from a law abiding body.

The police have been committing criminal offences regularly and the main organisers are the most senior officers in the service. Oh yes, and they also kill people too and then cover the murder up with its own public purse sponsored corrupt investigative bodies like the so-called IPCC which clearly exist only to rob the victims family of the evidence required to secure conviction against guilty officers.

The police are simply the grand mafioso, a tool of the state and its job is to keep its influence and structure intact by any means necessary, and that means disrupting by any means necessary any body that threatens its welfare.

So lay of with the sham surprise, realise what the realities of this world are...and get the fuck on with it and stop giving them what they want...endlessly distracting our readers into pointlessly disabling trivia.

There is only one body that benefits from us "arguing" and that is the object of our emnity, the capitalist state and its violent and murderous mafioso.

Knot Eyed Jaguar

@Just Because

27.01.2011 16:02

That is true - good point. A lot of trolls probably don't post from behind the 303 gateway.


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