Monday, 1 April 2013


Best way to start this post:

Maria Margaronis is a Greek journalist.

Although we have had no one-to-one real-world dealings, and I cannot subscribe to her views on all matters, we’re FB friends and I appreciate her deeply. You can read a selection of her work for the Guardian here and for the Nation here. She’s worth following on Twitter as well.

Recently, she posted an article on FB about herself from an online resource called Metapedia, which I had not, to that date, heard of. Metapedia’s  article on Maria is reproduced below in full, with heartfelt apologies to my readers:

Maria Margaronis is a middle-class, anti-Greek, communist media propagandist, married to the Jew journalist D. D. Guttenplan. They have a Jew son together, Alexander Guttenplan. Margaronis operates between London, Greece and Vermont. A Europhobic agitator, she promotes the demographic genocide of Greeks and is an enemy of the people. She is a supporter of the extremist openly communist Synaspismós organisation. Along with her Jew husband, she is associated with the London branch of The Nation magazine, though her propaganda has also featured in The Guardian.

The tabs under the article very probably say more about its authors than about the subject of the article:

Think this is bad? The discussion pages behind the main article are much, much worse:

She looks very much, like a jew herself. Hu1 22:20, 10 October 2012 (CEST) 
The hook-nose and beady eyes said "Jew" to me as well, but I can't find any source that says she is. She might just be ugly. She definetly has a communist agenda in her "reporting". Basileus13:24, 11 October 2012 (CEST) 
Yes, the nose, the nose-mouth part, which is slightly ape-like, the eyes, her overall untidyness and uglyness, and the last indication is her style (and usage of presumably faked photos). If a person shows these indications, I automatically categorize her as a crypto Jew. Which Jew says openly, he is a Jew? Hu1 19:55, 11 October 2012 (CEST) 
@Hu1, @Basileus: Maybe you should start a metapedia article about which physical traits are indications for a possible jewishness? Such an article could contain many example images and may be very useful as a practical guide. What about masculine appearance for females, feminine appearance for men? And are freckles also an indication for a possible jewishness? I don't think they are, but someone once told me that. (Galileo 21:43, 11 October 2012 (CEST)).

Now, you might argue that, as with all things wiki- the crowdsourced nature of the material makes it difficult to vet in real time. Users come and go, some are anonymous, and the marginal cost of an edit is so low that persistent users can get their way for quite some time.

Except of course, the persons entirely responsible for this vile post are three users by the name of Basileus, Galileo and Hu1, all three of whom are Metapedia admins.  Hu1, as I see, specialises in the question of Gas Chambers, Galileo fancies himself as a scientist, while Basileus is the Orthodox Christian link, with his own views on orthodox supremacy.

Metapedia’s style guide, which the admins at least must be familiar with, pathetically states the following:

§  Make sure to write in a neutral tone. Hard biases, exaggerations and irony don't belong in Metapedia. Take a look at other encyclopaediae to get a feeling for what the texts should look like stylistically.

This suggests to me that Metapedia admins don’t see this article as exemplifying ‘hard bias’. It’s very difficult to understand what would.

Again, I sincerely apologise for posting this filth but I think it’s important to share the nature of the beast. 

While mercifully brief, this post demonstrates the following:

1. That metapedia admins are actively involved in peddling racial hatred.

·     2.  That metapedia admins aim to monitor criticism of Golden Dawn, which they label as ‘propaganda’ and equate with ‘promoting demographic genocide of Greeks’. While I cannot prove that the admins’ purpose is to direct retaliatory action or pre-emptively discredit GD’s critics, the latter are labelled ‘enemies of the [unspecified] people’ and Syriza sympathisers, regardless of the nuances of their political attitudes.
3. That metapedia admins are obsessed with ethnic and racial origin (their definition of which is extremely broad, judging from the fact that they feel compelled to list ‘Gentiles with Jewish spouses’  and try to work out the ‘Jewishness’ of individuals from their facial features.
4. That metapedia admins are obsessed with Jews to the point that they need to prefix even the names of their children with ‘Jew’, as well as mark them out with a special yellow star of David icon/tab. That last bit bears re-reading. I find it chilling.

·         5. That metapedia admins have such a broad definition of communism that it can encompass Greece’s syncretic leftist cacophony, Syriza; mainstream (if culturally statist) media such as the Guardian; and the whole of Twitter itself.

6. That metapedia admins have no interest in this being an encyclopaedia or any kind of reference resource, as none of the claims in this article (for instance, the claim that Maria advocates 'demographic genocide of Greeks') are actually referenced in any way.

Now - on to my complaint. 

Metapedia solicits donations via Paypal, principally through Facebook and Twitter appeals, and has to date raised just over $4,000 from a substantial number of contributors. As a longtime user of Facebook and Paypal, I find that this grossly violates both platforms' acceptable use policy. Sadly, not that of Twitter.

From Paypal’s Acceptable Use Policy:
“You may not use the PayPal service for activities that:
1.     violate any law, statute, ordinance or regulation.
2.     relate to transactions involving […] (e) items that promote hate, violence, racial intolerance, or the financial exploitation of a crime”

From Facebook’s terms:

We do our best to keep Facebook safe, but we cannot guarantee it. We need your help to keep Facebook safe, which includes the following commitments by you: […]
6. You will not bully, intimidate, or harass any user.
7. You will not post content that: is hate speech, threatening, or pornographic; incites violence; or contains nudity or graphic or gratuitous violence.
10. You will not use Facebook to do anything unlawful, misleading, malicious, or discriminatory.

Unfortunately, it is impossible to report such groups under Twitter's terms of service and rules/guidelines, but since the Twitter posts simply direct back to FB that's not a big issue. 

Note that Metapedia is careful not to own up to its purposes on Facebook – their page explains, coyly, that they are “An alternative encyclopedia about culture, art, science, philosophy and politics.” Alternative indeed, the Nazi cowards. Similarly, Twitter repeats the above statement with no further details and posts are extremely opaque.

It is clear to me that Metapedia is a hotbed of racial hate and its fundraising activities are in violation of both Paypal’s and Facebook’s terms of use. The article in question is one of many, and is clearly not untypical of the website or the policies of its admins.

I invite you to help me kill Metapedia’s funding stream by reporting this activity to Paypal and Facebook. Let’s become ‘enemies of the people’ together. 

For details on how to report hate speech on Facebook, see here. For Twitter, see here. Their account is @metapedia

Reporting a hate group on Paypal is harder, but the best way in this case is to write to compliance@paypal.com who are supposed to be notified by any group 'collecting donations as a non-profit or charity organisation.' If Metapedia haven't done that they would be non-compliant even without all of the hate speech association. There is good precedent for Paypal withdrawing services from hate groups. Read more here for instance.   

For further information on Metapedia, see here http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Metapedia

UPDATE: The Metapedia admins, spineless cowards that they are, have rewritten Maria's page thoroughly following this publication, and particularly the feature on Harry's Place here. Their racial profiling banter is gone and there is now a section on Maria's supposed 'Crimes of Hellenophobia.' This, a lamentable copy & paste job to be found elsewhere on their website, simply lists a number of crimes by non-Greeks against Greeks, with the implication that any journalist choosing to focus their writing on any other violent act committed on Greek soil is a Hellenophobe.