Episode 107: How the Internet Lost its Backbone, with Joshua Moon

In 1993 John Gilmore famously said, “The Net interprets censorship as damage and routes around it.” To learn why that’s no longer true, listen to Josh Moon enumerate “the amount of things that have broken that people in the industry assumed could never break,” as activists with personal vendettas and political agendas relentlessly employ every possible strategy to silence his small but notorious gossip site Kiwi Farms. From Cloudflare to Hurricane Electric, ISPs, data centers, and payment processors, literally anything up and down the Border Gateway Protocol has been targeted to shut down the ‘Farms. With ISIS, the KKK, Stormfront, neo-nazis, and child porn all continuing to enjoy online services, who expected “the gossip site that makes fun of troons” to be the straw to break the Internet’s backbone? And why have the individuals and organizations who once stood against censorship lost their own?


Brave browser: https://brave.com/

Tor browser: https://www.torproject.org/download/

Keffals: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Keffals

The World Should Not Need Kiwi Farms by Corinna Cohn: https://corinnacohn.substack.com/p/the-world-should-not-need-kiwi-farms

Liz Fong Jones calls Corinna a “Kiwi Farms operative”: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Np9erdnM4l8&t=3074s&ab_channel=LizFong-Jones

Border Gateway Protocol (BGP): https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Border_Gateway_Protocol

Electronic Frontier Foundation: https://www.eff.org/

Internet Archive: https://archive.org/

Copyright’s origins in censorship: https://questioncopyright.org/promise

FIRE: https://www.thefire.org/


6 thoughts on “Episode 107: How the Internet Lost its Backbone, with Joshua Moon

  1. Our rights must end where other people’s rights begin. Free speech, like all rights, has its limits. Kiwifarms was made for the purpose of stalking and harassing people. Their, now banned, official twitter page said their goal was “exploitation of the mentally handicapped for amusement purposes”. ( Source: https://archive.is/jYp5p )

    And it goes even further than that. I think Kiwifarms is criminal. Null, the admin of the site, has indicated that he was ok with users posting stolen financial information. (Source: https://archive.is/DBlwB )

    Allowing your users to post private financial information, such as stolen credit card numbers and social security numbers, makes it easy for people to commit identity theft and other fraud. Especially when you have a site full of people’s data such as addresses, emails, phone numbers, relatives, and other personal identifying information.

    It wouldn’t be a stretch to say that Null is acting maliciously. What he and his site does is an abuse of the ideals of a free society. One could even argue that it functions as a chilling effect on the free speech of others.

  2. I am a long as in 7 years maybe reader and poster at kiwi farms as well as someone who has sent money for the keeping it running. I’m very glad to hear Josh speak and no I don’t want to out myself although I follow both of you. There is a place for kiwi farms and no one forces anyone to go there it’s not like kiwi farms is out there harassing people at funerals. Great interview and thank you for doing it!

  3. Hi Nina and Corinna,

    Tall basketball player/author/graphic novelist here. Met you at ICONS in Denver. Love the podcast.

    Lost your biz cards, but writing to say I’m still laughing about your ICONS summary, along the lines of “I’ve never heard so much talk from so many women about winning!”

    Well, yes, Nina. That’s who we are.

    You were also shocked at how tall we were. Also amusing.

    Come hang out with tall, athletic women more often!

    And keep up the good work w the podcast. Raw, honest, unfiltered, thought-provoking.

  4. Censorship and copyright just ain’t natural. I’m glad some sane people can see through all the rhetoric and semantics used to try and justify something so harmful against personal liberty and self-expression.

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