We’ve never had particularly warm feelings for Dell computers, and now at least we know the feeling’s mutual. Dell proudly admits to making software that intentionally blocks access to sites that have LGBT-focused content.
Currently, Dell has a 100 percent approval rating from the Human Rights Campaign, but we wouldn’t be surprised if didn’t last much longer. Dell makes a product called “SonicWALL” that allows parents or network admins to block content for not reason other than that it is associate with LGBTs.
As an example of unacceptably gay content, Dell cites We Are Family, “a safe space for LGBTQI and straight ally youth.” Oh yeah, we wouldn’t want kids having access to safe spaces.
In a statement to Gay Star News, a Dell spokesperson explained that they created the software “based on business or organization needs.” There has been no explanation for why a business or organization might need to withhold safe spaces from children.
And mysteriously, Dell does not block access to websites that target women, or websites that have information about Asians, or websites oriented towards tall people, or websites for companies that make bargain-basement computers loaded with bloatware that crap out after a few months.
Another company with blocking software, Trend Micro, apologized when it was pointed out that they were blocking LGBT sites. They’ve promised to stop the practice. Dell, on the other hand …
That’s why nondiscrimination laws exist. You can sue companies that discriminate if they do business in states with nondiscrimination laws covering sexual orientation, race, gender, etc. That’s why the laws exist.
So I can’t even have a computer now?
I was given a Dell computer that has, for the most part, been a PITA since I received it. I can’t wait for the POS to die so I can get a REAL computer, i.e., a HP, Asus, et al, anything but a Dell! And it has Sprint shit embedded in it also, which fries my ass no end! HOWEVER… no software against LGBT web sites!
I have a Dell…never had any software issues against anything…odd
I would like to know how much money Dell gives to HRC.
I assure you that Dell does not discriminate against any LGBT people at all. I work there and can say that we have people of all genders, sexual orientations, nationalities and political beliefs. In fact it is a wonderful place to work because of this. The SonicWall rules are most likely compiled from customers and not necessarily the view of Dell Computers or any other organization within Dell. There is no absolute way to keep the entire default block lists free from any unfriendly sites, the same is true in reverse. Dell seems to be the most open place I have ever worked.
I’ve had three computers with them since 2004. Don’t really have a single complaint with them either. You just got to know how to handle your Dell. You treat it with care, it will be there for you as long as you need it.
As a gay man and a Network Admin I am appalled at this story. The lack of research that you have put into it and the missing information that you have left out of the story. The way you write the story is that Dell made the SonicWall software just to block LGBT sites. When actually Dell purchased SonicWall to add to it’s line up of Firewalls. It is a hardware device that many companies use. I just purchased 7 of them. Does it block LGBT related stuff, maybe, but you have to TURN IT ON. What you fail to mention is that it will also block porn, hate speech, gambling, and a number of other pre-defined groups. What you also fail to mention is that you can also go in and block certain website or unblock websites. While I may allow my employees to view LGBT website, I don’t want them to have access to Adam4Adam while they are on my network. Or I don’t want them to have access to Match.com or maybe even this website. If people want to look at it, they can look at it at home. Companies don’t pay people to surf the internet all day long, they are paid to work. And if I ran a daycare I would want to block everything if I am letting little kids play games on the Disney or Nick website. SonicWall is a product that is sold and marketed to a number of different markets. So maybe before you make a snap judgement you should do a little more research.
@jmasondotnet: Funny, you said exactly what I was going to, the difference is you can and my critical posts get deleted.
The fact Matt Baume thinks SonicWall was created by Dell shows just how little he understands, and completely underlines his worth as a journalist [so called].
Keep up the good work JMason we need more good people in our area. But why let facts get in the way of some quick sensationalism. You’d think the people behind a series of sites built fundamentally on WordPress would at least understand the basics of filters, given the idiotic ones Matt and his cohorts utilise, censoring the word [email protected]
@2eo: I don’t normally post or even follow this page. In fact I had to create an account just to be able to post that response. I read it and it just made my blood boil. Thanks for the kind words.
Dell’s customer service SUCKS! And you will need it because of the utter crap the sell.
I think you are missing the salient point. His point is that it is as easy to block a blanket of gay sites including safe gay spaces, as blocking a blanket of KKK sites, porn sites, etc. BUT other protected groups like Asians, dont have a simple on and off switch because the creators of the hardware/software do not compile a list of asian websites that you can block with a simple witch like you do with their collection of gay sites. This means that gay sites are being classified as one thing – whether they are gay porn or gay groups or gay blogs or gay safe spaces. That classification is wrong.
As for Dell. They bought the hardware/software switch. They can change the lists easily if they want to delist useful gay sites, but they did not – unlike Trend Micro.
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