In Russia, debt collectors may sexually assault you or burn your children to get you to pay up

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Христос, какая мудак!


Wrong pronoun, and “Христос” has a rather specifically liturgical ring to it. I believe in the appropriate vernacular it should be “Господи, какой мудак!”


In Soviet Russia, debt collect you?


So it’s completely legal to rape and burn people in Russia if they owe you money. Wow.

I mean that’s what the headline says, right? So Xeni, how much does Buzzfeed charge for their headline writing seminar?


Xeni isn’t a journalist. That’s a mistake I’ve made, as well, before I was corrected. Or rather, she is a journalist, but not on Boing Boing. She’s not a journalist in the sense that an inkwell is an inkwell. She’s an inkwell. An inkwell is a journalist. A journalist is a journalist. To be an inkwell is to be a journalist. A journalist inks well. A well-inked journalist is not.

Hopefully that clarifies.


Often it seems like some journalists can’t tell the difference between “we can’t prosecute” and “it’s legal.” I assure you the judge knows the difference.


The scary thing? Debt collectors in the US are probably watching this and thinking of ways to make it legal to do that here.


“May” can also mean “might”. Nothing about the headline implies that it’s legal unless you really want to read that into it (which one may do if they felt the need to make disingenuous criticism I guess).


Using your stance on the intent of the use of the word “may” here the headline becomes meaningless. If the implication is that someone might do something illegal and get away with it isn’t new information.

The headline was meant to imply that this is, on some level, accepted practice in Russia. It’s bait.


66 Rubles to the US Dollar, they are hurting for sure.

I took Latin in high school. Google Translate is responsible for this one.


But is it not in fact, on some level, accepted practice? It’s accepted practice not in the sense that it isn’t covered by a criminal code, or that it doesn’t attract the disapproval of the citizenry, but it appears to be accepted practice in the sense that offialdom tolerates debt collection shenanigans.

Russia is hardly alone in that, though this is written from a perspective of outrage which seems to have got your goat a bit. How are you more disappointed with the dramatic drawing of attention to injustice than you are with the injustice itself?

If it’s not effectively legal, then surely the authorities can punish these people and get redress for the victims? It’s one of the other no matter what the penal code or constitution might say.


I’m sure Xeni is glad you’ve explained what her intention was. She probably wasn’t able to articulate it herself.


Yes, it implies it’s becoming accepted practice among some number of debt collectors in Russia, which is what the article is saying. No, that doesn’t mean the headline implies it’s fully legal or widely viewed as socially acceptable. You’re reading an extreme and unrealistic meaning into this headline.


No, it doesn’t. If it did before I got here, it now says debt collectors may. The collectors got away with the crime. Therefore they de facto may assume they can do it. For example, I may smoke weed in downtown Austin provided I don’t walk up to a cop and blow it in his face. It’s illegal. I may do it anyway. If you take issue with the headline’s implication that collectors getting away with it means they can expect to get away with it in the future, then fine (though I will point out that even if officials make a few examples with actual investigation and prosecution of the criminals, it will probably be because the media gave the crime attention). But when you change the meaning of the headline to suit an unsupported reading of it, that undermines your argument, and defending the mistake doesn’t change that.


It’s all a matter of greasing the right palms.

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I just got a PM from @xeni, and she is disappointed in BoingBoing.

Can’t believe she gets on the list before I do, totes misandry.


It’s all in the delivery.


Or at least figure out how to get away with it. They already do a lot of things that are illegal, but they’ve figured out how far they can push it before they get in trouble.