When I first heard of the "Jane Austen twitter-rape-threat arrest" I did not think I would write about it because, I thought, he should be arrested, he deserved it. Threatening someone is a crime, so this seems like a straight forward, uncontroversial case. Make a threat, get arrested. Nothing to write about there. A threat is a threat, right?
I started thinking more about this because I saw "rape threat" comments when I posted a video of Feminist protests at the University of Toronto. I did not want to get into censoring comments, but I deleted the "I want to rape her" and "she should be raped" comments as I saw them. Not only are these comments abusive and offensive but they add nothing to any conversation. At best these comments shut down conversation, and inflame tensions.