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Sun Jul 1 19:24:19 UTC 2007

help notice that something had been censored from it, and this 
actually increased the attention paid to MRV, including by people who 
hadn't even heard of the place before this.  Once their curiosity had 
been piqued, it wasn't very hard for them to find it, since it was in 
other sources such as Google Maps which were outside the control of 
the town leaders.  At any rate, many of the town's leading citizens, 
including the ones most fervently opposed to MRV, spent much time 
looking up at its hilltop with their own telescopes and binoculars in 
order to keep an eye on what those evil trolls were up to.  However, 
they still didn't want anybody else finding the place; they could be 
trusted to look at it themselves, for good motives of helping to 
protect Maddenville from it, but if others find it they might be 
manipulated by the evil trolls, which wouldn't be good.

While debate was breaking out over whether the blanking of the atlas 
entry was justified, a citizen wrote an essay called "BADTOWNS" and 
posted it to the bulletin board in the town square.  It called for a 
ban on referring, pointing, or giving directions to any town, 
village, or hamlet that was engaged in personal attacks on any 
citizen of Maddenville.  It was originally designated as merely an 
essay, but some people attempted to move it from the bulletin board 
into the law books in the town courthouse so it could be enforced as 
law, despite it not actually having been voted into effect by the 
legislature or by a referendum of the citizens.  Others tried to move 
it to the historical archives along with other failed proposals.  
Somebody even grabbed it and fed it into a paper shredder, but 
another person painstakingly taped it back together so that it 
remained on the bulletin board.  Despite not being made into law, 
some tried to enforce it nevertheless, including on people who were 
trying to discuss the proposal itself and feeling the need to refer 
to specific things about MRV and other towns that might be covered by 
the proposal.  Some people trying to make such mentions in their 
speeches and bulletin board postings about the proposal were given 
warnings, and one who persisted after such a warning was forced to 
spend the night in the town jail.  This tended to chill discussion 

Proponents of the BADTOWNS policy claimed that it was actually 
already law, regardless of the status of the current proposal, due to 
an earlier decision of the Maddenville Superior Court.  This decision 
was regarding another town called SportsDramaVille, which was settled 
by comedians with a very tasteless sense of humor.  Their main 
product was a set of trading cards with grotesque caricatures of 
various figures in sports including players, coaches, team and league 
officials, and even some prominent fans.  The cards also had 
scurrilous gossip about the people on them, including false and 
defamatory information, true and privacy-invading information, and 
nasty personal attacks.  Some prominent Maddenville citizens were 
included, but some people from Maddenville Review Village also were, 
as well as people from other places and other sports of little 
interest here.  The court decision ultimately banned those trading 
cards, and anything else connected with SportsDramaVille.  Some felt 
this was an overreaching decision going beyond the proper 
jurisdiction of the court, and was possibly unconstitutional, but few 
wanted to object very strongly because of the overwhelming view that 
SDV and its cards were vile things of no use to the serious pursuit 
of football.  Some thought that the actions of a Maddenville 
constable soon after the decision, to go and rummage through the 
drawers of the local sports card shop to find and destroy all of the 
offending cards even in the dusty, musty backstock that was seldom 
even looked at, were unnecessary, however.  This decision was now 
being used as a precedent to support larger bans on references to 

The next controversy came when a scandal broke out that some of the 
football players in Maddenville were using illegal performance 
enhancing substances, and were lying about it and cheating on their 
drug tests.  This got extensively written up in the national press, 
and resulted in some players being suspended or expelled from their 
teams.  Embarrassingly, the scandal had been uncovered and publicized 
by the people at Maddenville Review Village, as part of their ongoing 
attempt to cast disrepute on Maddenville.  When the local newspaper, 
the Maddenville Goalpost, wrote about the scandal, they included a 
line mentioning the involvement of MRV in it.  This upset a town 
leader so much that he went around town early in the morning 
gathering up all the papers before anybody else woke up and read 
them, burning those papers, and printing a new edition without the 
offending mention.  The paper's reporter and editor didn't much care 
for this, just like the librarian earlier, but also didn't want to be 
seen as MRV sympathizers.

[To be continued]

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