Posts Tagged ‘censorship’

Banned Books Week

September 27, 2011

Banned Books Week

September 24 — October 1, 2011 is the thirtieth annual observance of Banned Books Week.  The freedom to read what we will is firmly rooted in the First Amendment, yet many who rant about upholding the Constitution would restrict our access to written art, enlightenment, and information. Celebrate liberty and literacy — read a banned book today.

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Dan Snyder Stops Embarrassing the NFL

September 11, 2011

Dan Snyder Stops Embarrassing the NFL

Dan Snyder, billionaire owner of DC’s professional football team, has withdrawn his harassing lawsuit against the Washington City Paper, which had the audacity to print facts leading to the inevitable conclusion that Mr. Snyder is a monumental jerk. The fact that his suit clearly violated the District of Columbia’s anti-SLAPP law might have had something to do with this action.

Now if Mr. Snyder would only change the racist name of his team, and they would win a few football games, the town might have a team it could be proud of.

Short link: http://wp.me/p6sb6-b6l

Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

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Ai Weiwei Tweets Again

August 11, 2011

Ai Weiwei Tweets Again
Dissident Chinese artist Ai Weiwei is back on Twitter, condemning the Chinese government’s detention of bloggers and artists who had previously protested his own 2-month prison detention. It is believed that this violates a gag order that was a condition of Ai’s release.

Twitter is blocked in China but the censorship can be circumvented through use of VPNs and other tactics. Ai speaks English but his primary audience is domestic so he’s tweeting in Chinese. His messages are being translated into English here and on a Tumblr.

Ai Weiwei has also joined Google+ and given an interview to the Communist Party’s official English-language tabloid Global Times.

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Internet Access is a Global Human Right

June 10, 2011

Internet Access is a Global Human Right

Frank La Rue, special rapporteur to the United Nations “on the promotion and protection of the right to freedom of opinion and expression”:

“Given that the Internet has become an indispensable tool for realizing a range of human rights, combating inequality, and accelerating development and human progress, ensuring universal access to the Internet should be a priority for all states.”

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Falwell Teaches Freedom of the Press

April 13, 2011

Falwell Teaches Freedom of the Press

In a bold move to teach the importance of the First Amendment, Virginia’s Liberty University blocked the website of the Lynchburg News & Advance newspaper last week. University Chancellor Jerry Falwell Jr. provided a simple explanation for taking a page from the playbook of Middle Eastern tyrants: “We’re a private organization and we don’t have to give a reason and we’re not.”

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Ai Weiwei Held in China

April 3, 2011

Ai Weiwei Held in China

Chinese artist and designer Ai Weiwei was detained by police at the Beijing airport before he could take a flight to Hong Kong yesterday. Even if you haven’t seen his current exhibition at London’s Tate Modern or those at Munuch’s Haus der Kunst and Tokyo’s Mori Art Museum, you still may know his work.  Ai Weiwei helped design the “Birds Nest Stadium” for the 2008 Olympics, the National Stadium of the People’s Republic of China.

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Egypt Shuts Off The Internet

January 29, 2011

Egypt Shuts Off The Internet

“Egypt may have turned off the Internet one phone call at a time,” Los Angeles Times

“Egypt cuts off internet access,” Charles Arthur, The Guardian

“How Egypt Turned Off the Internet,” Kyle VanHemert, Gizmodo

“The Internet goes dark in Egypt,” Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols, ZDNet.com

“Egypt severs internet connection amid growing unrest,” BBC News

“Egypt’s Internet Blackout: Extreme Example of Just-in-time Blocking,” Masashi Crete-Nishihata and Jillian C. York, OpenNet Initiative

“Egypt: An Internet Black Hole,” Global Voices

“Egypt shutdown worst in Internet history: experts,” Katia Dolmadjian, AFP via Yahoo News

“In Egypt, should Internet access be an inalienable right?” Monica Hesse, Washington Post

“The Tweets Must Flow,” Twitter Blog

“Statement on Internet Shutdown in Egypt,” Global Network Initiative

“Egypt turns off internet, Lieberman wants same option for US,” Sean Bonner, BoingBoing

“Internet Security Savvy is Critical as Egyptian Government Blocks Websites, Arrests Activists in Response to Continued Protest,” Eva Galperin, EFF

“Egypt Cuts Off The Net. Net Fights Back,” Ben Rooney, Wall Street Journal

“6 Ideas For Those Needing Defensive Technology to Protect Free Speech from Authoritarian Regimes and 4 Ways the Rest of Us Can Help,” Peter Eckersley, EFF

Short link: http://bit.ly/f4xE1B

Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

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Banned Books Week

September 26, 2010

Banned Books Week

Celebrate the freedom to read during Banned Books Week, September 25−October 2, 2010, the twenty-ninth annual celebration of free access to thought through the printed word. Many libraries and  bookstores sponsor readings of frequently challenged books (last year’s include To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee, Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger and The Chocolate War by Robert Cormier). Find an event near you

 

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

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Fear of Darwin

September 21, 2009

Fear of Darwin

The film that opened the 2009 Toronto Film Festival is too controversial to show in the USA. No distributor will touch it. Why? It’s about Charles Darwin.

Based on Anna’s Box, a book by Darwin great-great-grandson Randal Keynes, the film Creation deals with Darwin’s crisis of faith after the death of his young daughter.

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Kindling the Bonfire of History?

February 23, 2009

Kindling the Bonfire of History?

Stephanie at UrbZen points out the downside of the web-based Kindle digital book reader:

… the Kindle’s very name is weirdly evocative of book burning …

The printed word — physically printed, on paper, in a book — might be heavy, clumsy or out of date, but it also provides a level of permanence and privacy that no digital device will ever be able to match.

In the past, restrictive governments had to ban whole books whose content was deemed too controversial, inflammatory or seditious ….  Censorship in the age of the Kindle will be more subtle, and much more dangerous.

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