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    Showing posts tagged Censorship

    Twitter Censorship and Google Tracking

    Is it just me, or did our SOPA fight fall a bit short, knowing that Twitter is going to cave to dictatorial regimes on censorship and Google is going to be tracking users’ internet use.

    It just seems like the folks who should be on the front lines helping people combat privacy violations and promote the spread of ideas are taking two steps backward.  What’s going to happen when the next Egyptian Revolution hits and Twitter is deleting tweets that tell people where they can find safety?  (Or some other equally likely scenario.)

    Perhaps I’m a bit too naive and idealistic, but this really saddens me.

    6 01.27.12
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    My Letter to my Congressman/Senators on SOPA/PIPA

    I know I said I’d black out for the day, but I think this is important, considering I’ve asked my followers to email their lawmakers to urge opposition to these bills:


    Dear Mr. Blunt,


    I’m writing today to urge you to vote ‘no’ on the SOPA/PIPA anti-piracy bills.

    There are many reasons why this bill is unacceptable, chief among them the power it gives to the government to fundamentally alter the infrastructure of the Internet. Such action has the potential to hinder the functionality of the web by severing the connection between domain URLs and numerical data addresses that many programs rely on. The DNS system is the foundation of a functional internet, and breaking it could have catastrophic consequences for the country and its economy.

    Also important are the implications for free speech and censorship, as this bill would give many entities the power to censor content that they find objectionable to their particular political agenda via improper use of content blocking powers. The manager of reddit.com, Erik Martin, has recently gone on record stating in his prior career with an independent film company, he received numerous erroneous requests to remove content that his company had posted on Youtube, content that they themselves produced. The potential for abuse is real, and is another reason why this bill should be scrapped.

    Another important consideration would be the necessity of large and important US-based tech and media corporations to move offshore, and taking the jobs they create with them, if this bill were to be passed. Google, Reddit, Twitter, Wikipedia, and others would have to consider a move of this nature to preserve the rights they currently have under the law. Do we really want to encourage our most innovative companies to relocate internationally?

    I hope you’ll do the right thing on this bill. You need to send a message to Hollywood that the rights of the American people are worth more than $95 million dollars in campaign contributions.

    Thank you for your time.


    Sincerely,

    Ryan Stevens

    7 01.18.12
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    Blacking Out Against Censorship

    I encourage everyone to write your senators and congressmen today and urge them to vote against this atrocious bill.

    See you tomorrow!

    1 01.18.12
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    Wikileaks Takes Down the Head of Al Jazeera

    jonathan-cunningham:

    Wadaj Khanfar, the director of Al Jazeera, announced his resignation today after Wikileaks released documents that could prove embarassing to the news organization, the New York Times has reported.

    According to the documents, Khanfar held particularly close ties with the U.S. government, to whom he promised the network would provide less critical coverage. He steps down today after running the network for eight years.

    The documents allege that Khanfar censored some of Al Jazeera’s coverage of the conflict in Iraq under American pressure to sanitize its coverage, presumably to minimize anti-U.S. sentiment in the Arab world. The coverage in question was to include images of injured civilians, which were allegedly removed by Khanfar.

    To an American media outlet, colluding with the government is actually a sign of respectability. Remember when the New York Times hid Bush’s warrantless wiretapping of American citizens for over a year?

    Wikileaks… protecting us from scumbag liars everywhere.

    464 09.24.11
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    Congressman bans cameras, cops commit armed robbery - Indie Register

    Paul Ryan’s not the only scumbag Republican getting in on the camera banning fun.  Rep. Steve Chabot not only banned cameras (illegally) at his town hall meeting, but coerced police into illegally searching and seizing peoples’ property.

    I suppose he should get an iota of credit for having a town hall meeting at all, as roughly half of Republicans are too scared to do so in the wake of the votes they made for god-awful and moronic policies, while demonizing the the people that elected them.

    What are you afraid of, Republicans, if not your own sheer idiocy?

    Per Indie Register:

    Rep. Steve Chabot (R-OH) allegedly had signs placed in front of the venue banning cameras. After some attendees failed to obey the signs, police officers went through the audience to take them away.

    The story was first brought to my attention by Carlos Miller at Photography is Not a Crime.

    The amature videographers asserted their rights to the cops, but to no avail. An officer told one of the individuals the ban was “to protect the constituents.” The videographer stood his ground saying, “I’m well within my rights” after being asked “Are we gonna do this easy way? Or the hard way?” After protesting a few seconds more, the camera was stolen by the officer.

    5 08.25.11
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    Hackers target San Francisco's rapid transit system - CNN.com

    Good. 

    Per CNN: (Emphasis mine.)

    Members of a well-known hacking group — according to a statement and Twitter messages — took credit Sunday for an online attack targeting San Francisco’s embattled transit system.

    Anonymous — in a news release attributed to the group, and backed up by related Twitter pages — said it would take down the website of the Bay Area Rapid Transit System, known as BART, between noon and 6 p.m. PT Sunday. This is in response to the system’s decision to cut off cellphone signals at “select” subway stations in response to a planned protest last week.

    By (cutting cell service), you have not only threatened your citizens’ safety, you have also performed an act of censorship,” a seemingly computer-generated voice — speaking over dramatic music and images — said in a video posted online Sunday afternoon. “By doing this, you have angered Anonymous.”

    6 08.14.11
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