UK News

 2014: Oct-Dec

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  You're banned from using certain words, and we're banned from telling you which words...

Ludicrous MP calls for derogatory terms to be totally banned from use in social media, newspapers and TV, regardless of the context


Link Here 19th December 2014

Twitter logo Luciana Berger, the shadow Minister for Public Health, has called for Twitter to totally ban the use of derogatory terms, regardless of the context. She said the website should ban racist words such as kike , (a derogatory term for Jews) which she claims can never be used in a non-derogatory way. A clearly bollox claim proven by her very own non-derogatory use of the term!

Berger said:

Online hate needs to be taken as seriously as offline hate -- but it isn't. Twitter's response isn't good enough. It has a responsibility to do more to protect its users. The site is letting me and many others down who have been the subject of lots of hate... It could start by proactively banning racist words which aren't allowed to printed in newspapers or broadcast on TV that could never be used in a positive way -- such as kike -- a derogative and anti-Semitic term for describing a Jew.

One has to have a little sympathy for her, as she was on the receiving end of torrents of insults over her being jewish, but that doesn't really justify people in authority from putting forward rubbish knee jerk policy ideas. Such ideas deserve, and require, robust criticism and ridicule.

 

 Update: Ruling on UK Book Censorship...

The Supreme court will rule on whether a memoir should be banned on grounds that reading it may traumatise the author's son


Link Here 16th December 2014  full story: Book Censorship in the UK...Books banned by the British courts
Uk Supreme Court A British performing artist who has been prevented from publishing his memoir as a result of legal action brought by his ex-wife is to ask the supreme court to overturn the ban, arguing that it poses a dangerous threat to free speech.

The artist referred to only as MLA, as a consequence of the extensive secrecy surrounding the case,  is being supported by human rights groups and a leading writers' organisation, which also believe that an injunction imposed by a lower court presents a serious risk to the right to freedom of expression.

The temporary injunction was imposed by the court of appeal last October after lawyers representing the artist's ex-wife argued that his book's descriptions of the sexual abuse that he suffered as a child were so disturbing that their son would suffer catastrophic psychological distress if he were to read it.

This claim is disputed by MLA, who also believes that it is particularly important that the voices of survivors of sexual abuse are not stifled. The book recounts the way in which the artist, who is well known in his field, suffered years of sexual abuse while at school, and found a way though his art of dealing with the trauma of his past.

The writers' association English PEN, Article 19 and Index on Censorship, which defend and promote free speech, will seek to join the supreme court hearing, to argue that the court of appeal's judgment could have a chilling effect on other writers tackling difficult subjects, should it be allowed to stand.

The supreme court agreed that it would hear the case in the new year.

 

 Offsite Article: Chief constable warns against drift towards police state...


Link Here 6th December 2014
police manchester logo Greater Manchester's Peter Fahy says it is not the police's job to define what counts as extremism

See article from theguardian.com

 

 Updated: Searching for someone else to do the work...

Man goes to court to force Google to track down links to delete


Link Here 25th November 2014  full story: The Right to be Forgotten...Bureaucratic censorship in the EU
Old Bailey The case of a UK businessman who wants Google to stop malicious web postings about him appearing in its search results is set to begin.

Daniel Hegglin says he has been wrongly called a murderer, a paedophile and a Ku Klux Klan sympathiser during a malicious online campaign against him. He wants Google to block the anonymous posts from its search engine results.

Google asked him to provide a list of web links to be removed, but High Court judges will rule if it should do more. He claims there are more than 3,600 websites containing abusive and untrue material about him, and says listing all the posts for Google to remove would be expensive, time consuming, and ineffective.

He says that although Google is not the originator of the abusive campaign, its search engines have allowed the abuse to become more widespread.

He is seeking a legal order to force Google to take steps to prevent the abusive posts being processed in searches in England and Wales.

Update: Settled

25th November 2014. See  article from  wiggin.co.uk  

The case was settled on the first day of trial.

Daniel Hegglin's barrister said in a statement:

The settlement includes significant efforts on Google's part to remove the abusive material from Google-hosted websites and from its search results. Mr Hegglin will now concentrate his energies on bringing the persons responsible for this campaign of harassment to justice .

And a statement for Google:

Google provides search services to millions of people and cannot be responsible for policing internet content. It will, however, continue to apply its procedures that have been developed to assist with the removal of content which breaches local applicable laws .

 

  Worthy of a Bad Review...

Hotel compounds bad service with a smallprint fraud of charging guests for a bad review


Link Here 21st November 2014
smallprint A couple have been unfairly charged £100 by a Blackpool hotel they described as a rotten stinking hovel on travel review website TripAdvisor. Tony and Jan Jenkinson posted the negative comments after being unimpressed with the one night they spent at the Broadway Hotel.

The couple, from Whitehaven, later found £100 charged to their credit card. The hotel said its policy was to charge for bad reviews.

Trading Standards from Cumbria County Council are investigating. Officials believe the hotel may have breached unfair trading practice regulations.

When the couple queried the surcharge, the hotel's manager said they had a no bad review policy in their terms and conditions. The policy stated in the smallprint: Despite the fact that repeat customers and couples love our hotel, your friends and family may not. For every bad review left on any website, the group organiser will be charged a maximum £100 per review.

The couple then contacted the council's Trading Standards team to complain about their treatment and have also sought a refund via their credit card company.

 

 Offsite Article: Report Censored...


Link Here 12th November 2014
university of west london logo University cancels the debate on how much free speech should be conferred to islamic extremists

See article from telegraph.co.uk

 

  Putin Opens his War Chest...

Propaganda TV: Russia Today, BBC tomorrow


Link Here 3rd November 2014  full story: Russia Today Propaganda TV...Russia Today, English language international propaganda channel

russia today international logo Russia Today (RT), a propaganda news channel bankrolled by Vladimir Putin, has launched a dedicated UK version. It is the first time an overseas news operator has launched a service specifically targeted at British viewers. Perhaps not surprising as the venture looks set to cost Putin £250m a year

These are the latest salvos in a propaganda onslaught in which RT, al-Jazeera, China's state-funded CCTV and the BBC World Service and its commercially-funded sister TV channel BBC World News, are among the most prominent players.

The international version of RT is already facing six separate investigations by TV censor Ofcom, including its coverage of the shooting down of Malaysia Airlines flight MH17. Richard Sambrook, former director of global news at the BBC and director of the Centre of Journalism at Cardiff University, said:

Editorially its line is clearly one that is being driven by the Kremlin agenda. It's a surprising move to focus resources on the UK. It's not a commercial proposition, therefore the main purpose must be to gain influence. It's about soft power for the Kremlin.

RT's UK channel will be made up of five hours of programmes a day broadcast from its new studios in Milbank, with the rest of the schedule filled by content from its international channel.

Meanwhile...

See  article from  globalresearch.ca

bbc news logo Not since Iraq have I seen BBC News working at propaganda strength like this. So glad I'm out of there

These are the words of the former economics editor of the BBC's Newsnight show, Paul Mason , relating to the BBC's coverage of the Scottish independence referendum. The London broadcaster's biased reporting on Scottish independence is not an isolated incident however, as the BBC has been blatantly warping, misrepresenting and omitting pertinent facts and narratives on numerous issues, from its coverage on Israel to its distortion on Ukraine.

The broadcaster has been widely criticised by many in Scotland and around the world for their propaganda campaign in the run up to the referendum in September, leading thousands of people to take to the streets in protest over the lack of journalistic integrity at the BBC. A major episode of this was when the BBC's political editor, Nick Robinson, censored Alex Salmond's lengthy response to a question regarding the rumours that the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) would move its headquarters to London if Scotland voted for independence. Despite Salmond's comprehensive response to the question which gave the BBC seven minutes of video footage to edit for their report, Robinson decided to deceive the public and falsely claim he didn't answer the question. This was part of a wider propaganda campaign of injecting fear and uncertainty into the idea of Scotland being an independent nation.

 

 Offsite Article: The awful truth about free speech...


Link Here 31st October 2014
Spiked logo Time to stop paying lip service to the principle and take a stand in practice. By Mick Hume

See article from spiked-online.com

 

  The right to free expression forgotten...

BBC News to maintain a list of URLs censored by Google under the 'right to be forgotten'


Link Here 22nd October 2014  full story: The Right to be Forgotten...Bureaucratic censorship in the EU
BBC logo The BBC is to publish a continually updated list of its articles censored from Google search under the disgraceful right to be forgotten rule.

Editorial policy head David Jordan told a public meeting, hosted by Google, that the BBC felt some of its articles had been wrongly hidden. He said greater care should be given to the public's right to remember .

The BBC will begin - in the next few weeks - publishing the list of removed URLs it has been notified about by Google. Jordan said the BBC had so far been notified of 46 links to articles that had been removed.

The list will not republish the story, or any identifying information. It will instead be a resource for those interested in the debate .

Jordan criticised the lack of a formal appeal process after links have been taken down, noting one case where news of the trial involving members of the Real IRA was removed from search results.

 

 Offsite Article: The End...


Link Here 21st October 2014
Assassination Margaret Thatcher Hilary Mantel Padraig Reidy: Collective outrage and imagined slights. Controversy about a short story about assassinating Thatcher

See article from indexoncensorship.org

 

 Updated: The right for the rich and powerful to censor what they don't want to hear...

Author banned from writing about his experience of child abuse lest this hurts delicate ears


Link Here 18th October 2014  full story: Book Censorship in the UK...Books banned by the British courts
english pen logo Stephen Fry, David Hare and Tom Stoppard among leading writers to voice concerns over court ruling that prevents publication of memoir. They write:

The Court of Appeal's injunction last week preventing publication of a memoir poses a significant threat to freedom of expression.

The Court has ruled that the book should not be published on the grounds that it may cause psychological harm to the author's child, who suffers from disabilities, including Asperger's and ADHD.

The book is not targeted at children and will not be published in the country in which the child lives. The memoir deals with the author's past experiences of sexual abuse and explores the redemptive power of artistic expression. It has been praised, even in court, as striking prose and an insightful work.

The author's earlier public discussions of sexual abuse have previously led to the arrest of one of his abusers.  Its publication is therefore clearly in the public interest and may encourage those who have suffered abuse to speak out.

As writers, and members of English PEN, we are gravely concerned about the impact of this judgment on the freedom to read and write in the UK. The public is being denied the opportunity of reading an enlightening memoir, while publishers, authors and journalists may face censorship on similar grounds in the future.

Jeffrey Archer, William Boyd, John Carey, Jim Crace, Jonathan Dimbleby, Cory Doctorow, Michael Frayn, Maureen Freely, President, English PEN, Stephen Fry, Daisy Goodwin, David Hare, Tom Holland, Hari Kunzru, Marina Lewycka, Blake Morrison, Katharine Norbury, Will Self, Tom Stoppard, Colin Thubron, Colm Tóibín

 

  Trademarked Blocking Systems...

ISP website blocking extended to websites accused of trademark infringement


Link Here 18th October 2014
Old Bailey In a landmark ruling, the High Court has ordered several of the UK's leading ISPs to block websites dealing in counterfeit products. The decision follows legal action by Richemont, the owner of several luxury brands including Cartier and Montblanc.

Following successful action by the world's leading entertainment companies to have sites blocked at the ISP level on grounds of copyright infringement, it was perhaps inevitable that other companies with similar issues, such as trademark infringement would tread the same path.

Compagnie Financiere Richemont S.A. owns several well-known luxury brands including Cartier and Mont Blanc and for some time has tried to force sites selling counterfeit products to close down. Faced with poor results, in 2014 the company wrote to the UK's leading ISPs, Sky, TalkTalk, BT, Virgin Media, EE and Telefonica/O2, complaining that third party sites were infringing on Richemont trademarks.

Concerned that Richemont hadn't done enough to close the sites down on its own and that blocking could affect legitimate trade, the ISPs resisted and the matter found itself before the High Court.

The court decision means that the ISPs named in the legal action must now restrict access to websites selling physical counterfeits in the same way they already restrict file-sharing sites.

A Richemont spokesperson told TorrentFreak that the ruling represents a positive step in the fight to protect brands and customers from the sale of counterfeit goods online. T he company said:

We are pleased by this judgment and welcome the Court's recognition that there is a public interest in preventing trade mark infringement, particularly where counterfeit goods are involved. The Courts had already granted orders requiring ISPs to block sites for infringement of copyright in relation to pirated content. This decision is a logical extension of that principle to trade marks.

TorrentFreak reports that the decision is likely to be appealed.

 

 Update: Revising History...

Google reports on the scale of censorship under the right to be forgotten


Link Here 12th October 2014  full story: The Right to be Forgotten...Bureaucratic censorship in the EU
Google logo One in 10 requests for web links to be censored from search results under European right to be forgotten laws have come from the UK, Google has said.

Google said it had removed 498,737 links from search results since May this year - including 63,616 pages following requests from the UK. It said 18,304 requests were made in the UK, the third highest in the EU.

According to a transparency report released on its website, Google removed 35% - or 18,459 - of censorship requests.

Google also provided examples of the sorts of requests it had received, along with the search engine's decision.

 

  The Sexual Freedom Party...

Charlotte Rose is standing for sexual freedom at the Clacton By-election on 9th October 2014.


Link Here 9th October 2014

sexual freedom partyt Charlotte Rose is standing as a  Sexual Freedom party candidate at the Clacton by-elections on 9th October 2014.

Sexual Freedom Party Manifesto 2014
 

What we stand for

  • - Freedom from sexual ignorance due to poor, or denial of, sex education

  • - Freedom from control by others

  • - Freedom from governmental control

We stand for knowledge, tolerance and respect, whatever a person's ability, preferences, identity, orientation, or job, so long as neither abuse or unwanted control is involved.

Why constituents might vote for us

We alone cover one aspect of life which people really care about: sex. Sex is the second biggest human drive, after survival, and yet it is ignored in politics. Most politicians pretend it is not important, and simply promote family values.

What we bring

Having a Sexual Freedom Party politician in the House of Commons will help towards the sex and relationship wellbeing of British citizens.

The Sexual Freedom Party will bring a new awareness to Parliament and society and work towards ridding this country of the stigma and bigotry which prevents some of our citizens from being sexually free. We will be doing this in these eight pressing areas:

  • Disabled people and older people in care need to be free to enjoy the same pleasures as everybody else enjoys in the privacy of their own homes. The Disability Discrimination Act 1995 makes this law, but it is rarely adhered to in practice.

  • People with sexual diversities still live restricted lives, for fear of stigma. Gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered people have achieved some social acceptance but this does not often extend to situations like visiting the doctor or going into hospital, where stigma exists, and gay people actually avoid going asa result! There is still little acceptance of people into BDSM (bondage, domination sado-masochism), fetishism, swinging, dogging, and polyamory.

  • Those who provide sexual services are currently forbidden by law to work together, which limits their capacity and renders their working lives unsafe. No other profession is limited in this way. So long as no control is involved, sex workers should be free to work in pairs or groups, or as a community.

  • Striptease artists and sex workers are being targetted by religious and anti-sex feminists. They claim that sex work is violence to women, yet do not listen to the strippers and sex workers themselves. The professional ones actually claim they like their work and are in charge of what they do. Striptease establishments are being unnecessarily closed down around the country, and sex workers demonised. In fact, striptease is a delightful, aspirational form of entertainment, and sex workers provide pleasure, teaching, necessary human contact and satisfaction for millions of men and women across the country.

  • FGM Female Genital Mutilation -- thousands of young girls and women in this country are forced to have their genitals mutilated: the clitoris and labia are cut off, so that they experience pain instead of pleasure, Sometimes the vagina is sewn up so that entry is so restricted that the man can only masturbate on her in order to impregnate her! FGM is illegal but only one prosecution has been made* since the law was passed over 25 years ago, and nothing really effective is being done because of "cultural sensitivity".

  • Grooming of young girls -- the recent scandal in Rotherham of muslim gangs grooming and raping young girls, was covered up for 14 years. Those trying to expose it were ignored by the press and authorities, which demonstrates the ignorance and the PC cultural sensitivity of our government.

  • Forced marriage -- also ignored thanks to PC cultural sensitivity, where situations such as a young, learning disabled person being forced to marry a relative abroad in order for the spouse to live in the UK. Then they are encouraged to produce a large inbred family, with perhaps more disabled children. This is illegal under the Forced Marriages Act 2008, and Forced Marriage etc. (Protection and Jurisdiction) (Scotland) Act 2011

but the laws are rarely enforced and do not go far enough.

Sex and Relationship Education (SRE)

SRE could do much to improve the sexual wellbeing of British citizens. This sex education needs to include everything mentioned above, i.e. sex and disability, all sexual diversities, striptease and sexual services and practices which threaten personal freedom.

Many brilliant campaigns have failed to get anywhere, and still schools are not obliged to teach SRE, and parents can ban their children from classes in school, so children are growing up in the 21st century, without sexual health knowledge, and often without the skills to enjoy a happy sex life.

Campaigns against porn use the argument that porn teaches people inaccurate information which corrupts their minds. This misses the point that porn is about fantasy. What young people need is education on reality. Sex education is necessary to prepare young people to look at porn. For example, in porn, anal sex looks as easy as vaginal sex but anal sex requires the recipient to open up, otherwise it is very painful and can be damaging. Many young porn viewers without this education are currently experiencing such difficulties.

Considering the above, the level and quality of sex education required is much higher than the "school nurse" or biology teacher is likely to deliver. Experts need to be brought in. A disabled man**, just out of school, declared that the best people to be teaching sex in schools are sex workers, as only they really know the full extent of human sexual needs and practice.

SRE needs to give people the confidence to enjoy the sex they want without being controlled or stifled. Some women, disabled people and shy people may need more support and there are experts out there who offer appropriate services. Sadly they mostly work underground and are largely unsupported.

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