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 2018: April-June

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  Terrifying censorship...

Labour MP tables bill amendment requiring social media companies to take down posts within 24 hours of an official complaint


Link Here 29th June 2018  full story: Glorification of Censorship...Climate of fear caused by glorification of terrorsim
Google, Facebook, YouTube and other sites would be required by law to take down extremist material within 24 hours of receiving an official complaint under an amendment put forward for inclusion in new counter-terror legislation.

The Labour MP Stephen Doughty's amendment echoes censorship laws that came into effect in Germany last year. However the effect of the German law was to enable no-questions-asked censorship of anything the government doesn't like. Social media companies have no interest in challenging unfair censorship and find the easiest and cheapest way to comply is to err on the side of the government, and take down anything asked regardless of the merits of the case.

The counter-terrorism strategy unveiled by the home secretary, Sajid Javid, this month, said the Home Office would place a renewed emphasis on engagement with internet providers and work with the tech industry to seek more investment in technologies that automatically identify and remove terrorist content before it is accessible to all.

But Doughty, a member of the home affairs select committee, said his amendment was needed because the voluntary approach was failing. He said a wide variety of extremist content remained online despite repeated warnings.

If these companies can remove copyrighted video or music content from companies like Disney within a matter of hours, there is no excuse for them to be failing to do so for extremist material.

Doughty's amendment would also require tech companies to proactively check content for extremist material and take it down within six hours of it being identified.

The proactive check of content alludes to the censorship machines being introduced by the EU to scan uploads for copyrighted material. The extension to detect terrorist material coupled with the erring on the side of caution approach would inevitably lead to the automatic censorship of any content even using vocabulary of terrorism, regardless of it being news reporting, satire or criticsim.

 

  Let's jail everybody...

Government to introduce a bill to ban upskirting whilst Labour's extreme feminists want to hijack it to ban misogyny and fake porn


Link Here 22nd June 2018
A row over Tory MP Christopher Chope blocking a backbench attempt to ban people from taking lewd photographs up women's skirts has spurred the government to adopt the bill.

Speaking in PMQ's this week, Theresa May confirmed the Government was taking on the upskirting campaign. She said:

Upskirting is a hideous invasion of privacy.

It leaves victims feeling degraded and distressed.

We will adopt this as a Government Bill, we will introduce the Bill this Thursday with a second reading before the summer recess.

But we are not stopping there. We will also ensure that the most serious offenders are added to the sex offenders register, and victims will be in no doubt their complaints will be taken very seriously and perpetrators will be punished.

And now extremist feminists are attempting to massively extend the bill to cover their own pet peeves.

Feminist campaigner and academic Clare Ms McGlynn, claimed the draft law created an opportunity to tackle so-called deepfake pornography. She said:

It would be easy to extend the bill so that it covers images which have been altered too and clearly criminalise a practice that victims say they find incredibly distressing.

And Labour MP Stella Creasy demanded misogyny is made a hate crime to ensure the law keeps up with abuse of women. She claimed outlawing hatred of women - by bringing it in to with race and equality laws - would be more effective than one-off bans for offences like upskirting.

 

 Offsite Article: Censorship by red tape...


Link Here 20th May 2018  full story: Student Union Censorship...Students Vs Free Speech
Harriet Harman denies that there is a free speech crisis within UK universities but concedes that the concept of safe spaces has been abused

See article from cherwell.org

 

 Updated: Hacked off with Labour...

Labour resuscitates disgraceful proposal to introduce a UK newspaper censor and then denying natural justice to refuseniks


Link Here 19th May 2018  full story: UK News Censor...UK proposes state controlled news censor
Local newspaper editors from across the country have united to urge MPs not to join a disgraceful Labour-backed plot to muzzle the Press.

Former party leader Ed Miliband and deputy leader Tom Watson are among opposition MPs seeking to hijack data protection legislation to introduce newspaper censorship..

MPs will vote tomorrow on proposed amendments to the Data Protection Bill that would force publishers refusing to join a state-recognised Press censor to pay the costs of claimants who bring court proceedings, even if their claims are defeated. They would also lead to yet another inquiry into the media known as Leveson 2.

Former party leader Ed Miliband and deputy leader Tom Watson are among opposition MPs seeking a press censor.

Local newspaper editors warn today the completely unacceptable measures are an attack on Press freedom that would cause irreparable damage to the regional press.

Alan Edmunds, editorial director of Trinity Mirror Regionals, the country's largest publisher of regional and local papers, said:

We do not want our journalists facing the spectre of Leveson 2 when attempting to report on the activities of public figures, legitimately and in the public interest.  Another huge inquiry would only embolden those who would rather keep their activities hidden from scrutiny.

Maidenhead Advertiser editor Martin Trepte added:

The amendments represent an attack on Press freedom which is completely unacceptable in our society. As a point of principle, we stand united against these attacks on free speech and urge all MPs to do likewise by voting against all the amendments.

Update: Press freedom wins the day

10th May 2018. See  article from bbc.com

Ed Miliband served up an impassioned speech saying something along the lines of: 'think of the hacking victims', they deserve that the rest of British people should be denied the protection of a press so we can all suffer together.

But despite his best efforts, press freedom won the day and the Miliband's proposal to resuscitate the 2nd part of the Leveson report was defeated by a vote of 304 to 295. Tom Watson's amendment to withdraw natural justice from newspapers refusing to sign up to a press censor was withdrawn after it became obvious that parliament was in no mood to support press censorship.

For the government

Culture Secretary, Matt Hancock said it was a great day for a free press.

Update: Press freedom wins the day again

19th May 2018. See  article from dailymail.co.uk

On Tuesday, the Commons rejected yet another attempt to resurrect the 5.4million Leveson 2 inquiry into historic allegations against newspapers.

MPs were forced to act again on the issue after peers attempted to amend the Data Protection Bill, ignoring an earlier vote in the Commons last week. MPs have now voted twice to reject a backward-looking, disproportionate and costly Leveson 2 inquiry.  Tuesday's vote passed by 12 votes -- 301 votes to 289 -- an even larger majority than last week.

Downing Street later urged the Lords to finally respect the wishes of the elected house. And the Lords seems to have responded.

A Tory peer who had just tried to resurrect plans for another multi-million-pound Press inquiry told his fellow plotters it was time to give up. Lord Attlee urged the Lords to abandon any more challenges.The peer, who was one of three Tories to back a rebel amendment to the Data Protection Bill, said they should not seek to hold the legislation to ransom. He added:

We have had a good battle and now we have lost. We should not pursue it further. We should not hold a time-sensitive Bill to ransom in order to force the Government to change policy. In my opinion, that would be wrong.

 

 Offsite Video: Censorship committee...


Link Here 3rd May 2018
Myles Jackman and the Open Rights Group speak to Parliament's Communications Committee which is considering how best to censor the internet

See article from parliamentlive.tv

 

  Four in five people 'want' an internet censor to stop youngsters from going mad...

It sounds like the government is ramping up the propaganda machine to suggest that people 'want' the creation of a state social media censor


Link Here 19th April 2018
A survey commissioned by the Royal Society for Public Health has claimed that four in five people want social media firms to be regulated to ensure they do more to protect kids' mental health. Presumably the questions were somewhat designed to favour the wished of the campaigners.

Some 45% say the sites should be self-regulated with a code of conduct but 36% want rules enforced by Government.

The Royal Society for Public Health, which surveyed 2,000 adults, warned social media can cause significant problems if left unchecked.

Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt has previously claimed that social media could pose as great a threat to children's health as smoking and obesity. And he has accused them of developing seductive products aimed at ever younger children.

The survey comes as MPs and Peers today launch an All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) that will probe the effect of social media on young people' mental health. It will hear evidence over the coming year from users, experts and industry, with the aim of drawing up practical solutions, including a proposed industry Code of Conduct. Labour MP Chris Elmore, who will chair the APPG.

 

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