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US Censorship News

2022: April-June

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Handing over personal data to protect users from handing over personal data...

Californian state law makers propose age verification for all internet users.

Link Here 30th June 2022
Full story: Lady GaGa...Winding up the nutters with sex and religion
California state lawmakers are discussing proposed legislation to require age and identity verification for all internet users. The proposal is bassed upon the UK's Age Appropriate Design Code that requires websites likely to be accessed by under 18s to implement data protection according to age. Younger viewers will be restricted from handing over personal data. But of course the rub is that the websites needs to know the age of the reader to implement this.

The bill, AB2273, is known as The California Age-Appropriate Design Code Act.

Critics of the legislation contend this requirement threatens the privacy of adults and the ability to use the internet anonymously. Eric Goldman, Santa Clara University School of Law professor commented:

The bill pretextually claims to protect children, but it will change the Internet for everyone. In order to determine who is a child, websites and apps will have to authenticate the age of ALL consumers before they can use the service. No one wants this.

The bill will put an end to casual web browsing, forcing companies to collect personal information they don't want to store and protect -- and that consumers don't want to provide -- in order to authenticate the age of visitors. And since age authentication generally requires identity details, that threatens the ability to use the internet anonymously.



Shooting from the hip...

New York Governer wants to sort out gun crime by censoring social media

Link Here8th June 2022
Full story: Internet Censorship in US...Left leaning media companies cancel the right
New York Governor Kathy Hochul has reacted to a recent mass shooting in Buffalo by signing as many as ten new laws, including one that concerns social media.

Hochul said that New York will require social media companies to report hateful content:

In the state of New York, we're now requiring social media networks to monitor and report hateful conduct on their platforms, Hochul announced.

According to the governor, the state will set up a task force whose focus will be violent extremism and social media, and this body will also investigate the role of social media in promoting domestic terror.



Offsite Article: The Political Fixation With Shifting The Blame Onto Porn...

Link Here 5th June 2022
In the desperation to find something to blame apart from the obvious, sexual expression is always a go-to distraction.

See article from



Contrarian views...

Florida's new law banning the censorship of right leaning views on social media is declare unconstitutional

Link Here25th May 2022
Full story: Internet Censorship in US...Left leaning media companies cancel the right
The US state of Florida responded to social media's silencing of Donald Trump by enacting a new law to ban social media from censoring users for political reasons. The law was challenged in the courts and it has now been judged to be mostly unconstitutional.

The 11th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that Florida's social media regulation law is unconstitutional.

The Appeals Court ruled against most of the provisions in Florida's social media regulation law. However, it said some of the provisions, including one that requires platforms to allow banned individuals to access their data for at least 60 days, were constitutional.

The ruling said that the law violated social media companies' First Amendment rights:

We conclude that social media platforms' content-moderation activities -- permitting, removing, prioritizing, and deprioritizing users and posts -- constitute 'speech' within the meaning of the First Amendment.

Most notably, the court rejected the argument that social media companies should be defined as common carriers, saying:

Neither law nor logic recognizes government authority to strip an entity of its First Amendment rights merely by labeling it a common carrier.

Earlier this month, the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals allowed a similar law in Texas to be enforced. The Texas law prohibits social media companies from censoring content or banning users based on political viewpoints. Tech companies have appealed the ruling by the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals and have submitted the ruling by the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals to support their case.



What you see is what you can get...

US appeal court finds that it is legal to use the data downloaded to a browser which is used to display a web page

Link Here20th April 2022
Scraping is a term used to describe the automated use of the html page data which is downloaded by a browser and then used to diplay a web page. Perhaps the most obvious example is to select a section of text on a web page and use copy and paste to insert the text into another place.

The US Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals may have set an important precedent in the tech world. The court has essentially concluded that Data Scraping is not hacking. Hence, it might not be illegal to scrape data from websites, and social media platforms, unless there are defensive technologies in place.

After listening to the arguments in a case that involved Microsoft-owned LinkedIn and competitor hiQ Labs, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals has concluded that scraping publicly available data does not constitute a federal crime. The case dates back to 2017 which LinkedIn had filed against hiQ Labs. The social media platform for professionals had objected to its data being scraped.

LinkedIn essentially wanted hiQ Labs to immediately cease scraping public data from the social networking site. During the first trial, the court sided with hiQ Labs, noting that LinkedIn couldn't invoke federal hacking laws to stop the practice. The court opinioned that hiQ Labs' behavior didn't seem to violate any laws, and hence, the company's actions could not be classified as a crime.

A defining feature of public websites is that their publicly available sections lack limitations on access; instead those sections are open to anyone with a web browser. In other words, applying the gates analogy to a computer hosting publicly available webpages, that computer has erected no gates to lift or lower in the first place. Simply put, had LinkedIn deployed mechanisms to prevent data from being scraped, hiQ Labs would have been in the wrong. However, since there were no restrictions, LinkedIn's insistence that hiQ Labs must cease its practice doesn't have any merit.



US Parents recommend...

Lawn Boy by Jonathan Evison and many other gay themed books for kids

Link Here11th April 2022
Mary Ellen Cuzela is a mother of three from Katy, a suburb of Houston, Texas. She has hit the headlines over her campaign to complain about gay themed books available in local school libraries.

She started after reading Lawn Boy , by Jonathan Evison, which was available at her children's high school. She said. The book, which traces the story of a Mexican American character's journey to understanding his own sexuality and ethnic identity, was filled with vulgarity, Cuzela said, including dozens of four-letter words, explicit sexual references and a description of oral sex between fourth-grade boys during a church youth group meeting.

Cuzela shared her views with some like-minded parents, and together they set out to get such books banned, and so the campaign was launched.

Another book that caught her attention was Jack of Hearts (and Other Parts) , by L.C. Rosen. This was noted for references to anal and oral sex and a detailed description of male genitalia and advice on how to give oral sex.

The campaign received world attention including a report from the BBC. Books complained about for "pervasive vulgarity" include:

  • Lawn Boy , by Jonathan Evison
  • Losing the Girl by MariNaomi
  • Me Earl and the Dying Girl by Jesse Andrews
  • Out of Darkness by Ashley Hope Perez
  • The Nerdy and the Dirty by B.T. Gottfred
  • Forever for a Year by B.T. Gottfred
  • Jack of Hearts (and other parts) by L.C. Rosen
  • All Boys Aren't Blue by George Johnson
  • The Handsome Girl and Her Beautiful Boy by B.T. Gottfred
  • A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas
  • Beauty Queens by Libba Bray
  • Drama: A Graphic Novel by Raina Telgemeier
  • Transformers, Revenge of the Fallen Vol 2, Official Movie Adaptation by Simon Furman
  • The Breakaways by Cathy G. Johnson

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