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2016: Oct-Dec

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Update: But only one domain name banned for an offensive name...

Nominet censors 8000 domain names mostly at the behest of the UK's copyright police

Link Here 22nd December 2016
Full story: Internet Domain Censorship...In the Domain of Nominet internet censorship
Nominet, the Registry responsible for running the .UK domain name space, has recently published a report on the number of domain names it has suspended further to requests from law enforcement agencies. The figures show that during the 12 month period from 1 November 2015 to 31 October 2016, over 8,000 domain names were suspended. This is more than twice the number of domain name suspensions during the preceding 12 month period in 2014/2015.

A revised registration policy, which came into effect in May 2014, made it clear that the use of a domain name under .UK for criminal purposes is not permitted and that such domain names may be suspended. Police or law enforcement agencies (LEAs) are able to notify Nominet of any .UK domain names being used for criminal activity.

The suspension of 8,049 domain names from 1 November 2015 to 31 October 2016 was the result of notifications from eight different LEAs, ranging from the Counter Terrorism Internet Referral Unit to the UK Trading Standards body. The majority of the requests came from the UK Police Intellectual Property Crime Unit which submitted 7,617 suspension requests.

In addition to this, the revised registration policy also prohibited the registration of domain names that appear to relate to a serious sexual offence. Such domain names are termed offensive names under the policy. Thus Nominet, in its sole discretion, will not allow a domain name to remain registered if it appears to indicate, comprise or promote a serious sexual offence and where there is no legitimate use of the domain name which could be reasonably contemplated . As a result of this, all new domain name registrations are run through an automated process and those that are identified as potentially problematic are highlighted. These domain names are then verified manually to ensure that they are in breach of Nominet's offensive names policy.

It is interesting to note that while the automated process to identify offensive domain names highlighted 2,407 cases, this resulted in only one suspension.



Get the Daily Mail reclassified as a fake news website...

Humerous petition calls for the Daily Mail to be designated as fake news.

Link Here 17th December 2016
It wasn't so long ago that the Daily Mail was universally derided in anti-censorship circles. Now it has become a champion of the people, willing to give voice to large sections of the population whose opinions are being silenced by the politically correct 'elite'. Anyway the petition reads:

Facebook has announced that a new tool is being rolled out so that readers have a fast and convenient way to flag fake news stories, and once again there seems to be no distinction between fake news for entertainment purposes (our site Southend News Network) and fake news for deliberate and dangerous deception purposes (those nasty pages who got Donald Trump elected, apparently).

Well then, seeing as that will probably result in the eventual demise of Southend News Network, we thought that we might as well go out in a real blaze of glory.

Therefore, we are proud to present our campaign to get the Daily Mail reclassified as a fake news website!

Our argument is a simple one. We feel that the Daily Mail reports stories in a manner that often swerves into the realms of fake news. Reporting Jeremy Corbyn doing a jig, making the campaigner Gina Miller appear darker than she really is in photographs, and just a general history of reporting real world events in a way that incites hatred against anyone who is an enemy of the Daily Mail are all unacceptable in our eyes at a time when actual fake news websites are getting blamed for many of society's problems.

If enough people sign this petition, there is just the slightest glimmer of hope that their Facebook classification could be altered to Humour or something along those lines. We know that it is a tall order in reality as they have the most-visited news site in the world, but to be brutally honest if we are going down then we might as well try and create one hell of a storm at the same time.

Thanks for your support!

Chief Reporter, Southend News Network,



Oh bollocks it's Christmas...

Police waste time and money following up a bollocks complaint about a mug in a shop window display

Link Here16th December 2016
Welsh police ludicrously wasted time and money following up a ridiculous complaint about a jokey mug in a Cardiff shop window.

Staff at Ginger Whites shop in Rhiwbina said that the mug, displayed on a high shelf in window, has a picture of Father Christmas and holly with the words Oh bollocks it's Christmas written across it. Following the visit they posted a picture of the mug on Facebook with the comment:

We had the Police in the shop today, Ginger Whites, due to a complaint being made about our Bollocks Christmas mugs.

Absolutely gobsmacked as to why anyone would waste police time over this. Seriously, put your time to better use!

No action was taken by the police and they didn't tell us to take it down. They just let us know a complaint had been made.



Offsite Article: How our laws inspired Trump's attack on free speech. By Nick Cohen...

Link Here 4th December 2016
Labour and Liberal authoritarian 'progressives' revisit UK press censorship perhaps in the hope that it can be used to silence popular opponents such as Trump and Farage

See article from



Update: Another seat of learning where the Sun never shines...

Plymouth Student's Union decides to censor the newspapers that voice the views of large sections of the British population

Link Here 3rd December 2016
Full story: University Censorship...Universities vs Free Speech
Students at Plymouth university have followed students at City, University of London by deciding to ban three newspapers from their campus.

It means that the campus shop run by Plymouth's students will not sell copies of the Sun, Daily Mail, Daily Express and their Sunday equivalents from the new year.

According to a report in the Plymouth Herald , the decision was taken by the executive council of the University of Plymouth Students' Union (UPSU). The motion was passed, says a UPSU Facebook statement, by a large majority . However students themselves were not consulted. The Student's Union said:

Whilst we believe that freedom of expression and speech are inalienable human rights, as defined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, a number of British tabloids are known to express hateful views. [...BUT...]

They aim at belittling and demonising certain groups in society, such as immigrants, refugees, asylum seekers, disabled people, the LGBTIQA+ community, Muslims, Black and Asian communities...

It is our duty to protect and empower and represent marginalised and discriminated against groups... UPSU opposes hatred, discrimination and demonisation of any individual..

Because of these very values that we hold and we are proud of, we believe that it is unethical for us to profit out of the sale of hateful, non-factual and anti-scientific media platforms.



Secret Censorship...

A few super injunctions are still being ordered in Northern Ireland

Link Here2nd December 2016
Full story: Super Injunctions...Granting super powers to rich gaggers
Through an Assembly question to the Justice Minister, South Down UUP MLA Harold McKee has established that ultra-secretive super-injunctions are still being ordered in Northern Ireland.

A standard injunction is a gagging order imposed by a judge, which bans anybody in the court's jurisdiction from reporting a story, or naming the parties involved. A super-injunction goes further and seeks to ban any mention of the fact that such an injunction has been imposed in the first place.

Super-injunctions are so extraordinary and unwieldy that even the normally ban-happy London courts effectively banished them five years ago after getting a bad rap in a few celebrity cases.

However, it appears that Northern Ireland's courts are continuing to use the discredited orders. After a lull since 2009, a fresh super-injunction was granted in 2015 and another one just this year. That is all we are allowed to know.

Harold McKee linked the continuation of super-injunctions in Northern Ireland to the Executive's refusal to adopt the liberalising reforms to the defamation laws introduced across the rest of the UK.



Internet supervillain censored...

UK Government orders the censorship of an alt-right old boy speaking to pupils at school

Link Here23rd November 2016

A Kent school has censored a talk by Milo Yiannopoulos, a former pupil, an outspoken Donald Trump supporter, and member of the so-called alt-right movement. The censorship was apparently ordered by the Department for Education

Simon Langton grammar school for boys, which Yiannopoulos attended, said it had pulled his address to sixth-formers due to take place on Tuesday. Yiannopoulos is a senior editor at the US-based Breitbart website, whose chief executive, Steven Bannon , is Trump's choice for chief strategist.

The Canterbury school claimed the talk had been cancelled because of safety concerns, with almost all of the opposition to it coming from outside the school.

The alt-right may be a bit controversial but this hasn't really lead to any incidents of unrest so far. Anyway the school said:

The decision was taken following contact from the DfE counter-extremism unit, the threat of demonstrations at the school by organised groups and members of the public, and our overall concerns for the security of the school site and the safety of our community.

Yiannopoulos, who was permanently suspended from Twitter in July , describes himself as the most fabulous supervillain on the internet on his Facebook page, where he added:

My old high school has been bullied into cancelling my talk on Tuesday by the counter-extremism unit at the UK Department of Education.

Who even knew the DoE had a counter-extremism unit? And that it wasn't set up to combat terrorism but rather to punish gays with the wrong opinions?



A Tory councillor recommends...

Calls for a ban of an Penarth art exhibit featuring political cartoons

Link Here18th November 2016
An art exhibition featuring cartoons of Theresa May sitting on the toilet and Boris Johnson breaking wind is facing calls to be censored over claims the work is crude and pornographic .

The free exhibition entitled Dyma Gariad (Fel y Moroedd) ( Here is a Love [Deep as Oceans] ) opened recently at Penarth Pier Pavilion.

Anthony Ernest, a Penarth town councillor, whinged:

Constituents have come to me expressing their concerns over the quality of the exhibition and whether it is suitable for the wider audience which includes children, and indeed adults. I have to say, I agree with them. More than £1m of public funding has gone into the Pavilion, so its artwork should be suitable for the wider community.

I think public art should be interesting, and even provocative... BUT of this nature, which is downright crude and pornographic, just isn't acceptable.

But artist Iwan Bala says his work is a direct response to the recent political madness of the Brexit vote and election of Donald Trump -- and that art is bound to offend some people.

The exhibition will be open to the public until November 30.



The digital economy as dominated by the US...

Campaigners suggest that Google and Facebook should pay a levy to assist local journalists

Link Here9th November 2016
The Media Reform Coalition and National Union of Journalists are hoping to make Google and Facebook fund journalism in Britain.

They are seeking to persuade politicians to include a new amendment to the digital economy bill, which is currently going through parliament. It will propose a 1% levy on the operations of the digital giants in order to pay for independent and non-profit journalism.

A statement issued by the Media Reform Coalition (MRC) argues that digital intermediaries such as Google and Facebook are not only amassing eye-watering profits and paying minimal tax in the UK, they are also bleeding the newspaper industry dry by sucking up advertising revenue . It continues:

As national and local newspapers try to cut their way out of trouble by slashing editorial budgets and shedding staff, journalistic quality is becoming a casualty.

Public interest journalism in particular has been hit the hardest as newspapers are being lured into a clickbait culture which favours the sensational and the trivial.

In the light of this, we propose a 1% levy on the operations of the largest digital intermediaries with the resulting funds redistributed to non-profit ventures with a mandate to produce original local or investigative news reporting.



Censorship denied...

Extremist's libel claim against the BBC's Sunday Politics for describing him as an extremist turned down by court on the grounds that the BBC's comment were true

Link Here28th October 2016

A libel claim brought against the BBC by Chief Imam, Shakeel Begg, has been dismissed today.

Begg, the Chief Imam at Lewisham Islamic Centre, sought damages against the BBC for libel in respect of a broadcast of Sunday Politics presented by Andrew Neil on BBC One, 3 November 2013. He denied being an extremist speaker who had recently promoted and encouraged religious violence by telling Muslims that it would constitute a man's greatest deeds.

Today in a written judgment The Honourable Mr Justice Haddon-Cave dismissed the claim stating that:

Shakeel Begg was something of a Jekyll and Hyde character whose speeches and postings, represent an overwhelming case of justification for the BBC, and that he clearly promotes and encourages violence in support of Islam and espouses a series of extremist Islamic positions.

A BBC Spokesperson said:

We were right to stand by the journalism of Sunday Politics. The judge has concluded, based on the evidence, that Imam Begg has preached religious violence and an extremist worldview in his remarks.

The trial took place between 27 June and 1 July 2016. The BBC defended the case on the basis that the broadcast was substantially true relying upon evidence from six speeches given by Begg to a variety of Muslim audiences between 2006 and 2011.



Still a little green...

The new Green Party leader attempts to censor the press from revealing that many of the 'child' refugees arriving in Britain were surely adults

Link Here25th October 2016
The Green party has complained to the press censor IPSO over the use of pictures of refugees by the Sun, Daily Mail, Daily Star and Sunday Telegraph.

Although it was absolutely obvious that some of the 'children' were many years into adulthood, Jonathan Bartley, who co-heads the Green party, has asked the Independent Press Standards Organisation whether the titles were justified in printing images of refugees in Calais whom were claiming to be under 18.

According to Ipso's code of practice pictures of children under the age of 16 should not be used unless adult consent has been given.

Bartley ludicrously argued that the coverage did not qualify as an exceptional public interest that would allow the newspapers to override the Ipso code.

In fact large proportions of the public were well interested in the fact that the authorities are so politically correct that they refuse to entertain reasonable doubt about the voracity of what desperate refugees tell them.

Bartley argued that publishing the pictures contributed to an atmosphere of prejudice against the refugees. A little bit bizarre considering the pictures demonstrated how far British officials are biased in favour of the refugees.

The Green party complaint cites editions of the Sun (18th and 19th October), the Daily Mail (18 October), the Daily Star (19 October) and the Sunday Telegraph (23 October).



Thousands of reasons...

Thailand censors BBC coverage of the King's death

Link Here17th October 2016
Thailand's Ministry of Foreign Affairs has issued a statement deploring foreign media who allegedly misreported the number of Thais gathered to mourn the death of King Bhumibol Adulyadej.

The statement, which did not identify any media outlet specifically, deplored some big foreign media for reporting that thousands of Thais had gathered to mourn the loss of the King at the Grand Palace. The statement said the actual number was much higher noting that hundreds of thousands lined the route from Siriraj Hospital to the Grand Palace. It described the alleged discrepancy between thousands at the palace and hundreds of thousands along the route as manipulative and provocative.

After the announcement of the King's death Thursday evening, all television channels, cable channels and satellite channels under Thai control were replaced by a single government broadcast. The channels resumed at midnight on Friday night, but were told not to broadcast entertainment programmes for a month. However the BBFC and Al Jazeera news channels were subjected to additional censorship in that any news items reporting on Thailand were blacked out with a card announcing that Programming will return shortly.

BBC correspondent Jonathan Head confirmed their coverage about Thailand had been blocked in the country several times ever since. Head told news company Khaosod:

Whenever reporting on Thailand comes up our transmissions are blocked. Just now when I was reporting live.

We have received no official complaints, and the MFA has not mentioned any problems with the BBC's reporting. So we do not know why we are being blocked.

Presumably the reason for the blocking is more about discussions of the succession, rather than numbers attending funeral events. It is a very sensitive issue in Thailand.

Khaosod also reported that cable and satellite company, TrueVisions was looking for freelancers to monitor BBC and Al Jazeera news, and to switch out news reports from Thailand.



Update: Soaraway Censorship...

Third council, The Wirral, to call on local newsagents to ban The Sun

Link Here13th October 2016
Full story: Censoring The Sun...UK councils call for local newsagents to ban The Sun
Wirral Council is expected to back a campaign encouraging retailers across the borough to stop selling The Sun newspaper.

At a meeting of the full council next Monday a notice of motion is scheduled to be debated which points out the tabloid published blatant lies about the Hillsborough disaster. The call from Labour councillor Ron Abbey adds:

For this reason we ask all retailers and vendors of newspapers to stop selling the Sun. We applaud the group called 'The Total Eclipse of the S*n' for their endeavours to rid our city region of this newspaper.

Liverpool councillors unanimously backed a similar motion to stop selling The Sun in September. Derry and Strabane District Council also recently agreed a motion also asking local newsagents to stop selling the title.



Classified as dumb...

Total common sense failure at a Welsh language film showing without the English subtitles

Link Here3rd October 2016
Y Llyfrgell (Library Suicides) is a 2016 UK thriller by Euros Lyn.
Starring Dyfan Dwyfor, Carwyn Glyn and Sharon Morgan. Youtube link IMDb

The BBFC rated a subtitled version of Library Suicides as 15 uncut for strong threat, injury detail, sex, nudity, suicide references, drug misuse.

Exactly the same film is being shown without the subtitles at Aberystwyth Arts Centre. Now the Arts Centre bosses have tried to explain a dumb decision to slap its own 18 rating for the film just because the subtitles are turned off. They said that the BBFC had not rated the unsubtitled version, so it has to be listed by cinemas as an 18.

An Aberystwyth Arts Centre spokesperson confirmed the rating difference is not a mistake , saying:

The non-subtitled version has not been rated by the BBFC so we have to list it as an 18 rather than a 15, but essentially it is exactly the same film.



Update: Soaraway Censorship...

Second council calls on local newsagents to ban The Sun

Link Here1st October 2016
Full story: Censoring The Sun...UK councils call for local newsagents to ban The Sun
Derry City and Strabane District Council has passed a motion asking local newsagents to stop selling The Sun.

The motion was put forward to show solidarity with the families of the Hillsborough football stadium disaster.

It also called on the council to support the campaign group Total Eclipse of the Sun , which wants all shops to boycott the newspaper.

A spokesperson for The Sun described the move as extreme censorship :

We are astonished that in Derry - a city that has prided itself on its association with civil liberties and free speech - some elected politicians think it's appropriate to push such extreme censorship on its citizens and retailers.

The vote was proposed by independent councillor Paul Gallagher and supported by 27 SDLP, Sinn Féin and independent members. One unionist representative voted against, whilst seven more unionists abstained.

Liverpool councillors had previously backed a similar censorship motion a few weeks ago..

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