Showing 33 posts tagged free speech
A US District Court judge dismissed a lawsuit March 27 that accused Chinese search engine Baidu of illegally suppressing free speech by censoring information about democracy movements in China on the internet. The decision raises some unsettling questions about the world’s dependency on a handful of search engines.
The group of activists who brought the suit said Baidu’s government-mandated censorship was preventing Baidu’s users in the US from seeing their work, and thus violated their right to free speech under the US constitution’s First Amendment. Judge Jesse M. Furman’s paradoxical conclusion was that forbidding Baidu from censoring results would be a violation of its right to free speech
» via Quartz
Ratings are important on eBay. Lots of buyers use them to assess the quality and reliability of particular sellers, and lots of sellers will go to great lengths to keep perfect or near-perfect ratings.
But an Ohio company named Med Express has shown it’s willing to go further than other sellers: it’s willing to litigate. When Med Express got its first piece of negative feedback, it filed a lawsuit, insisting that the feedback be removed from eBay.
» via ars technica
For the first time ever, Twitter censored a controversial account at the request of local government earlier this week. It was run by neo-Nazis. The ban, which is the first of its kind under a relatively new Twitter policy that gives the company “the ability to reactively withhold content from users in a specific country — while keeping it available in the rest of the world.” As such, the ban is only effective in Germany. The rest of the world is free to follow the bigots.
» via The Atlantic
A California actress who appeared in the infamous “Innocence of Muslims” flick on YouTube is again asking a federal court to remove the anti-Islam footage that has spawned deadly protests and sparked a U.S backlash in the Middle East.
Actress Cindy Lee Garcia is now claiming a copyright interest in the film, and says that Google ignored five DMCA takedown notices served on YouTube seeking removal of the film.
The latest development comes days after a Los Angeles County judge refused to take down the film in a previous suit. Garcia argued she was fired from her job, received death threats and was tricked into starring in the “hateful anti-Islamic production.”
» via Wired
California legislators last week sent a bill to the governor’s desk that would prohibit colleges from requiring students to hand over access to their social media accounts, raising the re-emerging question of how much control athletes — who are very much public faces of many universities — should have over personal accounts that nonetheless are visible in the public domain.
The California Senate passed the bill the same week the Universities of Kentucky and Louisville became the latest institutions to take flak on the issue, for requiring athletes to install software that monitors posts on their accounts or forfeit their spot on the team. The Golden State is the second in two months to pass such a bill, after Delaware, which forbade colleges from requesting or requiring login information or software installation, or allowing officials to view content that an athlete has classified as private online. (Both Facebook and Twitter allow users to customize privacy settings.) Maryland’s Senate passed a similar bill that ultimately stalled.
The only content of concern is what the public can see because that is what affects “the brand” of the university and the athlete, the Kentucky athletics spokesman DeWayne Peevy said.
» via Inside Higher Ed
A federal judge issued a final order on Wednesday that directs the University of Cincinnati not to enforce an earlier campus policy on free speech that a student group had protested in a lawsuit. The lawsuit challenged restrictions that had, among other things, limited demonstrations to a small “free speech” area and set conditions on where and when groups could collect signatures on petitions.
» via The Chronicle of Higher Education (Subscription may be required for some content)