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Category Archives: Free Speech

Justice – Official Site

Jezebel – “It’s been nearly five years since Brett Kavanaugh was confirmed to the Supreme Court by the Senate in a 50-48 vote—despite allegations of sexual misconduct by Dr. Christine Blasey Ford and Deborah Ramirez and about 4,500 other tips that the FBI seemingly just kind of ignored. Justice, a new documentary about the botched FBI investigation that preceded Kavanaugh’s confirmation, premiered at Sundance to a sold-out audience Friday night [January 20, 20223] —after only being shown to Sundance execs Wednesday and getting added to the schedule Thursday. “This was the kind of movie where people are terrified,” director Doug Liman said at the beginning of his documentary debut. “The people that chose to participate in the movie are heroes.” Among the new testimonials from Ramirez (who tells her story on-camera for the first time), friends of Blasey Ford, as well as corroborating evidence that the FBI failed to follow up on or fully investigate, is a never-before-heard recording from one of Kavanaugh’s Yale classmates that corroborates Ramirez’s story..”

Students want new books. Thanks to restrictions, librarians can’t buy them.

Washington Post: Schools are struggling to keep their shelves stocked as oversight by parents and school boards intensifies – “States and districts nationwide have begun to constrain what librarians can order. At least 10 states have passed laws giving parents more power over which books appear in libraries or limiting students’ access to books, a… Continue Reading

Supreme Court Poised to Reconsider Key Tenets of Online Speech

The New York Times: “On Friday, the Supreme Court is expected to discuss whether to hear two cases that challenge laws in Texas and Florida barring online platforms from taking down certain political content. Next month, the court is scheduled to hear a case that questions Section 230, a 1996 statute that protects the platforms… Continue Reading

Disquiet in the archives: archivists make tough calls with far-reaching consequences – they deserve our support

The Conversation: “Right now, for technological, ethical and political reasons, the world’s archivists are suddenly very busy. Advances in digital imaging and communications are feeding an already intense interest in provenance, authorship and material culture. Two recent discoveries – a woman’s name scratched in the margins of an 8th-century manuscript, and John Milton’s annotations in… Continue Reading

Courts Find That Twitter Can Restrict More Than Just Your Character Count

ABA:  “The 21st century court system has seen a surge of internet-related cases as websites and social media platforms continue to connect more individuals around the globe. While only 5 percent of adults in the United States reported using social media in 2005, the number has now skyrocketed to more than 70 percent. Today, people… Continue Reading

Inventing the Dark Web

Via LLRX – Inventing the Dark Web – This paper by Thais Sardá, Simone Natale, and John Downey examines how the deep Web, i.e., Web sites that are not indexed and thus are not accessible through Web search engines, was described and represented in British newspapers. Through an extensive content analysis conducted on 833 articles… Continue Reading

Mastodon and the pros and cons of moving beyond Big Tech gatekeepers

Ars Technica: “As Elon Musk’s Category 5 tweetstorm continues, the once-obscure Mastodon social network has been gaining over 1,000 new refugees per hour, every hour, bringing its user count to about eight million. Joining as a user is pretty easy. More than enough ex-Twitterers are happy finding a Mastodon instance via joinmastodon.org, getting a list… Continue Reading

America’s culture warriors are going after librarians

.coda: “…It’s a tale playing out in cities and states across the country, as a book-banning fever courses through the country’s body politic. Nationally, attempts to remove books from school and public libraries are shattering previous records. The effort is being driven by a loose collection of local and national conservative parents’ groups and politicians… Continue Reading

Inventing the dark Web: Criminalization of privacy and the apocalyptic turn in the imaginary of the Web

Inventing the dark Web: Criminalization of privacy and the apocalyptic turn in the imaginary of the Web by Thais Sardá, Simone Natale, and John Downey. First Monday, Volume 27, Number 11 – 7 November 2022. doi: https://dx.doi.org/10.5210/fm.v27i11.12691 “This paper examines how the deep Web, i.e., Web sites that are not indexed and thus are not… Continue Reading

Elon Musk, Fox News, and Free Speech Absolutism

Teri Kanefield – “Free Speech Absolutism” – Elon Musk abolished Twitter’s moderation policies and allowed “America’s most prominent Nazi,” Andrew Anglin back onto Twitter along with Donald Trump. He declared himself a “free speech absolutist” and said all voices should be heard. Then, on Thursday, he went on a binge and suspended the Twitter accounts of a number… Continue Reading