US Senator Joe Lieberman is heading up a movement in the US Congress that would like to see Twitter censor the Taliban's tweets, in order to eliminate violent Islamist extremism propaganda on social media.
The Taliban has been prolific on
Twitter, but their account tweets a mixture of up-to-the-minute information about NATO attacks, as well as anti-Western propaganda.
Leslie Phillips, a spokesman for the senate homeland security committee, said:
Senator Lieberman's efforts to eliminate violent Islamist extremism propaganda from the internet and social media has been a campaign of persuasion.
He has written letters, for example to Google seeking the company to enforce more strongly its terms of service, which ban the sort of thing that we see from violent Islamist extremists.
Google is said to be
resisting the demands that the accounts be closed. They are specifically citing the fact that, unlike Al Quaeda, the Taliban is not considered a terrorist group by the US government.
In a turnaround for the Bond movies, 2002's Die Another Day was passed '12A' uncut (and later '12' uncut on VHS, DVD and Blu-ray) in the UK, whilst a slightly edited version went out in the US, courtesy of the MPAA.
Shortly after it's
release, producer Michael G. Wilson -- perhaps aware of Bond's tough censorship history in the UK -- laughed and remarked, People have to buy the British version to see the whole thing!
An Oregon court has denied a blogger protection under that state's shield laws because she isn't employed by a media organization,
Blogger Crystal Cox was accused of defaming Obsidian Finance Group in blog posts critical of the company's
founder Kevin Padrick. The accusation was based on writings Cox had based on information she said was leaked from a company insider. Cox lost the defamation case and had to pay out $2.5 million.
According to Seattle Weekly. While defending her
posts as factual, Cox also declined to reveal her source, claiming protection under Oregon's shield laws. Her bind was that concealing her source weakened her defense that her posts were factual and the court decided that Cox wasn't eligible for the
shield law defense.
The judge wrote:
Although defendant is a self-proclaimed investigative blogger and defines herself as media, the record fails to show that she is affiliated with any newspaper, magazine,
periodical, book, pamphlet, news service, wire service, news or feature syndicate, broadcast station or network, or cable television system. Thus, she is not entitled to the protections of the law
Operation In Our Sites, launched by the US Department of Homeland Security's ICE unit, continues with the seizure of 11 Korean domain names that were allegedly related to movie piracy.
Since Korean websites are becoming likely targets for the
operations launched by US authorities, the well-known banner that declares a site illegal, alerting its visitors that it has been shut down by law enforcement agencies, now has a Korean translation of the warning.
82movie.com, 82movie.net, 82us.com, bzserv.info, itvwmg.com, ktvwmg.com ,wmgitv.com, wmgus.com and wmgus.net were domains that offered download links to the latest movies in return for a small fee.
Many of the seized domains belong to a US
company, even if they were clearly designed to target Korean speakers.
So far, 350 domains have been taken into custody by the US federal government and these operations will not stop too soon.
A bill that would restrict U.S. exports of technology that can be used by repressive regimes to censor the Internet or conduct surveillance on users will be introduced in the House soon.
The sponsor, Representative Chris Smith said the proposed
legislation is in response to reports that some governments have used American products to crack down on dissidents. He said:
How will all these dictatorships ever matriculate into democracy if the dissenters...are all
in prison, hunted down with high-tech capabilities sold or acquired through U.S.-listed companies?
Previous attempts by Smith to bar U.S. companies from enabling online political censorship in authoritarian countries have stumbled.
Smith's latest bill to enact a Global Online Freedom Act would prohibit the export of telecommunications technology that can be used for online censorship or surveillance to countries the State Department would determine to be restricting
the Internet, according to a draft reviewed by the Journal. A license would be required to export to other countries when the end-user was a government.
Efforts also are under way in Europe to both implement Internet surveillance technology and to
crack down on its use on other countries. The European Commission intends next year to propose allowing each EU member to halt exports of technology that isn't on the current list of controlled items if there is evidence it could be used to abuse human
rights, an EU official said.
After a series of one-sided hearings, luxury goods maker Chanel has won recent court orders against hundreds of websites trafficking in counterfeit luxury goods. A federal judge in Nevada has agreed that Chanel can seize the domain names in question and
transfer them all to US-based registrar GoDaddy. The judge also ordered all Internet search engines and all social media websites ---explicitly naming Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Bing, Yahoo, and Google---to de-index the domain names
and to remove them from any search results.
The case has been a remarkable one. Concerned about counterfeiting, Chanel has filed a joint suit in Nevada against nearly 700 domain names that appear to have nothing in common. When
Chanel finds more names, it simply uses the same case and files new requests for more seizures. (A recent November 14 order went after an additional 228 sites; none had a chance to contest the request until after it was approved and the names had been
How were the sites investigated? For the most recent batch of names, Chanel hired a Nevada investigator to order from three of the 228 sites in question. When the orders arrived, they were reviewed by a Chanel official
and declared counterfeit. The other 225 sites were seized based on a Chanel anti-counterfeiting specialist browsing the Web.
The Entertainment Software Rating Board ESRB, is teaming up with the Cellular Telecommunications Industry Association trade group to create a standardized rating system for mobile apps and games.
The groups teased the existence of the new new
ratings system, which will be based on age-appropriateness of their content and context, ahead of an official announcement.
There is currently no unified standard for content-based ratings across mobile platforms.
Since its creation
in 1994, the industry-backed ESRB has rated over 21,000 console and PC games released in the United States. In April, the group introduced an automated system to aid in rating the high number of digitally distributed console games.
CTIA, the international nonprofit association representing wireless carriers, in collaboration with the Entertainment Software Rating Board (ESRB), has
announced the development of a mobile application ratings system to be implemented next year.
In a press release, CTIA stated:
The CTIA Mobile Application Rating System with ESRB will utilize the well-known and
trusted age rating icons that ESRB assigns to computer and video games to provide parents and consumers reliable information about the age-appropriateness of applications. Today's announcement is an extension of CTIA's 2010 Guidelines for Application
Content Classification and Rating.
When developers submit their applications to a participating storefront they will be able to complete a detailed yet quick multiple choice questionnaire that is designed to assess an
application's content and context with respect to its age-appropriateness. This includes violence or sexual content, language, substances, etc., as well as other elements such as a minimum age requirement, the exchange of user-generated content, the
sharing of a user's location with other users of the application and the sharing of user-provided personal information with third parties.
Once developers complete all answers to these questions, their applications are rated
within seconds. Each rated app is issued a certificate and a unique identifying code that may be subsequently submitted to other storefronts during their respective onboarding processes, avoiding the need for developers to repeat the rating process. This
means consistent ratings across participating storefronts and a convenient, cost-free process for app developers.
According to the Los Angeles Times, the age-based ratings categories will be the same as those used by ESRB for video
games, adding, The carriers, which sell apps via their own storefronts---much as Apple Inc.'s iTunes sells music---are expected to roll out the ratings sometime next year. Each carrier will decide for its own store whether the ratings will be
mandatory for some or all apps, or entirely voluntary.
iPhone apps will not be covered, since Apple already has set up a far more censorial ratings system.
Also Google said publicly that it didn't make a lot of sense to sign on to the
new ratings system because it already had its own system.
ECRB ratings for video games are:
EARLY CHILDHOOD (EC) Content that may be suitable for ages 3 and older. Contains no material that parents would find inappropriate.
EVERYONE (E) Content that may be suitable for ages 6 and older. Titles in this category may
contain minimal cartoon, fantasy or mild violence and/or infrequent use of mild language.
EVERYONE 10+ (E10+) Content that may be suitable for ages 10 and older. Titles in this category may contain more cartoon, fantasy or mild
violence, mild language and/or minimal suggestive themes.
TEEN (T) Content that may be suitable for ages 13 and older. Titles in this category may contain violence, suggestive themes, crude humor, minimal blood, simulated gambling,
and/or infrequent use of strong language.
MATURE (M) Content that may be suitable for persons ages 17 and older. Titles in this category may contain intense violence, blood and gore, sexual content and/or strong language. This
category is particularly designed to ensure that the most adult possible can be sold at many supposedly 'family friendly' retailers who refuse to stock adults only titles.
ADULTS ONLY (AO) Content that should only be played by persons
18 years and older. Titles in this category may include prolonged scenes of intense violence and/or graphic sexual content and nudity. Many US retailers refuse to carry AO titles.
RATING PENDING (RP) Titles have been submitted
to the ESRB and are awaiting final rating. (This symbol appears only in advertising prior to a game's release.)
Halloween II is a 1981 US horror film by Rick Rosenthal.
Universal released a 30th Anniversary Edition Blu-ray on 13th September 2011.
But the fans were not impressed as explained in a news story shortly after the release:
In a completely disgraceful move, Universal/MCA replaced producer Moustapha Akkad's credit, on the new release of HIS film, Halloween II, with their own corporate logo.
worse, they did it after his tragic death, when he is not here to defend his own work. Therefore, we need to let the studio know that we will not stand for it. No one did more for the Halloween franchise than Moustapha Akkad, and we want his credit put
back - NOW.
Do not but this, or any other Universal DVD, until they fix this shameful situation! And if you have bought it, return it.
Solidarity among Michael Myers lovers, for the
Godfather of Halloween, Moustapha Akkad, R.I.P.
Universal responded to the campaign and explained that the omission of the credit was a mistake and that release will be fixed.
And indeed Universal made good with the pledge, and have now issued a replacement complete with the well deserved credit.
Where possible Universal are now emailing buyers of the errant disk:
II Blu-ray Owner,
We're happy to let you know that revised Halloween II Blu-ray discs are now available.
For information on receiving a replacement, please let us know your mailing address and daytime
Consumer Relations UNIVERSAL STUDIOS HOME ENTERTAINMENT
US Senator Joe Lieberman is calling on Google to censor more content on its blog platform.
Lieberman apparently believes that censorship of anti-West and violent jihadist content will keep people from wanting to attack America. At least that's
what it sounds like when you read the senator's formal letter to Google CEO Larry Page - asking Mountain View to censor content on its blogs.
Lieberman thinks that Google's primary mission should be to keep the Internet free of radical ideology
and help the government fight its war on terror. Lieberman references the blog of recent lone wolf terrorist suspect Jose Pimentel as a reason to police content on Google's blogger platform. Pimentel allegedly used the Internet to access
instructions to make bombs and share his support for violent Islamic extremism, writes Lieberman.
Lieberman ends his letter claiming that Google is getting in the way of the government's fight against terrorists. I strongly believe that
Google should expand that standard to include your other platforms. The private sector plays an important role in protecting our homeland from the preeminent threat of violent Islamic extremism, and Google's inconsistent standards are adversely affecting
our ability to counter violent Islamic extremism online, Lieberman said.
US authorities have initiated the largest round of domain name seizures yet as part of their continued crackdown on counterfeit and piracy-related websites. 131 domain names have been taken over by the feds to protect the commercial interests of US
companies. The seizures are disputable, as the SOPA bill which aims to specifically legitimize such actions is still pending in Congress.
The Department of Justice (DOJ) and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) have resumed Operation In
Our Sites , their domain name seizing initiative.
TorrentFreak has identified 131 domains taken over by the government during the last 24 hours (See
article for list),.
This time the action appears to be mostly sites selling sports kit, football jerseys etc, but there are
also DVD and software sellers.
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement said it has seized 70 domain names of websites accused of selling counterfeit products. During the operation,
federal law enforcement officers purchased sports jerseys, baby carriers and luxury goods from the sites. Many of the goods purchased from the sites were shipped from outside the United States.
Federal authorities have seized a total of 839 domain
names, including the latest round of seizures, according to ICE. Of that number, 229 domain names have been forfeited to the U.S. government.
The DVD release of the documentary, Sons of Perdition , about teens exiled from Warren Jeffs' FLDS Church, comes with a choice: Full of swears or Utah nice.
The movie was given an R rating by the MPAA for its adult language. The
DVD (which is released Nov. 29, on Oprah Winfrey's OWN Documentary Club label) presents the movie with that language intact, but also offers an audio option that bleeps out the strong language.
We understood that a large audience,
including teenagers, wouldn't be able to view the film due to the strong language. But we wanted to give everyone a chance to see this powerful story, said co-director Tyler Measom in a statement. The story is essentially the same, just without
the cuss words.
Update: Vicars and Trainspotters
25th November 2011. From Alan
I think you're a bit unfair to vicars! I know a few, and I don't think any of them would blush at a few
cusswords. One of them - a rector actually - cheerfully recounted to me and others how he had given an undertaker the instruction Turn that fucking coffin round - now!
Vicars are also good trainspotters - e.g. the Revd W. Awdry of Thomas the Tank Engine fame - and I'm sure
they might notice that the rails in that picture to which the increasingly barmy ASA objected are red rusty. No train had been down those tracks in years, Hence, no danger to the model.
From the Melon farmers
Fair comment. Henceforth
the Vicar's Cut will be renamed as the Nutter's Cut.
The MPAA's rating appeals board has upheld the R rating given to Lionsgate's children's horror The Possession.
The Classification and Rating Administration had assigned the movie an R for violence, terror, and disturbing images in
October, prompting an appeal for a PG-13 instead.
Jeffrey Dean Morgan stars in The Possession, formerly titled Dibbuk Box , with Sam Raimi and Rob Tapert producing, and Ole Bornedal directing. The movie follows a divorced
father whose youngest daughter becomes strangely connected to an antique wooden box she purchased at a yard sale.
The European Parliament has adopted a resolution which criticizes domain name seizures of infringing websites by US authorities.
According to the resolution these measures need to be countered as they endanger the integrity of the
global internet and freedom of communication. With this stance the European Parliament joins an ever-growing list of opposition to the proposed US law called Stop Online Piracy Act .
Starting in 2010, US authorities have used domain name
seizures as a standard tool to take down websites that are deemed to facilitate copyright infringement.
Despite fierce criticism from the public, legal experts and civil liberties groups, taking control of domain names is now one of the measures
included in the pending Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA), legislation designed to give copyright holders more tools to protect their rights against foreign sites.
Opposition to SOPA has been swelling in recent days, and today the European Parliament
adds its voice by heavily criticizing the domain seizures that are part of it. A resolution on the EU-US Summit that will be held later this month stresses the need to protect the integrity of the global internet and freedom of communication by
refraining from unilateral measures to revoke IP addresses or domain names.
If SOPA does indeed become law the US would be able to shut down domains worldwide, as long as they are somehow managed by US companies. This includes the popular
.com, .org and .net domains, and thus has the potential to affect many large websites belonging to companies in EU member states.
After a showing of the NC-17 rated Shame at the US AFI Fest, National Association of Theater Owners president John Fithian talked to TheWrap about Shame and the distribution of adult rated films..
Fithian said about Shame:
It would have destroyed this film to cut it down to an R rating. Too many filmmakers and too many studios do that, and I applaud Steve McQueen and Fox Searchlight for sticking to their guns.
This is the kind of
film that the NC-17 is designed for, and I think we need more bold filmmakers and distributors to make content appropriate for the rating and release it that way.
Fithian then claimed that distributors reluctance to release NC-17
films was largely based on myth. He said:
The first myth, is that theaters will not play movies with the rating.
That's just not true. We've surveyed 100 of our members, and three of them said
they would never play NC17s, just as a personal choice. So that myth is 97% false.
And the other myth is that you can't advertise movies that are rated NC-17. That's wrong, too. Fox Searchlight released a Bertolucci picture a
while back [9 years ago] called The Dreamers , and [company president] Steve Gilula says they got it played where they wanted to get it played. In terms of advertising, one newspaper in Utah wouldn't take advertising for NC-17, and that was about
Hide/Seek Brooklyn Museum, New York 18th November 2011 to 12th February 2012
The art exhibition Hide/Seek cam to the public's attention courtesy of nutter rants targeted at David Wojnarowicz's 1987 short film A Fire in My
Predictably, the Christians' crusade continues as local groups are now pressuring the Brooklyn Museum to remove the late artist's film from the exhibition.
Both the Christian Post and Daily News note that the Brooklyn Museum has
received many complaints from members of local groups outraged by the shortened, 13-minute version of the 21-minute original's ten-second segment in which ants crawl over a crucifix.
In reaction to the forthcoming exhibit at the Brooklyn Museum,
Director Arnold Lehman said he received thousands of pre-programmed emails from a Catholic group. Lehman said the film is an important piece of American art history. He told the Daily News: For a city that prides itself on diversity and
creativity, there couldn't be a better exhibition.
Brooklyn's Catholic Diocese has also requested that the work be censored from the show.
Meanwhile Pastor A. R. Bernard, who leads Brooklyn's Christian Cultural Center said: What is
the point? I think this is the piece in the Hide/seek collection they really need to hide.
Undeterred, the museum plans to show every piece in the Hide/Seek exhibition, which opens November 18 and remains on view through February 12.
A US federal appeals court has again threwn out a $550,000 fine against CBS by the US TV censors of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) for Janet Jackson's wardrobe malfunction during the 2004 Super Bowl halftime show.
States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit in Philadelphia had issued a similar ruling in July 2008. But that decision was sent back to the appeals court in May 2009 by the Supreme Court after it ruled in a separate case that the FCC had the right to
hold broadcasters accountable even for unscripted and isolated foul language.
The appeals court heard another round of arguments in the Janet Jackson case in February 2010. It has now ruled that while the FCC had the authority to police fleeting
images, the nipple-baring episode was on-screen for nine-sixteenths of a second, the commission acted arbitrarily because it had not announced that it had changed its policy until after it decided to fine CBS.
The FCC failed to acknowledge that
its order in this case reflected a policy change and improperly imposed a penalty on CBS for violating a previously unannounced policy, the appeals court said in a 2-to-1 decision written by Judge Marjorie O. Rendell and joined by Judge Julio M.
The majority said the decision by the FCC was arbitrary and capricious because the commission did not announce that it was stiffening its guidelines for fleeting material until March 2004, after the February 2004 Super Bowl
Google have revealed the number of requests for them to remove content, mostly from YouTube and to hide content from searches. The figures cover the period January to June 2011.
Google received 7 UK court orders to
remove 43 items from searches. 14 on grounds of defamation and 28 on grounds of privacy or security.
Google received 1 UK court order and 52 letters from the likes of police and government requesting removal of a total of 220 YouTube videos.
61 for privacy and security, 135 for national security, 3 for violence and 1 for hate speech.
Google received 24 US court orders and 3 government/police requests to remove 198 items from searches. 188 of these on
grounds of defamation
Google received 6 US court order and 26 letters from the likes of police and government requesting removal of a total of 113 YouTube videos. 62 for privacy and security, and 16 for defamation.
Google also received 5
court orders to remove 379 Google Groups on grounds of defamation. Also 18 requests to remove 47 items from Blogger blogs.
The US requests are a 70% increase over the previous 6 month.
In a show of good faith, Google touted the fact that it has refused to cooperate with law
enforcement agencies in the U.S. who requested the removal of YouTube videos of police brutality and criticisms of law enforcement officials.
Google cited its transparency report from the first half of this year, but to mention it with violent
crackdowns at Occupy Oakland this week, is telling. Google said:
We received a request from a local law enforcement agency to remove YouTube videos of police brutality, which we did not remove. Separately, we
received requests from a different local law enforcement agency for removal of videos allegedly defaming law enforcement officials. We did not comply with those requests, which we have categorized in this Report as defamation requests.
Fox Searchlight's US distribution deal with Shame specified that the studio would not re-edit the movie for a lower-rating even though it's almost certainly going to get an NC-17. The movie, which follows the downward spiral of a sex addict
(played brilliantly by Michael Fassbender), features copious sex and nudity with a sprinkling of implied incest.
There are multiple challenges to marketing an NC-17 movie. Most networks won't air promos for an NC-17 film (at least not during
primetime), newspapers are wary of buying ads for NC-17 movies, and even theaters aren't eager to show NC-17 movies because it's adults only. This allows for stupid folks to come out an accuse the theater of not being family friendly.
Shame has been very well received wherever it has been shown on the festival circuit, so Fox will market the film on the strength of good reviews and word of mouth. It has a good start as it picked up awards at the Venice Film Festival for Best Film and
Shame isn't going to open with a wide release. It opens in New York and Los Angeles on December 2nd, which means that the studio will only have to rely on newspaper ad buys in those cities. Fox will also put a green-band (suitable for
all ages) trailer into theaters.
The Fox studio co-president Steve Gilula said:
I think NC-17 is a badge of honor, not a scarlet letter. We believe it is time for the rating to become usable in a serious manner.
The sheer talent of the actors and the vision of the filmmaker are extraordinary. It's not a film that everyone will take easily, but it certainly breaks through the clutter and is distinctive and original. It's a game changer.
There is nothing subtle about Frank Miller's newest graphic novel, Holy Terror . The book opens with the quote: If you meet the infidel, kill the infidel , which Miller attributes to the islamic prophet Mohammed.
Miller is no
stranger to controversy. His stories, which include the film inspiring 300 and Sin City , regularly explore the darker corners of society amid shades of moral grey.
His latest work was originally envisioned as a Batman tale after
September 11 attacks on the US, the comic features heroes The Fixer, and thief-come-love interest, Natalie, as they join forces to stop an Al Qaeda plot on Empire City, a thinly veiled New York City.
For some, this underlines a worrying shift in
American entertainment. We are witnessing a growing industry of information and fear-mongering, and this work fits in the centre said Nihad Awad, the executive director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations. He described the work as shameful
In a post on his website dated September 23, Miller unapologetically defended Holy Terror as a piece of naked propaganda , but propaganda in a virtuous sense. Holy Terror is his contribution to the fight against terrorism.
Despite wary reviews, Holy Terror was the best-selling graphic novel in September, according to Diamond Comic Distributors.
Cuts to the scene where Michael dunks a nurse into a boiling Jacuzzi. The final two thrusts under the water have been removed, a close up of her burnt face and also Michael throwing her naked body to the floor.
Summary Review: Successful exercise in terror
It is rare that horror sequels (or any film sequels) manage to capture the tone and feel of their predecessor. However Halloween 2, made 3 years after John Carpenter's
original, is a successful exercise in terror.
However, expect more violence than the almost entirely blood-free first outing.
A very worthwhile film for lovers of the horror genre.
In a completely disgraceful move, Universal/MCA replaced producer Moustapha Akkad's credit, on the new release of HIS film, Halloween II, with their own corporate logo.
What's worse, they did
it after his tragic death, when he is not here to defend his own work. Therefore, we need to let the studio know that we will not stand for it. No one did more for the Halloween franchise than Moustapha Akkad, and we want his credit put back - NOW.
Do not but this, or any other Universal DVD, until they fix this shameful situation! And if you have bought it, return it.
Solidarity among Michael Myers lovers, for the Godfather of
Halloween, Moustapha Akkad, R.I.P.
The campaign coordinator writes:
Universal has said that they will fix the situation, and apologized for the error. We believe that
no harm was intended and it was a mistake.
But, wow, the power of Halloween fans united. We will keep you posted, as news develops...
An art exhibit has been banned from Manchester Town Hall in Connecticut
The Manchester Art Association exhibit of 35 painted and decorated torsos were considered inappropriate.
The show was planned to promote breast cancer awareness. Local
artists responded to a call for an exhibit called Paint the Ta Tas (large breasts), and the result is more than a dozen painted and decorated female and male torsos that were considered inappropriate for a public office.
Town officials made
the decision after looking at a website that the art organization suggested as an example of the original exhibit, but the mannequins online were quite different from the torsos planned for town hall.
The examples that they told me to look at
are just terrific, sometimes inspiring, sometimes shocking. It's art. It's provocative, a little bit controversial, it's terrific stuff. It's just that Town Hall is a place of business Town Hall Manager Scott Shanley said.
Now the 35 torsos
are on display at the gallery of Manchester Memorial Hospital, which is open to the pubic seven days a week. The hospital has not received a single complaint on the exhibit, which is actually getting the attention they need to spread the word about
breast cancer awareness.
Naif Al-Mutawa anticipated a struggle when he launched an Islam-inspired comic book series that he hoped would become a symbol of toleration.
He worried about the comics being banned in Saudi Arabia - which wound up happening,
briefly -- and he expected to be challenged by conservatives in Islam, since Al-Mutawa wanted to buck the trend of Islamic culture being directly tied to the Koran.
But it wasn't an Islamic cleric that stalled the series, called
The 99, after the 99 attributes of Allah, which the superheroes are supposed to embody.
It is the American market, and the voices of Islam's Western critics, that have caused the most problems for The 99, says
Al-Mutawa, who is the focus of a PBS documentary airing next week.
The Comic Book Legal Defense Fund has announced that it has received the intellectual property rights to the Comics Code Authority Seal of Approval in an assignment from the now-defunct Comic Magazine Association of America, which administrated the
Code since the 1950s.
CBLDF Executive Director Charles Brownstein says, As we reflect upon the challenges facing intellectual freedom during Banned Books Week, the Comics Code Seal is a reminder that it's possible for an entire creative field
to have those rights curtailed because of government, public, and market pressures. Fortunately, today comics are no longer constrained as they were in the days of the Code, but that's not something we can take for granted.
The CBLDF will take
over licensing of products bearing the Comics Code Seal, including t-shirts, providing a modest source of income for the organization's First Amendment legal work. Graphitti Designs is currently offering t-shirts with the Code Seal to benefit CBLDF.
Brownstein adds It's a progressive change that the Comics Code seal, which is yesterday's symbol of comics censorship, will now be used to raise money to protect the First Amendment challenges comics face in the future. That goal probably would
have been unimaginable to the Code's founders, who were part of a generation of comics professionals that were fleeing a witch-hunt that nearly trampled comics and any notion that they deserved any First Amendment protection.
The MPAA has reversed its earlier R rating for the upcoming Orlando Bloom drama The Good Doctor , reducing it to a PG-13 on appeal.
The indie film was originally slapped with an R rating for some crude sexual references by the
MPAA's Classification and Rating Administration. However the movie will now be rated PG-13 for thematic material, disturbing situations and some crude sexual content.
Also read: Harvey Wins! MPAA Overturns Blue Valentine's NC-17The
decision to reverse the rating was made following arguments by Jonathan King and Julia Lebedev, the film's producers.