Two men from Australia's Victoria state have been given suspended jail sentences for supposed derogatory postings on Facebook.
They had created a Facebook page which allowed users to rate the sexual prowess of women. The page in question was
called Bendaz Root Rate . [ Bendaz is a name].
The two men lived in a town called Bendigo and created the page after seeing similar efforts for other towns. They ran afoul of authorities after the page was noticed and its contents
found to contain derogatory commentary that mentioned people well below the age of consent.
The Bendigo Magistrate's Court today deemed the content fell under the provisions of Australia's Criminal Code that prohibit using a carriage service to
offend, or publishing offensive material on an information network. The prosecutors claimed that the material could do lasting damage to those it mentioned, and was not merely embarrassing.
One the men was barred from using Facebook for two years.
The men were given suspended jail sentences of 6 and 4 months.
A Sri Lankan court has given suspended jail terms to three French tourists for supposedly wounding the religious feelings of easily offended Buddhists by taking pictures deemed insulting.
Two women and one man were detained in the southern town of
Galle after a photographic laboratory snitched them up to the police. The pictures show the travellers posing with Buddha statues and pretending to kiss one of them.
The images were later posted on a Sri Lankan website.
sentenced the trio to six months in prison with hard labour, suspended for five years - which means they will not actually serve any time in jail. The court also levied a small fine on them.
They were convicted under a section of the Penal Code
which outlaws deeds intended to wound or insult the religious feelings of any class of persons through acts committed in, upon or near sacred objects or places of worship.
Club Nevada is located at the Beach Road end of Soi 13/2 (Soi Post Office)
The bar is still ticking over in its minimalist sort of way. Its probably the weakest of the clutch of GoGos in this soi and next. Far East Rock scores as a hangout bar
while Hot & Cold and Las Vegas offer the best hands on fun.
Las Vegas generally has 3 or 4 dancers at a time and 3 or 4 more waiting their turn. The dress code is nude, topless or bikini depending on the girl. The music is oldie rock and it
doesn't inspire the dancers very much.
The girls are friendly enough, but sometimes they seem to prefer to vanish off upstairs or outside rather than looking after customers.
Drinks are cheap though, and overall the bar provides a pleasant rather
than enthralling experience.
Savages is a 2012 US crime thriller by Oliver Stone. With Aaron Johnson, Taylor Kitsch and Blake Lively. See IMDb
UK: Passed 15 for strong
language, violence, drug use and sex after BBFC advised category cuts were implemented for:
UK 2012 cinema release
The BBFC commented:
This work was originally seen for advice. The company was advised that the film was likely to receive an 18 rating but that their preferred 15 rating could be achieved by making changes to a number of
scenes. These were to reduce:
various moments of strong bloody violence,
strong sex and
some focus on drug use.
When an edited version of the film was submitted for formal rating, changes had been made to satisfactorily address these issues and the film was consequently rated 15.
Prometheus is a 2012 US/UK Sci-Fi adventure by Ridley Scott. With Noomi Rapace, Logan Marshall-Green and Michael Fassbender. See IMDb
UK : The
Theatrical Version is set for:
UK 2012 20th Century Fox [3D + 2D] RB Blu-ray at UK Amazon released on 8th October 2012
2012 20th Century Fox RB Blu-ray at UK Amazon released on 8th October 2012
UK 2012 20th
Century Fox R2 DVD at UK Amazon released on 8th October 2012
There's no sign of the much hyped Extended Version of Director's Cut. Presumably the distributors are hoping for a double dip windfall with a subsequent Director's Cut release
There is also a US release
After scientists Elizabeth Shaw (Noomi Rapace, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo) and Charlie Holloway (Logan Marshall-Green, Devil) discover mysterious cave drawings that point to the origins of mankind, they soon find
themselves aboard the spaceship Prometheus, sponsored by Weyland Industries and on a journey to uncover the secrets of humanity.
Overseen by the imperious Meredith Vickers (Charlize Theron, Snow White and the Huntsman), looked
after by the android David (Michael Fassbender, X-Men: First Class), and backed up by a team of scientists, Shaw and Holloway arrive on the isolated moon LV-223 to discover an abandoned alien spaceship and the truth... that not all is as it seems...
UK 2012 Shameless Pop Erotica Box Set [Venus in Furs + The Frightened Woman + Baba Yaga] R0 DVD at UK Amazon released on
20th August 201
Promotional Material: Pop Erotica
The third in the series of Shameless-Unwind videotape-themed box-set.
Stylish, imaginative and deliciously twisted, these three cult
classics reveal the darker side of passion, love and sex.. Inspired by eclectic masterpieces, from the erotic literary genius of Leopold Sacher-Masoch's Venus In Furs , to Guido Crepax's arousing iconic comic strip Baba Yaga , via the
far-out sets of Niki De Saint Phalle in The Frightened Woman , this Erotic Pop Fest also features some of cinema's most alluring leading ladies - think Dagmar Lassander, Laura Antonelli ! - caught up in increasingly bizarre and dangerous sex
Shameless' Pop Erotica Box will be presented with specially commissioned artwork from a top British artist emphasizing the videotape-shaped boxset - this time a V2000 ! ... remember those?
1969 West Germany/Switzerland/Italy erotic film by Massimo Dallamano. With Laura Antonelli, Régis Vallée and Loren Ewing. See IMDb
UK: Passed 18 after 1:05s of BBFC cuts for:
UK 2012 Shameless Pop Erotica Box Set DVD released on 23rd July 2012
The BBFC specified their cuts as follows:
Remove all sight of woman's tearful screams turning to pleasure as man continues to rape her (this pleasure being indicated by her making moaning sounds and winding her arms around his neck). Intervening shots of other people
Previously even more censored:
Passed 18 after 2:32s of BBFC cuts for the 1993 Redemption VHS
Passed X (18) after BBFC cuts for the UK 1971 cinema release
Banned by the BBFC for the UK 1970 cinema release
The Frightened Woman
1969 Italy drama by Piero Schivazappa. With Philippe Leroy, Dagmar Lassander and Lorenza Guerrieri. See
An Extended Version was passed 18 uncut for strong sexual threat, humiliation and violence for:
UK 2012 Shameless Pop Erotica Box Set DVD released on 23rd July 2012
An unspecified version was passed 18 after 16s of BBFC cuts for the UK 1998 Salvation VHS
1973 Italy Giiallo by Corrado Farina. With Carroll Baker, George Eastman and Isabelle De Funès. See
UK: The Reloaded version was passed 18 uncut by the BBFC for:
UK 2012 Shameless Pop Erotica Box Set DVD released on 23rd July 2012
The Original Version was passed X (18) after BBFC cuts for the UK 1974 cinema release titled Baba Yaga, The Devil Witch. The BBFC deleted two full frontal shot of Carroll Baker
ATVOD has claimed that BBC should pay its extortionate censorship fees for clips of Top Gear and Nigella Lawson uploaded to YouTube.
Video on Demand censors ATVOD carried out the investigation and ruled that the BBC should pay its annual
charge for each YouTube channel.
The clips under examination are segments of Top Gear lasting up to nine minutes, along with similar footage of Nigella Lawson and other cooks on the Food Programme . ATVOD claimed that the BBC clips on You
Tube resemble linear television programmes .
The BBC consider that the the clips were not TV-like because they are watched in short chunks often by people on the move . The BBC said:
Worldwide considers the duration of programmes to be a key characteristic of the form and content of programmes normally included in television programme services
The YouTube channel in question provides only short clips.
An analysis of the five main UK channels over four days demonstrates that only 3.2% of programmes were less than 10 minutes in duration.
Therefore it is a key characteristic of the form and content of
programmes normally included in television programme services that they last longer than a short period of time.
Television programmes are consumed at home, in comfort on the sofa and the longer duration is indicative of this.
Short form content is not 'television-like' as it is often viewed on the move or during quick breaks in the working day.
The BBC has launched an appeal against the ATVOD ruling to an Ofcom panel.
Burma has ended pre-publication censorship of the country's media, the information ministry has announced.
The Press Scrutiny and Registration Department (PSRD) said that as of Monday, reporters would no longer have to submit their work to state
censors before publication.
However, strict laws remain in place which could see journalists punished for what they have written.
Tint Swe, head of the PSRD, told AFP news agency:
Censorship began on 6
August 1964 and ended 48 years and two weeks later.
Any publication inside the country will not have to get prior permission from us before they are published.
From now on, our department will just carry
out registering publications for keeping them at the national archives and issuing a license to printers and publishers..
The head of the BBC's Burmese Service, Tin Htar Shwe, says journalists in Burma are cautiously optimistic about
the reforms, but that the end of the law does not necessarily mean the end of the censorship altogether. Many laws still exist under which journalists can be punished for writing material which angers or offends the government, she says.
German politicians are mulling over a law to make Facebook pay for when police break up parties advertised on the social network.
Reinhold Gall, interior minister of the southern German state of Baden-Wurttemberg, said:
A commercial internet platform that makes something like this possible also carries a large measure of responsibility.
Bavarian Interior Minister Joachim Herrmann added:
does not meet its responsibilities to protect its users, if the only difference between an invitation to friends and the whole world is just one mouse-click. Facebook has a duty to protect its users and the public with appropriate warnings and
Some mass parties descended into chaos in Germany when hosts did not realise their invitations had reached the entire network rather than just their friends. But one youth who invited 1,500 people to a rave-up
on the shores of Lake Constance was fined £ 200,000 after a massive police operation to stop it going ahead.
Rainer Wendt, chairman of the German Police Union, said:
invite people to a Facebook party that sparks a police intervention, you will have to pay the costs.
The Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) has ordered all Internet Service Providers (ISPs) to block numerous 'scandalous' internet sites, specifically the audio recording of a sensual conversation between two notable opposition parliamentarians.
The footage of a press conference in which a lady TV news anchor, Aysah Sana, claimed that she and a man working with a state organisation have secretly got married and they have a son, is also to be blocked. She made the allegations against the
boss of a TV channel who she accuses of betraying her.
This is the first time that the PTA has moved swiftly to order blocking of 'scandalous' websites. Wahajus Siraj, Convener of the ISP Association of Pakistan (ISPAK), said the process on
ordering of blocking of websites have become non-transparent and questionable, as it seems that Inter-Ministerial Committee is being used as tool to censor internet for political gains instead of going after the intended anti-Pakistan or blasphemous
One leading ISP said that with five GSM service providers and numerous broadband service providers are to challenge the order.
ISPs also pointed out that blocking popular social media sites like Facebook, YouTube and Twitter can
create major unrest among millions of subscribers which then has a direct impact on the revenue of ISPs.
Google has announced that it will lower the search engine rankings of websites that receive a high number of DMCA takedown requests, independent of whether the linked content is lawful or not.
The algorithm change is the result of extensive
lobbying efforts by Hollywood and the major music labels, and could severely degrade the rankings of websites such as The Pirate Bay, FilesTube, and even YouTube.
Google's Amit Singhal writes in a blog post:
Starting next week, we will begin taking into account a new signal in our rankings: the number of valid copyright removal notices we receive for any given site. Sites with high numbers of removal notices may appear lower in our results.
The move may also encourage media companies to issue even more takedown notices.
Cricketing superstar Kevin Pietersen has stood up to some of the world's most awesome bowlers, but he seems to be left quaking at the thought of a little body line bowling via Twitter.
A parody account, @kevpietersen24 , is wickedly
observed and, providing you have an English sense of humour, is extremely funny.
Some of the in-jokes suggest a source close to the team and Pietersen has been hurt by it enough to get his lawyers to try to close it down.
They could not,
though they did succeed in getting the original avatar, a picture of KP at his most gauche with skunk hairdo circa 2005, replaced.
Speculation has raged as to who the authors of the Twitter account are with Pietersen keenest to find out. That he
is offended by their exaggerated claims, especially when they refer to him in the third person as KP Genius , suggests he already has a distorted sense of self.
Unless Andy Flower or the England and Wales Cricket Board discover who is
behind the fake Twitter account and appeal to their better nature, Pietersen is just going to have put up with a little sledging, or else he'll just have to skulk off to the sub continent.
A Twitter account acting as
a parody of England's Kevin Pietersen has been taken down from the social media website.
Reports on Wednesday suggested batsman Pietersen believed some of his team-mates were behind the account, which poked fun at the batsman. However, the England
team denied having any involvement with the account.
Even though the identity of who is behind the account is unknown, Pietersen is still thought to be unhappy that some members of the squad followed and engaged with it.
Many of the tweets
from the account have been sent while Test matches have been in progress, while players have restricted access to mobile phones and the internet during this time as part of International Cricket Council regulations to guard against corruption.
Indeed, a tweet from the account, which has seen the number of its followers more than double since Pietersen's chagrin emerged, said:
It doesn't take that woman from 'Murder She Wrote' to work out that this isn't a team mate of KP. I've been tweeting during Tests!
A Facebook page filled with racial jokes about aboriginal people has been taken down, after hundreds of people campaigned to have it removed.
SBS reported on the Facebook page, which allows posts with racial memes about Indigenous people.
The page was temporarily removed, before re-appearing on the site with a tag noting that the content contained controversial humour .
Communications Minister Stephen Conroy weighed into the debate, saying he thought it should be taken down.
We don't want to live by the same standards that Facebook does, Conroy said: I think it's an offence. It's been reclassified but I think it should be taken down.
Race Discrimination Commissioner Dr Helen Szoke warned the page
could be a breach of the Racial Discrimination Act: [The page] potentially does insult and offend, but it probably does more than that. I think the depiction of these images on Facebook actually moves more in to vilifying.
Jacinta O'Keefe started a change.org petition after a complaint to Facebook failed to result in the removal of the page: It is an openly racist page that is encouraging hate towards Aboriginal people. I find it incredible that Facebook would refuse to
remove this page .
The social media site has responded to complaints with the message: After reviewing your report, we were not able to confirm that the specific page you reported violates Facebook's Statement of Rights and
But the page ended up being removed anyway as of 6pm 8/8 2012.
Club Oasis is located on Soi Buakao just down from the junction with Soi Leng Kee and Soi Diana.
I have neglected the long running Club Oasis for a while due to the distractions of seeing how the proliferation of new bars is
getting on. But on a recent visit Oasis is still doing fine.
It offers more or less the same mix as it has done for a while. Certainly less customers than in the past, but from my slightly selfish view, this was a good thing.
There was a better chance of a little company.
The bar still had a stage full of dancers organised in two teams. The dress code is bikini or less, with no signs of coyotes. There were several attractive girls on the stage in both
The Tina Turner look alike mamasang was back in charge. And from my observations she generally brings a bit of life to a bar.
I'm not sure whether the decline in customers is seasonal, or a
reflection of the western world going bankrupt; or else an upsurge in nearby competing gogos. However, I don't think any of the new bars have brought anything particularly new that will dominate the area. So I think Oasis, keeping to its long running way
of doing things, will continue doing just fine.
Police admitted last night that they are being dragged into too many Twitter disputes as a row raged over the decision to arrest a youth who abused Olympic diving star Tom Daley.
The police over reacted and swooped on the home of Reece Messer, 17,
at 2.45am yesterday as if he was some sort of highly dangerous master criminal.
Last night, as Dorset police handed the troubled teenager a formal harassment warning, police leaders claimed forces are being dragged into too many petty social media
Officers were asked to look at content 14,000 times on Facebook alone last year and Simon Reed, vice-chairman of the Police Federation, which represents rank and file officers, said forces do not have the resources to monitor the internet.
There is legislation which concerns causing harassment, alarm or distress. But can we police the internet when someone upsets someone else?
I don't think we have the resources to do
that. We can't have a free-for-all online but we cannot involve the police every time something unpleasant is said.
Here are three things that NBC prevented their public from being able to watch on network television so far this Olympic Games: live footage of the opening ceremony; live footage of Saturday's swimming showdown between Michael Phelps and Ryan Lochte;
live footage of the USA men's basketball dream team.
A fourth thing they do not want people to see is the email address of Gary Zenkel, the executive responsible for this shambles. And a fifth thing is my Twitter feed,
which over the weekend contained a couple of dozen occasionally uncouth observations about their coverage, several of which were accompanied by the trending hashtag: #NBCfail.
Twitter's guidelines forbid users from
publishing what they call private information, including private email addresses . There is plenty of sense in this. But I did not Tweet a private email address. I Tweeted a corporate address for Mr Zenkel, which is widely listed online,
and is identical in form to that of tens of thousands of those at NBC.
I was not contacted by NBC or Twitter before my account was suspended.
[Shortly before 6pm London time] I had received an email from Twitter support, announcing that I was no longer
verboten in Twitter-land:
Your account was suspended because a complaint was filed stating that you had violated our terms of service, it read. We have just received an updated notice from the complainant retracting the
original request. Therefore, your account has been unsuspended, and no further action is required from you at this time.
[Twitter] has yet to properly address growing suspicions that its decision to
suspend my account was motivated by a business relationship with NBC. The firms are running a cross-promotion throughout the Olympics. Was that why it chose to ignore its own rules?
Yesterday, the website, which is supposedly
dedicated to the democratic flow of conversation, did admit it had actually contacted its corporate partner urging it to complain so that my account could be shut down in the first place. A mea culpa on its blog said last night: We want to apologise
for the part of this story we did mess up. The team working closely with NBC around our Olympics partnership did proactively identify a tweet that was in violation of the Twitter rules and encouraged them to file a support ticket with our trust and
safety team to report the violation... Our trust and safety team did not know that part of the story and acted on the report as they would any other. We do not proactively report or remove content on behalf of other users no matter who they are.
[But close enough that's exactly what they just did!].
Twitter's rules, available via its help centre , say:
Users must not impersonate others in a manner intended to mislead or deceive others.
Tweeters are not allowed to infringe companies' trademarks by either assuming their name or logo as part of their
profile. Related Articles
Members of the service must not publish other people's private and confidential information -- such as credit card numbers or home address -- without their express permission.
People will be permanently suspended from the site if they perpetually send spam or abuse -- which is defined as specific threats of violence against others .
And tweeters must not infringe
copyright rules, use the site for illegal purposes (adhering to the country's laws from which a person is tweeting) or misuse Twitter verification badges (which denote an account's authenticity with a blue tick).
users must not use obscene or pornographic images in either their profile picture or user background.
Vsevolod Chaplin says authorities are not speaking loudly enough about western involvement in the growing opposition movement.
A top official in the Russian Orthodox church said that the trial of the feminist protest group Pussy Riot had
been willed by God,. Three members of Pussy Riot stand accused of hooliganism motivated by religious hatred following a February performance in Russia's main cathedral aimed at protesting against Vladimir Putin's return to the presidency.
was a sin against God and it is God that is judging it, Vsevolod Chaplin, a high-ranking priest who often acts as the church's spokesman, said: And all Christians should know this.
Chaplin said he refused to accept the three women's
apology, issued in court on Monday, for insulting Orthodox believers. An unforgiving Chaplin said:
Their words had a double meaning Any acceptance of a mistake is a step in the right direction. But they also insulted
the patriarch, who is a symbol of the church.
And to confirm the root basis of the Pussy Riot protest, Chaplin praised the growing closeness between church and state:
For the Orthodox believer, like
for Muslims, of course the authorities and the church are understood as one thing. Our ideal is the unity of the church and the authorities, and unity of the people and the authorities.
In this way, we are decidedly different from
the west. I think attempts in the west to separate the spiritual sphere and secular sphere is a historical mistake. Such a division is not characteristic to any civilisation except the west.
The credit card giant, Visa, is asking paysite operators by way of third-party billers and merchant banks to cease using certain terms in certain contexts---for example, the use of the word forced when combined with orgasm, or the use of
the word torture when combined with ... well, probably any sexual activity.
Again, why this is being done now is unknown, but Visa/MasterCard appears to be very serious in its intent to remove from websites that accept the
cards any hint of sexual activity that could be perceived as violent, even if it is consensual.
Users of Microsoft's consumer cloud service SkyDrive have had their accounts suspended for inadvertently breaking the terms of their end user agreements.
WMPoweruser reports that a user in the Netherlands, going by the pseudonym WingsOfFury
, lost access to his Windows Live account, including Hotmail and Xbox Live, after uploading 9GB of content to a private SkyDrive folder.
After asking for advice on a Dutch forum and contacting Microsoft, he was told his account had been blocked
because he had uploaded content that violated the terms of service.
The software giant would not explain what WingsOfFury had uploaded that broke the rules, only that it related to files containing nudity, partial nudity, pornography, or content
containing links to external sites that contain similar content.
And in these times of extreme PC the slightest insult can be arbitrarily deemed 'inappropriate' and the mildest picture can be seens as 'sexualised'.
Update: Dropbox: Don't trust it for anything valuable
Marco Arment is the creator of Instapaper, co-founder of Tumblr, and Internet-famous software developer. Responding to a listener question about the insecurity of Dropbox, he said:
that is really sensitive or extremely valuable or needs to be kept very secret, I wouldn't store on anybody else's servers. That, to me, seems ridiculous unless I held the encryption keys like with the online backup service that I use.
Marco makes some salient points worth repeating here for users who may not be fully aware of how services like Dropbox typically work and the ramifications of storing your data off-premise. In case you didn't realize, Dropbox holds the keys to encrypt
and decrypt your data on their servers.
This means that a Dropbox employee could theoretically view (or steal) your data. Why do they hold the keys? Dropbox isn't just online backup, it's a collaboration tool. In order to offer public file sharing
features, they have to be able to decrypt data that is stored on their servers.
They also need to be able to decrypt data for legal reasons -- if they get a DMCA takedown notice or a subpoena from the US government requesting certain files,
servers, or even racks of servers . And because Dropbox hosts data for 25,000,000+ users, some of which are undoubtedly doing very bad things, the likelihood of being served with a subpoena is far greater for them than for an individual person or
The French Supreme Court has ruled that Google should censor the words torrent , rapidshare and megaupload from its Instant and Autocomplete search services.
Music industry group SNEP asked the court to stop the terms from
being suggested in Google's searches because, it claimed, Google was thereby facilitating piracy.
A lower court rejected the request from SNEP because it said that these links did not constitute infringement of copyright in and of themselves.
However, the Supreme Court has reversed the decision, saying that the relief sought by the group was likely to prevent or partially stop infringements.
The search firm actually already blocks piracy-related terms from Autocomplete, but on
its own terms. The web giant announced back in December 2010 on one of its blogs that it was taking steps to stop copyright infringement, including blocking search terms closely associated with piracy.
The Swiss Olympic delegation have sent defender Michel Morganella, 23, home from the Games after he posted the message in the wake of the team's 2-1 defeat to South Korea on Sunday.
The star posted the message shortly after the game, saying that
South Koreans can go burn and referred to them as a bunch of mongoloids.
Gian Gilli, chef de mission for the Swiss Olympic delegation at the Games, said: Michel Morganella gravely insulted and discriminated against the South
Korean people and their football team with his highly offensive comments on Twitter.
We condemn his comments, which are in fundamental violation of the IOC's Olympic charter and Swiss Olympic's own ethics charter.
An American woman was banned from Facebook for posting an image of her five-year-old daughter pretending to breastfeed her two-year-old sister.
Lauren Ferrari said Facebook took down the image less than 24 hours after she posted and then banned
her from the social network for a week, the KOMO reports.
The mother said Facebook told her she had violated community standards but the mother argued the images were not sexual and asked, What is sexual about breastfeeding?
Thomas of Seattle Police Department's Internet Crimes Against Children said while the photo was not child pornography it was an example of poor parenting. She said people should think carefully about what they put online and warned that one an image goes
online it is beyond their control:
There's no real way of actually getting that image off the internet. So that's something that this family, that these girls, are going to have to ultimately deal with.
The famous Twitter joke conviction of Paul Chambers has been overturned on appeal, bringing welcome clarity to what is and what is not an offence of this type.
On discovering a week before he was due to take a flight that the airport was
closed due to adverse weather conditions, he tweeted:
Crap! Robin Hood Airport is closed. You've got a week and a bit to get your shit together otherwise I am blowing the airport sky high!!
was no evidence that this tweet alarmed any of his followers. It was picked up several days later by an employee of the airport, and it was referred to another member of staff, who took did not consider it a credible threat, but as a matter of procedure
it was referred to the airport police. They took no action, other than to refer it to South Yorkshire Police.
Chambers was arrested and charged, then later convicted of the offence of sending by a public electronic communication network a message
of a menacing character contrary to the Communications Act 2003. He appealed from the Magistrates' Court to the Crown Court, and then to the Divisional Court (part of the High Court).
The Court noted that in order to be menacing, as a
matter of fact the people who receive or read it, or may reasonably be expected to do so, feel apprehension or fear. So, if those people instead,
...brush it aside as a silly joke, or a joke in bad taste, or empty
bombastic or ridiculous banter, then it would be a contradiction in terms to describe it as a message of a menacing character. In short, a message which does not create fear or apprehension in those to whom it is communicated, or who may reasonably be
expected to see it, falls outside this provision, for the very simple reason that the message lacks menace.
A CPS spokesman said: We accept the court's reasoning and consider this to be the end of the matter.
Index on Censorship, Paul Chambers said he felt relieved and vindicated by the decision, adding that the case should never have got this far .
Chambers's solicitor David Allen Green said: This shameful prosecution should never have been
Facebook has announced that it is snooping on postings on the site for signs of criminal activity.
The social network is using its data-mining techniques to scan chats and posts between users with a loose relationship for signs of suspicious
behaviour. Content that has been flagged up is then reviewed to determine whether further steps, such as notifying police, are required.
The tool will pay particular interest to users who only recently became friends, have no mutual friends, and
have a significant age gap between them. Other factors such as phraseology, geographic location and frequency of contact are also taken into account.
Facebook chief security officer Joe Sullivan told Reuters:
We've never wanted to set up an environment where we have employees looking at private communications, so it's really important that we use technology that has a very low false-positive rate,
In order to legally protect brands that advertise products meant for adults, Twitter has launched a new tool that checks the a new follower claims to be old enough to meet restrictions.
Mentioned by Techcrunch this week, Twitter and Buddy Media
have partnered to develop an age verification tool that will allow brands to screen out users admit to being too young. For instance, the first time that a user under the age of twenty-one attempts to follow the Coors Light Twitter page, they will be
limit. Twitter will retain the claimed age for future verifications so that the user won't be hassled with repeat requests.
According to Twitter's head of product marking Guy Yalif, he stated We are trusting users to input their valid
birth date. We have no plans to self identify their valid birthdate or cross reference this with third-party data.
Buddy Media has been testing the new age verification tool with alcohol brands. In addition to alcohol companies, the
pornography industry, gambling organizations and pharmaceutical companies could also start using the age verification tool to protect themselves legally while increasing their advertising budget on Twitter.
According to Russia Today, nutters from the Orthodox Church are angry at the Facebook's decision to launch same-sex marriage icons, calling them gay propaganda .
The nutters apparently claim that the icons could make young people tempted to
explore homosexuality. In fact, the church in the city of Saratov, southern Russia, asked issued an ultimatum requesting that the social network stop flirting with Sodomites .
The nutters have organised a petition to get Facebook banned in
the country. Vladimir Roslyakovsky, leader of the Orthodox public organization, spewed:
We demand only one thing: Facebook should be blocked in the entire country because it openly popularizes homosexuality among
The US goal is that Russians stop having children. [They want] the great nation to turn into likeness of Sodom and Gomorrah, Roslyakovsky said. But I am confident that Russian laws and reasonable citizens will be able to
protect their children from a fierce attack of sodomites.
Facebook has apologised after it incompetently deleted a free speech group's post on human rights abuses in Syria. The website removed a status update by Article 19, which campaigns for freedom of speech, that linked to a Human Rights Watch report
detailing alleged torture in the Arab country.
Dr Agnes Callamard, the executive director of Article 19, accused Facebook of acting like judge, jury and executioner in the way it removes material from the website.
Facebook told the
Guardian that the post was mistakenly removed after being reported as containing offensive content. A spokesman said:
The link was reported to Facebook. We assess such reports manually and because of the high volume,
occasionally content that shouldn't be taken down is removed by mistake. We're sorry about this. The organisation concerned should try posting the link again.
Dr Agnes Callamard, the executive director of Article 19, was somewhat
underwhelmed by Facebook's censorship procedure. She said:
The deletion shows the looming threat of private censorship. We commend Facebook for creating tools to report abuse, but if your post was wrongly deleted for
any reason, there is no way to appeal. Facebook don't notify you before deleting a comment and they don't tell you why after they have. Facebook act like judge, jury and executioner.
Facebook is now widely recognised as a
quasi-public space and as such has responsibilities when it comes to respecting free speech. They can't just delete content without some kind of transparent and accountable system. International law says that censorship is only acceptable when it is
clearly prescribed, is for a legitimate aim -- such as for public health -- and is necessary in a democracy.
Wednesday marks Independence Day here in the United States. Beyond the fireworks and barbecue, July 4th serves as an important reminder of the need to hold governments accountable,
especially on behalf of those who may not have a chance to do so themselves.
With that in mind, today we're unveiling our first Twitter Transparency Report. Inspired by the great work done by our peers @Google, the primary goal of
this report is to shed more light on:
government requests received for user information, government requests received to withhold content, and DMCA takedown notices received from copyright holders.
report also provides insight into whether or not we take action on these requests.
One of our goals is to grow Twitter in a way that makes us proud. This ideal informs many of our policies and guides us in making difficult
decisions. One example is our long-standing policy to proactively notify users of requests for their account information unless we're prohibited by law; another example is transmitting DMCA takedown notices and requests to withhold content to Chilling
Effects. These policies help inform people, increase awareness and hold all involved parties----including ourselves----more accountable; the release of our first Transparency Report aims to further these ambitions.
more government requests in the first half of 2012, as outlined in this initial dataset, than in the entirety of 2011. Moving forward, we'll be publishing an updated version of this information twice a year.
Twitter reports for the
first half of 2012
849 requests for information about 1181 users of which 63% were at least partially provided
3379 copyright take down requests covering 5874 accounts. 38% of the requests were enacted removing 5275 tweets and 599 media items