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Political Correctness vs. Free Speech


2022: July-Sept

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Commented: Paypal censors close account of the Free Speech Union...

Decision by US payments company is a sinister form of cancel culture'


Link Here 25th September 2022
Full story: Paypal Censors...Paypal unilaterally decide to act as media censors
PayPal has shut down the account of the Free Speech Union, an organisation which defends people who have lost work for expressing opinions.

The US payments company censors were clearly offended by free speech and decided to shut down the accounts of the Free Speech Union, its founder Toby Young, and his opinion and news website the Daily Sceptic with no clear explanation. Paypal merely spouted the bollox explanations that the union had 'violated PayPal's Acceptable Use Policy'.

The Telegraph reports that a likely explanation is that the organisation has helped to defend people who claim they have lost work for expressing opinions, for example Gillian Philip, the author who said her contract was terminated because she stood up for JK Rowling on Twitter amid a row over transgender rights. It has also challenged universities that have no-platformed gender-critical academics.

Toby Young said:

I suspect it's because in reality PayPal doesn't value free expression and open dialogue or the people and organisations that stand up for those principles. Withdrawing financial services from dissidents and non-conformists and those who dare to defend them is the new frontline in the ongoing war against free speech.

The Free Speech Union will be lobbying the Government to put new laws in to prevent companies like PayPal demonetising organisations and individuals because their employees disapprove of their views.

 

Offsite article: Why has PayPal cancelled the Free Speech Union?

See article from spectator.co.uk by Toby Young

It's left me wanting to do something about this insidious new way of cancelling people. As the switch to a cashless society gathers speed, we need to put some laws in place to protect people from being punished by companies like PayPal for saying something their employees disapprove of.

 

Offsite article: Big Tech is waging financial war on dissenters

See article from spiked-online.com by Tom Slater

PayPal's banning of the Free Speech Union is its most sinister move yet.

 

Offsite article: PayPal is trying to silence us

See article from spiked-online.com by Molly Kingsley

The co-founder of UsForThem speaks out against Big Tech censorship.

 

 

A bit of a censorship dilemma...

Meta calls for public comments about the police requested take down of drill music on Facebook


Link Here18th August 2022
Full story: Facebook Censorship since 2020...Left wing bias, prudery and multiple 'mistakes'

In January 2022, an Instagram account that describes itself as publicising British music posted a video with a short caption on its public account. The video is a 21-second clip of the music video for a UK drill music track called Secrets Not Safe by the rapper Chinx (OS). The caption tags Chinx (OS) as well as an affiliated artist and highlights that the track had just been released. The video clip shows part of the second verse of the song and fades to a black screen with the text OUT NOW. Drill is a subgenre of rap music popular in the UK, with a large number of drill artists active in London.

Shortly after the video was posted, Meta received a request from UK law enforcement to remove content that included this track. Meta says that it was informed by law enforcement that elements of it could contribute to a risk of offline harm. The company was also aware that the track referenced a past shooting in a way that raised concerns that it may provoke further violence. As a result, the post was escalated for internal review by experts at Meta.

Meta's experts determined that the content violated the Violence and Incitement policy, specifically the prohibition on coded statements where the method of violence or harm is not clearly articulated, but the threat is veiled or implicit. The Community Standards list signs that content may include veiled or implicit threats. These include content that is shared in a retaliatory context, and content with references to historical or fictional incidents of violence. Further information and/or context is always required to identify and remove a number of different categories listed at the end of the Violence and Incitement policy, including veiled threats. Meta has explained to the Board that enforcement under these categories is not subject to at-scale review (the standard review process conducted by outsourced moderators) and can only be enforced by Meta's internal teams. Meta has further explained that the Facebook Community Standards apply to Instagram.

When Meta took the content down, two days after it was posted, it also removed copies of the video posted by other accounts. Based on the information that they received from UK law enforcement, Meta's Public Policy team believed that the track might increase the risk of potential retaliatory gang violence, and acted as a threatening call to action that could contribute to a risk of imminent violence or physical harm, including retaliatory gang violence.

Hours after the content was removed, the account owner appealed. A human reviewer assessed the content to be non-violating and restored it to Instagram. Eight days later, following a second request from UK law enforcement, Meta removed the content again and took down other instances of the video found on its platforms. The account in this case has fewer than 1,000 followers, the majority of whom live in the UK. The user received notifications from Meta both times their content was removed but was not informed that the removals were initiated following a request from UK law enforcement.

In referring this matter to the Board, Meta states that this case is particularly difficult as it involves balancing the competing interests of artistic expression and public safety. Meta explains that, while the company places a high value on artistic expression, it is difficult to determine when that expression becomes a credible threat. Meta asks the Board to assess whether, in this case and more generally, the safety risks associated with the potential instigation of gang violence outweigh the value of artistic expression in drill music.

In its decisions, the Board can issue policy recommendations to Meta. While recommendations are not binding, Meta must respond to them within 60 days. As such, the Board welcomes public comments proposing recommendations that are relevant to these cases.

Respond via article from oversightboard.com

 

 

Banned by Edinburgh Fringe...

Venue bosses get all easily offended by Jerry Sadowitz


Link Here15th August 2022
A comedian has been cancelled by an Edinburgh Fringe venue after he got his penis out on stage and made jokes about disallowed topics on his opening night.

Jerry Sadowitz was scheduled to play at The not very pleasant Pleasance at the Edinburgh International Conference Centre on Friday and Saturday.

The censorial venue confirmed that it had been pulled because his material does not align with our values.

One female audience member told the Scottish Sun that Sadowitz  called Rishi Sunak a 'paki' and said the economy was awful because it is run by blacks and women.

The event listing carried a warning which read:

This show contains strong language and themes some may find distressing.

Revealing the decision, Sadowitz said on Twitter:

Did a show last night, 75 mins, thought it went well. Didn't see any walkouts. Today I'm told my show's been cancelled. Great stuff. I'm truly sorry for everyone who travelled to see the show tonight.

Offsite Comment: They finally came for Jerry Sadowitz

15th August 2022. See article from spiked-online.com by Simon Evans

Comedians dismiss cancel culture at their peril.

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