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  • Our First Amendment Rights Online

    China has been rightly criticized for censoring speech on the Internet. It is the one major economy in which the government has denied free speech and free access online. But this could change if the Orwellian-sounding “Minister of Culture” in Britain gets his way. The Minister, Andy Burnham, would like to see at least film-style ratings, and possibly outright censorship, imposed upon the Internet internationally.

    He is “planning to negotiate with Barack Obama’s incoming American administration to draw up new international rules for English language websites.”

    He is very clear what this means: the end of the free speech zone that the Internet has represented until now.

    “If you look back at the people who created the internet they talked very deliberately about creating a space that Governments couldn’t reach. I think we are having to revisit that stuff seriously now.”

    If film-like controls are not enough, outright censorship is an option this Minister appears ready to consider: the paper commented, Internet Service Providers “could also be forced to offer internet services where the only websites accessible are those deemed suitable for children.”

    But ISPs like AOL already offer filters and other services for parents, similar to television parental controls that prevent children from watching adult cable channels, to regulate what children can view. The government should not interfere in the bastion of free speech which the Internet represents. In the free market, speech can be free and simultaneously parents can regulate what their children can access. Government need not protect us from ourselves by censoring our speech.

    Posted in International [slideshow_deploy]

    10 Responses to Our First Amendment Rights Online

    1. W Howard Baker, Bard says:

      This is a general comment concerning the upcoming administration and Congress.

      THEY ARE NOT GOING TO LISTEN TO ANYBODY !!

      They are out to put us in an inflationary depression in order to reduce the opposition to their socialist agenda as well as a foreign policy of appeasement to make the formation of a civilian militaristic corps, i.e. "brownshirts", seem more attractive as we will be fighting Islam in our own streets where the use of our real military isn't allowed.

      They will be operating so far out from the Constitution that any opposition from things like "talk radio" and conservative, and even some liberal, think tanks will be quickly squashed by the civilian corps to stop "hate speech". These leaders will be placed in "re-education centers" to help them see the light. The people won't come to their aid as they will be scrambling for food.

      THE AMERICAN PEOPLE HAVE ELECTED A TYRANT ON THE ORDER OF MUSSOLINI AND STALIN !!

      The peoples' only hope is to convert their money to gold and pray that we still have elections in 2012 and that anyone is allowed to run against him and his party. If you want a template, look at the Hugo Chavez government in Venezuela. I know that Obama is looking through his buddy, Bill Ayres, who is in one of Hugo's think-tanks.

    2. W Howard Baker, Bard says:

      The censorship of the internet is going to be a reality right along with the censorship of "talk radio" and "think-tanks". We don't actually believe that a government that eliminates free speech will not include free thought, do we?

      I believe that the first order of business will be to push this country into an inflationary depression so that the populace is so scared that they will accept the loss of their rights just to get help from the government. Then they will start eating away at the Bill of Rights, one by one until they are all gone.

    3. kENNETH bURFIRD, McA says:

      The attacks on talk radio and the internet is just another tactic of a dictatorship. The silencing of ones opinions and free speech could lead this country into a Fourth Reich.

    4. William Beach William Beach says:

      Great post, Guinevere. When freedom to speak against public policies ends through speech bans or "regulated speech", we effectively lose those particular rights (I prefer the word liberties) that protect property in our selves and our possessions and the liberty to decide how best to live our lives (in the equal recognition of the rights of others to do the same, peacefully).

    5. Hope Rodriguez Holla says:

      When the resolution of enslaving America was formed in Great Britain,the British Parliment was advised by an artful man,who was the governor of Pennsylvania,to disarm the people;that it was the best and most effectual way to enslave them;but that they should not do it openly,but weaken them,and let them sink gradually….I ask,who are the militia?They consist now of the whole people,except a few public officers."

    6. Matthew A. Woods, OH says:

      This paternalistic people protection is insulting. I already have a father. I don't need another one in Washington, New York, or Brussels. When government takes from a man the ability to act as he chooses it has stolen from him. A burglar bears little distinction.

    7. Dennis A Social Circle Ga. says:

      Well I guess people will began to see just how far this country has sunken into the mire. The dems will do anything to keep their power and place. The constitution has already been made into shambles, now they want to take the right of freedom of speech. I thought this had already been done, just look at all the supposed hate laws and at the words that have been demed to be hate.

    8. H L PUCKETT VA says:

      I AGREE WITH HOWARD BAKER OBAMA IS A TYRANT AND A MUSLIM, WE NEED TO DO AS SOME COUNTRIES ARE DOING, DEPORT THE MUSLIMS AND ALL ILLEGALS FROM OUR COUNTRY IF THEY SLIP BACK SHOOT THEM THAT WILL PUT A STOP TO IT ALL.BULLDOZE THE MOSQUE LIKE ITALY IS DOING KICK ALLAH OUT OF THE COUNTRY AND HIS FOLLOWERS BY THE WAY THERE IS NO GOD BY THIS NAME, THER IS ONLY ONE GOD, THAT IS JEHOVAH AND HIS ONLY SON JESUS CHRIST AND THE SPIRIT OF GOD, THE HOLY GHOST,

    9. H L PUCKETT VA says:

      WHAT HAPPENED TO MY COMMENT? AFRAID TO PUBLISH THE TRUTH?

    10. Greg Gentry, Newport says:

      Is it time for armed insurrection against this form of gov't?

      Someone needs to take back American; these leaders are unaccount fat cats who are going to spend us into oblivion and create a whole new class of sheeple that suckle on the gov't teet til Western Romes demise.

      How do we turn around this economy, Simple.

      We let companies in trouble go under.

      we lower the corporate tax.

      we abolish the capital gains tax.

      we abolish the 16th amendment (tax system,IRS)

      and adopt the Fair Tax.

      We set term limits on Congress.

      Lastly, we invest in the American Family with any proposed stimulus package. It' our money anyway and unlike the federal nannies we will spend it wisely.

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