Poland's TV censors of the National Broadcasting Council have fined a private television channel, TVN, for its coverage of opposition
demonstrations in Warsaw last year. The fine amounted to about £311,000.
The council's five board members were either appointed by the Law and Justice majority in parliament or by the president, himself a former member of Law and Justice.
The council claimed the station's prominent coverage had promoted illegal activities and encouraged behaviour that threatened security.
Opponents of Poland's right-wing government have pointed out that the council's decision amounted to censorship.
The demonstrations in December 2016 were sparked by the plans of the governing party Law and Justice to limit the number of journalists and television stations allowed to cover parliamentary proceedings. The proposals were largely dropped.
The censors ruled that the coverage by TVN's 24-hour news channel broke the law because it showed opposition politicians encouraging more people to show their disapproval of the government.
TVN is a US-owned broadcaster and is often critical of the right-wing government. The channel said in a statement that it disagreed with the decision and would appeal against the regulator's decision.
Cinemas are set to open in Saudi Arabia in March 2018 for the first time since they were banned in in the early 1980s, according to the
Saudi minister of culture.
Cinemas existed in Saudi Arabia until they were banned in the early 1980s after a puritanical religious establishment gained control over social and educational affairs in the country. Today, the organized Islamist undercurrents that thrived in
the 1980s and the beginning of the 1990s no longer have quite so much influence in the country.
A multimillion-dollar DVD bootleg industry flourished as a result of the cinema ban. Saudis amassed large collections of pirated DVDs of the latest Hollywood blockbusters, circumventing both the ban and censorship. It's this revenue that the
decision today also aims to recapture.
Opening cinemas will act as a catalyst for economic growth and diversification, said Minister of Culture Awwad Alawwad. By developing the broader cultural sector, we will create new employment and training opportunities, as well as enriching the
kingdom's entertainment options
The Saudi cinema industry is still nascent but has been receiving more attention over recent years with breakthrough movies like Wadjdah and Barakah meets Barakah. It's a beautiful day in Saudi Arabia! tweeted Haifaa
al-Mansour the first female Saudi director of a feature film, the acclaimed Wadjda.
The announcement by the ministry of culture did not specify whether seating in cinemas would be gender-segregated as most public spaces are in Saudi Arabia or how heavily censored movies will be. Films are usually greatly censored with pixelation
added to cover the chest and legs of actresses. Censorship rules are expected to be announced in the coming weeks. Multiple malls currently being built had already received licenses to build multiplexes before today's announcement.
A Queensland anti-pornography group has found itself in a wrangle with a local bus company after it refused
to carry the group's outdoor advertising that came with the message porn destroys relationships.
The group, who calls itself A City Free From Porn, is based in Toowoomba and has been actively campaigning for pornography to be abolished in the town.
The group tried to have an ad (see a dummy version above) added to the back of local buses, however, the campaign has been rejected by the operators due to their understandable prohibition on adverts of a sexual and political nature.
London's Westminster council is seeking to put people out of work because it claims that its streets are
being clogged up by mopeds delivering for Uber Eats and Deliveroo.
The new policy by Westminster City Council will require restaurants that rely on apps for the bulk of their deliveries to apply for planning permission, with view to then refusing that planning permission.
Businesses have been warned that they could face formal enforcement action if they flout new rules that are set to come into force in spring 2018. Daniel Astaire, cabinet member for planning and public realm, spouted:
It is a popular, much-needed service but we can't allow the city to be swarmed with delivery drivers.
Westminster has already taken action against a Nando's branch in Westbourne Grove after receiving more than 25 complaints from residents, who said they were repeatedly disturbed by large groups of moped delivery drivers. Council bosses ordered the
popular chicken restaurant to stop offering deliveries in a move that Westminster City Council said set a new precedent.
The Daily Mail reports on Labour amendments to the Data Protection Bill designed to restrict press investigations in the name of data protection, and of course to resurrect unjust press censorship ideas suggested by Leveson
The Daily Mail explains that criminals and corrupt politicians and businessmen could escape exposure
under a new attempt to restrict Press freedom.
A fresh bid to restrict the rights of journalists and the media to inquire into crime and corruption involves attempts to change a data law that is going through Parliament.
One Labour amendment to the Data Protection Bill would mean that the Information Commissioner would have powers to decide whether codes of conduct under which journalists work should be recognised by the new law.
A second amendment would rewrite the new law so that the unjust censorship powers suggested in the second half of the Leveson inquiry into Press standards would go ahead.
Currently the proposed legislation provides an exemption for journalists who access and store personal information without consent when exposing wrongdoing. This means that individuals under investigation by journalists would not be able to
interfere with their inquiries or block publication of stories that would bring to light wrongdoing.
However a series of attempts have been made to introduce changes to the Bill which would remove safeguards for freedom of expression, bind journalists and make their inquiries either difficult or impossible.
On Saturday, five months late, Russia's most controversial ballet in years opened at the Bolshoi.
Nureyev , which traces the life and Aids-related death of Soviet dancer and choreographer Rudolf Nureyev, had been pulled just two days before its scheduled premiere in July. Insiders suggested the ballet's frank treatment of
homosexuality -- and a reported intervention by the culture ministry -- lay behind the dramatic decision to cancel. The parallel investigation and August arrest of the ballet's director, Kirill Serebrennikov, added to those suspicions.
Right up until the last moment, there were doubts that the premiere would ever happen.
The Cannes-winning director remains under house arrest, awaiting trial. He is unable to work, talk to the press or see his elderly, infirm parents. He was not allowed to play any direct role in the final preparations of the ballet. State
investigators accuse him of embezzlement but it seems more likely that the arrest is more to do with Russian hatred of gay culture.
The ballet has also suffered a notable cut from the version originally planned. The original version of the production, seen in leaked rehearsal videos, included the projection of a famous picture from Avedon's photoshoot of Nureyev in
full-frontal mod. Insiders reported that it was this detail that had proven to be the most controversial for authorities. By Saturday, the 10-second scene had been cut, rather undermining the theatre's narrative that politics had not played
a role in the original cancellation.
US singer Katy Perry has become the latest artist to be banned from China.
The indefinite ban is apparently due to her wearing a sunflower dress at her 2015 concert in Taiwan capital Taipei. The sunflower has become a symbol of the anti-China movement in Taiwan. At the same concert, the singer also draped a Taiwan
flag on herself.
The singer wore the same dress when performing a little later in Shanghai and so has ended up on China's never again list.
Google is escalating its campaign of internet censorship, announcing that it will expand its workforce of human censors to over 10,000. The
censors' primary focus will be videos and other content on YouTube, but will work across Google to censor content and train its automated systems, which remove videos at a rate four times faster than its human employees.
Human censors have already reviewed over 2 million videos since June. YouTube has already removed over 150,000 videos, 50 percent of which were removed within two hours of upload. The company is working to accelerate the rate of takedown
through machine-learning from manual censorship.
YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki explained the move in an official blog post:
Human reviewers remain essential to both removing content and training machine learning systems because human judgment is critical to making contextualized decisions on content. Since June, our trust and safety teams have manually reviewed
nearly 2 million videos for violent extremist content, helping train our machine-learning technology to identify similar videos in the future. We are also taking aggressive action on comments, launching new comment moderation tools and in
some cases shutting down comments altogether. In the last few weeks we've used machine learning to help human reviewers find and terminate hundreds of accounts and shut down hundreds of thousands of comments. Our teams also work closely
with NCMEC, the IWF, and other child safety organizations around the world to report predatory behavior and accounts to the correct law enforcement agencies.
We will continue the significant growth of our teams into next year, with the goal of bringing the total number of people across Google working to address content that might violate our policies to over 10,000 in 2018.
At the same time, we are expanding the network of academics, industry groups and subject matter experts who we can learn from and support to help us better understand emerging issues.
We will use our cutting-edge machine learning more widely to allow us to quickly and efficiently remove content that violates our guidelines. In June we deployed this technology to flag violent extremist content for human review and we've
seen tremendous progress.
Since June we have removed over 150,000 videos for violent extremism.
Machine learning is helping our human reviewers remove nearly five times as many videos than they were previously.
Today, 98 percent of the videos we remove for violent extremism are flagged by our machine-learning algorithms.
Our advances in machine learning let us now take down nearly 70 percent of violent extremist content within eight hours of upload and nearly half of it in two hours and we continue to accelerate that speed.
Since we started using machine learning to flag violent and extremist content in June, the technology has reviewed and flagged content that would have taken 180,000 people working 40 hours a week to assess.
The European Commission has joined the list of organisations calling on the likes of Google, Facebook and
Twitter to do more to remove extremist content - or face further legislation.
EU home affairs commissioner Dimitris Avramopoulos warned the real battlefield is against 21st century terrorism. He said most of the recent terrorist attackers had never travelled to Syria or Iraq. But most of them had been influenced,
groomed and recruited to terrorism on the internet.
Avramopoulos said he believed it was feasible to reduce the time it takes to remove content to a few hours. There is a lot of room for improvement, for this cooperation to produce even better results.
Avramopoulos also said he thought it was worthwhile to harness artificial intelligence to complete the task. You now.. like Facebook censoring Robin Redbreast Christmas cards because the word 'breast' appeared in filenames.
The Commission said it would make a decision by May next year on whether additional measures -- including legislation -- are required in order to better address the problem of illegal content on the internet.
Charlie Pearce has been convicted of attempted murder. He was obsessed with sexually violent images when he raped and bludgeoned his victim on
his 17th birthday, leaving her for dead.
Feminists have used the case to call for an extension to Britain's porn censorship laws about violent porn in particular, and of course, for a wider ban of porn. Sarah Green, co-director of the End Violence Against Women Coalition, said:
This case is extremely disturbing and the age of the offender should alarm us all. The evidence about his searches for online porn before the attack tell us that we urgently need public discussion about the contents of contemporary online
pornography, its accessibility and what is known about the way it influences those who use it.
It is currently a criminal offence in England and Wales to possess pornographic material which is grossly offensive, disgusting or otherwise obscene and explicitly and realistically depicts life threatening and serious injury.
However pornographic material that is obviously scripted and not realistic is legal. Feminists claim the vast majority of images depicting rape are therefore lawful to possess.
Footage of Sunderland comedy hero Bobby Thompson has been deemed unsuitable for TV adverts because he smokes too much on stage.
His DVD The Little Waster was recorded in 1982. Distributors wanted to advertise it on TV this Christmas, but were told that the Woodbine hanging constantly in his hand would break the advertising code.
And some of the jokes he cracked were deemed too offensive to modern ears, so had to be avoided too.
Clearcast, which works with TV advertisers to make sure their commercials comply with ASA guidelines said:
We were recently asked to approve an ad for a Bobby Thompson DVD. We were unable to approve the ad at this stage because it showed an excessive amount of cigarette smoke and [the rules] state, "Advertisements must not promote smoking
or the use of tobacco products".
Back in March, Australia shelved plans to extend its copyright safe harbor provisions to services such as
Google and Facebook. Now, following consultations with the entertainment industries, the government has revealed it will indeed exclude such platforms from safe harbour provisions.
Services such as Google, Facebook and YouTube now face massive legal uncertainty as they themselves can be held responsible for copyright infringing posts by users. The logical result would be that the companies will have to check every
post before upload. The vast quantity of posts to check would make this an economically unviable option.
Proposed amendments to the Copyright Act earlier this year would've seen enhanced safe harbor protections for such platforms but they were withdrawn at the eleventh hour due to lobbying by media companies. Such companies accuse platforms
like YouTube of exploiting safe harbor provisions in the US and Europe, which forces copyright holders into an expensive battle to have infringing content taken down.
Communications Minister Mitch Fifield has confirmed the exclusions, so now it is up to Google and Facebook to consider how they can operate under this law.
Justice League is a 2017 USA action Sci-Fi fantasy by Zack Snyder.
Starring Ben Affleck, Gal Gadot and Jason Momoa.
Fueled by his restored faith in humanity and inspired by Superman's selfless act, Bruce Wayne enlists the help of his new found ally, Diana Prince, to face an even greater enemy. Together, Batman and Wonder Woman work
quickly to find and recruit a team of met humans to stand against this newly awakened threat. But despite the formation of this unprecedented league of heroes; Batman, Wonder Woman, Aquaman, Cyborg and The Flash, it may already be too late
to save the planet from an assault of catastrophic proportions.
Last year, Lebanon banned the Wonder Woman movie because its star, Gal Gadot, had served in the Israeli forces under the country’s national service. Gadot's two years of service coincided with the 2006 war between Israel and Lebanon,
one of many wars and conflicts the bitter rivals have been involved in over the decades.
With Justice League , also starring Gal Gadot in the same role, opening in local cinemas on Thursday, activists want the government to do the same. Activist Pierre Abi Saab has accused the promoters of the film of ignoring Lebanese
laws that he said outlaw all forms of normalisation of ties with Israel.
It has now been reported that this campaign has been successful and that, yes, Justice League has been officially banned in Lebanon.
Iran's telecommunications minister says that his ministry wants to customize Internet blocking based on user's occupation, age, and other
The attorney general's office has conditionally agreed with this plan, Minister Mohammad Javad Azari Jahromi announced on December 4.
Without providing any details, he said his ministry had reviewed suggestions made by the attorney general and prepared appropriate technical responses. He expressed hope that the office would give its final approval for the implementation
of the plan.
Despite the regime's extenisve efforts to censor the Internet, Iranian users currently get around the restrictions by using anti-filtering programs or virtual private networks.
The 15:17 To Paris is a 2018 USA drama by Clint Eastwood.
Starring Jenna Fischer, Judy Greer and Jaleel White.
American soldiers discover a terrorist plot on a Paris-bound train.
The Warner Bros film was submitted to the MPAA in December 2017 and was rated R for a sequence of violence and bloody images. The distributors are now appealing to the CARA Appeals Board, presumably seeking a PG-13 rating.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York has decided not to take down a Balthus painting of a young
girl, Thérèse Dreaming (1938), that an online petition calls sexually suggestive.
The work depicts Balthus's favoured model and neighbour, Thérèse Blanchard, who was 12 or 13 years old at the time, reclining with her underwear visible. The artist had a noted infatuation with pubescent girls, and it can be strongly argued
that this painting romanticises the sexualisation of a child, writes the New York resident Mia Merrill, who started the petition on the website Care2 on 30 November. It has since gathered more than 8,600 supporters.
Merrill says that she is not calling for the work to be censored, destroyed or never seen again but either removed from display or shown with a caption that acknowledges the controversy over Balthus's reputation.
The museum's chief communications officer, Kenneth Weine, told the New York Times that:
Moments such as this provide an opportunity for conversation, and visual art is one of the most significant means we have for reflecting on both the past and the present and encouraging the continuing evolution of existing culture through
informed discussion and respect for creative expression.
Back in 1992, Hindu fanatics numbering 150,000 demolished the 16th-century Babri Mosque in the city of Ayodhya
because the site was considered by some to be Ram Janmabhoomi, the actual birthplace of the god Rama. The demolition resulted in several months of intercommunal rioting between India's Hindu and Muslim communities, causing the death of at
least 2,000 people.
The incident inspired Indian movie director Sunil Singh, above, to make a movie called Games of Ayodhya , due for release on December 8 -- and zealots now want him dead.
His home in Aligarh, Uttar Pradesh, was vandalised by right-wing Hindu activists on Sunday and Yogesh Varshney, city president of Hindu Jagran Manch in Aligarh said that they would not allow the movie, which narrates a love story between a
Hindu man and a Muslim woman in Ayodhya at the time of Babri Masjid demolition, to be released in the city. He said:
Today we have blackened the wall of Singh's house. If he doesn't back down, we will kill him.
One activist announced a bounty for chopping the arms of the director whilst another has gone a step ahead and offered a reward to anyone who beheads the director.
The movie was originally banned by the film censors of the CBFC, but was later cleared by the Film Cerification Appellate Tribunal (FCAT).
Ofcom has appointed Monisha Shah and Jonathan Baker to its Content Board.
Ofcom's Content Board is a committee of the main Ofcom Board. It has delegated, advisory responsibility for a wide range of content issues, including the censorship of television, radio and video-on-demand quality and standards.
Monisha and Jonathan join Ofcom's Content Board on three-year terms, serving until 30 September 2020.
Monisha is an experienced arts and media executive, who has held prominent roles on a number of high-profile commercial and public-sector Boards.
She is the current Chair of Rose Bruford College of Theatre and Performance; a Non-Executive Director of Imagen, a media management technology company; and an Independent Board Director of the publishing company Next Mediaworks.
Monisha is a current Trustee of the ArtFund and served as Trustee of Tate from July 2007 203 2015. She was also Tate's liaison Trustee on the Board of the National Gallery, and has served on the Boards of the Foundling Museum and ArtUK.
Monisha worked at BBC Worldwide for 10 years before stepping down in 2010.
Jonathan brings over 40 years' journalism experience, and is currently the founding Professor of Journalism at the University of Essex.
He began his career as a reporter at the Liverpool Daily Post and Echo, before joining the BBC, where he held several roles in radio and TV news. He was Editor of the Nine O'Clock News bulletin when it moved to its current Ten O'Clock
slot, where it received multiple BAFTA and Royal Television Society Awards under his editorship.
Jonathan also spent five years as BBC World News Editor, later becoming Deputy Head of the wider Newsgathering department. He was also appointed Head of the College of Journalism, with responsibility for training 8,000 BBC journalists.
Pizza Hut has apologised for running a promotion with The Sun on Sunday, just two weeks after Paperchase was criticised
for doing the same with the Daily Mail.
The controversy erupted after Pizza Hut flagged a promotion it was running with The Sun on Sunday, which offered a free pizza to every consumer.
The PC lynch mob on Twitter responded they would switch their patronage to other businesses. One Twitter user said:
I'm never going to set foot in your business again. No....not if you have to stoop so low as deal with that rag!!! said another. I will no longer patronise Pizza Hut given that they work with The Sun, was a popular sentiment, as was: Never
ever buying a pizza from here ever again now. Another complainant Howard Cover claimed Pizza Hut was finished in Liverpool.
Less than five hours after first posting details about the promotion, Pizza Hut said in a statement:
We apologise for any offence caused as a result of this partnership. The aim of this offer was simply to give our customers the chance to enjoy a free pizza to share with their family and friends.
There's no sign yet of an apology to Sun readers for Pizza Hut pandering to the politically correct sneering at Sun readers by the liberal left.
It's been compared to removing Harry Potter's wand, or watching Titanic and not seeing the boat sink.
French broadcaster TF1 has angered viewers who tuned into a Sunday night screening of the 2015 film Fifty Shades of Grey by removing 15-minutes of sex scenes from it. The channel said it made the cuts in order for it to screen at 9pm.
However, some viewers thought it should have been shown in full after 10.30pm, while others thought it was tame compared to some French programming and pointed out it was only restricted to those under-12 when it was released in French
The bizarre censorship decision may have been something to do with a recent whinge by President Macron'that French teens were being exposed to too much sex, too early.
Wanted is a 2008 USA / Germany action crime fantasy by Timur Bekmambetov.
Starring Angelina Jolie, James McAvoy and Morgan Freeman.
A young man finds out his long lost father is an assassin. When his father is murdered, the son is recruited into his father's old organization and trained by a man named Sloan to follow in his dad's footsteps.
The film is 18 rated by the BBFC for strong bloody violence.
Sky1, 18 September 2017, 21:00
Wanted is a film about an office worker, Wesley, who learns that he is the son of a professional assassin and that he shares his father's superhuman killing abilities. It is an action thriller that was classified at an 18 rating by the
British Board of Film Classification in 2008.
Ofcom received a complaint about the broadcast of the word fucking and a sex scene shortly after the watershed. The complainant said that her 11 year old son was watching and that she considered the scene unsuitable for the time of
The film was scheduled to start shortly after the 21:00 watershed. From 18:30 to 21:00, five episodes of The Simpsons were broadcast.
The film cut at 21:03 to a scene in which Wesley’s girlfriend and friend, Cathy and Barry, were shown having sex on a kitchen table. Barry was naked from the waist down, while Cathy was in a skirt and bra. Barry was shown standing while
having sex with Cathy, who lay on the table with her legs wrapped around him, slapping his buttocks. The scene was shot mainly from the side and behind Barry. It lasted about 10 seconds.
We considered Rule 1.6:
The transition to more adult material must not be unduly abrupt at the watershed (in the case of television) …For television, the strongest material should appear later in the schedule.
We first assessed whether the sex scene was more adult material. We considered that, although relatively brief, and although the couple were partially clothed, it clearly depicted them having sex. In addition, at the same time as the sex
scene, the word fucking was used. Ofcom's 2016 research on offensive language4 highlighted that the word fuck and similar words are considered by audiences to be among the most offensive language. Therefore, in our view, this material was
aimed at an adult audience and could be considered more adult material in the context of Rule 1.6.
We considered that broadcasting a sex scene and an instance of the most offensive language three minutes after the watershed, and on a channel which had just broadcast family entertainment, was an unduly abrupt transition to more adult
Ofcom's Decision is that the material was in breach of Rule 1.6.
Padmavati is a 2017 India historical romance by Sanjay Leela Bhansali.
Starring Deepika Padukone, Ranveer Singh and Shahid Kapoor.
Rani Padmavati (aka Padmini) is said to be one of the most beautiful women to ever exist. This real life story is epitome of Love and sacrifice between Rajput Queen Padmavati and Rana Rawal Ratan Singh, the Rajput ruler of Mewar. Their
perfect life took unfortunate turn when Allauddin Khilji's lustful eyes gazed upon Queen Padmavati. Alauddin Khilji is known as one of the most brutal rulers of the Khilji dynasty, who ascended the throne by killing his father-in-law, his
brother-in-laws and their uncles. He was known for attacking states, only for their land and women. And, the motive behind the attack on Mewar was none other than royal Rani Padmavati. Chittorgarh fort, today, stands as an epitome of the
true Rajputana spirit, loyalty, fidelity and bravery and a symbol of women power.
Rajput is an hindu caste of India, and Rajput Samaj of UK is a London based group of made up from the local community of the Indian caste. The group seems somewhat offended by the movie Padmavati and have started a move to try
and ensure that the movie is not screened in the UK. They are at pains to mention that they will be expressing their views only through peaceful means, rather hinting that an expectation of recourse to violence is not far below the surface.
The Rajput Samaj of UK wrote to the BBFC pointing out that Padmavati is a revered figure in India and that she represented national pride, rather like the figure of King Arthur in Britain. The Samaj claimed in its letter that the directors
of the film had tried to glorify Alauddin Khilji and that such efforts were similar to glorifying ISIS terrorists. They went on to add We must stand up against the glamorisation of plundering, looting, and other barbaric acts, rather in
keeping with the extremist view in India that sees its Muslim rulers who ruled for well-nigh 800 years, as plunderers and looters. It urged BBFC to find the right historians who can watch the film and stop the character assassination of
Egyptian singer Shyma has been arrested on suspicion of incitement to debauchery over her new video for song Andy Zoroof (I Have Problems), which authorities considered to be too daring and suggestive.
If convicted, the singer faces a one-year prison sentence, and in the mean time she is being held in custody.
At a court hearing where the singer's detention was extended by a further seven days, the singer stated she didn't know her video would cause such controversy and was acting according to the video director's requests.
Additionally, the Music Syndicate have decided to withdraw the singer's annual license, leaving her unable to perform and earn a living as a singer. The union also claimed that her video was pornographic and harmed the values of community
The video, which sparked outrage in the country, features the singer in a classroom in front of male students licking an apple and slowly unpeeling a banana, eating it and pouring milk on it, and worst of all, pulling her bra strap off her
A strip club advertisement has been banned from one of Brisbane's busiest train stations after the advert censor
found it debased women (with thin crusts) comparing pizzas to breasts.
The poster shows two pizzas with pepperoni clustered in their centres under the words: Pizzas or Jugs? Grab both for just $25.
The owner of The Grosvenor topless bar and strip club, Jasmine Robson, responded:
Now I think this is political correctness/censorship gone absolutely mad. I am shocked that the ASB would determine that this ad is exploitative or demeaning to women in any way, especially considering there isn't even a woman on the
However the advert censors of the Advertising Standards Bureau upheld complaints including that the ad condoned and suggests sexual harassment of women by suggesting that people can grab 'jugs' at the bar'.
In their ruling, the ASB noted the image used in the ad was of a picture of pizzas with strategically placed pepperoni for the purpose of creating the impression of breasts with pronounced nipples. The Board considered the use of the term
pizzas or jugs and noted that the colloquial definition for jugs can include breasts.
The ASB found that the representation of womens' breasts as pizzas did reduce women to an object which was exploitative by way of purposefully debasing women. In addition, the promotion of being able to grab the deal at a bargain price was
degrading by lowering in character and quality women in general, the ASB found.
Google makes their internal processes difficult to track by design, but the author of a report By Karlaplan states that these changes are
fairly recent, suspected to have been implemented on the 30th of August -- the changes having only been discovered in late October.
However, until the publication of this document , little other than anecdotal evidence was presented with complaints from YouTube content creators.
Through extensive analysis of the YouTube Data API and other sources, Karlaplan found that YouTube tags demonetized videos according to both severity and type of sensitive content -- neither of which is transparent to the uploader.
The report also notes that videos are more likely to be hidden from viewers if their likely viewership is low. Perhaps as higher viewership videos may be more likely to be appealed, or more likely to be spotted as examples of censorship and
hence generate bad publicity for Google.
Google have published an information page that is quite useful in detailing which videos get censored. Google outlines two levels of sensitivity that advertisers can select when not wanting to be associated with sensitive content. Google
While the Standard content filter excludes the most inappropriate content, it doesn't exclude everything that a particular advertiser may find objectionable. The Sensitive content categories allow you to opt out of additional content that
many advertisers find inappropriate. Eg:
Tragedy and conflict
Standard: Excludes graphic footage of combat or war
Sensitive: Excludes the above plus footage of soldiers marching with weapons
Sensitive social issues
Standard: Excludes videos intended to elicit a response about controversial issues
Sensitive: Excludes the above plus news commentary about controversial issues
Sexually suggestive content
Standard: Excludes videos about sex or sexual products
Sensitive: Excludes the above plus music videos with suggestive themes
Sensational and shocking
Standard: Excludes videos of disasters or accidents that show casualties or death
Sensitive: Excludes the above plus videos of moderate disasters or accidents that show minimal casualties or harm
Profanity and rough language
Standard: Excludes videos with frequent use of profanity
Sensitive: Excludes the above plus videos with profanity that has been bleeped out
A PC extremist from Newcastle has called on her son's infant school to ban the classic fairy tale from teh school's reading list.
Sarah Hall claimed the timeless tale, in which an unconscious princess is kissed by a prince to wake her from a curse, features an inappropriate sexual message about a lack of consent. She contends the fairytale teaches children it's OK to
kiss a women while she's asleep.
Hall told the Newcastle Chronicle:
I think it's a specific issue in the Sleeping Beauty story about sexual behavior and consent. It's about saying, 'Is this still relevant? Is it appropriate? In today's society, it isn't appropriate, my son is only six, he absorbs
everything he sees.
She said her call for the book to be banned only refers to younger kids, saying the tale could be a great resource for older children to encourage discussions on consent and how the Princess might feel.
Offsite Comment: Okay, now feminists have gone too far
There is so much that is wrong with these arguments. There's the suggestion that parents won't be able to explain the
difference between fiction and real life to their kids. Or that sexual consent is something six-year-olds need to worry about. Or that as kids get older they will think back to the fictional tales they read when they were six to work out
how to proceed with budding sexual relationships. Or that there is something wrong in the first place with imagining a beautiful princess being saved by a kiss; that there's something wrong with the life of the imagination itself.
Cloudflare's decision to ban the Daily Stormer has led to an increase in censorship requests. Since August, Cloudflare has received more than 7,000 requests from across the political spectrum for removal of content
Senior police officers are to lose the power to self-authorise access to personal phone and web browsing records under a series of late
changes to the snooper's charter law proposed by ministers in an attempt to comply with a European court ruling on Britain's mass surveillance powers.
A Home Office consultation paper published on Thursday also makes clear that the 250,000 requests each year for access to personal communications data by the police and other public bodies will in future excluded for investigations into
minor crimes that carry a prison sentence of less than six months.
But the government says the 2016 European court of justice (ECJ) ruling in a case brought by Labour's deputy leader, Tom Watson , initially with David Davis, now the Brexit secretary, does not apply to the retention or acquisition of
personal phone, email, web history or other communications data by national security organisations such as GCHQ, MI6 or MI5, claiming that national security is outside the scope of EU law.
The Open Rights Group has been campaigning hard on issues of liberty and privacy and writes:
This is major victory for ORG, although one with dangers. The government has conceded that independent authorisation is necessary for communications data requests, but refused to budge on retained data and is pushing ahead with the Request
Filter, to enable rapid interrogation and analysis of the stored communications data.
Adding independent authorisation for communications data requests will make the police more effective, as corruption and abuse will be harder. It will improve operational effectiveness, even if less data is used during investigations and
trust in the police should improve.
Nevertheless the government has disregarded many key elements of the judgment
It isn't going to reduce the amount of data retained
It won't notify people whose data is used during investigations
It won't keep data within the EU, instead it will continue to transfer it, presumably specifically to the USA
The Home Office has opted for a six month sentence definition of serious crime rather than the Lords' definition of crimes capable of sentences of at least one year.
These are clear evasions and abrogations of the judgment. The mission of the Home Office is to uphold the rule of law. By failing to do what the courts tell them, the Home Office is undermining the very essence of the rule of law.
If the Home Office won't do what the highest courts tell it to do, why should anybody else? By picking and choosing the laws they are willing to care about, they are playing with fire.
There was one final surprise. The Code of Practice covers the operation of the Request Filter . Yet again we are told that this police search engine is a privacy safeguard. We will now run through the code in fine detail to see if any such
safeguards are there. On a first glance, there are not.
If the Home Office genuinely believe the Request Filter is a benign tool, they must rewrite this section to make abundantly clear that it is not a mini version of X-Keyscore (the NSA / GCHQ'S tool to trawl their databases of people linked
to their email and web visits) and does not operate as a facility to link and search the vast quantities of retained and collected communications data.
Hawaii State Representative Sean Quinlan has advocated for self-regulation of loot boxes by the video game industry whilst
also suggesting that such games should carry a 21+ age rating.
He said that ultimately, it's best for the industry to self-police. The ideal solution would be for the game industry to stop having gambling or gambling-like mechanics in games that are marketed to kids... BUT ... he believes
games makers should be held accountable. The ESRB would need to enforce higher-grade ratings and other labels to distinguish games that rely on predatory monetization. As an example, he said that the ESRB could say that if a game has loot
crates, it gets a 21-plus rating.
The Entertainment Software Association is proving resistant, however. Their response ran along the same lines as many publishers, asserting that loot boxes are a voluntary feature and that the gamer makes the decision in regards to their
Australia's advert censors have changed their mind over a lamb marketing advert and have now banned the advert.
The Advertising Standards Board (ASB) has reversed its decision on Meat and Livestock Australia's lamb ad, after an independent review found it had breached the advertising code.
The ad, which featured religious gods and prophets, including Hindu god Ganesha sharing a BBQ lamb meal, received more than 200 complaints, including one from the High Commission of India in Australia, which claimed the ad was offensive and
hurting religious sentiments.
The ASB originally cleared the ad declaring it had not breached its code.
An independent review by the ASB found the original ruling was an error and cited substantial flaws with the initial decision, which found the ad was lighthearted and humorous and did not breach the advertising standards code.
The review claimed Meat and Livestock Australia gave inadequate consideration to how seriously some Australians take their religious views and determined the ad had breached the code, recommending the ad be removed.
The Russian government is currently discussing plans to build its own independent internet infrastructure that will
be used by BRICS member states 204 Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa.
The Russian Security Council has today formally asked the country's government to start the building of a global DNS system that Russia and fellow BRICS member states could use to take control of the internet as used within the BRICS
Russia and fellow BRICS nations would have the option to flip a switch and move Internet traffic from today's main DNS system to their own private system. The states will then have absolute and direct control of sites to be blocked.
Furthermore, the alternative DNS system also allows oppressive regimes to deanonymize Tor traffic and hunt for dissidents, via an attack called DefecTor.
Russia, China, and many other countries have criticized the US for hoarding control over the domain naming system (DNS), a position they claim has allowed the US to intercept and tap global Internet traffic. Last year, the US handed over
control over the DNS system to ICANN , an independent organization. While Russia and China welcomed the move, they actually wanted the DNS system to be controlled by the United Nations' International Telecommunication Union. This is because
the two countries have more power in UN matters than control over an NGO, like ICANN.