Censor Watch logo

 Censor Watch
  Home Censorship News Latest Melon Farmers
  Links Daily UK Ratings from the BBFC Thai-Anxiety
Religious Watch

30th August

  Battling the Ban of Battle for Banaras...

Indian film censors ban political documentary
Link Here  full story: Banned Movies in India...Sex, religion and easy offence
battle for banaras The Battle for Banaras is a 2014 India documentary by Kamal Swaroop.
Starring Neil Nitin Mukesh, Sikandar Agarwal and Aditya Bhattacharya. Youtube link IMDb

Inspired by Nobel laureate Elias Canetti's book, 'Crowds and Power', the documentary captures the excitement, the madness and the noise behind the high- octane poll battle in the holy city of Banaras, India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi's parliamentary constituency. And in the process, for the first time lays bare the equation and politics of democracy called India.

Indian film censors have banned a political documentary, Battle of Banaras. The film studies the high-profile electoral battle between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader Arvind Kejriwal in Varanasi during the 2014 Lok Sabha elections.

CBFC chairman Pahlaj Nihalani, who hasn't watched the film, later said:

My officers told me that it's a political satire. It speaks against all politicians and is pro-Kejriwal in the way it has been shot. The people who reviewed it are experienced enough to know what is right and wrong. They found the kind of language that has been used in the film absolutely unsuitable for public viewing. It is inflammatory and flouts the CBFC guidelines.

Defending his film, Kamal Swaroop said it is strictly non-political and doesn't take any sides. He said:

I have nothing to do with AAP or the BJP . It's none of my business as a filmmaker. The film follows the festivities around the elections. I have observed the candidates fighting the election as a physical phenomenon.

Swaroop still has appeal option and he has decided to take the documentary to the Film Certification Appellate Tribunal (FCAT).


30th August

  The Book of Mormon...

So fucking good that even the advert censor appreciates the humour
Link Here

so fucking good An ad, in the Evening Standard, for the musical The Book of Mormon featured the quote SO F**KING GOOD IT MAKES ME ANGRY , which was attributed to Jon Stewart on the Daily Show. Issue

  1. Two complainants challenged that the ad was offensive and unsuitable for publication in a widely available newspaper.

  2. One complainant challenged whether the ad was unsuitable for children to see.

ASA Assessment

1. Not upheld

The ASA noted that F**KING was partly obscured by asterisks, but acknowledged that the intended meaning of the word was still clear. However, we considered, in the context of the ad, the word did not have a sexual meaning, but emphasised the extent to which Jon Stewart enjoyed the musical, while reflecting the adult content of the Book of Mormon and the language Jon Stewart used in his comedy. Therefore, we considered the word would be interpreted in a light-hearted context. We understood that the Evening Standard had a predominantly adult readership, and that the editorial sections reported on serious news events, while also regularly using explicit language. Therefore, we did not consider the ad would be offensive to those who were likely to see the ad. For those reasons, we concluded the ad was not likely to cause serious or widespread offence.

2. Not upheld

We noted that the Evening Standard had a predominantly adult readership and referred to explicit language in its editorial section. We considered its content included news events about serious topics that would not be of particular interest to children. Therefore, we considered that the newspaper in which the ad was published was unlikely to appeal to children and concluded that its placement was not irresponsible.


30th August

 Diary: Going Clear but encrypted...

21st September 2015. Sky is set to broadcast Going Clear despite censorship pressure from the Scientology organisation
Link Here  full story: Scientology Censors...Scientogists quick to litigate against critics
going clear Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief is a 2015 USA documentary by Alex Gibney.
Starring Lawrence Wright, Mike Rinder and Marty Rathbun. IMDb

A devastating two hour documentary based on Lawrence Wright's book of the same name. Scientology is laid bare by a film that skilfully knits together archive footage, testimonials from former high ranking officials and public, and dramatic reconstructions.

Sky Atlantic is to show a documentary on Scientology, despite legal pressure from the 'church'.

Alex Gibney's Going Clear traces the origins of the organisation and profiles former members, including Oscar-winning screenwriter Paul Haggis. It has alleged abusive practices at Scientology's US headquarters, which members have denounced as one-sided, bigoted propaganda .

The film premiered to wide acclaim in the US in March and was watched by 5.5 million viewers on HBO. It also garnered seven Emmy nominations.

The Church of Scientology has previously threatened to use the UK's libel laws to challenge any false or defamatory content if it is broadcast in the UK.

Although an initial screening, in April, was postponed, Sky has now confirmed it will be shown, without edits on 21 September. A spokesman for Sky told The Guardian:

Both Sky, and the producers of the film, have sought legal advice at every stage of the process and are confident the film complies with legal requirements in the territories in which we are screening the film.


30th August

 Update: Cut and Paste Oppression...

Russian looks to extend censorship control of the internet to cover the written word
Link Here  full story: Internet Censorship in Russia...Russia restoring repressive state control of media
Russian Duma logo Russia is looking to expand its control over the internet and is targeting the written word.

According to the deputy head of the Duma Committee on information politics, parliament will be considering new legislation to protect online media publications from cut-and-paste piracy. Leonid Levin said:

Indeed, there is a conversation with the journalistic community on the topic of additional changes in legislation, including for copy-paste [infringement]

We will analyze this situation and we are certainly going to look at the possibility of changes, including for the protection of media publications.

At this stage it seems likely that Levin is referring to the wholesale online piracy of complete articles and publications but no further details have yet been made public. But whatever the intent, plenty of space will be required to report news, generate analysis, express opinion and offer criticism.


30th August

 Diary: FrightFest 2015...

27th -31st August at Vue cinema in Leicester Square
Link Here

firghtfest 2015 advert FrightFest 2015
27th -31st August 2015
Vue cinema, Leicester Square, London

The announcement of the full FILM4 FrightFest 2015 will now be on July 3rd at 2pm.

Festival and day passes will be available on Saturday, July 4th with single tickets two weeks later.

A festival pass this year will cost £185. Day passes are Thursday - £30, Friday and Saturday £60, Sunday and Monday £50 and will only be available online. Single tickets this year will be £13.25.

The festical will open with Irish chiller Cherry Tree , directed by David Keating ( Wake Wood ) and starring Anna Walton ( Hellboy 2 ) and Naomi Battrick ( Down Dog ). Closing the event is another European premiere,  Tales of Halloween .

Update: Films announced

7th July 2015. See  article from  strangethingsarehappening.com

frightfest writes:

We have assembled what is without doubt the greatest and most comprehensive line-up in our entire event-packed history comprising 19 World, 16 European and 24 UK premieres.

Team FrightFest has been struck this year by the sheer quality, unique imagination and technical ingenuity in the ever-burgeoning independent arena. From Australia and France, Mexico and Russia, Argentina and Peru, it's clear the genre is in wild, wonderful and diverse hands and we are pleased to showcase the most electrifying examples. CURTAIN, HOSTILE, SUMMER CAMP, BODY, THE ROTTEN LINK, THEY LOOK LIKE PEOPLE, GODDESS OF LOVE, NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEB, SUN CHOKE, NIGHT FARE, RABID DOGS, LANDMINE GOES CLICK, POD, TURBO KID, DEATHGASM, III, HELLIONS, JERUZALEM, SOME KIND OF HATE, EMELIE, SLUMLORD, THE SHELTER, ANOTHER ME, WIND WALKERS, BITE, BLOODSUCKING BASTARDS, ZOMBIE FIGHT CLUB, THE ENTITY and INNER DEMON are just astonishing and are bound to cause much heated debate and ecstatic discussion.

Of course we always take great pride and pleasure in presenting the latest work from British artists and 2015 is an outstanding year in that department too. You already know we are opening FrightFest with David Keating's CHERRY TREE. But Dominic Brunt's BAIT, Ben and Chris Blaine's NINA FOREVER, Mark Murphy's AWAITING, Paul Hyett's HOWL, Adam Levins' ESTRANGED, Howard J. Ford's NEVER LET GO, Corin Hardy's THE HALLOW, Ruth Platt's THE LESSON, Eugene McGing's THE UNFOLDING, Robin Schmidt and Gez Medinger's AFTERDEATH and Liam Regan's BANJO continue Film4 FrightFest's commitment to platform the brightest sparks on the UK homefront. Oh, and wait until you see Steve (SIGHTSEERS) Oram's AAAAAAAAGH!, which we guarantee will World Premiere to a sea of open-mouthed astonisment.

Other stellar productions include our closing anthology TALES OF HALLOWEEN and our festive attraction A CHRISTMAS HORROR STORY. Plus Iain Softley's CURVE, Bernard Rose's FRANKENSTEIN, Adrian Garcia Bogliano's SCHERZO DIABOLICO, Abner Pastoll's ROAD GAMES, Alistair Legrand's THE DIABOLICAL, Ted Geoghegan's WE ARE STILL HERE, Adam Schindler's SHUT IN, Padraig Reynolds' WORRY DOLLS, Zak Hilditch's THESE FINAL HOURS, April Mullen's FARHOPE TOWER, Takashi Miike's OVER YOUR DEAD BODY, David Gelb's THE LAZARUS EFFECT and JAMES WAN'S DEMONIC.

You want monsters? Try the giant wasps in STUNG or what lurks beneath THE SAND. You want documentaries? Look for FUTURE SHOCK! THE STORY OF 2000AD and THE NIGHTMARE. You want even more stalk-and-slash? Well, there's also SUSPENSION, FINAL GIRL, MOST LIKELY TO DIE, HANGMAN and LAST GIRL STANDING to sate your appetites. You want special events? How about veteran artist Graham Humphreys, who provides our poster every year, discussing his new book Drawing Blood , Film4's Catherine Bray hosting a guest panel on DIY Filmmaking, the return of the Duke Mitchell Club and an in-depth Q&A with our Special Guest Icon who we are keeping under wraps at the moment. Not to mention our hugely popular Short Film Showcases.

If our Discovery Screen Strand has increased in popularity, so has our Retrospective selection. This year you will be able to dip in and out of an eclectic programme stradding grindhouse to art-house with brand new restorations of the classic HELLRAISER, the giallo masterpiece YOUR VICE IS A LOCKED ROOM AND ONLY I HAVE THE KEY, the exploitation duo MADMAN and THE MUTILATOR, the cult Hammer Horror CAPTAIN KRONOS: VAMPIRE HUNTER, the high camp HAWK THE SLAYER and the high-end horrors TENDERNESS OF THE WOLVES and THE REFLECTING SKIN.


29th August

 Updated: A persuasive plaintif...

Indian film banned in Pakistan over claims of defamation by a suspected terrorist
Link Here
phantom india Phantom is a 2015 India action thriller by Kabir Khan.
Starring Saif Ali Khan, Katrina Kaif and Rajesh Tailang. Youtube link BBFC link IMDb

Phantom is a political thriller that unfolds across various countries around the world. The plot revolves around protagonist Daniyal, whose journey to seek justice takes him from India to Europe, America and the volatile Middle East. However, he finds out that in a mission like this, there is always a price to pay, in this case, a very personal price.

The Indian movie, Phantom was set to be released on August 28 both in Pakistan and India, but its screening is now banned in Pakistani cinemas as the result of a case in the Lahore High Court. It follows the pattern of Pakistanis not being impressed by being depicted as the bad guys.

In this case, a lawyer representing a suspected bad guy wanted by the U.S., brought the case over being depicted as a terrorist who is the target of an assassination in the film. The internationally designated terrorist who was the brains behind the 26/11 attacks felt that this movie would somehow mislead the residents of Pakistan.

In the UK, the BBFC has just passed the film 15 uncut for strong violence.

Update: Aid group calls for the censorship of Phantom because they think people believe what they see at the movies

29th August 2015. See  article from  bbc.co.uk

medicins sans frontieres logo Aid group Medecins sans Frontieres (MSF) says it is taking legal action over a Bollywood film, claiming it could endanger its staff in conflict zones.

MSF says the film Phantom depicts an aid worker for a confusingly similar fictitious organisation using a weapon. The film does not mention MSF by name.

The group claims the film could harm its work in places where its access depends on a reputation for neutrality. A statement released by MSF said the organisation became aware of its association with Phantom after one of its actors said

Their character in the film worked for MSF. The same character was also shown holding a gun in the film's trailer, something an MSF staff member would never do.


29th August

  Censored Until Dawn...

YouTube video reveals cuts to cuts in Japanese version of the game Until Dawn
Link Here
Sony 711719815136 Until Dawn PS4 The YouTube channel Censored Gaming has published its latest video, this one highlighting how the PlayStation 4 horror game, Until Dawn , was amended for its Japanese release.

Josh's death by saw cutscene was crudely censored for Japan by totally blanking out the video.

Until Dawn is rated M for Mature in the United States and features a good amount of blood and gore, including disembowling and decapitations, as well as a scene where a character is forced to cut off parts of his fingers.


29th August

 Offsite Article: Secret Affairs...

Link Here  full story: Ashley Madison Website...infidelity dating website
ashley madison logo New analysis shows over 99% of the women on Ashley Madison were fake

See article from extremetech.com


28th August

  An Old Rap...

US rapper Tyler, the Creator banned from the UK over lyrics written many years ago and no longer performed
Link Here
Goblin Creator Tyler The US rapper Tyler, the Creator says he has been banned from the UK because of the nature of his lyrics. The Odd Future co-founder recently cancelled four dates including an appearance at Reading/Leeds and tweeted that it was because the authorities were unhappy with his subject matter.

His manager, Christian Clancy, went into more detail on his Tumblr, saying

Tyler has been banned from entering the UK for somewhere between 3 to 5 years per a letter from the secretary of state for the home department of the UK. The letter specifically cites lyrics he wrote 6-7 years ago for his albums Bastard and Goblin , the type of lyrics he hasn't written since. Highlights from the letter include that his work encourages violence and intolerance of homosexuality and fosters hatred with views that seek to provoke others to terrorist acts.

Earlier this month Tyler cancelled the Australian leg of his world tour after a feminist group launched a petition to have him denied a visa to enter the country. The group, Collective Shout, cited objections to lyrics that include references to rape and violence against women, as well as historic behaviour on earlier tours.

Complaints about Tyler seem to stem largely from songs on his self-produced 2009 mixtape Bastard, which includes lines such as you call this shit rape but I think that rape's fun as well as references to raping Goldilocks and committing suicide. Most of that record was written when Tyler was a teenager and he has since written about how he's moved on from the sentiments expressed on it.

Comment: Once you start banning rappers like Tyler, the Creator, where do you stop

See  article from  theguardian.com


28th August

 Offsite Article: Caligula, vampires and coping with death threats...

Link Here
islam the untold story An interview with Tom Holland, who made the documentary, Islam: The Untold Story

See article from theguardian.com


28th August

 Offsite Article: Place de Nana...

Link Here
place de nana Paris feminists have fun substituting women for men on famous street signs

See article from thelocal.fr


28th August

 Offsite Article: Age Related Incapability...

Link Here  full story: Internet Age Verification in UK...UK bill to mandate age verification for internet sales
trust elevate logo UK authorities and internet industry seem to be getting serious about finding a viable methods of age verification

See article from computerweekly.com


27th August

 Update: Rajan Zed recommends...

Women's polo suits from Hardcoresport
Link Here  full story: Rajan Zed...Taking easy offence at hindu imagery
water polo ganesha The professionally easily outraged hindu, Rajan Zed, is whngeing about an image of the religious character Lord Ganesha that appears on women's water polo suits from the California, company, Hardcoresport.

Zed said that it was disturbing to see image of Lord Ganesha covering hips and crotch of a model in a water polo suit. Lord Ganesha was meant to be worshipped in temples or home shrines and not for pushing swimwear for mercantile greed of an apparel company.

Zed, who is President of Universal Society of Hinduism, urged the manufacturer Hardcoresport to immediately recall and remove from various web-outlets all swimwear which showed Hindu Lord Ganesha, and its bosses Mia Andersen and Whitney Hentzen to publicly apologize.

Zed further said that such trivialization of a Hindu deity was disturbing to the Hindus world over. Hindus were for free artistic expression and speech as much as anybody else if not more ...BUT... faith was something sacred and attempts at trivializing it hurt the followers.

Rajan Zed suggested Hardcoresport and other corporations worldwide to send their senior executives for training in religious and cultural sensitivity.


27th August

 Offsite Article: GCHQ and me...

Link Here
Secret Service Issues Duncan Campbell Investigative journalist Duncan Campbell recounts his experiences unmasking British eavesdroppers

See article from opendemocracy.net


26th August

  Making movies with no chance of a happy end...

Film director jailed for 20 years by Russia for coordinating relief efforts for Ukrainian soldiers blockaded in Crimea
Link Here
Poster Gmer 2011 Oleg Sentsov Gámer is a 2011 Ukraine drama by Oleg Sentsov.
Starring Zhanna Biryuk, Alexander Fedotov and Vladislav Zhuk. IMDb

The boy's name is Alex, but in the world of gamers where he spends most of his time, he is known as Koss. The enormous amount of time he spends at the computer screen starts to pay off: in the games' clubs in his small Ukrainian village, he is the undisputed king of the shooting game Quake, admired by the 'noobs' - the younger and less experienced players he defeats digitally.

A Russian court has sentenced the Ukrainian film director Oleg Sentsov to 20 years in prison after a trial described by Amnesty International as redolent of Stalinist-era show trials .

Sentsov directed the 2011 feature film Gamer , but stopped work on a new movie when Russia began to intervene in Crimea. He coordinated relief efforts for the Ukrainian soldiers who were blockaded inside their bases by Russian troops.

Sentsov and his co-defendant Alexander Kolchenko, who received a 10-year sentence, were accused of planning terrorist acts in Crimea after the peninsula was annexed by Russia last year. The trial was littered with irregularities: Sentsov said he had been tortured, while investigators dismissed the bruises on his body as being the result of a supposed penchant for sadomasochistic sex. The main prosecution witness recanted in the courtroom and said his evidence had been extorted under torture. When the judges asked the pair if they understood the verdict, they smiled and sang the national anthem of Ukraine .

Heather McGill, a researcher at Amnesty International, said:

This whole trial was designed to send a message. It played into Russia's propaganda war against Ukraine and was redolent of Stalinist-era show trials of dissidents. This trial was fatally flawed and credible allegations of torture and other ill-treatment have been ignored by the court.

International film directors, including Ken Loach, Mike Leigh and Wim Wenders, have signed an open letter to the Russian president, Vladimir Putin, calling for Sentsov's release and an investigation into claims of torture against him.

Russian directors have also joined the appeals. Andrei Zvyagintsev , whose most recent film, Leviathan , won a Golden Globe, said on Monday that he had read the documents from the court case and found them unconvincing. He asked the Russian authorities to either release [Sentsov] or try him only for what you can prove irrefutably .


26th August

  Recommending Tagore's Dance Drama: Valmiki Pratibha...

Followers of Indian religion to protest against dance drama at Birmingham arts centre
Link Here
tagores dance drama valmiki pratibha Followers of an ancient Indian religion are to gather outside a Birmingham theatre to protest over a play that depicts their guru as a villain.

Members of the Central Valmiki Sabha International organisation are 'outraged' that the production - Tagore's Dance Drama: Valmiki Pratibha - shows the group's guru, Bhagwan Valmiki GI, as a robber, looter and killer.

Worshippers from across the UK will demonstrate outside the Mac arts centre in Edgbaston on Sunday, the day the play is due to be performed. Representatives of other faiths, including Sikhs and Christians, are also expected to join the protest.

Jagdish Rai, general secretary of Central Valmiki Sabha UK, said:

There is a great deal of upset within our community. There has never been any evidence to suggest that our guru was a thief, he came from royalty. We will not have this and this is why we are planning this protest.

There are people from all faiths attending because they want to support our cause. If someone was saying something against their faith, they would feel the same.

This will be a peaceful protest. We are not interested in violence, we just want to get our message across. There will be a lot of people there because there is a great strength of feeling about this.

We are fine for the play to go ahead, but we want them to eliminate the part where they depict the person we worship as a thief and a thug because we do not believe this to be the case.

The play is being performed by Nrityakunj, a South Asian dance, drama and arts company based in Manchester, and choreographed by artistic director Mitali Dev. It has already been staged in London, Manchester and Liverpool.


26th August

  Carnival of Control Freakery...

Notting Hill Festival organisers attempt to take control of press coverage
Link Here

nottiing hill carnival Photographers, reporters and camera crews will this weekend stage a de facto boycott of the prime locations at Notting Hill Carnival as news organisations fight back at the creeping control of media freedoms at major entertainment and sporting events.

The protest by national and international media groups follows attempts by carnival organisers to charge journalists £100 each for 'accreditation' to cover the annual free street festival. Following discussions, news groups will cover the carnival from among the crowds and without official accreditation.

The attempt by the carnival's board to charge journalists and to demand shared rights to articles, blogs and pictures is seen as part of a trend in which organisers of major sports and entertainment events seek to censor and monetise media coverage.

Andrew Moger, executive director of the News Media Coalition (NMC), an international body representing publishers and news agencies said:

I would characterise it as a creeping control and erosion of legitimate and long-held journalistic freedoms.


26th August


Thailand proposes an advisory video games rating system
Link Here
Tropico Espionage Mac Code Steam A non-binding video game ratings system has been proposed by the Thai Ministry of Culture. Six age-based ratings for games have been mooted by the Ministry of Culture that would be placed on all games released in Thailand but would not be legally binding on retailers to enforce. Pradith Posew of the Film and Video Censors Board said:

There won't be any legal effect in banning kids from playing games. It's merely a guidance for guardians to take care of their kids' video game playing, based on the appropriateness to their age.

He said it was also intended to help internet and gaming cafes to advise kids who play games at their shops.

In addition to a general audience category, the six ratings would include recommendations for minimum ages of 3, 6, 13, 15 and 18.

The ratings system has been sent to the military government for final approval, Pradith said.

On several recent occasions video games have been banned in Thailand. In 2008, the Ministry of Culture banned sales of Grand Theft Auto IV , after a 17-year-old student stabbed a taxi driver dead and blamed the game for his actions.

In August 2014, three months after the military seized power from an elected government, Thai authorities also banned sales of Tropico 5 , which allows players to assume the role of a dictator running a fictitious tropical island nation. The Film and Video Censors Board claimed the game could possibly affect the kingdom's political situation. The game creator hit back at Thailand this past June by launching a new Espionage mission tasking players with crippling the Thai tourism industry.


26th August

  Europe carved up to benefit the media industry...

European Commission asks whether failed Satellite TV licensing rules should be extended to the internet
Link Here
european commission logo The European Commission is considering extending failed copyright rules covering satellite broadcasters and cable companies to services carried over the internet.

The Commission says it wants to enhance cross border access to broadcasting and related online services across the EU. It wants to assess the impact of extending the Directive to TV and radio programmes provided over the internet, notably broadcasters' online services, such as the BBC iPlayer or commercial services like Sweden's TV4 Play.

Under the 1993 directive satellite rights are acquired for the EU country where, under the control and responsibility of the broadcasting organisation. Under this country of origin principle, rights cleared in one country theoretically allow the broadcasting organisations to broadcast to the whole of the EU, but in practice, don't.

Views are being sought from consumers, public authorities, broadcasters, authors, audio-visual and record producers, performers, collective management organisations, satellite and cable operators, internet and online service providers. The consultation will run through until November 16.


25th August


Cutting Edge Quick Trims Episode 22. BBFC cuts to sights of a butterfly knife. By Gavin Salkeld
Link Here

Kindergarten Cop

Face/Off is a 1997 US action film by John Woo.
With John Travolta, Nicolas Cage and Joan Allen. YouTube icon BBFC link IMDb

Cut by the BBFC for all UK releases so far, but the cut would be waived if resubmitted. Uncut in the US. There is said to be a slightly longer version preferred by John Woo but this has never seen the light of day.

See the cuts required by James Ferman's ban of butterfly knives in the latest Quick Trims episode of Cutting Edge.

See video from YouTube


25th August

 Extract: From the Diary of a Near Retirement Age Censor...

David Cooke speaks about the 18 rating for Diary of a Teenage Girl
Link Here
Diary Teenage Girl Account Pictures David Cooke, the director of the BBFC told the New Statesman that the film was classified 18 thanks mainly to its eight sex scenes, use of cocaine, LSD and marijuana, and what Cooke calls the glamorisation of drug use in the film. He added that the age gap between Minnie and Monroe, and the fact that Minnie is underage, would also have affected the decision.

He also said that the film very clearly fits into the 18 classification and wasn't a borderline case.

...Read the full article


25th August

 Update: Ignorant Censors...

Russia bans Wikipedia over a single page about marijuana
Link Here  full story: Internet Censorship in Russia...Russia restoring repressive state control of media
wikipedia logo Russia has just banned Wikipedia over an article about marijuana. Roscomnadzor, the official internet censor, has ordered Russian ISPs to block the site. The ban is due to a specific article about charas, a form of hashish that is handmade in India. According to Roscomnadzor, the page constitutes instructions on how to make the drug, which makes it illegal under Russian laws.

Wikimedia.ru has declined to avoid the ban by removing the post.

Earlier this month, Russia briefly blocked the entirety of Reddit over a post about hallucinogenic mushrooms after Reddit similarly refused to remove the post. Reddit later accommodated the censors wishes so as to unblock the site.

The use of HTTPS, which encrypts traffic between websites and users, is having an impact on ISP level censorship as it prevents the ISPs blocking specific pages.


25th August

 Offsite Article: For Such a Time...

Link Here
Such Time Kate Breslin More about the politically correct censorship of a romance set in a concentration camp

See article from vice.com


25th August

 Offsite Article: Ghostery and Privacy...

Link Here
ghostery logo If ad-blocking continues to rise, what happens to the web's business model? By John Naughton

See article from theguardian.com


25th August

 Diary: Premieres...

August 2015 on the Horror Channel
Link Here

Cassadaga DVD Kelen Coleman Saturday nights in August just got scarier as Horror Channel ushers in four unmissable UK premieres plus there's a network premiere for Anthony DiBlasi's celebrated shocker Cassadaga .

There are first TV showings for Josh C. Waller's all-female fight-to-the death thriller Raze , Paul Soter's house-haunted Dark Circles , Jason Cuadrado's shock-ridden Devil May Call and the well-reviewed supernatural chiller The Torment , from Andrew Cull and Steve Isles.

Anthony DiBlasi's Cassadaga on the 1st is an atmospheric chiller that stars Kelen Coleman, Lousie Fletcher and J LaRose. Devastated by the death of her younger sister, deaf art teacher Lily Morel (Coleman) seeks solace at the Florida based spiritualist community of Cassadaga. But instead of finding closure, she contacts something else - the vengeful ghost of a murdered young woman. Part Southern Gothic horror, part giallo, this shocker gains enormous atmosphere from being located in the real Cassadaga known as the Psychic Capital of the World .

Its UK TV premieres all the way from the 8th starting with Raze. Sabrina, (played by Tarantino discovery Zoë Bell), is imprisoned, alongside a large group of other women, in a mysterious underground fortress run by the diabolical husband and wife team of Elizabeth (Sherilyn Fenn) and Joseph (Doug Jones). The women must fight to the death for the entertainment of a secret group of rich guests in order to save their unsuspecting loved ones on the outside from killed by hired snipers. This is followed on the 15th by Dark Circles. New parents Alex (Jonathan Schaech) and Penny (Pell James) retreat from the city and move into a place outside town, Persistent sightings of a strange woman in the house has them wondering if they are suffering from hallucinations, or if their new property holds a dark, supernatural presence. As their fragile grasp on reality spirals into delirium, Alex and Penny find themselves nearly helpless to deal with the horrific truth of what is really going in their sinister new home.

Another unmissable UK TV premiere arrives on the 22nd with the survival shocker Devil May Call. Blinded in an accident, Sam (Corri English) has rebuilt her life by helping callers on a suicide hotline. When she informs an obsessive caller (Tyler Mane) that she's quitting, he takes the news very personally. What begins as a quiet shift at work, becomes a frantic fight for survival against a relentless killer in the darkest, deadliest night of Sam's life. August's last UK TV premiere is the British thriller The Torment on the 28th. A young London couple receive a visit from their friend David (Giles Alderson) who tells them that his girlfriend has been unfaithful and needs a place to stay for the night. They welcome him in but it's not long before David starts seeing a figure out of the corner of his eye. As he investigates, he comes face to face with something utterly nightmarish. But this isn't his first encounter with the horrors that lurk in the dark. He's met them before...and now he's brought them with him to his friends' apartment.


23rd August

 Commented: Abusing freedom of expression...

ATVOD censors Dreams of Spanking and 7 other website operators
Link Here  full story: ATVOD censors Pandora Blake...Dreams of Spanking websites falls foul of internet censor
dreams of spanking logo Video on Demand censor ATVOD has taken action against 8 adult companies operating 21 websites. 6 of the services didn't abide by ATVOD's unviable and onerous age verification requirements and 2 contained spanking material, which ATVOD claims is banned under an undemocratically introduced government decree.

In fact spanking material is banned because the Crown Prosecution Service unilaterally claims that it can be successfully prosecuted under the Obscene Publications Act. This claim is surely not backed up by recent jury trials, but is maintained by offering attractive plea bargains to victims being prosecuted to accept a guilty rap rather than go to jury trial. The Crown Prosecution Service writes the porn censorship rules used by the BBFC, and ATVOD in turn, uses the same CPS defined rules as maintained by the BBFC.

Ultimately ATVOD and the government are making the bollox claim that spanking videos are somehow likely to 'deprave and corrupt' viewers. A claim that's provably nonsense as for all the many people that enjoy the likes of Dreams of Spanking, there simply aren't any examples of people who have been depraved and corrupted its viewing, not even ATVOD staff.

The two services which featured 'banned' material -- The Bondage Mistress Club and Dreams of Spanking are the subject of ongoing enforcement action. If they fail to become fully compliant in accordance with a strict timetable set by ATVOD, the service providers will be referred to Ofcom for consideration of a sanction, a procedure which can lead to operators being fined or having their right to provide a service suspended.

The six other services -- Joybear Pictures, Sunday Sport XXXtra, UK XXX Pass, Lisa Cross, Luke's Lair and Lucy Zara -- had all failed to have in place robust mechanisms for preventing under 18s from accessing pornographic material which would be restricted to adult licensed sex shop customers if distributed on a DVD. Two of the services -- UK XXX Pass and Luke's Lair - had allowed any visitor to view such material free of charge. The remaining four restricted access to hardcore porn to paying customers only, but accepted the most common forms of payment which theoretically could be used by under 18s.

Following ATVOD's intervention, all six services acted to make changes to bring the service into compliance or closed until such action could be completed. Of these, Joybear Pictures and UK XXX Pass acted in advance of the final breach ruling, while the remaining four acted in accordance with deadlines set in Enforcement Notifications issued at the time the breach was confirmed.

ATVPD notes that two of the providers recently brought into compliance have since submitted claims -- currently under investigation - that the services have now been transferred to the control of persons based outside the UK. ATVOD has no powers in relation to services operated from abroad and on-demand services provided from outside the UK -- but accessible within the UK - are rarely required to have in place the sort of age verification and access control systems required by ATVOD.

Comment: Amongst the authoritarian, sanctimonious twats of this world

23rd August 2015. Thank to Alan

letter writing I write from a civilised country, in which material illegal under the Dangerous Pictures Act can be shown on terrestrial telly, with the kiddiwinks protected only by the late hour of broadcast. Maybe I should extend my holiday.

My first reaction to reading the ATVOD determination was laughter. How could anybody write this sanctimonious, po-faced drivel without rolling on the floor pissing his boxers (or her knickers) with uncontrollable, hysterical mirth? Among the authoritarian, sanctimonious twats of this world, Johnson has shown himself to be the Michelangelo of authoritarianism, the Leonardo of sanctimony and the Raphael of twattishnesss.

One small mercy, I suppose, is that Pandora's real name is redacted. She was seriously concerned that it might be released. (I know of only two models/actresses in the spanking field who have let their demonstrable real name be known, and a couple of others who have used the same name -- real or assumed -- for spanking and other modelling work.) The more serious aspect, of course, is that PB has had to put Dreams of Spanking on hold until she can win an appeal against this idiocy. My acquaintance with the woman is extremely limited -- confined to the exchange of a couple of emails -- but she comes across as a thoroughly likable person.

Update: Ariel's Sponsored Caning

24th August 2015. Thank to Alan

It is interesting to note that one of the films singled out for a kicking was Ariel's Sponsored Caning - produced specifically to raise money for the fight against ATVOD, and made available free under Creative Commons.