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Category Archives: Censorship

National parks report on climate change finally released, uncensored

Reveal – Elizabeth Shogren: “Backing away from attempts at censorship, the National Park Service today released a report charting the risks to national parks from sea level rise and storms. Drafts of the report obtained earlier this year by Reveal from The Center for Investigative Reporting showed park service officials had deleted every mention of humans causing climate change. But the long-delayed report, published today without fanfare on the agency’s website, restored those references. The scientific report is designed to help 118 coastal parks plan for protecting natural resources and historic treasures from the changing climate. Maria Caffrey, the study’s lead scientist, said she was “extremely happy” that it was released intact. “The fight probably destroyed my career with the (National Park Service), but it will be worth it if we can uphold the truth and ensure that scientific integrity of other scientists won’t be challenged so easily in the future,” said Caffrey, a University of Colorado research assistant who had worked on the report for five years….”

Also via Reveal – Elizabeth Shogren’s podcast, Silencing Science: “President Donald Trump says he doubts humans have much of a role in climate change. His administration has downplayed the science of climate change and sought to silence scientists working for the federal government. In this hour, Reveal’s Elizabeth Shogren details the pressures one researcher faced as she worked on a project for the National Park Service…” [h/t Mary Whisner]

What the President Could Do If He Declares a State of Emergency

The Atlantic – From seizing control of the internet to declaring martial law, President Trump may legally do all kinds of extraordinary things: “…It would be nice to think that America is protected from the worst excesses of Trump’s impulses by its democratic laws and institutions. After all, Trump can do only so much without… Continue Reading

Censoring China’s Internet, for Stability and Profit

The New York Times – Thousands of low-wage workers in “censorship factories” trawl the online world for forbidden content, where even a photo of an empty chair could cause big trouble. “…China has built the world’s most extensive and sophisticated online censorship system. It grew even stronger under President Xi Jinping, who wants the internet… Continue Reading

An Interview with UN Special Rapporteur David Kaye

Digital Rights Monitor: “The latest 2018 Freedom House report presents a dismal picture of internet freedom. Out of 65 countries studied for the report, internet freedom deteriorated in 26 countries including United States of America. The study also noted that more than a dozen countries were putting in place restrictive measures in the name of… Continue Reading

Researchers try to cope without HHS public medical guideline database five months after its takedown

Sunlight Foundation: “When the Agency for Healthcare Quality and Research (AHRQ) shut down its National Guideline Clearinghouse (NGC) in July, medical professionals who relied on the database, hosted at guideline.gov, reacted with alarm. For nearly 20 years, AHRQ’s repository of medical guidelines had served as the gold standard for clinicians, helping guide day to day… Continue Reading

U.S. Courts Are Figuring Out if the Government Can Block You On Facebook

NextGov: “In the last two years, there’s been a cascade of lawsuits in the U.S. against public officials who have blocked people on social media and deleted critical comments. The list starts with the highest one in the country, president Donald Trump, and goes all the way down to a county board chair. As officials use social platforms… Continue Reading

Ajit Pai’s FCC gives carriers the option to block text messages

Cnet: The agency approves new rules to help phone companies combat spam texts. But opponents have censorship concerns. “The one Democrat on the FCC, Jessica Rosenworcel disagrees. She warned that the FCC is misleading the public about what the new classification will actually do. “Today’s decision offers consumers no new ability to prevent robotexts,” she… Continue Reading

Questions We Should Be Asking About Facebook’s Smear Campaign Against Its Critics

EFF: “The New York Times published a blockbuster story about Facebook that exposed how the company used  so-called “smear merchants” to attack organizations critical of the platform. The story was shocking on a number of levels, revealing that Facebook’s hired guns stooped to dog-whistling, anti-Semitic attacks aimed at George Soros 1 and writing stories blasting… Continue Reading

How China Walled Off the Internet

The New York Times – “Today, China has the world’s only internet companies that can match America’s in ambition and reach. It is years ahead of the United States in replacing paper money with smartphone payments, turning tech giants into vital gatekeepers of the consumer economy. And it is host to a supernova of creative… Continue Reading

How China Made Its Own Internet

The New York Times – Today, China has the world’s only internet companies that can match America’s in ambition and reach. It is years ahead of the United States in replacing paper money with smartphone payments, turning tech giants into vital gatekeepers of the consumer economy. And it is host to a supernova of creative… Continue Reading

The U.S. Press Freedom Tracker

“Journalists in the United States face hostility from local and federal governments, along with a number of legal threats to themselves and their sources. This nonpartisan website aims to be the first to provide reliable, easy-to-access information on the number of press freedom violations in the United States—from journalists facing charges to reporters stopped at… Continue Reading

Google Is Teaching Children How to Act Online. Is It the Best Role Model?

The New York Times: “The tech giant is positioning itself in schools as a trusted authority on digital citizenship at a moment when the company’s data-handling practices are under growing scrutiny – “Google is on a mission to teach children how to be safe online. That is the message behind “Be Internet Awesome,” a so-called… Continue Reading