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Category Archives: Censorship

Suppressed Study: The EPA Underestimated Dangers of Widespread Chemicals

ProPublica: “The CDC has quietly published a controversial review of perfluoroalkyl substances, or PFAS, that indicates more people are at risk of drinking contaminated water than previously thought. A major environmental health study that had been suppressed by the Trump administration because of the “public relations nightmare” it might cause the Pentagon and other polluters… Continue Reading

Removal of 26 Documents for Asylum Officer Training from the USCIS Website

Sunlight Foundation: “The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) removed a cache of materials on its asylum process shortly after President Donald Trump took office, a reduction in access detailed in our latest Web Integrity Project report. The 26 removed documents, which collectively run to several hundred pages, constitute training materials for USCIS asylum officers,… Continue Reading

EU Member States agree on monitoring & filtering of internet uploads

EDRI: “On 25 May, the European Council agreed to a negotiating position on the draft copyright directive. This  will allow the presidency of the Council to start negotiations with the European Parliament on mass monitoring and filtering of internet uploads and a chaotic new “ancillary copyright” measure that will make it harder to link to… Continue Reading

Cohen files leaked by Treasury law enforcement official turned Whistleblower

New Yorker – Ronan Farrow – “Missing Files Motivated the Leak of Michael Cohen’s Financial Records – A law-enforcement official released the documents after finding that additional suspicious transactions did not appear in a government database.” “Last week, several news outlets obtained financial records showing that Michael Cohen, President Trump’s personal attorney, had used a shell… Continue Reading

CFPB techies blast talk of taking down complaint portal

FCW.com: “…Created by the 2010 Dodd-Frank law, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is one of the first federal examples of bringing in outside tech talent to deliver government services. “If you’re going to build a government agency from scratch, you’re going to get the chance to do things differently,” one former CFPB senior official told… Continue Reading

Advocacy Groups Push Tech Companies To Be More Transparent and Accountable About Censoring User Content

“EFF, ACLU of Northern California, Center for Democracy & Technology, New America’s Open Technology Institute, and a group of academic experts and free expression advocates today released the Santa Clara Principles, a set of minimum standards for tech companies to augment and strengthen their content moderation policies. The plain language, detailed guidelines call for disclosing… Continue Reading

DOJ Deleted Language About Press Freedom And Racial Gerrymandering From Its Internal Manual

BuzzFeed: “Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein ordered a review of the US Attorneys’ Manual, which features high-level policy statements as well as practical guidance to prosecutors on how to do their jobs. Since the fall, the US Department of Justice has been overhauling its manual for federal prosecutors. In: Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ tough-on-crime policies.… Continue Reading

Update: After Congress complains, USDA restores animal welfare reports

Science: “Following Congress’s request for greater transparency, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has apparently restored detail in its most recent animal welfare inspection reports. Reports published on the agency’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service website since last August have omitted inventories that list the number and species of animals housed at facilities within… Continue Reading

Editorial – Obfuscating with transparency

Obfuscating with transparency, Jeremy Berg. Science 13 Apr 2018: Vol. 360, Issue 6385, pp. 133. DOI: 10.1126/science.aat8121 “Transparency is critical when it comes to decision-making that broadly affects the public, particularly when it comes to policies purported to be grounded in scientific evidence. The scientific community has been increasingly focused on improving the transparency of… Continue Reading

NYT – The Case of Hong Kong’s Missing Booksellers

New York Times Magazine – As China’s Xi Jinping consolidates power, owners of Hong Kong bookstores trafficking in banned books find themselves playing a very dangerous game: “…The Chinese government has long sought to shape and control information, but the scope and intensity of this effort was something new — and its origins could be… Continue Reading

Removal of Breast Cancer Website, Related Webpages from within HHS’s Office on Women’s Health Website

[April 2, 2018] “the Sunlight Foundation’s Web Integrity Project released a new report, “Removal of Breast Cancer Website and Related Webpages from within HHS’s Office on Women’s Health Website.” We also released a blog post analyzing the wave of removals from the Office on Women’s Health (OWH) website, “Unexplained censorship of women’s health website renews… Continue Reading

Academic research is publicly funded why isn’t it publicly available?

Erica Stone: Academic research is publicly funded — why isn’t it publicly available? [TED] “In the US, your taxes fund academic research at public universities. Why then do you need to pay expensive, for-profit journals for the results of that research? Erica Stone advocates for a new, open-access relationship between the public and scholars, making… Continue Reading