The European Union has a censorship addiction, and a desire to inflict the costs of indulging that addiction on the world’s top tech companies.
Vera Jourova, the EU’s Commissioner for Justice, Consumers and Gender Equality, complains that Facebook, Twitter, Google and Microsoft respond too slowly to demands that they delete posts deemed “hate speech” from their platforms.
In May, those companies “voluntarily” affirmed a code of conduct committing themselves to 24-hour turnaround on doing Jourova’s dirty work for her. Six months later, she claims the companies are too slow and that the EU may be “forced” to enact laws to punish them for not shutting people up as quickly as she wants them shut up.
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In the early hours of November 7, Janet Reno died at the age of 78 from complications of Parkinson’s disease. Her niece “confirmed to CBS News that Reno died peacefully at home surrounded by family and friends.” It’s unfortunate that, unlike many of her victims, she was permitted to shuffle off this mortal coil a free woman, unpursued by the hounds of justice. Janet Reno had a lot to answer for.
As state attorney for Dade County, Florida in the 1980s, Reno helped kindle a wildfire of moral panic in America over alleged widespread ritual child sex abuse, leading witch hunts in which children and witnesses were bullied and even tortured into making up the lurid stories Reno and her “expert” child psychologists wanted to hear. People went to prison for crimes that they had not committed — in fact, crimes that hadn’t actually occurred at all. Some may still be there.
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As final voting in the 2016 US presidential election approaches, questions continue to swirl around Wikileaks and its release of an email archive copied from the personal files of John Podesta, Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton’s campaign chair. It would be impossible, in the space of a single column, to fully consider the content and implications of those emails. There are, however, two relevant questions which those interested in the matter should carefully consider.
First, are the emails authentic and unaltered?
Clinton and her surrogates don’t want to answer that question. They stick to claiming that the mails haven’t been authenticated and hinting that they may have been altered.
The facts: Not all of the emails can be authenticated as to origin and content. But some can be, and some have been. As Bob Graham of Errata Security points out, many of the emails are digitally signed using the Domainkeys Identified Mail verification standard, which can be used to verify that email comes from the server it claims to come from and has not been modified since leaving that server. To date, no one has publicly demonstrated that the origin, or so much as a comma of the content, of any of the Podesta emails has been altered. So far as we can tell, they’re the genuine article.
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