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[liberationtech] Query re. Corporate censorship

Charles Ess charles.ess at
Wed Jul 3 15:58:09 PDT 2013

Dear colleagues,

I have been encouraged to repost this query to this list, and am more than
happy to do so.

I've been asked to develop a presentation on the future of freedom of
expression in online environments, including discussion of multiple ways in
which - in addition to whatever governments may be up to in different
contexts and ways - the private enterprises that increasingly dominate and
control much of our online spaces and infrastructures censor political
speech and expression.

The presentation is for an upcoming Webinar, sponsored by The Digital
Futures Task Force in collaboration with the European Commission Directorate
General for Communications Networks, Content & Technology - Unit  G1,
"Converging Media and Content².

One example passed on to me was of a well-established professional in a
European country (i.e., not fitting the profile of terrorist, anarchist, or
even leftist) who posted comments on his/her SNS page critical of the U.S.
These comments disappeared from the page without notice or explanation.

I would be very grateful for:
1) recommendations for careful studies of such events and phenomena which
include reliable documentation of their occurrence? (Yes, I realize that
documenting and studying such episodes would be extremely tricky and
2) well documented anecdotes or examples (e.g., as reported in a reliable
newspaper of record) of such episodes?

Please send these along offlist.  I will, of course, more than happily
credit the sources and authors of any examples and resources collected and
used for the presentation (unless anonymity is requested instead).

Many thanks in advance,
- charles ess

Professor in Media Studies
Department of Media and Communication
Director, Centre for Research on Media Innovations

University of Oslo 
P.O. Box 1093 Blindern
Oslo Norway
email: c.m.ess at

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