Sunday, September 23, 2012

Free Speech in the Age of YouTube; New York Times, 9/22/12

Somini Sengupta, New York Times; Free Speech in the Age of YouTube: "COMPANIES are usually accountable to no one but their shareholders. Internet companies are a different breed. Because they traffic in speech — rather than, say, corn syrup or warplanes — they make decisions every day about what kind of expression is allowed where. And occasionally they come under pressure to explain how they decide, on whose laws and values they rely, and how they distinguish between toxic speech that must be taken down and that which can remain. The storm over an incendiary anti-Islamic video posted on YouTube has stirred fresh debate on these issues. Google, which owns YouTube, restricted access to the video in Egypt and Libya, after the killing of a United States ambassador and three other Americans. Then, it pulled the plug on the video in five other countries, where the content violated local laws."

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Twitter’s Free Speech Defender; New York Times, 9/2/12

Somini Sengupta, New York Times; Twitter’s Free Speech Defender:

"At a time when Internet companies control so much of what we can say and do online, can Twitter stand up for privacy, free expression and profitability all at the same time?

“They are going to have to monetize the data that they have and they can’t rock the boat maybe,” said Ryan Calo, a law professor at the University of Washington. “I don’t predict Twitter is going to lose its way, but it’s a moment to watch.”

Jonathan Zittrain, one of his former professors at Harvard Law School, called it both a challenge and opportunity for Mr. Macgillivray, widely known as @amac, his handle on Twitter, and one that could influence the Internet industry at large."