Archive for 7 April, 2012

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US SenateU.S. lawmakers have authored another bill designed to censor the internet in the name of cybersecurity.

Citing cyberattacks as a threat, some legislators have lent their support to a new act that, if passed, would let the government pry into the personal correspondence of any person they choose.

The website has created a petition against the act and a handful of videos have been made against it along with some articles, but the American press has been mostly silent about the potential act, HR 3523, a piece of legislation dubbed the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (or CISPA for short).

Opponents say the bill has vague language that could well allow Congress to circumvent existing exemptions to online privacy laws and essentially monitor, censor and stop any online communication that it considers disruptive to the government or private parties.

Critics have already come after CISPA for the capabilities that it will give to seemingly any federal entity that claims it is threatened by online interactions, but unlike the Stop Online Privacy Act and the Protect IP Acts that were discarded on the Capitol Building floor after incredibly successful online campaigns to crush them, widespread recognition of what the latest would-be law will do has yet to surface to the same degree.

The Electronic Frontier Foundation, an online advocacy group, has sharply condemned CISPA for what it means for the future of the Internet. It effectively creates a cybersecurity exemption to all existing laws, explains the EFF, who add in a statement of their own that There are almost no restrictions on what can be collected and how it can be used, provided a company can claim it was motivated by cybersecurity purposes.

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hm david beckham advertA digital poster for H&M, displayed on 30 January 2012, showed three images of David Beckham. One image featured David Beckham wearing only a pair of trunk briefs. Issue

Three complainants objected to the ad.

  1. Three complainants challenged whether the ad was offensive.
  2. Two complainants challenged whether the ad was irresponsible, because it contained material that they said was unsuitable for children to see.

ASA Assessment: Complaints Not Upheld

  1. The ASA noted that there was no explicit nudity in the image, and that the ad was for an underwear range. We considered that the nature of the product meant viewers of the ad were less likely to regard the ad as gratuitous or offensive, and considered that the poses and facial expressions of David Beckham were mildly sexual at most. While we acknowledged that some viewers might consider the images distasteful, we concluded the ad was unlikely to cause serious or widespread offence.

    On this point we investigated the ad under CAP Code  rule 4.1 (Harm and Offence) but did not find it in breach.

  2. Because the ad was for an underwear range, was not overtly sexual and did not feature explicit nudity, we considered the ad was not unsuitable for children to see, and concluded it was not socially irresponsible.

    On this point we investigated the ad under CAP Code rule 1.3 (Social responsibility) but did not find it in breach.

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ken livingstoneI understand London Mayoral candidate, Ken Livingstone, has apparently said that if he is made Mayor again he would try to use the new law close down as many of London’s strip clubs as he can.