Emails Show Facebook Censored Posts at Health Canada’s Request, Proposed Streamlining Censorship

If you’re tired of censorship and dystopian threats against civil liberties, subscribe to Reclaim The Net. Big Tech colludes to suppress speech in more places than just the US, although evidence of those particular, US-centric incidents, as they become revealed, takes all the spotlight. There are surely many countries where citizens will never know that something of the kind has happened to them – that is, getting censored online by major social media at a government’s behest – but we now do know that Canada is not among those. It’s well known. Emails that just surfaced provide evidence that Facebook censored (at the very least) three posts because the Canadian health agency asked the company to do it. The messages also show a Facebook eager to “improve” the way it and Health Canada work together to censor Canadians. Health Canada finally had to provide the documents – two whole pages /s – no less than 11 months into being asked to release them. The documents concern the country’s government – specifically the Health Ministry – asking Facebook to remove “at least three” posts published by users. Of course, this has to do with Covid. At this point, an alien visiting the Earth would think that there is and never has been, any other health issue of significance or urgency on this planet, ever. But what’s interesting is that even as the pandemic became an “abandoned global crisis” – as others, of other kinds, were developing and taking up most of…Emails Show Facebook Censored Posts at Health Canada’s Request, Proposed Streamlining Censorship

Australia Plots Digital ID Launch For This Year

If you’re tired of censorship and dystopian threats against civil liberties, subscribe to Reclaim The Net. The Australian government is planning a nationwide digital ID launch, which is tentatively set for this year. While it could be delayed for logistical reasons, it’s clear that the government is fully intent on pushing a new digital ID agenda in the country. Having first entered Parliament last year, the Digital ID Bill in Australia finished its final stage at the end of January, garnering input from business and finance groups. The country’s authorities are currently communicating with the individual states. An announcement from the Department of Finance revealed that the novel system would empower users to select their preferred digital ID provider for the accessibility of both government and private services. Private entities can apply for accreditation to provide digital ID services under the Trusted Digital Identity Framework (TDIF), which is the government’s recognition framework. As stated by an official spokesperson, the legislative step will set in motion the enlargement of the Australian Government Digital ID System to encompass state, territory and private sector organizations opting to participate. The national digital ID will essentially serve as a comprehensive version of MyGovID that Australians currently utilize for the Australian Taxation Office, Centrelink and Medicare access. The strategy to retain other digital IDs issued by other state governments. An individual user will have the capability to create a multipoint image on a device, to be validated against their passport photo or eventually, their driver’s license….Australia Plots Digital ID Launch For This Year

Meta and TikTok Sue EU Over Online Speech Laws

If you’re tired of censorship and dystopian threats against civil liberties, subscribe to Reclaim The Net. Meta, the parent company of Facebook, and Chinese viral app TikTok, have taken legal action against the European Union for its regulation efforts to police online speech. According to them, these measures jeopardize the unobstructed continuity of online global discussions. While Meta and TikTok have been heavy fans of censorship over the years, it appears that their issue with the EU’s legislation is not that it threatens free speech but because they believe censorship of narratives is their job, not the EU’s. These tech firms are making waves in the high court and are two of the first major platforms to challenge the Digital Services Act. Related: The EU’s Strict Online Speech Laws Are Set To Impact US Citizens in 2024 As reported by Politico, the Silicon Valley powerhouses labeled the EU’s legislative effort as an arcane rulebook, paralyzing freedom and innovation. They also argue that such rules impair their ability to champion creativity and connection among online users, which is the lifeblood of the online landscape. Furthermore, such regulation, they claim, comes with undue complications associated with moderating online communications. The post Meta and TikTok Sue EU Over Online Speech Laws appeared first on Reclaim The Net.Meta and TikTok Sue EU Over Online Speech Laws

Treasury Department’s Janet Yellen Dodges Questions on Financial Surveillance of “MAGA,” “Trump”

If you’re tired of censorship and dystopian threats against civil liberties, subscribe to Reclaim The Net. A wave of backlash for the Biden administration has been triggered following a probe into a surveillance mission by the Treasury Department targeting Americans. Republicans have been seeking answers about the initiative, which involved surveilling bank records of Americans for “extremist” activities post-January 6. Recent reports revealed a controversial directive from the Treasury Department regarding the monitoring of financial transactions. Under this directive, the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) asked financial institutions to investigate their clients’ transaction data for terms such as “MAGA” and “Trump.” This sparked an outcry from Republicans who questioned the government’s monitoring strategies. This comes following a revelation of the specific sectors and demographic being targeted — Trump supporters, patrons of outdoor stores like Cabela’s, Dick’s Sporting Goods and Bass Pro Shops, and individuals who bought religious texts. Secretary of the Treasury Janet Yellen encountered numerous questions about these retrieval requests during her appearances on Capitol Hill this week. However, these intense inquiries were deflected by Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, who responded that the matter was under investigation and that she didn’t have extensive knowledge about the situation. Yellen pledged to look further into the department’s instructions to the banks concerning the transaction inspections. These surveillance actions were questioned by Rep. Ann Wagner in this week’s hearing. The Missouri Republican asked Yellen if the Treasury had instructed the banks to monitor citizens’ lawful shopping to keep track of their acquisition…Treasury Department’s Janet Yellen Dodges Questions on Financial Surveillance of “MAGA,” “Trump”

Jim Jordan and 44 Other Members of Congress Submit Brief to the Supreme Court in Major Big Tech Censorship Case

If you’re tired of censorship and dystopian threats against civil liberties, subscribe to Reclaim The Net. Representative Jim Jordan, along with 44 other Congressional members, joined forces with America First Legal (AFL) to submit a crucial brief to the US Supreme Court. This brief supports Missouri, Louisiana, and private plaintiffs in the significant case of Murthy v. Missouri. The case centers on allegations of the federal government’s unconstitutional suppression of free speech on social media platforms. We obtained a copy of the brief for you here. The AFL, in collaboration with co-counsel Christopher Mills, has been actively combating what they perceive as a growing censorship crisis. The brief presented to the Supreme Court contends that the federal government has been exerting undue influence on private tech companies. This influence, the brief argues, has led to the suppression of First Amendment-protected speech concerning COVID-19, the Biden family’s alleged influence peddling, and various election-related issues. These arguments were previously raised in the Fifth Circuit, where AFL represented Representative Jordan and other members of the House Judiciary Committee and the Select Subcommittee on the Weaponization of the Federal Government. The involvement of these bodies stemmed from their investigative work, which unearthed the extent of federal pressure on private entities, compelling them to censor speech. This was notably highlighted through disclosures in The Facebook Files and The Twitter Files. “The First Amendment is first for a reason,” Rep. Jim Jordan said in a statement. “Through our constitutional oversight, we have uncovered evidence that the…Jim Jordan and 44 Other Members of Congress Submit Brief to the Supreme Court in Major Big Tech Censorship Case

Mayor Bowser signs order outlining AI plan for DC government

Washington, D.C., Mayor Muriel Bowser signed an executive order Thursday that outlined how she plans to integrate artificial intelligence (AI) into local government agencies. “We are going to make sure DC is at the forefront of the work to use AI to deliver city services that are responsive, efficient, and proactive,” Bowser said in a statement. “With these guiding values, we will make sure that when we use AI, we are responsible and we use it in a way that aligns with our DC values.” The mayor’s announcement said agencies plan to use AI to improve city services and increase efficiency. They also hope to better manage and analyze data and “create a more effective and inclusive government.” As AI technology is rapidly developed and used by the public, members of the government are attempting to create guidelines and regulations, as well as use the emerging technology to their advantage. Bowser’s order said the D.C. government will create an advisory group that will ensure public oversight of AI efforts will be done in a way that has a clear benefit to residents and is conducted with safety, equity, accountability, transparency, sustainability and privacy in mind. The local government will also create a task force of government personnel to work with various agencies and produce “key governance policies, procedures and documents” throughout the rest of the year. Each D.C. agency will create AI strategic plans over the next three years, which will be overseen by the Office of the Chief Technology…Mayor Bowser signs order outlining AI plan for DC government

Listening Devices Are Being Installed In UK School Bathrooms

If you’re tired of censorship and dystopian threats against civil liberties, subscribe to Reclaim The Net. As part of an attempt to curb vaping, bullying, and unruly behavior in school restrooms, some educational institutions in the UK are turning to new technology — sensors capable of snooping on student conversations and detecting certain keywords in speech. However, these measures are creating a significant rift in the debate over privacy rights. These remote, digital sensors that look like smoke detectors, can be programmed to recognize select words through machine learning algorithms. Upon hearing these, they send alerts to specific members of the school staff. They are being marketed by companies such as Triton and Emergency Protection, both of which suggest these sensors can be used not only to monitor students but also to oversee staff incidents such as bullying among colleagues. However, privacy advocates are pushing back. Madeleine Stone, a senior advocacy officer for Big Brother Watch, voiced her concerns by stating “secretly monitoring school bathrooms is a gross violation of children’s privacy and would make pupils and parents deeply uncomfortable,” continuing to highlight the unlikelihood of such surveillance being lawful and posing a clear risk to student safety. In response to the privacy concerns, Triton defends their 3D Sense Pro Sensor, stating its aim is not to intrude on daily conversations, but to provide additional security against threats like bullying or sexual assault in these spaces. The sensor, which has preloaded keywords, allows schools to add an additional 10 custom…Listening Devices Are Being Installed In UK School Bathrooms

Government-Funded Non-Profit Maligns Distrust in Mainstream Media As “Misinformation”

If you’re tired of censorship and dystopian threats against civil liberties, subscribe to Reclaim The Net. In a recent report unearthed by the congressional committee on the weaponization of the government, it was found that Meedan, a technology non-profit funded by the federal government, perceives distrust in the mainstream media as a form of “misinformation.” This tech entity is bolstered by a hefty $5.7 million grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF). They conducted a presentation defining skepticism towards mainstream media as a “misinformation narrative” as evidenced by research documents from the House Judiciary Committee and the dedicated Select Subcommittee on Weaponization. The Channeling of funds by the NSF towards Meedan’s Co-Insights aims to challenge and ultimately quell the perceived rampant spread of “misinformation” rampant in minority communities. Meedan has requested an additional fund of a whopping $5 million from public money for the Co-Insights project. The team cataloged “common misinformation narratives” including “fearmongering” and the undermining of trust in mainstream media, as indicated by slides integrated into the House report. We obtained a copy of the report for you here. The report also makes references to “interventions” of such “misinformation.” The long-term ambition of the non-profit leans towards prompting technology platforms to generate an archive of censored content. This “misinformation” data would be accessed by researchers to facilitate the automatic suppression of specified types of speech, as noted by Scott Hale, Meedan’s Director of Research, in a November 2022 email correspondence. Hale envisioned a scenario where social media platforms…Government-Funded Non-Profit Maligns Distrust in Mainstream Media As “Misinformation”

Canada: NDP-Proposed Speech Law Calls to Jail Those That Praise Fossil Fuels

If you’re tired of censorship and dystopian threats against civil liberties, subscribe to Reclaim The Net. Charlie Angus, a longstanding New Democratic Party MP representing the Timmins-James Bay region in Canada, has introduced a provocative private member’s bill this week, known as the Fossil Fuel Advertising Act or C-372. Essentially, this act aims to impose penalties, including imprisonment, on those found publicly advertising praise of fossil fuels, even if their statements are based on accepted scientific facts. For example, such facts could include the statement that burning natural gas is less harmful to the environment than coal. However, Bill C-372 encompasses much more than just prohibiting false advertising from oil and gas companies. Heralded by Angus in the House of Commons as the oil industry’s impending “big tobacco moment,” this reference reflects the sweeping federal ban on tobacco advertisement currently in effect in Canada. Yet, seeing as the NDP currently only holds 25 seats in parliament, it is unlikely that this private member’s bill will gain the necessary traction to pass. We obtained a copy of the bill for you here. Despite its slim chances of success, the implications of this act apply broadly. For instance, any Canadian found commending the oil industry or oil in general could be faced with penalties. The law stipulates a heavy fine of up to $500,000 for individual violators, while oil corporations could face up to two years imprisonment or have to shoulder a $1,000,000 fine. Under the law, a wide net is cast…Canada: NDP-Proposed Speech Law Calls to Jail Those That Praise Fossil Fuels

Private Search Engine Mojeek Deploys New Algorithm That Provides Better Results for Users

If you’re tired of censorship and dystopian threats against civil liberties, subscribe to Reclaim The Net. Private search engine Mojeek, one of Reclaim The Net’s recommended search engines, has announced the launch of its new algorithm that integrates a semantic element into its search engine. This update, which has undergone extensive building and user testing phases, is now live and set to revolutionize how queries are matched to relevant pages. The traditional keyword-based approach of Mojeek has been enhanced with this semantic element. This means that pages that might not have ranked highly solely based on keywords can now achieve better visibility. The primary goal of this update is to refine search results, making them more relevant and user-friendly. The semantic approach addresses the limitations of keyword searches, such as issues with misspellings, synonyms, and polysemous words (words with multiple meanings). For example – “Light” and “Lamp.” “Light” can refer to the natural agent that stimulates sight and makes things visible, but it also means not heavy. A search engine might struggle with connecting “light” to “lamp” if the context is ambiguous. Despite this new addition, Mojeek retains its core keyword-based search mechanism. The balance aimed here is to enhance search results without overstepping into the realm of guessing what the user intends – a common frustration with some search engines. The refinement brought about by the semantic element is particularly notable in its current application to English-language results. However, Mojeek plans to expand this functionality to other languages over…Private Search Engine Mojeek Deploys New Algorithm That Provides Better Results for Users