News Bytes

Freedom of expression issues in the media


Canadians Honour Foreign Free Expression Advocates

On May 28, the City of Montreal made Mr. Raif Badawi, a blogger imprisoned in Saudi Arabia, an honorary citizen.   REPORTAGE   Sidhartha Banerjee of the Canadian Press reports: https://www.theglobeandmail.com/canada/article-montreal-set-to-debate-naming-jailed-saudi-blogger-raif-badawi-an/   CBC News reports: http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/montreal/raif-badawi-citizen-montreal-1.4680368   In the Montreal Gazette, Catherine Solyom reports: http://montrealgazette.com/news/local-news/proposal-to-make-badawi-honorary-montrealer-latest-in-freedom-campaign   COMMENTARY   In the Montreal Gazette, Celine Cooper writes: […]


Supreme Court of Canada Rules on Defamation Case

In Ottawa, the Supreme Court of Canada has ruled that a Canadian businessman who says he was defamed by an Israeli newspaper will have to sue for damages in Israel, not here. Mitchell Goldhar, owner of the Maccabi soccer team, filed a defamation lawsuit in 2011 against Haaretz. The Israeli newspaper had published an online […]


Justin Brake Receives 20th Annual Press Freedom Award

Earlier in May, Justin Brake received the 20th annual Press Freedom Award. Mr. Brake is a journalist who faces civil and criminal charges for his reporting about the impact of the Muskrat Falls hydro-electric project on Indigenous people in Labrador.   REPORTAGE May 2018   The Canadian Press reports: https://www.theglobeandmail.com/canada/article-journalist-justin-brake-charged-over-muskrat-falls-reporting-wins/   At iPolitics, Sarah Turnbull […]


B.C. Government Introduces Anti-SLAPP Bill

In British Columbia, the provincial government has introduced a bill that seeks to protect public debate from costly and intimidating lawsuits (SLAPPs).   The Canadian Press reports: http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/bc-slapp-legislation-bill-1.4664087 http://www.timescolonis.com/b-c-introduces-anti-slapp-legislation-to-protect-public-interest-debates-1.23302920   Richard Zussman of Global News reports: https://globalnews.ca/news/4211185/bc-anti-slapp-legislation/   In The Globe and Mail, Justine Hunter reports: https://www.theglobeandmail.com/canada/british-columbia/article-new-bc-legislation-aims-to-curb-so-called-slapp-suits/   Marcella Bernardo of News 1130 reports: http://www.news1130.com/2018/05/15/bc-govt-reviving-law/ […]


Canadian customs censorship

Canadian customs censorship, which is out of sight and out of mind for most people, continues. In the National Post, J.J. McCullough comments on video: http://nationalpost.com/opinion/j-j-mccullough-canadians-like-censorship-more-than-we-think


Northern Pulp Threatens Boycott of Bookstores

In Nova Scotia, a pulp mill’s threat to boycott a local bookstore if it hosted an author’s book-signing event has backfired.   Northern Pulp’s threatened boycott of Coles for hosting Joan Baxter and selling copies of The Mill: Fifty Years of Pulp and Protest has sparked public interest in the book and boosted sales.   […]


Libraries are providing more services than ever — so why aren’t we funding them?

Once, the public library was seen as a destination for bookworms. In recent years, however, libraries have expanded their scope: they’re now meeting needs — both technological and social — that are not being met anywhere else in On TV Ontario, Steve Paikin interviews three librarians about their Vickery Bowles of the Toronto Public Library […]


House of Commons passes the Journalistic Sources Protection Act (Bill S-231)

On October 4, the House of Commons passed the Journalistic Sources Protection Act (Bill S-231). Support was unanimous. The bill, which provides greater protection for journalists’ confidential sources of information, will come into force when it receives royal assent.   REPORTAGE   In The Globe and Mail, Gloria Galloway reports: https://beta.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/ottawa-passes-legislation-to-protect-journalists-anonymous-sources-from-police/article36497819/?ref=http://www.theglobeandmail.com& Maham Abedi of Global […]


Fredericton Library Displays Challenged Books

In Fredericton, New Brunswick, a public library is displaying 50 challenged and censored books. CBC News reports: http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/new-brunswick/banned-books-fredericton-public-library-1.4289508   — Link courtesy of Franklin Carter Editor and Researcher Book and Periodical Council Freedom of Expression Committee Toronto, Canada


In fight for free speech, researchers test anti-censorship tool built into the internet’s core

In the United States, researchers are testing a new way to circumvent Internet censorship: refraction networking. Matthew Braga of CBC News reports: http://www.cbc.ca/news/technology/tapdance-refraction-networking-decoy-routing-test-usenix-1.4249177 __ Link courtesy of Franklin Carter Editor and Researcher Book and Periodical Council Freedom of Expression Committee Toronto, Canada