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Freedom of speech and our freedoms

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By Arthur I. Cyr

At the start of October, the European Court of Justice handed down an important decision regarding Facebook that should be generating extensive debate, but so far has not. Implications for freedom of speech are profound.

The law case originated in Austria, a nation that is a representative democracy today, but in the past has embraced extreme dictatorship. An Austrian politician offended by online comments demanded removal of them. The European Court ruled a national court finding online content offensive could require worldwide removal. In effect, governments and corporations now have a new censorship tool.

The decision is serious because the principle involved is basic freedom.

Several decades ago, the Chicago Council on Foreign Relations, where I worked, attracted intense organized pressure to cancel an event featuring an official of the anti-Israel Palestine Liberation Organization. We did not do so. Council Chairman........

© The Korea Times