Free speech and Britain's war on the left
Watch: I discuss a proposed new UK law which could impose censorship.
Last week I talked to Red Line TV about the British government’s “Online Safety Bill.” You can watch our discussion in the video above.
You can click here to skip to the part of the show featuring me. But actually if you have the time you should watch the entire programme. It’s really good, and has a wide variety of guests with a range of views.
The Tory government’s proposed new “online safety” law has reportedly been denounced by civil liberties groups as “state backing to big tech censorship on a scale that we have never seen before” and by others as failing “to rein in the power of unaccountable Silicon Valley tycoons”.
I argue in the discussion with Red Line TV above that broadly defined “online harm” is dangerous, as the first people it is likely to be used against is us on the left.
It’s quite easy to predict that the British government could, for example, unilaterally declare that The Canary has been engaging in “online harm” by reporting accurately (as it did) on the Israel lobby’s fabricated “anti-Semitism” campaign against the left. Or by declaring that the anti-war movement’s websites and social media are engaging in “online harm” by opposing arms to Ukranian Nazis — something which will predictably be smeared as “pro Putin.”
There’s also a good debate on the nature of free speech and its implications for socialists. Other guests include:
Clare Daly, an Irish MEP
Moshé Machover and Huda Ammori
Professor David Miller; and
Graham Bash, editor of Labour Briefing magazine
Red Line TV is a new socialist internet TV programme which is broadcast live on Zoom weekly. It’s hosted by left-wing activists Jackie Walker and Tina Werkmann — who will be familiar to readers of my years of coverage for The Electronic Intifada on Labour’s “anti-Semitism” witch hunt.
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