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Did the STYLEman thread just vanish? - Page 9

post #121 of 227
credit where credit is due...ernest is truly fantastic at derailing a thread.
post #122 of 227
Quote:
Surely there is such a concept as self-censorship. I wonder if there is some slight confusion between a "dictionary definition" of the word and the First Amendment concept -- which, as the lawyers here will know, requires state action.
Just to dip into this conversation, I'll have to say that there is a fine line between these types of censorships. If the free market (e.g. film or tv industries) is self-censoring as to not cause the government to put its foot down on them, then that is censoring in my book. That they fly below the radar and stay out of trouble just means that they know the extent of censoring and have good laywers and advisors. Just because people dont' get speeding tickets does not in any way imply that there are no speed limits, to make an analogy. What's censoring ? I guess it depends if you agree to it or not. If the majority of America is opposed to having ms Jackson's right breast on their tv, then its fine. If you would all like to see it and, preferably the whole pair, then that's just censoring. I think European media took perverse pride in showing this episode in newscasts and the papers printed stills from this without any 'decency filters' in either media. The story on my side was equally about this incident as it was on the response of the American media and public. It shed a little more light on the official accepted morals over there. Bjorn
post #123 of 227
Those dictionaries were written by Berkeley kids.   Censorship is the attempt to deny thoughts or ideas to gain a wide hearing anywhere.  For the term "censorship" to have any real meaning, three forces have to be in play: 1) the person being censored has to be trying to say something important; 2) there is real coercive power to shut him up; 3) the person being censored has for all practical purposes no other outlet to express his views.  Only a government, in most cases, can bring these forces to bear. An editor who edits is not censoring.  He is being paid to use his judgement to decide what get into the paper and what does not.  If a reporter comes to him with the "story of the century" but the editor thinks it is too poorly sourced to run (or whatever) the reporter can always try another publication. A moderator who moderates is not censoring.  Leave aside that fact that j did not remove anything of real importance (this is admittedly somewhat subjective), anyone who has something important to say and is barred from posting it here has a zillion other outlets he can try.  The government is not after him.  No harm will come to him. What the government of France tried to do to Orianna Fallaci, however, (and thank God they failed) qualifies on all counts.
post #124 of 227
The whole "Jackson affair" is convoluted because of the way the US government regulates the media.  Way back when the FCC was set up, there was only one way to get a mass signal out to people: over the airwaves.  And the frequencies available for use, given the technologies of the time, were much more limited than they are today.  So the government stepped in and claimed that the airwaves were in effect "owned" by the public and thus broadcast rights should be strictly controlled -- by the government, of course.  So in order to broadcast, you had to have a license, and you had to show that what you were doing was somehow in "the public good." Now, the FCC regulated, at least in theory, what you could actually show.  For the most part, this wasn't an issue because the networks didn't want to push the envelope.  And they eagerly welcomed a censorship they never really had to feel in order to enjoy tightly controlled access to their industry, which kept competitors out.  Basically, they got something for nothing.  Great deal. This system is now archaic, to say nothing of whether it ever made sense in the first place.  With the rise of cable and satellites and the Internet, it really makes no sense, as those mediums are not regulated by the FCC -- only broadcast is.  But the FCC soldiers on all the same.  And the same networks that used to self-regulate with a merciless vigor now act as though epater les bourgeois is not only an original, recent idea, but a moral duty. Anyway, I suppose I could concede that what the FCC is censorship, although I have my doubts about that.  One thing I left out of my earlier definition is the important concept: No prior restraint.  That governened American censorship law for centuries.  That aside, there certainly are plenty of outlets for Janet to show her hooters, even if the bluenoses at the FCC won't let her do it on CBS.
post #125 of 227
This is an appropriate definition for many cases, like when suppressing political views. What this does not address is when censoring is used to uphold the values of the ones who rule. According to the definition above, the act of removing pages from fashion magazines at the Saudi borders or fining a network for showing a breast is not censoring. That leaves the definition incomplete to me. Rant completed... B edit: We were both composing our answers at the same time. I see now that you addressed much of my remarks and this post was perhaps superfluous.
post #126 of 227
Quote:
According to the definition above, the act of removing pages from fashion magazines at the Saudi borders or fining a network for showing a breast is not censoring. That leaves the definition incomplete to me.
Oh, no, I would definitely call that censorship.
post #127 of 227
Quote:
You mean they lifted the ban? Poor Canada..  
J, not a fan of the FOX hotties....what is wrong? If nothing else, they do have the best looking women in broadcast news. And, they are fair an balanced.
post #128 of 227
Quote:
like a whiny Berkeley undergraduate, you howl "Censorship."
Students I knew at Cal were pretty busy studying.  I always respected them. One guy at Cal who was studying Greek helped me translate some text I was using in my research.  It took him days.  He did it for free, to practice, because he found the exercise intellectually stimuating. I don't know, Manton, others.  Maybe one should question the merit of generalizing.  The world is still a pretty big place and much of it we do not actually know, cannot get our minds around, and so often we generalize to compensate for that.  I believe in every situation there can be all types of people.  There is even variability within ourselves from moment to moment. Not to generalize too much...
post #129 of 227
Hey, I did specify that I meant only the "whiny" ones. You know, say, 85% of the undergraduate population ...
post #130 of 227
In actual fact Manton, in saying that the article you linked to is a case of censorship by the French Government you are being a little disingenuous. Many countries in Europe have laws against inciting racial hatred. What is happening here is that a body formed to monitor racism in France, took the matter to the judiciary to decide. The judiciary in France, as in all Europe, is independent of Government and the body bringing the case was also independent of Government, so you can hardly say that the Government acted as censor. In addition, the article doesn't state the outcome, so we can't tell if censorship has taken place. However, censorship does take place in every country, including the USA, the only differences are as to what is censored. In a democracy, such as the USA or France, that is pretty much decided by what the public taste is. I would venture to say that most Europeans believe that allowing people to incite racial hatred and/or violence is worse than seeing a breast on TV, which is why a pamphlet published by a neo-nazi organisation, encouraging people to kill blacks/jews/arabs etc could be banned under this form of legislation. From reading the article you cited I rather doubt that the  book would fall into this category, however, that is up to the French Judiciary to decide.
post #131 of 227
I read Fallaci's book; it is an intemperate screed, no doubt.  But it does not incite racial hatred.  That was a trope used by her critics to justify censorship.  The same charge is recklessly flung in America all the time (by Berkeley kids, among others  ), except that here the government can't put authors on trial for writing things people don't like (short of libel perhaps, but that is another issue).  I must say, I prefer our system on this matter. The distinction between the government and the judiciary is ultimately meaningless.  I suppose what you mean is that there is a distinction between the Chirac administration the judiciary.  Fine.  But if Fallaci had lost that trial, it would have been up to the coercive power of the state to enforce the court's verdict -- no matter which party is in power, no matter who controls the current administration.  There is no other way. That is real censorship. And it is dangerous, and wrong, and counterproductive. In my opinion.
post #132 of 227
post #133 of 227
If this is supposed to be an argument for censorship, I must say that I remain unconvinced. It does raise an interesting question, however.  When and why did liberals flip and decide that censorship is a good thing?  I like the earlier libs better, the ones who fought censorship as a matter of principle, and defended free speech as a fundamental right.
post #134 of 227
What do you mean when you write "liberals?"
post #135 of 227
Well, let's just say that the SF Weekly is not exactly a conservative broadsheet.
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