UK Censorship

The NUS Is Only Half the Problem

Ellie Spawton | Posted 27.04.2016 | UK Universities & Education
Ellie Spawton

We simply cannot do this if we obsess over this new victim mentality, seeking offense where none is intended. We cannot do this if we refuse to allow those we disagree with to speak. This is a generation of intellectual cowards; whether the NUS disaffiliation campaigns are successful or not, nothing will change until we do.

Here's Why The NUS Just Voted To 'Ban' Yik Yak

The Huffington Post | George Bowden | Posted 20.04.2016 | UK Universities & Education

The National Union of Students has voted to heavily restrict anonymous messages on apps such as Yik Yak. Supporters of the decision, made on Tuesday a...

Safe Spaces Are a Symptom of Student Support Failings

Ed Pinkney | Posted 01.04.2016 | UK Universities & Education
Ed Pinkney

Instead of criticising the methods of those students stepping up to try and help their peers, we can admire their compassion, and respect their determination to plug a failing support system. And if civil liberties campaigners don't want this to deteriorate into censorship then they can join efforts to make sure that adequate support exists.

Why Our Student Unions Can Never Be a 'Safe Space' for All

Leo Gibbons-Plowright | Posted 23.03.2016 | UK Universities & Education
Leo Gibbons-Plowright

Safe Space and No-platform policies are in essence pessimistic and defeatist. Their advocates see mainstream society as something to be feared and to be disengaged from. Our student unions are not challenging or defeating prejudice in wider society, they are simply cowering from it. And in doing so, they are letting down most the minority students they claim to be fighting for.

The Turkish People Have a Right to Know What Is Happening in Their Country

Rachael Jolley | Posted 07.03.2016 | UK
Rachael Jolley

Media freedom is at the heart of any democracy. A freedom to report different sides of the same story. And a freedom to criticise government policies. Turkey increasingly feels like it is steadily sliding towards secrecy. EU leaders must put media freedom on any negotiating table, and not abandon the right of Turkish people to be free to know what is happening in their country.

The Social Justice Movement - A Very Modern Fundamentalism

Alan Grant | Posted 25.02.2016 | UK Politics
Alan Grant

This article originally appeared on the Backbench website on February 23rd 2016. Religion is on the way out in the West. Recent data shows that the n...

Why 'Political Correctness' Won't Save Us

Najite Phoenix | Posted 24.02.2016 | UK Politics
Najite Phoenix

I've never been able to completely subscribe myself to this notion that political correctness is one of the key remedies for a diseased society. And ...

How to Write a Good Article About Free Speech and Comedy

Payton Quinn | Posted 22.02.2016 | UK Comedy
Payton Quinn

So, it's been pretty rough lately, huh? The times seem to be changing fast and they're heading in a direction that you do not like one bit. Students and other young people seem to be becoming the wagging fingers at the end of our punchlines, the chain of protesters outside our shows, the sea of Tweets and Facebook comments on our promotional pages.

War and Peace and Penis

Pat Higgins | Posted 01.02.2016 | UK Entertainment
Pat Higgins

There was a penis on War and Peace this week, and apparently this was a big deal. Before you faint in horror and disgust, let me stress that the penis was neither 'ready to rock & roll' nor in a setting where it looked likely to become so.

Can Safe Spaces and Academia Co-exist?

Bradley Allsop | Posted 25.01.2016 | UK Universities & Education
Bradley Allsop

There is an important yet depressingly polarised debate raging across university campuses on both sides of the Atlantic at the moment. It concerns a plethora of policies ranging from no-platforming certain groups and speakers, banning certain university societies, demanding trigger warnings for a range of issues in lectures and in general extending the philosophy of safe spaces and the reverence of personal feelings into general university life.

Do You See This Artist's Photos Of Naked Women As 'Indecent'?

The Huffington Post UK | Natasha Hinde | Posted 21.12.2015 | UK Lifestyle

An artist's work designed to combat negative self image has been closed down by police, because it featured photos of naked women. Mathilde Grafstr...

2015: When the State Met the Social Media Company

Alex Krasodomski-Jones | Posted 18.12.2015 | UK Politics
Alex Krasodomski-Jones

Illegal guns and child pornography are bought and sold. Terror groups are using Facebook to radicalise young people in their bedrooms. Islamic State propaganda is splattered across the internet in greater quantities and in plainer sight than ever. Why isn't Twitter capable of getting rid of this stuff? Social media companies should be doing more!

A Chinese University Is Banning Students Holding Hands Or Feeding Each Other Rice

The Huffington Post UK | Lucy Sherriff | Posted 09.11.2015 | UK Universities & Education

A university in China is banning students from holding hands, putting their arms around each other or feeding each other rice in order to crack down o...

Facebook and the Far Right

Philip Ellis | Posted 05.11.2015 | UK Tech
Philip Ellis

Could it be, with the Armed Forces actively distancing themselves from nationalist propaganda, parody pages like Britain Furst lampooning such fear-mongering, and artists like Waldhauer drawing attention to the omnipresence of racist content, that that the days of casual xenophobia on Facebook may finally be numbered?

Germaine Greer Had No Right to Speak at Cardiff University

Andrew Doyle | Posted 26.10.2015 | UK Comedy
Andrew Doyle

Next year we hope to disinvite more people than ever before. We've already invited a number of controversial speakers for 2016 so that we can ask them not to turn up.

The Campus Censors Are More Dangerous Than You Think

Alan Grant | Posted 26.10.2015 | UK Politics
Alan Grant

Heavyweight feminist intellectual Germaine Greer has recently attracted the ire of the Thought Police for her comments about transgender people. At ti...

Is This China's Bravest Writer?

Jemimah Steinfeld | Posted 20.10.2015 | UK Entertainment
Jemimah Steinfeld

Murong Xuecun, nom de plume of Chinese writer Hao Qun, isn't afraid of controversy. Following the arrest of several friends who were commemorating 25 years since the Tiananmen Square crackdown, at which his own speech was read aloud, he wrote an op-ed in the New York Times asking to be arrested when he returned to China.

It Is Not the Job of Student Unions to Police Student Thoughts

David Browne | Posted 05.10.2015 | UK Universities & Education
David Browne

The banning of No Offence at Freshers' Fair (and let's not pretend that this doesn't put it at considerable disadvantage in terms of distributing it and exposing those who wish to read it to the ideas therein) ironically is the perfect showcase for the need for its existence.

First They Came for the Cheeses and No-One Spoke Out - Russia's Banning Mania

Neil Durkin | Posted 20.08.2015 | UK Politics
Neil Durkin

On top of existing prohibitions on "undesirable organisations", on numerous public demonstrations, on gay pride rallies and on materials said to "promote" homosexuality, Russia's recent restrictions are faintly ludicrous and distinctly sinister.

Where's the Humanity in Artificial Intelligence? Ask an Echoborg

Charlotte Webb | Posted 18.08.2015 | UK Tech
Charlotte Webb

Currently, many androids are partly operated by humans, who are in charge of their speech and movement. This is because the technologies that orient androids to their environment are not sophisticated enough to make them seem convincingly human.

#Curvy Is Back: Instagram Unblock Hashtag Following Huge Backlash

The Huffington Post UK | Brogan Driscoll | Posted 24.07.2015 | UK Lifestyle

Last week, positive body image campaigners were up in arms after it was revealed that Instagram had blocked the hashtag #Curvy. The hashtag had bee...

Artist Whose Period Photo Was Removed From Instagram: 'Men Need To See My Work Most'

The Huffington Post UK | Brogan Driscoll | Posted 24.07.2015 | UK Lifestyle

While you may not recognise Rupi Kaur, you'll certainly remember her work. Earlier this year an image from her photo series, Period, went viral after ...

'Photoshop The Nipple' Is The Best Response To Censorship Yet

The Huffington Post UK | Natasha Hinde | Posted 07.07.2015 | UK Lifestyle

Social media sites such as Facebook and Instagram are well known for their lack of tolerance when it comes to women and their nipples. In the past...

Comedy - Censorship vs Accountability and Freedom of Speech

Dana Alexander | Posted 01.07.2015 | UK Comedy
Dana Alexander

Amy Schumer isn't the only Comedian who has recently come under fire for what was deemed inappropriate. Jerry Seinfeld, Trevor Noah and Stewart Lee are amongst of multitude of Comedians that have had objections raised by the Twitterazzi in reaction to their material recently. The real question is, "Who gets to draw the line?"

In Facebook Jail Again - Over Female Nipples

Laura Dodsworth | Posted 22.06.2015 | UK Lifestyle
Laura Dodsworth

Female breasts, depicted in a non-sexual way, by a female artist, are not allowed. In other words, if women's breasts and nipples are not in service to babies or men, or have not suffered cancer, if they simply exist on a woman's body, they must be covered.