LISTen: An LISNews.org Program -- Episode #242

And we're back. The first episode after the production suspension has a series of brief essays followed by a news miscellany.

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This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/us/.

Syria has dissapeared from the Internet.

Syria has largely disappeared from the Internet since May 7 at 2:45pm Eastern Time. Both Google and a Web security company called Umbrella Security Labs are indicating that the entire country of Syria may have been severed from the Internet. Google has a screen shot of Syria's Internet traffic at that time at: http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/worldviews/files/2013/05/syria-google-taller.jpg


Books and Guns

Book censorship is being contrasted to gun regulation.

Picture and additional post at Teleread

Colorado Librarian Jeffrey Beall Slapped With Canadian Libel Claim

Colleen Flaherty reports at Inside Higher Ed that the Canadian Centre for Science and Education has hit Beall with a libel claim over his Beall’s List of Predatory Publishers 2013. This follows the recently recognized case of Dale Askey reported on by Library Journal, The Hamilton Spectator, Macleans, and Inside Higher Ed.

(h/t Glyn Moody)

Book: Knowledge and Censorship

This volume collects four sharp philosophical essays by Ilan Stavans on the acquisition of knowledge in multi-ethnic environments, the role that dictionaries play in the preservation of memory, the function of libraries in the electronic age, and the uses of censorship. In the second part of the volume, Verónica Albin engages Stavans in a series of four conversations in which he expounds on the arguments he developed in the essays.

Steinbeck's Masterpiece Faces Censure Threat

Steinbeck's Masterpiece Faces Censure Threat; Publishers Union of Turkey protested upon a request by a national education ministry commission in Izmir province to censor John Steinbeck's "Of mice and man".


Greenville librarian says decision to ban graphic novel wasn't made lightly

She read the book.

“It was disgusting,” she said, declining to label it obscene or pornographic.

She acknowledged the library has many books that deal in such detail with the very same subject matter — racism, rape, murder, sex — but for her, the pictures gave her pause.

Her decision to pull the book was the first time she had overruled her staff’s recommendation and the fifth time she had removed material from the library after a complaint.

“I call it de-selection,” she said. (Using de-selection instead of censorship is Newspeak)

Full article


The Joint New Year's Eve Special

In concert with the team behind the Ubuntu UK Podcast, the Air Staff at Erie Looking Productions presented via WBCQ a New Year's Eve special broadcast via shortwave radio. Now that the show has finished being broadcast, it is being made available for download.

Download here (MP3). You can subscribe to the podcast (MP3) to have episodes delivered to your media player. We suggest subscribing by way of a service like gpodder.net. Stephen's shopping list of items to replace hardware damaged and destroyed due to adverse circumstances over the past week, which includes requiring replacement of our dead in-house server with a lower-powered Raspberry Pi at this point, can be found here where direct purchasing is possible to send the items directly to the Air Staff.

Creative Commons License
The Joint New Year's Eve Special produced by Gloria Kellat of the Air Staff of Erie Looking Productions is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

Turkey Plans to Lift Bans on Hundreds of Publications

Good news about censorship for once. Turkey is releasing a number of books and magazines from their official censorship list:

Effective on Jan. 5, all [censorship] bans will be lifted, freeing 453 books and hundreds of periodicals, magazines and newspapers from prohibition, the Office of the State Prosecutor in Charge of Media Crimes confirmed by telephone from Ankara this week.


You Can’t Say That on the Internet

A BASTION of openness and counterculture, Silicon Valley imagines itself as the un-Chick-fil-A. But its hyper-tolerant facade often masks deeply conservative, outdated norms that digital culture discreetly imposes on billions of technology users worldwide.

What is the vehicle for this new prudishness? Dour, one-dimensional algorithms, the mathematical constructs that automatically determine the limits of what is culturally acceptable.

Opinion piece at NYT


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