More Censorship from the French Govt on the way. This time: the entire internet!

I came across this brief article last night from Craig McGinty on ThisFrenchLife.

Not only has the French Government banned the use of the terms ‘Facebook’ and ‘Twitter’ on air very recently (Radio and TV) - but it would seem it is well on its way to controlling what we can read on the entire internet!

Freedom of speech/ freedom of expression, as well as the basic human right to information will soon be a thing of the past here in France, if this executive order becomes law.

Is this a censorship step too far? What do people think?

Thanks , I am a member of Avaaz and I never had a mail about this!
I have signed!!

You can sign a petition on this subject by following this link:

I think you may be assuming that therre is a “tariff” for crimes. The problem is that each crime solved is given one paint towards the target set by the government. This does not depend on the severity of the crime or the amount of time and resources spent on solving it. This is why the police go around looking for so called"soft" crimes, mainly motoring offences so that they can reach their government target. This has given rise to a great deal of resentment as the police now use less “common sense and advice” and book everyone to reach their target.


Might we be at cross purposes here? I assumed you were talking about France. I now realise you were probably taking about the UK.

This was an initiative started by Tony Blair. I am surprised hyou cannot find any reference, as there was much discussion and opposition at the time and, also, subsequently.
My daughter works for Cambridgeshire Constabulary

This was a government directive to try and stop people from committing suicide on the spur of the moment.

I think you may find that the limit on how many packets of aspirin and paracetamol you can buy in a supermarket is governed less by the administration’s concern over whether you’re going to use it to top yourself and more by the objections of the pharmacies association to supermarkets being allowed to sell any kind of medicine which they see as their prerogative.

The policy they have had to follow is totally stupid. They have been working on a points system whereby each crime solved is a point. This means that a solved murder equates to a driving offence. Ergo, they have been targeting easier to prosecute offences.
The major crime in UK is to have a brain, everything is dumbed down to the lowest common denominator, eg the Health and Safety Executive.
Another stupid example of treating everyone like idiots is the amount of aspirins, paracetemol you can buy at one time in a supermarket. As though you can’t visit more than one if you decide to take your own life. Etc. etc.etc.

Not odd from our point of view. Minor infringements of the law were and still are, an easy target from the police point of view. Maybe you have not heard of the case of Peter West who brought his car from Spain and France three times in one calendar year to visit his family and was prosecuted for not having licenced it, as he had been in the country for more than the required six months. He had to take his case to the European court before the government issued notices to all police forces that the six month time was cumulative. Also the gentleman who was prosecuted for having a penknife in his car(with a blade less than the proscribed length) for peeling apples on picnics and who was prosecuted for carrying an offensive weapon. It seems that young policemen are making these mistakes and their superiors have not the common sense to acknowledge that these are, indeed, errors and backing them up.
There is no racial profling involved here, just total stupidity!

The French are very insecure about anything that is not French and downright hostile to anything American. That is not news. These are the people who came up with the expressions “franco-français”, “être cocorico”, etc… Leaving England because it’s almost a police state (which it is not, not by any stretch of the imagination) to move to France, is just odd. These people were practicing racial profiling (to paraphrase a country song) when racial profiling wasn’t cool! Not to mention the “bavures policiéres” which at one time, were practically a daily occurrence and nicely tied in with the racial profiling. Protectionism is pervasive, starting with the language and the stupid length they go to protect it only to end up with distorted version of English that doesn’t satisfy either protectionism nor open-mindedness.
There are other countries with nicer people, better hygiene, better weather, etc… France is a nice place for a holiday or to enjoy the culture, particularly the literature which is second to none, but to live there, it takes a lot of resilience in the face of frustration.

As it happens, that ban has come about because of what the Conseil supérieur de l’audiovisuel (CSA) has construed as ‘free advertising’ to what are seen as two of the ‘big hitters’ - Facebook and Twitter.

From now on, a broadcaster can utter the names of Facebook and Twitter only in the context of it being an actual story about either Facebook or Twitter themselves. Any other content in a broadcast that mentions those sites by name is now seen to be breaking the law.

This ban does not just apply to the casual mentions that you would hear at the end of a broadcast such as “Follow us on Twitter, etc” but also stretches to include persons or groups who are promoting something on either site.

CSA spokesperson Christine Kelly recently explained the decision by saying the following:

"…clandestine advertising aside, any reference to Facebook or Twitter shows preference for those two social networks, to the exclusion of others - Why give preference to Facebook, which is worth billions of dollars, when there are many other social networks that are struggling for recognition. This would be a distortion of competition. If we allow Facebook and Twitter to be cited on air, it’s opening a Pandora’s Box — other social networks will complain to us saying, ‘why not us?” "

Anyway, how is this going to work if there is a ‘news’ story concerning FB or twitter? The recent ‘super-injunction’ farce springs to mind…

Slightly off topic bit I’ve just been on Viadeo - been a member for ages but never use it. As it is pants.

Anyway someone sends me a contact request so I log back in and think " as I’m here maybe I should give it another go…"

DON’T - the phrase that springs to mind is the Dark Ages - you can request updates weekly, fortnightly or wait for it…monthly! Do they not get the “internet = immediacy” thing? Nope, clearly not and this is the basic problem. The French as a nation generally don’t get the internet. They are scared of it - I think this comes down to the 1 in 3 people who are ‘fonctionnaires’ and see any form of computing as a potential threat to their sinecure, sorry job.

Still, on the plus side, you can always blame the internet for any admin cock up you make yourself. Just say " I tried to do it on line but you know what the internet is like…" You will be met with sympathetic head nodding and tales of when someone’s third cousin tried to buy an Ipad for 27 dollars and got ripped off…

I am an avid user of eBay. Our children are at present both working in the USA so I find it very convenient to go onto the American eBay site, use one of the reputable merchants I know and trust, order goods, pay via PayPal and get the gifts delivered to them at their American addresses. This saves lots of time and delivery costs. Our daughter wanted a particular brand of French cosmetics and perfume; ordering it from here should be a simple matter??? NO! If you are in France, you are not allowed to buy certain French merchandise for delivery in another country. This is really crazy and very annoying.

Yet another stupid decision by the french government at variance with the EU and Human Rights. We left England because we felt we were almost living in a police state, cameras and the police harassing ordinary folk to keep up their targets.
We know that Sarkozy does not like people to use the net to buy in other countries than France, but the answer to that is to open up the french markets, not to restrict its own peoples freedoms.
I may have to march!