New York Times Tells Brits They Can't Read Article On UK Terror Case

from the jurisdictional-silliness dept

Questions of legal jurisdiction over online content are nothing new at all. Over the years, we've pointed to plenty of legal cases that raised issues about online publications, and whether the content was liable under local laws in countries outside of where the publisher (or its servers) were based. Unfortunately, there still isn't a general agreement on what laws apply, and that makes things risky. Apparently, the NY Times didn't want to risk any such lawsuit in the UK, so when it published an article yesterday about the British terror case, it used some of its geographic ad targeting technology to also block out visitors from the UK from reading the content. This is to stay on the right side of British laws that "prohibits publication of prejudicial information about the defendants prior to trial." Of course, the Times then went on to publish an article proudly stating how they blocked the content from UK readers, which makes you wonder how effective the ban really is. By calling attention to it, it seems pretty likely that plenty of folks in the UK will be able to read the same (or similar) content from plenty of other sources. This isn't to call out the Times for the practice, but to question whether such laws are actually still possible in a world with a global internet.

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  1. identicon
    Not saying, 29 Aug 2006 @ 8:33am

    Stupid dumb idiot

    How stupid are you? How many people in the U.K. do you think will read this now you've posted it here? And what exactly do you suppose that a judge is going to say about it?

    Fact is that because this story has been published openly on the Internet (and the New York Times is squarely to blame for doing so), it's possible that these terrorists might be able to argue that their trial is not fair, and as a result, walk free!

    If that happens, perhaps we should round up all the idiots like you who think it's more important to stick two fingers up at perceived "censorship" and make you all fly back and forth across the Atlantic whilst simultaneously removing all security measures from flights in both directions.

    I want to be safe, and the only way that will happen is if these people are locked up. That isn't going to happen if head-in-the-sand twits like you (and the New York Times, who published this in the first place) behave in such a stupid and irresponsible manner.

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