Supporter Newsletter: October 2018

There's plenty to be scared about this Halloween!

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"One-click" criminalisation threatens press freedom

ORG joined eight rights organisations to voice concerns to the Lords about threats to press freedom within the Counter-Terrorism and Border Security Bill. The Bill proposes harsh sentences (up to 15 years in prison) for simply watching streamed extremist material. The "reasonable excuses" which allow journalists to view such videos for research are unclear, which can keep them from doing their jobs.

New guidance on Age Verification

The British Board for Film Classification (BBFC) was appointed as the regulator of Age Verification (AV) technology on pornographic websites and they have recently published this guidance. The good news? The BBFC acknowledged many of ORG's concerns and urged greater privacy protections for AV. The bad? Their recommendations are totally voluntary. With major data breaches making headlines on a regular basis, it is difficult to argue adequate protections should be optional. To make matters worse, the AV schemes may be up and running before the voluntary privacy rules are even written.

Post-Brexit trade & digital rights

Hundreds of ORG supporters submitted responses to the Government consultation on negotiations for UK/US trade relations. Rules for e-commerce and cross-border trade could have major impacts on digital censorship and privacy. ORG's primary request was for future trade negotiations to be made in public and under parliamentary oversight. 

Scotland's e-voting consultation

The Scottish Government recently published their analysis of a public consultation on electoral reform which included proposals for trials of electronic voting. When asked whether they would be more likely to vote if e-voting were available, 65% of the public said no. This shows what ORG has been arguing: e-voting does not improve participation and risks democratic integrity. The Government is still considering e-voting trials, but the subtle change in language to how trials might take place suggests the public has made them think twice. ORG supporters did a fantastic job in getting their concerns across to the Government. Thank you!



Article 13 in the balance

Trilogue negotiations took a hopeful turn with Italy's new government now opposing Article 13's automated upload filters. The three-way talks are the last opportunity to mitigate the worst parts of the Directive before a final up or down vote in the EU Parliament expected early 2019.

Launch of GDPR Today

A new publication by European Digital Rights (EDRi) launched this week to document the impacts of the GDPR across Europe and beyond. Check out GDPR Today for the latest on the fallout from Big Tech data breaches.

Copyright & the courts

The UK Intellectual Property Office (IPO) plans to change the process by which Internet Service Providers (ISPs) block pirate sites. Administrative site blocking is being explored as an alternative to the current system which requires a High Court injunction. Sought by rights holders, the change could dramatically increase blocking while removing the benefits of case by case oversight.



ORG Bristol

Join us for an update from Privacy International on what's new in policing in the age of data exploitation.

Friday 9 November 2018 6pm-9pm


ORG Cambridge

Join us to discuss ORG campaigns and the latest in digital rights issues.

Tuesday 6 November 2018 7pm-8:30pm

The Castle Inn, Cambridge CB3 OAJ

ORG Aberdeen

Thursday 1 November 2018 6pm-8pm

Join us for a discussion with the British Computer Society about e-voting trials in Scotland. Robert Gordon University

Sir Ian Wood Building, Garthdee Road, Aberdeen AB10 7GJ



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