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http://www.macworld.com/news/2007/03/06 ... /index.php

France bans citizen journalists from reporting violence
By Peter Sayer, IDG News Service

The French Constitutional Council has approved a law that criminalizes the filming or broadcasting of acts of violence by people other than professional journalists. The law could lead to the imprisonment of eyewitnesses who film acts of police violence, or operators of Web sites publishing the images, one French civil liberties group warned on Tuesday.

The council chose an unfortunate anniversary to publish its decision approving the law, which came exactly 16 years after Los Angeles police officers beating Rodney King were filmed by amateur videographer George Holliday on the night of March 3, 1991. The officers’ acquittal at the end on April 29, 1992 sparked riots in Los Angeles.

If Holliday were to film a similar scene of violence in France today, he could end up in prison as a result of the new law, said Pascal Cohet, a spokesman for French online civil liberties group Odebi. And anyone publishing such images could face up to five years in prison and a fine of €75,000 (US$98,537), potentially a harsher sentence than that for committing the violent act.

Senators and members of the National Assembly had asked the council to rule on the constitutionality of six articles of the Law relating to the prevention of delinquency. The articles dealt with information sharing by social workers, and reduced sentences for minors. The council recommended one minor change, to reconcile conflicting amendments voted in parliament. The law, proposed by Minister of the Interior Nicolas Sarkozy, is intended to clamp down on a wide range of public order offenses. During parliamentary debate of the law, government representatives said the offense of filming or distributing films of acts of violence targets the practice of “happy slapping,†in which a violent attack is filmed by an accomplice, typically with a camera phone, for the amusement of the attacker’s friends.

The broad drafting of the law so as to criminalize the activities of citizen journalists unrelated to the perpetrators of violent acts is no accident, but rather a deliberate decision by the authorities, said Cohet. He is concerned that the law, and others still being debated, will lead to the creation of a parallel judicial system controlling the publication of information on the Internet.

The government has also proposed a certification system for Web sites, blog hosters, mobile-phone operators and Internet service providers, identifying them as government-approved sources of information if they adhere to certain rules. The journalists’ organization Reporters Without Borders, which campaigns for a free press, has warned that such a system could lead to excessive self censorship as organizations worried about losing their certification suppress certain stories.
Yet more proof of how once the right of the people to keep and bear arms has been destroyed, other fundamental rights soon follow.
 

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You said France, right? Well, there ya go. Given the uproar from the poor and students over the last year or so invloving the lack of work there, it is no wonder.

Seems only fitting they would go ahead and curtail freedoms of speech even further. Damn French. :shakehead:
 

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Tinkerhell said:
:shock:

I'd love to visit France & see the sites. But I just don't know. That is absolutely nutz.
I am sure you can see a lot of cars burning in the street from the top of the Eiffel Tower.
 

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Been there done that, didn't like it at all!!!!!!

I had to go to France for a business trip during rutt (best part of deer season) first two weeks in November 2006. The plant I had to go to was in a small town called Anse. I did a google before I went and found that 40% of the population of Anse is Muslim. I went with 4 other engineers from our facility in Lawrenceville. 3 of us are fairly big guys (200lbs-270lbs 6'-6'4" tall) we all played football or wrestled in highschool or college. Anyway we went to a greek hole in the wall restauraunt and it was so small that we took up 2 tables and there wasn't room to walk around. This little place had some awsome food, anyway we where enjoying the food a fellowship when I noticed after about thirty minute there was a crowd of about 20 young men gathering in that tiny place. I decided to ask the owner what was going on and he let me know that this place was a local hangout for Muslim young men and they where getting upset because of the infidel americans takeing up their space. We decided not to be intemmidated so we finished our dinner, a couple of young men decided they would see what we would do and they came up to the table and said a few words we couldn't understand and started waving their arms at us, we ignored them and when we finished we all stood up at the same time and looked down on these punks and walked right through the crowd. It seems they just didn't have enough grit to do anything but piss in their pants. Sorry for the long post, but France is not a place I want to go back to. :minigun: :cantsay:
 

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Hey TJ2000:

I loved the post. Even the Muslims in France turn into wimps. Must be the wine or the food or something...

I wish I could seen the looks on their faces when you guys stood up and towered over them. Great story.
 

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The only things the French ever did right is find a way to kiss, make wine (kinda) and cook fried potatoes.
 
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