On July 16, 2010, a federal appeals court limited a subpoena for 600 hours of raw footage from a documentary about an international lawsuit between Chevron Corp. and Ecuadorian citizens who allege the oil company is responsible for environmental contamination.
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The Supreme Court of Canada handed down two rulings in May and June of 2010 that could have a significant impact on newsgathering there.
The Internet search giant Google announced on March 22, 2010, that it would no longer comply with Chinese government censorship and was suspending its online operations in mainland China. Since the announcement, Google has redirected users attempting to access its mainland China site, Google.cn, to Google.com.hk, a search engine based in Hong Kong, where it offers uncensored Internet searching.
On March 1, 2010, Afghanistan's National Directorate of Security (NDS) announced a ban on news coverage showing footage of live attacks by Taliban insurgents. Afghan officials claimed that the images embolden Islamist militants, a March 1 Reuters report stated.
On Dec. 22, 2009, the Canadian Supreme Court vacated libel verdicts against two Canadian newspapers in separate rulings, and created a new defense for members of the public or media who engage in "responsible communication."
Efforts by the European Union to facilitate civil litigation between citizens of different member states were frustrated by proposed regulations that would require EU countries to apply the law of other member states when resolving legal claims against the press. In January 2007, the latest proposals considered by the EU’s parliamentary body drew pleas from publishers and journalists to exclude the media from the regulations.
On March 22, 2007, Phillipe Val, editor of the French satirical newspaper Charlie Hebodo, was acquitted of charges brought against him in a Paris court by Muslim groups for publishing cartoons depicting the prophet Mohammed in his paper. According to Agence France Press (AFP), the Paris Grand Mosque and the Union of Islamic Organisations sued Val for “publicly offending a group of persons on the basis of their religion.”
Flemming Rose, the editor of the Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten who was at the center of the 2005 controversy over his newspaper’s publication of a controversial series of political cartoons depicting the prophet Mohammed, has been honored with an award from the Danish Free Press Society.
AP Photographer Freed in Iraq after Two Years
Iraqi Associated Press (AP) photographer Bilal Hussein was released by American military officials on April 14, 2008 after two years of imprisonment for allegedly working with insurgents in Iraq.
Controversy has flared during the prelude to the 2008 Beijing Olympic games as free press advocacy groups have criticized China’s human rights record on media and free speech restrictions. Meanwhile many Chinese have spoken out against international media coverage they have called biased and unfair.
Russian authorities have brought charges against several men in connection with the October 2006 murder of revered journalist Anna Politkovskaya, while her killer is said to be hiding in Western Europe and an investigation into the organization of the suspected contract killing is ongoing.
Claims of increasing media censorship in Russia have focused on the impromptu closing of a newspaper that often lampooned political leadership, the June 2008 “extremism” conviction of two journalists, and accusations of a television talk show “blacklist” – all of which were said to be politically motivated.