October 8, 2007
I’ve just been reading a story on the International Herald Tribune about the former U.K. ambassador to Uzbekistan, Craig Murray and his blogging woes.
He’s made what the press are calling a major faux pas by posting “potentially defamatory” information about Alisher Usmanov, a mining mogul who’s currently trying to take a stake in Arsenal football club. Murray’s ISP (Fasthosts) received a deluge of ominous legal letters demanding the removal of said information. And now, a couple of weeks later Murrays blog is no more having disappeared off the internet. Apparently he is due to reappear on that well known Dutch ISP who is happy to give a home to some of the more edgy bloggers out there.
Obviously the blogging community is up in arms about this kind of censorship. The main worry is the way Fasthosts removed the blogs without any legal ruling being decided. This means that none of our blogs are safe (if you’re hosting in the UK) and if you annoy the wrong people you could well see your blog disappear before your eyes.
I hope this doesn’t increases in prevalence, it would be nice to think that freedom of speech could exist in 2007, but I really doubt it does when dealing with people with vast fortunes.