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Sunday, July 27, 2008

IS BLOGGING ILLEGAL?

For the past few days I have been following a story but have not posted anything about it. Today I have to let people know what is going on. Imagine you create a blog and you use your blog to examine and if needed criticise things that are happening in Christianity. Someone gets upset and threatens legal action against the company that host your blog site. You are contacted and told your blog will be deleted unless you remove certain content. Sounds crazy? You are thinking that could not happen the United States which believes in the freedom of speech! I thought the same thing until yesterday, when a blog because they had offended someone was shut down.

Here is the story:

The following was found at the Slice of Ladoceia blog:

Poof! Apprising Ministries Online is Now Dark
Jul 26

In Ingrid’s absence, I am updating readers on the Richard Abanes/Apprising Ministries situation. As of 5pm Central Standard Time, the Apprising Ministries website that featured hundreds of important articles on current Christian issues was deleted. Richard Abanes, Harvest House author and chief apologist for Rick Warren and his Purpose-Driven global campaigns, accomplished this by filing a complaint with the legal department of IPower, Apprising’s web hosting service. Due to Richard’s claims of slander and libel regarding a 2005 article written by Apprising Ministries head, Ken Silva, the web hosting service,which does not check out any of these claims to see if there is any merit to them, gave Ken 48 hours to conform to Richard’s ideas of what should be on his website. The choice was this: take down your piece or lose your website. Ken correctly did not give in to this kind of threat and the site is now down.

The implications for all bloggers, religious or otherwise, are clear. Anyone who has a complaint about your views can claim that you have engaged in slander and the ISP Terms of Service usually allow for the companies to remove your website if you don’t take the material in question down. The First Amendment means nothing in these cases. Reportedly, a press release is about to go out to national media about this incident because it provides a clear precedent that has grave and clear implications for all who value the right to express their views online, regardless of the subject matter.

Everyone who values the right to read and publish blogs on the Internet has a vested interested in this. There will be more on all of this shortly.
You can read and comment regarding this at Richard Abanes’ blog.
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> posted by Trevor Hammack at

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