Tuesday, October 31, 2023

Grave Laughs: Halloween's Comic Side

While driving through a neighborhood near here 
my attention was captured by this home that turned
it's front yard into a graveyard. Seeing this first
grave marker (R.I.P. I'M A Goner) prompted me
to drive around the block, stop and take photos.

This next one is pretty scary. 

Well, do be careful out there tonight. 

Related Links

With Halloween so intertwined with spooky stuff, here are a few related items

Doctor Jekyll and Mr. Hyde: More Than A Horror Story

Frankenstein: A Cultural History

Emerson Parris: Trick or Treat

Monday, October 30, 2023

Rhapsody in Pixels: Jazz and AI Art Fusion

Playing with Dream AI by Wombo
I used the above painting as a prompt 
along with the verbal prompt "The Jazz Players"
The following images were generated based on style selections.

These last two were generated using the same painting
but I'd forgotten to change the prompt from "A Bald Man"
to "The Jazz Players."

This last image is very unusual, considering that the original painting 
was the one at the top of the page, a sextet of jazz players.

Related Links

Friday, October 27, 2023

My Jorge Luis Borges Archives: A Catalog of Links

I make no bones about being a major fan of the mind and writings of Jorge Luis Borges. The Argentine writer (1899-1986) is considered one of the most important figures in Spanish literature of the 20th century. A master of the short story, his work is known for its intellectual rigor, its imaginative scope, and its elegant prose.

Borges was born in Buenos Aires into a well-educated and cultured family. His father was a lawyer and his mother was a translator. Educated at home and in Buenos Aires schools, he learned to read and write English at a young age, and he was soon exposed to a wide range of world literature. 

In the 1920s, Borges began to publish his own work. His early writings were influenced by the avant-garde movements of the time, such as Ultraism and Surrealism. However, Borges soon developed his own unique style, which was characterized by its erudition, wit, and metaphysical speculations. And a form of storytelling that has been called Magical Realism.

Here are links to most of my Borges blog posts followed by several short stories of my own, inspired by Borges. Please forgive any redundancies. I had no idea I'd produced this many posts about this man. Explore as far as you like, and if you reach the end perhaps you'll be inspired to enter his own labyrinthine worlds.

The Mind of Borges


Labyrinths (2)


Dream of the Minotaur


Borges and I, Redux


Borges, Revisited


A Yellow Rose


The Poet Declares His Renown


Jorge Luis Borges and Other Influences


“The Watcher” by Borges


What is Magical Realism?


The Walter Benjamin Labyrinth Game


On Exactitude In Science


Seven Really Cool Internet Finds Pertaining to Borges


Tribute to Borges’ Garden of Forking Paths


Imaginary Interviews: A Visit with Jorge Luis Borges, the Master of Magical Realism


Here are a few of my own stories:

Duel of the Poets


The Nonsense Room


A Poem About Truth


Golem Terrorists


Are you a Borges fan? Do you have a favorite book, anecdote or story? Feel free to leave a comment.

Wednesday, October 25, 2023

A Brief Transaction

"At first he thought everyone was like him, but the puzzled look on a friend's face when he remarked on his emptiness told him he was mistaken and convinced him forever that an individual must not differ from his species." ~ Jorge Luis Borges

Untitled Excerpt From a Longer Story

Standing outside in the misty dark, Jess felt unusually quiet. A rusty pipe propped open the door of the tin shed, its butt end digging into the gravel driveway. The single dim bulb in the shed revealed a green John Deere and the dusty clutter of four decades -- old car bumpers, boxes of paper, pitchfork, rusted garden tools and engine parts. The haze made the whole scene appear fuzzy and colorless as if draped in a shroud of gauze. Only the green John Deere reflected any color, sitting in a cleared space in the midst of, but seemingly detached from, the labyrinth of rubble. 

Hank Denmark stood alongside the rear wheel of the tractor, his cap pulled snug over his brow."It's got to get more gas!" he shouted to Stanley Ross, who had climbed up into the tractor's seat and was now attempting to disengage the clutch. 

Stanley pulled the stick up, and then back part way."It needs more oil here," Stan said. 

Hank told him why it had to be stiff like that, and stepped back as the engine turned over, the old John Deere lurching backward with a heave.

Stan quickly cut it off. "This thing's dangerous!" he laughed, dropping down now from the green behemoth.

Jess looked across the way to a streetlamp softly diffusing its light through the evening fog. The thickness of the moist misty night made everything seem strange. Hank and Stan seemed different, too. Their bodies seemed thicker, bulkier, more real.

Hank and Stan closed their business with the tractor and shuffled out of the shed. Hank turned out the light.

Over by the truck Hank asked a question about a guy who had recently returned to town who was now divorced. Jess continued watching and listening as the two men talked on, standing in the shadow of Stan's box-shaped truck. A loudspeaker was blaring from some remote distance, but not enough to distract from the story Stan was telling.

After a while, Hank said, "Let's go in the house." 

The temperature had been dropping quickly. The three went inside, but feeling awkward and alone, Jess said goodnight and stepped back out again. He wanted to cry.

It will always be this way, he thought to himself as he walked back up the drive toward the barn and trailer. Like Kara, he also had somehow ceased to exist. In some indefinable way he was a phantom. Folding his arms across his chest he shivered against the cold.


Out of the Spotlight, Into the Saddle

I was thinking about cancel culture and an idea for a story emerged. I asked ChatGPT to write a 400 word story based on my idea. I then edited and expanded it to this 800 word story. Hope you find it entertaining.

Out of the Spotlight, Into the Saddle

Illustration by the author.
In the small, dusty town of Dusty Gulch, a once-famous TV star had found solace in the forgotten corners of the past. His name was James "Jay" Thornton, once adored by millions, until a single tweet razed his career to the ground. 

Driven by the desperate need to escape the relentless wrath of his fans, Jay acquired a time machine on the black market. Life as he’d known it was over forever.

One fateful day, he decided to try out his new toy, to give it a test drive. He wanted to see the future. Maybe he could find himself there. Unfortunately, the time machine malfunctioned, propelling him back to the year 1885 where he landed on a remote cattle ranch in the foothills of the Rockies.

Working as a humble ranch hand, Jay kept his past a well-guarded secret. He perpetually shunned the spotlight, now preferring the companionship of the open range and the simple folk of Dusty Gulch. One evening, in the dimly lit bunkhouse, Jay found himself sharing a bottle of whiskey with the other cowboys. As the alcohol flowed, the tales of their lives spilled out. 

With a heavy sigh, Jay decided to reveal his own story. "You know, back in my time, I used to be famous.”

“Really? How’s that. You shoot somebody? Rob a train?”

“No, no, no, no. I was a famous actor on television," he began.

The cowboys exchanged perplexed glances. "Television? What's that, Jay?"

"Well," he continued, "it's a magic box that shows moving pictures, stories, and news on a screen. People used to watch it for hours on end."

“You mean, something like a Magic Lantern,” the Finn said. 

“Sorry,” Jay said. “What’s a Magic Lantern?”

The Finn said, “I don’t know how it worked but it was kind of a thing where they used an oil lamp or lantern to shine through these glass plates and you would see images.”

Another cowboy interrupted. “We had a travelling showman come through these parts on the way to California and he put on a show with it, telling stories and projecting images onto a sheet we hung over a wire.”

“He said he was trying to sell them to schools or something like that,” a third added.

“Well,” Jay continued, “That's very interesting. I never heard of Magic Lanterns but you have something of an idea of pictures in boxes. In the future these boxes will show moving pictures. The box I'm talking about will be called a television set.”

“How do the pictures get into the box, Jay?” 

Jay shook his head and rubbed at his chin with his knuckles. “It’s all very strange really. The box is connected to a device called an antenna, which receives a stream of signals from a broadcast station. The pictures go through the air and –“   

He could tell by their expressions and the way they were fidgeting that they would never understand. The cowboys were scratching their heads, struggling to fathom this new concept. 

"How'd you end up here, Jay?"  

Jay took a deep breath. Another impossible question. He confessed, "I tweeted something that made a lot of people angry, and they canceled me. It ended my career."

"Canceled?" one cowboy asked.

“Tweeted?” another said. “You mean you made a sound like a bird or somethin’?”

“No, it’s sort of a communication platform.”


“It’s kinda like an online Wild West show,” Jay said, shaking his head dismissively as the words “Wild West” popped out of his mouth.

The boys all chuckled. 

“You’re not making any sense, Pard,” Big Burt said as he held out the bottle. “Better take another swig.”

Jay waved it away. “A tweet is like a message. Like those wanted posters back at the sheriff’s place.”

“Ah,” said a quiet cowboy off to his left. “So, you’re wanted.”

“No, no,” Jay replied. “I’m actually un-wanted. They took away my job.”

The cowboys burst into laughter. "Well, Jay, 'round these parts, we live by our own rules.”

Jay smiled, relieved by their reaction. "You're right. Life here is simpler, more honest."

The cowboys, now accepting him as one of their own, raised their glasses in a toast. "To Jay, the cowboy without a past!"

As Jay shared more stories of his time in the entertainment business, the cowboys listened in amazement, trying to imagine a world they could scarcely comprehend. For Jay though, the Wild West had become a sanctuary, far removed from the brutally unforgiving judgments of his former life. 

In the bunkhouse in Dusty Gulch Jay Thornton found a second chance among people who judged him not by his past, but by the man he had become. They might never understand his world of television and tweets, but they respected him for who he was now – a cowboy who had found redemption in the embrace of the Wild West, far from the relentless scrutiny of the digital age.

* * * * 

Just having fun. If you enjoyed this, feel free to leave a comment.

Monday, October 23, 2023

The Westminster Declaration: An Important Statement for Our Times

French scholar/lay theologian Jacques Ellul's book The Technological Society (1954) was an important work that outlined the impacts of our increasingly technological age on personhood, freedom and humanity. Ellul argued that modern society is being dominated by technique, which he defined as a series of means that are established to achieve an end. Technique is ultimately focused on the concept of efficiency. 

The term "technique" is to be comprehended in its broadest possible meaning as it touches upon virtually all areas of life, including science, automation, but also politics and human relations. He warned against the uncritical acceptance of what is and what is coming. He also had much to say about propaganda as well. 

Both of these themes were revisited in his last book, Anarchy and Christianity, in which Elul highlighted how technology can be used by governments and institutions to exert control and influence over individuals. He emphasized the need for Christians to be aware of the ways technology can be used for oppressive purposes.

Against this backdrop I saw the recent creation and signing of The Westminster Declaration as a significant statement in defense of freedom. 

The following is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

The Westminster Declaration

We write as journalists, artists, authors, activists, technologists, and academics to warn of increasing international censorship that threatens to erode centuries-old democratic norms.

Coming from the left, right, and centre, we are united by our commitment to universal human rights and freedom of speech, and we are all deeply concerned about attempts to label protected speech as ‘misinformation,’ ‘disinformation,’ and other ill-defined terms.

This abuse of these terms has resulted in the censorship of ordinary people, journalists, and dissidents in countries all over the world.

Such interference with the right to free speech suppresses valid discussion about matters of urgent public interest, and undermines the foundational principles of representative democracy.

Across the globe, government actors, social media companies, universities, and NGOs are increasingly working to monitor citizens and rob them of their voices. These large-scale coordinated efforts are sometimes referred to as the ‘Censorship-Industrial Complex.’

This complex often operates through direct government policies. Authorities in India[1] and Turkey[2] have seized the power to remove political content from social media. The legislature in Germany[3] and the Supreme Court in Brazil[4] are criminalising political speech. In other countries, measures such as Ireland’s ‘Hate Speech’ Bill[5], Scotland’s Hate Crime Act[6], the UK’s Online Safety Bill[7], and Australia’s ‘Misinformation’ Bill[8] threaten to severely restrict expression and create a chilling effect.

But the Censorship Industrial Complex operates through more subtle methods. These include visibility filtering, labelling, and manipulation of search engine results. Through deplatforming and flagging, social media censors have already silenced lawful opinions on topics of national and geopolitical importance. They have done so with the full support of ‘disinformation experts’ and ‘fact-checkers’ in the mainstream media, who have abandoned the journalistic values of debate and intellectual inquiry.

As the Twitter Files revealed, tech companies often perform censorial ‘content moderation’ in coordination with government agencies and civil society. Soon, the European Union’s Digital Services Act will formalise this relationship by giving platform data to ‘vetted researchers’ from NGOs and academia, relegating our speech rights to the discretion of these unelected and unaccountable entities.

Some politicians and NGOs[9] are even aiming to target end-to-end encrypted messaging apps like WhatsApp, Signal, and Telegram.[10] If end-to-end encryption is broken, we will have no remaining avenues for authentic private conversations in the digital sphere.

Although foreign disinformation between states is a real issue, agencies designed to combat these threats, such as the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency in the United States, are increasingly being turned inward against the public. Under the guise of preventing harm and protecting truth, speech is being treated as a permitted activity rather than an inalienable right.

We recognize that words can sometimes cause offense, but we reject the idea that hurt feelings and discomfort, even if acute, are grounds for censorship. Open discourse is the central pillar of a free society, and is essential for holding governments accountable, empowering vulnerable groups, and reducing the risk of tyranny.

Speech protections are not just for views we agree with; we must strenuously protect speech for the views that we most strongly oppose. Only in the public square can these views be heard and properly challenged.

What's more, time and time again, unpopular opinions and ideas have eventually become conventional wisdom. By labelling certain political or scientific positions as 'misinformation' or 'malinformation,' our societies risk getting stuck in false paradigms that will rob humanity of hard-earned knowledge and obliterate the possibility of gaining new knowledge. Free speech is our best defence against disinformation.

The attack on speech is not just about distorted rules and regulations – it is a crisis of humanity itself. Every equality and justice campaign in history has relied on an open forum to voice dissent. In countless examples, including the abolition of slavery and the civil rights movement, social progress has depended on freedom of expression.

We do not want our children to grow up in a world where they live in fear of speaking their minds. We want them to grow up in a world where their ideas can be expressed, explored and debated openly – a world that the founders of our democracies envisioned when they enshrined free speech into our laws and constitutions.

The US First Amendment is a strong example of how the right to freedom of speech, of the press, and of conscience can be firmly protected under the law. One need not agree with the U.S. on every issue to acknowledge that this is a vital 'first liberty' from which all other liberties follow. It is only through free speech that we can denounce violations of our rights and fight for new freedoms.

There also exists a clear and robust international protection for free speech. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR)[11] was drafted in 1948 in response to atrocities committed during World War II. Article 19 of the UDHR states, 'Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers.' While there may be a need for governments to regulate some aspects of social media, such as age limits, these regulations should never infringe on the human right to freedom of expression. 

As is made clear by Article 19, the corollary of the right to free speech is the right to information. In a democracy, no one has a monopoly over what is considered to be true. Rather, truth must be discovered through dialogue and debate – and we cannot discover truth without allowing for the possibility of error. 

Censorship in the name of 'preserving democracy' inverts what should be a bottom-up system of representation into a top-down system of ideological control. This censorship is ultimately counter-productive: it sows mistrust, encourages radicalization, and de-legitimizes the democratic process. 

In the course of human history, attacks on free speech have been a precursor to attacks on all other liberties. Regimes that eroded free speech have always inevitably weakened and damaged other core democratic structures. In the same fashion, the elites that push for censorship today are also undermining democracy. What has changed though, is the broad scale and technological tools through which censorship can be enacted. 

We believe that free speech is essential for ensuring our safety from state abuses of power – abuses that have historically posed a far greater threat than the words of lone individuals or even organised groups. For the sake of human welfare and flourishing, we make the following 3 calls to action.

  • We call on governments and international organizations to fulfill their responsibilities to the people and to uphold Article 19 of the UDHR. 
  • We call on tech corporations to undertake to protect the digital public square as defined in Article 19 of the UDHR and refrain from politically motivated censorship, the censorship of dissenting voices, and censorship of political opinion.
  • And finally, we call on the general public to join us in the fight to preserve the people's democratic rights. Legislative changes are not enough. We must also build an atmosphere of free speech from the ground up by rejecting the climate of intolerance that encourages self-censorship and that creates unnecessary personal strife for many. Instead of fear and dogmatism, we must embrace inquiry and debate.

We stand for your right to ask questions. Heated arguments, even those that may cause distress, are far better than no arguments at all. 

Censorship robs us of the richness of life itself. Free speech is the foundation for creating a life of meaning and a thriving humanity - through art, poetry, drama, story, philosophy, song, and more. 

This declaration was the result of an initial meeting of free speech champions from around the world who met in Westminster, London, at the end of June 2023. As signatories of this statement, we have fundamental political and ideological disagreements. However, it is only by coming together that we will defeat the encroaching forces of censorship so that we can maintain our ability to openly debate and challenge one another. It is in the spirit of difference and debate that we sign the Westminster Declaration.


  • Matt Taibbi, Journalist, US
  • Michael Shellenberger, Public, US
  • Jonathan Haidt, Social Psychologist, NYU, US
  • John McWhorter, Linguist, Columbia, Author, US
  • Steven Pinker, Psychologist, Harvard, US
  • Julian Assange, Editor, Founder of Wikileaks, Australia
  • Tim Robbins, Actor, Filmmaker, US
  • Nadine Strossen, Professor of Law, NYLS, US
  • Glenn Loury, Economist, USA
  • Richard Dawkins, Biologist, UK
  • John Cleese, Comedian, Acrobat, UK
  • Slavoj Žižek, Philosopher, Author, Slovenia
  • Jeffrey Sachs, Columbia University, US
  • Oliver Stone, Filmmaker, US
  • Edward Snowden, Whistleblower, US
  • Greg Lukianoff, President and CEO Foundation for Individual Rights and Expression, USA
  • Stella Assange, Campaigner, UK
  • Glenn Greenwald, Journalist, US
  • Claire Fox, Founder of the Academy of Ideas, UK
  • Dr. Jordan B. Peterson, Psychologist, Author, Canada
  • Bari Weiss, Journalist, USA
  • Peter Hitchens, Author, Journalist, UK
  • Niall Ferguson, Historian, Stanford, UK
  • Matt Ridley, Journalist, Author, UK
  • Melissa Chen, Journalist, Spectator, Singapore/US
  • Yanis Varoufakis, Economist, Greece
  • Peter Boghossian, Philosopher, Founding Faculty Fellow, University of Austin, US
  • Michael Shermer, Science Writer, US
  • Alan Sokal, Professor of Mathematics, UCL, UK
  • Sunetra Gupta, Professor of Theoretical Epidemiology, Oxford, UK
  • Jay Bhattacharya, Professor, Stanford, US
  • Martin Kulldorf, Professor of Medicine (on leave), Harvard, US
  • Aaron Kheiriaty, Psychiatrist, Author, USA
  • Chris Hedges, Journalist, Author, USA
  • Lee Fang, Independent Journalist, US
  • Alex Gutentag, Journalist, US
  • Iain McGilchrist, Psychiatrist, Philosopher, UK
  • Ayaan Hirsi Ali, Human Rights Activist, Author, Netherlands
  • Konstantin Kisin, Author, UK
  • Leighton Woodhouse, Public, US
  • Andrew Lowenthal, liber-net, Australia
  • Aaron Mate, Journalist, USA
  • Izabella Kaminska, Journalist, The Blind Spot, UK
  • Nina Power, Writer, UK
  • Kmele Foster, Journalist, Media Entrepreneur, USA
  • Toby Young, Journalist, Free Speech Union, UK
  • Winston Marshall, Journalist, The Spectator, UK
  • Jacob Siegel, Tablet, US/Israel
  • Ulrike Guerot, Founder of European Democracy Lab, Germany
  • Heather E. Heying, Evolutionary Biologist, USA
  • Bret Weinstein, Evolutionary Biologist, USA
  • Martina Pastorelli, Independent Journalist, Italy
  • Leandro Narloch, Independent Journalist, Brazil
  • Ana Henkel, Independent Journalist, Brazil
  • Mia Ashton, Journalist, Canada
  • Micha Narberhaus, The Protopia Lab, Spain/Germany
  • Alex Sheridan, Free Speech Ireland
  • Ben Scallan, Gript Media, Ireland
  • Thomas Fazi, Independent Journalist, Italy
  • Jean F. Queralt, Technologist, Founder @ The IO Foundation, Malaysia/Spain
  • Phil Shaw, Campaigner, Operation People, New Zealand
  • Jeremy Hildreth, Independent, UK
  • Craig Snider, Independent, US
  • Eve Kay, TV Producer, UK
  • Helen Joyce, Journalist, UK
  • Dietrich Brüggemann, Filmmaker, Germany
  • Adam B. Coleman, Founder of Wrong Speak Publishing, US
  • Helen Pluckrose, Author, US
  • Michael Nayna, Filmmaker, Australia
  • Paul Rossi, Educator, Vertex Partnership Academics, US
  • Juan Carlos Girauta, Politician, Spain
  • Andrew Neish, KC, UK
  • Steven Berkoff, Actor, Playright, UK
  • Patrick Hughes, Artist, UK
  • Adam Creighton, Journalist, Australia
  • Julia Hartley-Brewer, Journalist, UK
  • Robert Cibis, Filmmaker, Germany
  • Piers Robinson, Organization for Propaganda Studies, UK
  • Dirk Pohlmann, Journalist, Germany
  • Mathias Bröckers, Author, Journalist, Germany
  • Kira Phillips, Documentary Filmmaker, UK
  • Diane Atkinson, Historian, Biographer, UK
  • Eric Kaufmann, Professor of Politics, Birkbeck, University of Buckingham, Canada
  • Laura Dodsworth, Journalist and Author, UK
  • Nellie Bowles, Journalist, USA
  • Andrew Tettenborn, Professor of Law, Swansea University,  UK
  • Julius Grower, Fellow, St. Hugh’s College, UK
  • Nick Dixon, Comedian, UK
  • Dominic Frisby, Comedian, UK
  • James Orr, Associate Professor, University of Cambridge, UK
  • Brendan O’Neill, Journalist, UK
  • Jan Jekielek, Journalist, Canada
  • Andrew Roberts, Historian, UK
  • Robert Tombs, Historian, UK
  • Ben Schwarz, Journalist, USA
  • Xavier Azalbert, Investigative Scientific Journalist, France
  • Doug Stokes, International Relations Professor, University of Exeter, UK
  • James Allan, Professor of Law, University of Queensland, UK
  • David McGrogan, Professor of Law, Northumbria University, UK
  • Jacob Mchangama, Author, Denmark
  • Nigel Biggar, Chairman, Free Speech Union, UK
  • David Goodhart, Journalist, Author, UK
  • Catherine Austin Fitts, The Solari Report, Netherlands
  • Matt Goodwin, Politics Professor, University of Kent, UK
  • Alan Miller, Together Association, UK
  • Catherine Liu, Cultural Theorist, Author, USA
  • Stefan Millius, Journalist, Switzerland
  • Philip Hamburger, Professor of Law, Columbia, USA
  • Rueben Kirkham, Co-Director, Free Speech Union of Australia, Australia
  • Jeffrey Tucker, Author, USA
  • Sarah Gon, Director, Free Speech Union, South Africa
  • Dara Macdonald, Co-Director, Free Speech Union, Australia
  • Jonathan Ayling, Chief Executive, Free Speech Union, New Zealand
  • David Zweig, Journalist, Author, USA
  • Juan Soto Ivars, Author, Spain
  • Colin Wright, Evolutionary Biologist, USA
  • Gad Saad, Professor, Evolutionary Behavioral Scientist, Author, Canada
  • Robert W. Malone, MD, MS, USA
  • Jill Glasspool-Malone, PhD., USA
  • Jordi Pigem, Philosopher, Author, Spain
  • Holly Lawford-Smith, Associate Professor in Political Philosophy, University of Melbourne, Australia
  • Michele Santoro, Journalist, TV Host, Presenter, Italy
  • Dr. James Smith, Podcaster, Literature Scholar, RHUL, UK
  • Francis Foster, Comedian, UK
  • Coleman Hughes, Writer, Podcaster, USA
  • Marco Bassani, Political Theorist, Historian, Milan University, Italy
  • Isabella Loiodice, Professor of Comparative Public Law, University of Bari, Italy
  • Luca Ricolfi, Professor, Sociologist, Turin University, Italy
  • Marcello Foa, Journalist, Former President of Rai, Italy
  • Andrea Zhok, Philosopher, University of Milan, Italy
  • Paolo Cesaretti, Professor of Byzantine Civilization, University of Bergamo, Italy
  • Alberto Contri, Mass Media Expert, Italy
  • Carlo Lottieri, Philosopher, University of Verona, Italy
  • Alessandro Di Battista, Political Activist, Writer, Italy
  • Paola Mastrocola, Writer, Italy
  • Carlo Freccero, Television Author, Media Expert, Italy
  • Giorgio Bianchi, Independent Journalist, Italy
  • Nello Preterossi, Professor, University of Salerno, Scientific Director of the Italian Institute for Philosophical Studies, Italy
  • Efrat Fenigson, Journalist, Podcaster, Israel
  • Eli Vieira, Journalist, Genetic Biologist, Brazil
  • Stephen Moore, Author and Analyst, Canada


  1. Pahwa, Nitish. 'Twitter Blocked a Country.' Slate Magazine, 1 Apr. 2023, slate.com/technology/2023/04/twitter-blocked-pakistan-india-modi-musk-khalistan-gandhi.html.
  2. Stein, Perry. 'Twitter Says It Will Restrict Access to Some Tweets before Turkey's Election.' The Washington Post, 15 May 2023, www.washingtonpost.com/technology/2023/05/13/turkey-twitter-musk-erdogan/.
  3. Hänel, Lisa. 'Germany criminalizes denying war crimes, genocide.' Deutsche Welle, 25 Nov. 2022, https://www.dw.com/en/germany-criminalizes-denying-war-crimes-genocide/a-63834791 
  4. Savarese, Mauricio, and Joshua Goodman. 'Crusading Judge Tests Boundaries of Free Speech in Brazil.' AP News, 26 Jan. 2023, apnews.com/article/jair-bolsonaro-brazil-government-af5987e833a681e6f056fe63789ca375. 
  5. Nanu, Maighna. 'Irish People Could Be Jailed for “Hate Speech”, Critics of Proposed Law Warn.' The Telegraph, 17 June 2023, www.telegraph.co.uk/world-news/2023/06/1  7/irish-people-jailed-hate-speech-new-law/?WT.mc_id=tmgoff_psc_ppc_us_news_dsa_generalnews. 
  6. The Economist Newspaper. (n.d.). Scotland’s new hate crime act will have a chilling effect on free speech. The Economist. https://www.economist.com/the-world-ahead/2021/11/08/scotlands-new-hate-crime-act-will-have-a-chilling-effect-on-free-speech
  7. Lomas, Natasha. 'Security Researchers Latest to Blast UK's Online Safety Bill as Encryption Risk.' TechCrunch, 5 July 2023, techcrunch.com/2023/07/05/uk-online-safety-bill-risks-e2ee/. 
  8. Al-Nashar, Nabil. 'Millions of Dollars in Fines to Punish Online Misinformation under New Draft Bill.' ABC News, 25 June 2023, www.abc.net.au/news/2023-06-25/fines-to-punish-online-misinformation-under-new-draft-bill/102521500. 
  9. 'Cryptochat.' Meedan, meedan.com/project/cryptochat. Accessed 8 July 2023. 
  10. Lomas, Natasha.'Security Researchers Latest to Blast UK's Online Safety Bill as Encryption Risk.' TechCrunch, 5 July 2023, techcrunch.com/2023/07/05/uk-online-safety-bill-risks-e2ee/. 
  11. United Nations General Assembly. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR). New York: United Nations General Assembly, 1948.

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