Feeds

Council accused of gagging Web site

Freedom of speech v defamation

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

The Power of One eBook: Top reasons to choose HP BladeSystem

A Merseyside man claims his Web site has been gagged over allegations that it defamed local councillors.

Mick Dempsey runs Kirkby Times, a fiercely independent news site which provides "local news, not spin-doctored rubbish". It receives contributions from local people and takes particular relish in keeping tabs on the activities of the local council.

Last week, though, site host Telewest pulled the Kirkby Times site after receiving a letter from Knowsley Council.

Mr Dempsey managed to get the site hosted elsewhere and is continuing to publish, but is furious at the way he's been treated.

"At no time did Knowsley Council or any of their officers or councillors ever contact me direct to complain about any content," he said. "Knowsley Council pay lip service to democracy, but when confronted with real democracy, in the form of free speech, they seek to gag it."

In a statement Knowsley Council defended its actions.

"Knowsley Council has not closed down Kirkby Times website. The authority had raised the issue of defamatory remarks about officers and councillors on this site with the Internet provider and asked that they deal with it in an appropriate manner.

"The request was that any necessary action was taken for the removal of these remarks; the subsequent action taken by the Internet provider was their decision," it said.

A spokesman for Telewest confirmed that it had been contacted by Knowsley Council concerning the site.

"We took legal advice and decided to remove the site," he said. ®

Top three mobile application threats

More from The Register

next story
Stick a 4K in them: Super high-res TVs are DONE
4,000 pixels is niche now... Don't say we didn't warn you
BBC goes offline in MASSIVE COCKUP: Stephen Fry partly muzzled
Auntie tight-lipped as major outage rolls on
Philip K Dick 'Nazi alternate reality' story to be made into TV series
Amazon Studios, Ridley Scott firm to produce The Man in the High Castle
iPad? More like iFAD: We reveal why Apple fell into IBM's arms
But never fear fanbois, you're still lapping up iPhones, Macs
Bose says today is F*** With Dre Day: Beats sued in patent battle
Music gear giant seeks some of that sweet, sweet Apple pie
There's NOTHING on TV in Europe – American video DOMINATES
Even France's mega subsidies don't stop US content onslaught
You! Pirate! Stop pirating, or we shall admonish you politely. Repeatedly, if necessary
And we shall go about telling people you smell. No, not really
Too many IT conferences to cover? MICROSOFT to the RESCUE!
Yet more word of cuts emerges from Redmond
Joe Average isn't worth $10 a year to Mark Zuckerberg
The Social Network deflates the PC resurgence with mobile-only usage prediction
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable
Learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.