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Sic Semper Tyrannis

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Thank Goodness for the Media in France

(cross posted at The Confidentials)

...because who would film all the violent acts in their society? Forget calling 911 (or neuf un un), if you happen to witness a violent act. And don't dare film it on your cell phone - nope you must call the media to film a violent act in France now.

Zut alors....

From MacWorldonline...
The French Constitutional Council has approved a law that criminalizes the filming or broadcasting of acts of violence by people other than professional journalists. The law could lead to the imprisonment of eyewitnesses who film acts of police violence, or operators of Web sites publishing the images, one French civil liberties group warned on Tuesday.

The council chose an unfortunate anniversary to publish its decision approving the law, which came exactly 16 years after Los Angeles police officers beating Rodney King were filmed by amateur videographer George Holliday on the night of March 3, 1991. The officers’ acquittal at the end on April 29, 1992 sparked riots in Los Angeles.

If Holliday were to film a similar scene of violence in France today, he could end up in prison as a result of the new law, said Pascal Cohet, a spokesman for French online civil liberties group Odebi. And anyone publishing such images could face up to five years in prison and a fine of €75,000 (US$98,537), potentially a harsher sentence than that for committing the violent act.

How long before our own media wants a monopoly on [fill in the blank].