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Monday, May 19, 2008

BC Government Limits Free Speech - Shame!

Looks like the BC government has already legislated limitations on free speech at election time.

There are similar musings in Alberta to do something akin to this limitation on third party advertising at election time. Not good.

People are not stupid. They can make informed judgments. In the Internet age limiting third party advertising in elections is a silly and ineffective “solution” that abuses power and adds to political cynicism.

In a time when everyone is potentially a publisher, limits on traditional advertising for third parties is only going to extend and expand the other more effective media like You Tube, the Blogosphere and social networks. Limits like this will only make the "perceived problem" caused by third-party advertising worse. The networking power of the world wide web is enormously more powerful at informing and influencing public opinion and changing voter behaviours than a billboard or brochure will ever be.

Free speech is not free. It must be protected, promoted and used responsibly. That duty to ensure freedom of speech falls on governments and every freedom loving citizen. Premier Campbell's limitiation on freedom of speech in BC is wrong headed and this law needs to be repealed.