Another Encroachment Against Freedom

The obligatory link: France Bans Laypeople from Reporting Violence

Ouch. So, if you're not a journalist, you face jail time if you happen to catch real violence on film? Besides being ridiculous, it's a dangerous precedent to set.

"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."
Now, if you have a dark sense of humor, you may find the next bit here amusing. What date did the French Constitutional Council choose to unveil this law? None other than the 16th anniversary of the Rodney King beating (captured, of course, on film by an amateur with a video camera).

What are they actually trying to target with this law, though?

During parliamentary debate of the law, government representatives said the offense of filming or distributing films of acts of violence targets the practice of "happy slapping," in which a violent attack is filmed by an accomplice, typically with a camera phone, for the amusement of the attacker's friends.
This, ladies and gentlemen, is what we call swatting a fly with a nuclear warhead.

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