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France Bans Facebook and Twitter From Radio and TV

Soulskill posted more than 2 years ago | from the can-you-ban-it-from-the-web-too-please dept.

Facebook 278

An anonymous reader writes "In France, radio and television news anchors are no longer allowed to say the words 'Facebook' and 'Twitter' on air, unless the terms are specifically part of a news story. The ban stems from a decree issued by the French government on March 27, 1992, which forbids the promotion of commercial enterprises on news programs."

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278 comments

Ban Wikipedia too. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36340622)

Meepsheep here, Bsadowski1 is sucking my cock right now, and Nawlinwiki is in the toilet eating my feces.

Unless (5, Funny)

Andy Smith (55346) | more than 2 years ago | (#36340626)

"unless the terms are specifically part of a news story"

Well that hardly ever happens.

Re:Unless (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36340646)

Instead of "France" the new term is "Cheese Eating Surrender Monkeys."

Re:Unless (5, Insightful)

Hylandr (813770) | more than 2 years ago | (#36340718)

Check your history before flaming or modding me down.

If it weren't for France there wouldn't be an America. Seriously, Philosophically, financially, and with their military help America was established. Then they turned around and did for themselves too.

- Dan.

Re:Unless (5, Interesting)

lexsird (1208192) | more than 2 years ago | (#36340844)

There is an epic amount of "French Bashing" going on in the USA. I find it repulsive because I have always liked the French. I ran into lots of them in MMORPGs such as Asheron's Call, particularly the Dark Tide server. They were fun to fight and fight with. They are a bit quirky and tend to stick together, but can be very friendly if you aren't a tool.

Its highly important that everyone isn't of the same mindset on planet Earth. I could explain this, but I would rather do it and get an A for it in some damn sociology class, than waste it here.

  Just think if we would have followed the French's lead on Iraq, we wouldn't have invaded and wasted trillions of dollars in a war that we get absolutely NOTHING from. Leave it to the Right wingers to smear them after they didn't play ball with them. AND leave it to capitalists to make every socialist country a villain. BTW, I am not a socialist or capitalist. I believe the intelligent way to govern is to cherry pick what works well and use that for the benefit of EVERYONE, not just the aristocracy.

Also, contrast the life of the average Frenchman to ours. They live longer, have more free time, have medical and JOBS. I think they are infinitely freer than the corporate wage slaves that we are here. Every time a Rightwinger brays about how socialism doesn't work, pointing to the fall of Russia, I think of the French. In fact, I think of a lot of European countries that are socialists and they haven't "failed".

With that all said, I cheer them on if they want to keep the news newsworthy and not yet another plug for company X. After all, the airwaves belong to the public, not to any one person, and if you want to use it, you have to follow the rules the public agrees on. If you think our TV has "free speech" to say whatever they want, you are insane. We have something called the FCC and there are censors in this country and have been for decades. After the "Patriot Act", I don't think we have room to talk smack to ANYONE about freedoms. Once we stop our own government from goose stepping all over our Constitution, we might have a leg to stand on.Until then, we need to seriously STFU.

High Unemployment in France (3, Informative)

mosb1000 (710161) | more than 2 years ago | (#36341118)

Also, contrast the life of the average Frenchman to ours. They live longer, have more free time, have medical and JOBS.

Actually, the unemployment rate in France is higher than in the US (9.5% vs. 8.7%), and it is very difficult for young people to find jobs there. If you recall, there was a major bout of riots [wikipedia.org] in 2009 over it, and smaller riots have been occurring since then.

Just think if we would have followed the French's lead on Iraq, we wouldn't have invaded and wasted trillions of dollars in a war that we get absolutely NOTHING from. Leave it to the Right wingers to smear them after they didn't play ball with them.

I don't think we should have invaded Iraq (and I didn't think so at the time), but did you know that France had strong economic ties [bbc.co.uk] to Iraq at the time that probably contributed to their decision to oppose the war? It would be similar to the US opposing war on Saudi Arabia, or the UAE (which we certainly would). Those kind of decisions are made the same way in France as they are in the US.

Re:Unless (1)

Yvanhoe (564877) | more than 2 years ago | (#36341138)

I ran into lots of them in MMORPGs such as Asheron's Call, particularly the Dark Tide server. They were fun to fight and fight with.

Unfortunately none of these games allowed us the weapon that our history taught us to excel at : the cow catapult !

They live longer, have more free time, have medical and JOBS. I think they are infinitely freer than the corporate wage slaves that we are here.

yes, yes, yes and no. Our unemployment rate (~9.5%) is higher than the one in US (8.7%) but I think it is easier to live as an unemployed person in France than as someone with the minimum wage in US. however, the media I read have some bias so I cannot be sure.

Every time a Rightwinger brays about how socialism doesn't work, pointing to the fall of Russia, I think of the French. In fact, I think of a lot of European countries that are socialists and they haven't "failed".

That is something that has always amazed me. In France we have two words with completely different meaning : socialism and communism, that seem to be synonymous in US. We have a socialist party, that has been 14 years in power and did an okay job, and we have a communist party, that has never been in power. Saying they are the same is really like saying that conservative means nazi (and we are talking about extreme politics so I think Godwin laws do not apply). It is inherently absurd.

BTW, in France we have a right-wing government since 1995. Chirac during 12 years hasn't changed much and Sarkozy since 2007 actively tried to destroy the social institutions (retirement, healthcare, family planning, etc...). We compare them to GW Bush, that he actually liked. Next time you want to think about a successful European socialist country, think about Scandinavian countries. They are our models. We hope to be back in the race in 2012.

Re:Unless (1)

Nick_13ro (1099641) | more than 2 years ago | (#36340870)

Check your history before flaming or modding me down.

If it weren't for France there wouldn't be an America. Seriously, Philosophically, financially, and with their military help America was established. Then they turned around and did for themselves too.

- Dan.

And if king Louis XVI would have found a better way to spend the country's money other than further bankrupting it and inviting unrest by funding the american freemason rebellion, like for example paying an army to kill a bunch of bankers like his ancestors did with the predecessors of the freemasons- the templars, then maybe the world would be a somewhat better place.

Re:Unless (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36341032)

If it weren't for ____ there wouldn't be ____. This statement is true for many, many countries. The world is interconnected and many countries rely on each other. If it weren't for America Napoleon wouldn't have been able to fund his war, and France might be a very different country. Does that mean France has any sort of obligation to America today? No. It amounts to nothing today. The same goes for what you said. It amounts to nothing.

Re:Unless (2)

lexsird (1208192) | more than 2 years ago | (#36340934)

Are you serious? Do you blame women for being weak when their men beat them too? If we lived next to the Germans when they came Blitzing through, we would have surrendered too. There wasn't a lot of choice in the matter either. You obviously are no student of history and just how advanced the German war machine was.

German engineering + War; think about it.

French life style + War; bad combination. Unless they are invading to plant vineyards, and make better coffee, or milk our cows to make some cheese, I don't think we have anything to get excited about.

Re:Unless (3, Insightful)

houghi (78078) | more than 2 years ago | (#36341042)

Please give France back the Statue of Liberty. You don't deserve it anymore. You rape the liberties France helped you with against the British. You slap the the French soldiers in the face who died next to yours in the first Iraq war.

You try to convince the world that you alone won world war one and two, ignoring the many other countries and men that you were in a coalition with. Canadians, Polish, Russians, French, Dutch, English, South African. The list goes on and on and you could not have done it alone.

The one war you lost was Vietnam and you couldn't deal with it the moment you went at it alone.

Re:Unless (3, Interesting)

Tasha26 (1613349) | more than 2 years ago | (#36340808)

You seem to be forgetting presenters who re-direct viewers to their twitter or facebook page and/or ask them add their views to an ongoing discussion of some topic posted/tweeted on those sites. Frankly, I think it's a good move. Why should Facebook and Twitter get free advertising and becomes more popular than they already are? It's hindering emergence of other sites... hmm, non-US sites. :)

Re:Unless (3, Insightful)

RonnyJ (651856) | more than 2 years ago | (#36340926)

That bit should be part of the headline. Terrible editing.

France Bans Facebook and Twitter From Radio and TV News

Imagine... (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36340630)

Imagine something similar:
Visit us at www.texaco.com/abcnews for more information.

France is just jealous... (5, Funny)

howlingfrog (211151) | more than 2 years ago | (#36340640)

...that Twitter and Facebook have more influence on global culture than it does.

Re:France is just jealous... (3)

fearlezz (594718) | more than 2 years ago | (#36340790)

No, they're jealous that it's not livre des faces and twitteur [google.nl]

Re:France is just jealous... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36341064)

That would be "fesses de bouc".

Re:France is just jealous... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36341112)

surely livre des visages? I thought French "face" had a more religious undertone whereas it's somewhat the opposite in English

Re:France is just jealous... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36340804)

France is a country. Being jealous is an emotion, which is felt by people.
Maybe you mean "people in France are jealous..."? But in that case this is a generalization as stupid as "muslims are terrorists" or "American culture is Mc Do and Disneyland".

But maybe this comment means `any law on earth should be the same as in the US', which would show a very open mind.

Re:France is just jealous... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36340836)

I think I know where you are from.

Re:France is just jealous... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36341000)

"Face de Bouc " is culture ????

Inb4 "freedom of speech" comments (2, Insightful)

Sparx139 (1460489) | more than 2 years ago | (#36340648)

This isn't limiting freedom of speech. Granted it sucks (I know in Australia we've had all kinds of stupid/funny "if we get x followers on twitter we'll do y" things on breakfast shows that this sort of thing would stomp on were it here), but it doesn't have anything to do with civil rights.

Re:Inb4 "freedom of speech" comments (0)

syousef (465911) | more than 2 years ago | (#36340698)

This isn't limiting freedom of speech. Granted it sucks (I know in Australia we've had all kinds of stupid/funny "if we get x followers on twitter we'll do y" things on breakfast shows that this sort of thing would stomp on were it here), but it doesn't have anything to do with civil rights.

Please tell me how you figure this isn't a limitation on freedom of speech?? It's not just a limitation on freedom of speech. It's a directive that requires news organisations to make the news vaguer. If an issue has been discussed on Facebook, and they are forced to say "social network sites" and not identify the social network, that's diluted the information. Idiotic!

Re:Inb4 "freedom of speech" comments (2)

nzac (1822298) | more than 2 years ago | (#36340746)

Please tell me how you figure this isn't a limitation on freedom of speech?? It's not just a limitation on freedom of speech. It's a directive that requires news organisations to make the news vaguer. If an issue has been discussed on Facebook, and they are forced to say "social network sites" and not identify the social network, that's diluted the information. Idiotic!

I read the summary/article differently, your case is allowed. What it disallows is using broadcast time to advertise Facebook and twitter pages for the channel, which is hardly censorship of information or an attack on free speech. I would think it closer to age restriction censorship which is good or in very lest necessary.

Anti (some) Americans rant: Seriously how can you use the idea of freedom of speech to make it sound like a good idea to allow advertising or promotions of companies into news broadcasts.

Re:Inb4 "freedom of speech" comments (1)

Dachannien (617929) | more than 2 years ago | (#36340762)

Anti (some) Americans rant: Seriously how can you use the idea of freedom of speech to make it sound like a good idea to allow advertising or promotions of companies into news broadcasts.

Freedom of speech protects speech you like as well as speech you don't like.

That aside, this also bans a news channel from saying something like, "Follow us on Twitter at @newschannelname for the latest news updates direct to your phone." How does it benefit anyone to forbid that?

Re:Inb4 "freedom of speech" comments (1)

lexsird (1208192) | more than 2 years ago | (#36340904)

Two points for you to chew on.

1. We have censorship of "speech you don't like" as well, so seriously we need to STFU about "free speech".

2. The French have something called "culture", I know its a concept wasted on 99.9999998% of Americans, but if you strain real hard, you might come close to the galaxy of thoughts they have about preserving said culture. This probably entails them wanting their news without anymore bullshit than necessary.

Besides, it's the French, it's their country, let them run it the way they choose. Frankly, if I was to find a gene in a bottle and get turned into King of the World, I would make a law if you even say "Twitter" or "Facebook", you and your entire family tree gets a bullet in the head. If you have to ask why, you would get one in the head too. Contrast that with the French and get back to me if you still think they are being too harsh.

Re:Inb4 "freedom of speech" comments (1)

nzac (1822298) | more than 2 years ago | (#36340982)

Freedom of speech protects speech you like as well as speech you don't like.

That aside, this also bans a news channel from saying something like, "Follow us on Twitter at @newschannelname for the latest news updates direct to your phone." How does it benefit anyone to forbid that?

Dont think I have hope of getting the point across but here goes...
RRS does the same thing but more flexible you dont need a bowser and are not limited by characters so twitter is redundant compared to RRS except for the brand and takes less 'why can I do that?' panicking from the technologically inept.
Then there are people like me who don’t like the idea of twitter a global (among friends) SMS service controlled by a US company (cant fully trust a service you really don’t see any benefit to them in you using). Who would prefer if they just died so a small sector of society see a direct benefit.

Now for the real point, Some people like our news service just to report the news not promote themselves. Apart from fixed periods of ads, the news hour is just used to present news is something that we should be able to expect. Why is it good that channels/stations use this time on things that aren’t news. People watch the 6 oclock news for the 6 oclock news, that is how they have chosen to find out what happened they don't need to be provided alternative ways or give the channel a chance manipulate our behaviour.

Re:Inb4 "freedom of speech" comments (1)

vux984 (928602) | more than 2 years ago | (#36341034)

That aside, this also bans a news channel from saying something like, "Follow us on Twitter at @newschannelname for the latest news updates direct to your phone." How does it benefit anyone to forbid that?

In the same way that it benefits us that the anchor doesn't follow every sentence with "brought to you by Carls Jr."

Now maybe you don't see a benefit to that but I sure do. I don't want to get my news from a 3rd party ad company that has nothing to do with anything, and to be honest, I'm genuinely sick of being told sign up to twitter and facebook 30 times a day to follow some bullshit but that's life in 2011.

But I don't have a facebook account, I don't want a facebook account and I'm particularly offended by government subsized entities endorsing either.

(And that may well be the case with the French News organizations, although I don't know offhand.)

Re:Inb4 "freedom of speech" comments (1)

thetoadwarrior (1268702) | more than 2 years ago | (#36341044)

It is obvious that Americans hate the idea of news that just reports the facts so it's no surprise you use that defense. Not all speech is free and in fact the constitution arguably didd not originally make it free. It just made it the state's decision to censor you not the federal government's decision. But the news is something that people take seriously. It affects how they vote and how they live. You can't just let a news organisation take money to say things for a corporation, to out right lie or censor facts. Anyone that thinks it's acceptable for that is a tea party tool.

Re:Inb4 "freedom of speech" comments (1)

dolmen.fr (583400) | more than 2 years ago | (#36341096)

That aside, this also bans a news channel from saying something like, "Follow us on Twitter at @newschannelname for the latest news updates direct to your phone."

Why not use Internet standards and a subscription model they control themselfves instead of delegating that to a private company? "Follow us by subscribing to our mailing list at http: //newchannelname.fr/mailinglist"

Note that free Twitter by SMS does not exist in France due to the price of sending SMS. Only people with a smartphone and an Internet plan can use Twitter on their phones.

How does it benefit anyone to forbid that?

How does it benefit anyone to give the control of our communications and web site authentication to a single private company?

Re:Inb4 "freedom of speech" comments (1)

sco08y (615665) | more than 2 years ago | (#36340832)

Please tell me how you figure this isn't a limitation on freedom of speech?? It's not just a limitation on freedom of speech. It's a directive that requires news organisations to make the news vaguer. If an issue has been discussed on Facebook, and they are forced to say "social network sites" and not identify the social network, that's diluted the information. Idiotic!

I read the summary/article differently, your case is allowed. What it disallows is using broadcast time to advertise Facebook and twitter pages for the channel, which is hardly censorship of information or an attack on free speech. I would think it closer to age restriction censorship which is good or in very lest necessary.

Anti (some) Americans rant: Seriously how can you use the idea of freedom of speech to make it sound like a good idea to allow advertising or promotions of companies into news broadcasts.

You don't prevent the government from doing things because those things are always good. You prevent it because people have an inalienable right to do them. From a more practical perspective, it's damned near impossible to understand the unseen consequences and the more laws you have the more you don't know what problems are caused by people exercising their rights and what problems are caused by laws themselves. From a more cynical perspective, if there's some asshole lobbyist / politician / special interest saying how it's going to promote civility and make everyone's children happier and no reasonable person can possibly disagree with this, he's probably lying out his ass.

Anti-Euro and various ex-colonies question: how the hell do you still have state-run media? Are you children that need Loving Mother Government to tell you what's going on in the world?

Re:Inb4 "freedom of speech" comments (1)

Hognoxious (631665) | more than 2 years ago | (#36340852)

You don't prevent the government from doing things because those things are always good. You prevent it because people have an inalienable right to do them.

Inalienable isn't a magic word. All it means is that, at the time the rules got written down, the people doing the writing thought it was a good idea.

Re:Inb4 "freedom of speech" comments (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36340888)

Anti-Euro and various ex-colonies question: how the hell do you still have state-run media? Are you children that need Loving Mother Government to tell you what's going on in the world?

Simple, not one company in this world seems capable of delivering news.
Just political bullshit and commercials, and we don't have time for that.

Using the market to distribute news is a syntax error, every theory starts with assuming everyone has all information, and that would quite often include the news, so there is no need to distribute it.

Re:Inb4 "freedom of speech" comments (1)

valdyn (445073) | more than 2 years ago | (#36340966)

No, we have "state run media", because the majority of voters think that its a good idea having public media that is paid by taxpayers rather than Companies, because that makes higher quality programming possible. Btw, it's not "state run media", its independent media financed by taxes. Yes, *we* do like having independent media.

Re:Inb4 "freedom of speech" comments (1)

nzac (1822298) | more than 2 years ago | (#36341024)

You don't prevent the government from doing things because those things are always good. You prevent it because people have an inalienable right to do them. From a more practical perspective, it's damned near impossible to understand the unseen consequences and the more laws you have the more you don't know what problems are caused by people exercising their rights and what problems are caused by laws themselves. From a more cynical perspective, if there's some asshole lobbyist / politician / special interest saying how it's going to promote civility and make everyone's children happier and no reasonable person can possibly disagree with this, he's probably lying out his ass.

Some of us actually believe that we still have a better democracy than that, if most think a law turned out bad the government can repeal it. Though NZ appears to slowly converging to American 'democracy', most countries do not have the lobbying problem that the US has.

State media is better than news designed to generate rating rather than present the best news. The main point most democracies are actually democratic and care about the people more than profit driven companies.

Re:Inb4 "freedom of speech" comments (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36341124)

Anti-Euro and various ex-colonies question: how the hell do you still have state-run media? Are you children that need Loving Mother Government to tell you what's going on in the world?

BBC vs Fox News. Gimme a minute, I need to figure out which one treats their viewers like children...

Re:Inb4 "freedom of speech" comments (1)

war4peace (1628283) | more than 2 years ago | (#36341132)

Anti-Euro and various ex-colonies question: how the hell do you still have state-run media? Are you children that need Loving Mother Government to tell you what's going on in the world?

Have you watched any?
[sarcasm]Better run by the government and publicly known as that, than run by megacorporations for their nefarious purposes! [/sarcasm]
Disclaimer: I stopped watching ANY sort of TV years ago.

Re:Inb4 "freedom of speech" comments (4, Insightful)

sammyF70 (1154563) | more than 2 years ago | (#36340748)

It's not about news ABOUT Twitter or Facebook. It's about PR related issues. So, the headline "Facebook's Owner, Marc Zuckerberg, killed by frikking bass with lasers he intended to eat" or even "Bill Gate's Twitter account hacked. His password was Chairs4Steve" are still allowed, whereas "Entertainment Industry comes to term with the fact that DRM is contra productive. Read more on our Facebook page" isn't. In the first two, mentioning the sites is relevant. In the last one it's just hidden advertising (Even if might be unwilling).

Re:Inb4 "freedom of speech" comments (2)

blackraven14250 (902843) | more than 2 years ago | (#36340768)

Why shouldn't a news organization be able to promote other avenues for viewers to receive or submit content to their service? I see no logical difference between "Visit us at CNN.com" and "Visit our Twitter page at twitter.com/CNN" other than the second is an outside service rather than an internal service. It's not a "hidden advertising" issue if the first is allowed, which AFAICT, it is.

Re:Inb4 "freedom of speech" comments (1)

sammyF70 (1154563) | more than 2 years ago | (#36340834)

Supposing you're getting the "visit us on CNN.com" while watching CNN, it's self promotion (hopefully not only that though) and actually informative. People obviously know your product (CNN) and you are just giving them other channels to consume it. On the other hand, if you advertise private third party services you give them unfair leverage against their competitor (and just because "they are soooo big anyway already" is not an excuse).
In France it is illegal to actually name products and companies, unless it is relevant, this doesn't only apply to FB and Twitter. The ~news~ here is due to the fact that more and more news outlets promote those two, thus stiffling competition ( e.g."FB? no .. I'm not on it yet, but the news is all about it, so I might just get an account" even though the only news about FB was that you can like the talking head's page there)

Re:Inb4 "freedom of speech" comments (2)

buchner.johannes (1139593) | more than 2 years ago | (#36340976)

This paragraph from TFA sums up their argument:

The French TV regulatory agency Conseil Supérieur de l’Audiovisuel (CSA) insists the French government is simply upholding its laws. “Why give preference to Facebook, which is worth billions of dollars, when there are many other social networks that are struggling for recognition?” a CSA spokesperson said in a statement. “This would be a distortion of competition. If we allow Facebook and Twitter to be cited on air, it’s opening a Pandora’s Box — other social networks will complain to us saying, ‘why not us?’”

Re:Inb4 "freedom of speech" comments (1)

dolmen.fr (583400) | more than 2 years ago | (#36341122)

The difference is the World Wide Web versus Facebook. Open standards versus a single platform controlled by a single company.

Re:Inb4 "freedom of speech" comments (2)

obarthelemy (160321) | more than 2 years ago | (#36340754)

Actually, it's an increase in freedom of speech: there's limited time and resources for speech. Letting commercial companies take over all of it displaces and cancels cultural, philosophical... speech.

Re:Inb4 "freedom of speech" comments (2)

LordLucless (582312) | more than 2 years ago | (#36340770)

"...unless the terms are part of a news story" - you know, the bit from the article that the summary deliberately neglected to mention, in order to provoke reactions just like yours. In fact, the law isn't even aimed at Facebook or Twitter, it just happens to encompass them.

The law is intended to prevent "news" programs from stuffing their stories full of product placement.

Re:Inb4 "freedom of speech" comments (1)

thetoadwarrior (1268702) | more than 2 years ago | (#36341012)

Except for the fact news organisations will have no problem reporting on facebook and twitter unless of course they're doing it because they're paid by twitter or facebook.

Re:Inb4 "freedom of speech" comments (1)

war4peace (1628283) | more than 2 years ago | (#36341108)

I'm looking at this whole thing from a different perspective: proper news flow.
Too many times it happens that journalists obtain some information from Twitter/Facebook and broadcast it specifying the above as sources. With this ban, maybe they will do their job properly and will search for the ROOT source of the story instead of simply mentioning the most popular website as source.
Of course, according to TFA, if the ROOT source IS indeed Facebook or Twitter, they CAN mention that.
As for the "follow us on Twitter" broad-casted live, that was dumb anyway. Just mention the company's web page and a shortlink to the specific branch (e.g. "Socialize with us at www.abc.com/livenews"). What's on that webpage is their own business.

Re:Inb4 "freedom of speech" comments (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36340700)

Indeed, this is about creating a level playing field for competitors. Both companies can still buy advertisements to get more airtime.

Re:Inb4 "freedom of speech" comments (1)

tbird81 (946205) | more than 2 years ago | (#36340742)

I see. What the world, needs now, is more, government control. It's the only thing, that there's just too little of.

Re:Inb4 "freedom of speech" comments (1, Insightful)

sco08y (615665) | more than 2 years ago | (#36340740)

This isn't limiting freedom of speech. Granted it sucks (I know in Australia we've had all kinds of stupid/funny "if we get x followers on twitter we'll do y" things on breakfast shows that this sort of thing would stomp on were it here), but it doesn't have anything to do with civil rights.

How do you figure it's not limiting freedom of speech or, at least, freedom of the press?

It might be acceptable or justified based on whatever doctrine you're working from. But if you can't say X, Y or Z, it's a limitation, any way you slice it.

Generally, if you have to say something or can't say something, it impacts your freedom, but more importantly implements a level of control on you. And, generally, if someone went to the trouble of lobbying the government to control your speech, it will definitely sound like it's for the betterment of all mankind, but it will be tailored to their narrow interests.

Re:Inb4 "freedom of speech" comments (4, Insightful)

sammyF70 (1154563) | more than 2 years ago | (#36340760)

it still isn't. "Amazon.com" (or "amazon.fr" in that case) can't be named in similar circumstances ( "Here is our review of "Harry Potter XIII - Resurrection". You can buy it at amazon.fr" isn't allowed, 'Amazon's worth increasing 10 fold on the stock market after Bezos calls his kid "Kindle"' is actually allowed.)

Smart Move (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36340668)

More than a few useless web sites have gained prominence and even IPO's on the backs of what would be obvious shameless shilling by news personalities. Smart media entities would ignore these sites (baring actual news events) unless the *sites* paid the media entities to have a presence there. Twitter gets way more value from, for example, Maddow's Tweets than Maddow benefits from traffic sent by Twitter.

How typically ... French... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36340670)

In case you're wondering - French = stupid...

Re:How typically ... French... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36340714)

In other news : "dude's phone was smashed by police in miami after filming officers going all Dirty Harry". I'll take "stupid" instead of "psychopathic" anytime, thanks.

This is normal throughout (large) parts of Europe (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36340676)

Product placement is not allowed in state channels, commercial websites are just that, products.

Re:This is normal throughout (large) parts of Euro (4, Informative)

sco08y (615665) | more than 2 years ago | (#36340788)

Product placement is not allowed in state channels, commercial websites are just that, products.

And in Europe, it's taken for granted that this is a reasonable restriction and that the idea of state channels is reasonable.

Most Americans (and probably a lot of Euros) don't grasp that European leftism != American leftism and European rightism != American rightism. There are strong parallels in abstract, but as you cross the pond you see a fundamental change in the cultural gestalt of the relationship between the state and the individual.

Re:This is normal throughout (large) parts of Euro (2)

houghi (78078) | more than 2 years ago | (#36341006)

I would say that European rightism = American leftism. And there would still be place between the two.

Obviously talking about major parties, not minority groups or individuals.

Re:This is normal throughout (large) parts of Euro (1)

sangreal66 (740295) | more than 2 years ago | (#36340978)

Telling viewers to hit your facebook page or follow your twitter account is product placement? The product here belongs to the news program.

FFS (2, Funny)

gmhowell (26755) | more than 2 years ago | (#36340680)

Can we PLEASE go in on the side of the Germans next time?

Re:FFS (0)

Hylandr (813770) | more than 2 years ago | (#36340728)

Germany is pretty much a Jewish state these days, what are you getting at?

  - Dan.

Re:FFS (0)

Nick_13ro (1099641) | more than 2 years ago | (#36340928)

Germany is pretty much a Jewish state these days, what are you getting at?

- Dan.

It was also a jewish state before Hitler took over. Only difference is now they allow more goyim in the middle-upper classes. Before WW2 they simply pissed of way too many people by personally controlling absolutely everything, including all the retail stores- hence the swastikas the nazis painted on them to point out the level of control it got to.

Re:FFS (1)

houghi (78078) | more than 2 years ago | (#36341050)

I say the same thing and I am European. Would have prevented all the wining Americans about how they saved us from speaking German.

(Karma to burn)

Circumvention is proven (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36340684)

Does pronouncing bit.ly link shorteners count as valid?

Anyway, exactly how do they report a currently hypothetical purchase of say, Twitter by Facebook? "The world's largest social media company, owned by Mark Zuckerberg, has bought another?" Even that is pretty self-explanatory.

But seriously, in the US, they just say "for the complete story go to our website at _____news.com" (purposely withholding the exact link so that you'll generate extra ad revenue while looking for the one atom you want)

Re:Circumvention is proven (2)

sco08y (615665) | more than 2 years ago | (#36340744)

Anyway, exactly how do they report a currently hypothetical purchase of say, Twitter by Facebook? "The world's largest social media company, owned by Mark Zuckerberg, has bought another?" Even that is pretty self-explanatory.

FTFS: unless the terms are specifically part of a news story

Misleading Headline (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36340688)

The slashdot headline is, expectedly, SUPER misleading.

Re:Misleading Headline (1)

geogob (569250) | more than 2 years ago | (#36341002)

It's misleading if you don't even go as far as reading the 2 line summary...

Re:Misleading Headline (1)

dolmen.fr (583400) | more than 2 years ago | (#36341136)

That's is the point of a headline. Why should a headline be allowed to give a totally different meaning than the content?

Wish we had this (2)

nzac (1822298) | more than 2 years ago | (#36340696)

No more follow/like us on twitter or facebook interrupting something generally more interesting.

Seriously the PR departments must be really under pressure to appeal to the new generation, without fully understanding it, to think that we would rather follow them using a facebook or twitter interface rather than there generally well done actual website.

Re:Wish we had this (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36340778)

there generally well done actual website

There are news organizations with well-designed websites?

Re:Wish we had this (1)

nzac (1822298) | more than 2 years ago | (#36340996)

Fair call. But they are still designed for the purpose which is better than getting it from face book/twitter.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/ [bbc.co.uk]
This is better than an a list of 140 character news briefs.

I am so conflicted over this... (4, Insightful)

PyroMosh (287149) | more than 2 years ago | (#36340734)

On the one hand, the freedom of speech lover in me thinks that this goes to far, as I do with many things the French do...

On the other hand, I imagine what CNN would be like if they had to report or analyze a story instead of asking what Twitter thinks of a story...

Re:I am so conflicted over this... (1)

sco08y (615665) | more than 2 years ago | (#36340880)

On the one hand, the freedom of speech lover in me thinks that this goes to far, as I do with many things the French do...

On the other hand, I imagine what CNN would be like if they had to report or analyze a story instead of asking what Twitter thinks of a story...

If you are actually interested in news, just watch C-SPAN. Yeah, sometimes it's dry as hell and the callers are often painful, but it actually does a really good job of presenting both sides, and there are no ads. Bottom line: "I heard Rep X say this on the House floor and then Rep Y said this" wins a lot more arguments than "I heard talking heads X and Y scoring points on CNN."

If you're in the DC area, 90.1 FM is C-SPAN radio, and they have XM, webcasting, etc. If you're up late, they play historic Supreme Court cases.

brand names (5, Insightful)

dotsandlines (2021270) | more than 2 years ago | (#36340772)

Not that I agree with the French policy (or RTFS), but it's recently bothered me (in a very slight way) that we now have forms of communication that can only be referred to through the brand name. We could chat, text, fax, phone and blog without referring to a company name, but Tweets and Facebook posts seem harder to generalize. Just saying something's been "posted online" seems too vague. The proper generic verb hasn't been invented yet.

Proper generic term hasn't been invented (4, Interesting)

petes_PoV (912422) | more than 2 years ago | (#36340906)

Sure it has: the proper generic term is GARBAGE. Really, when did ill-considered soundbites from anonymous children ever become news?

Re:Proper generic term hasn't been invented (1)

thegarbz (1787294) | more than 2 years ago | (#36340974)

from anonymous children

Three words that show you just don't get it.

Twitter and Facebook have a large number of anonymous children. They also have a large following of corporate PR, legitimate news announcers, and non-anonymous important dudes (in someone's view). The fact that some news is broken FIRST on twitter and Facebook and the fact that news articles mention it at all is a clear indication of its perceived importance and relevant in the modern world.

Re:brand names (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36341030)

That's actually their "value".

Suppose there are only some seven sufficiently established services. Facebook and Twitter and your choice of five more.

We're moving toward an age where people are being taught through ads that Choice is a Bad Thing. ("Oh My Wordy, you have to 'manage' more than one service.")

However the CEOs did their deals, they're making it so you only have seven choices of how to post something. Then it becomes a game of peer pressure - "everyone else is here, why not you?".

Good. (5, Insightful)

radio4fan (304271) | more than 2 years ago | (#36340806)

Any objective person can see that saying "Follow us on twitter!" is an endorsement of a commercial service, and it's not legal in France to pepper news programs with adverts like this.

The blogtards and upcoming posters who say "Stupid bans like these don't work" and "Next they will be after McDonalds and Disney" are either missing the point due to a lack of thought, or don't care about the point and just like to criticize France anyway.

Personally, I'm amazed that CSA have finally pulled their finger out and have reminded the broadcasters of their responsibilities.

Re:Good. (1)

matunos (1587263) | more than 2 years ago | (#36341114)

Wouldn't the news show having a presence on Twitter/Facebook be an endorsement? Indicating that they have said presence isn't so much an endorsement as a statement of fact. Can they mention their website? Is that an implicit endorsement of their web hosting company? The internet providers you might use to reach their site? The companies who manufacture the ethernet and/or wifi devices you might use to access them? Are they endorsing France Télécom when they give out their phone number?

Over time, this issue will be settled in overtime. (2)

magusxxx (751600) | more than 2 years ago | (#36340828)

Then Twitter and Facebook will have to do what American companies have done for years. Buy sports stadiums. Then every time a game is played there, their name is mentioned during the sports replays.

I wish they had that in Australia (3)

JinjaontheNile (2217694) | more than 2 years ago | (#36340848)

It is becoming obligatory that half the news stories have half arsed irrelevant comments from Facebook or Twitter Unfortunately I suspect our journalists will find a way around minor obstructions like the French promotion laws.

Nothing to see here (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36340952)

My guess is "Facebook" will just become "a major social networking site" and "Twitter" will be "a major micro-blogging site". Everyone will know who they mean.

The current French government's internet policy is invariably stupid but this particular incident is just posturing.

what? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36340994)

This is ridiculous, the social networking scene has grown beyond just "hey guys check out this 'new' thing", it became a network, a network of people, a new medium to retrive news from. I don't understand why can't there be an exception, facebook has become the new adress book and twitter has become the 'newsfeed of "x" person'.

Finally some decency. (3)

Haedrian (1676506) | more than 2 years ago | (#36341036)

I'm tired of the 'news' stories pointing out what X said on twitter, and what pictures Y put on facebook related to the news in question.

I for one hope more people adopt it.

France has stronger anti-ads policy than US (4, Informative)

Trigger31415 (1912176) | more than 2 years ago | (#36341056)

Some examples : -Logos of trademarks that appear in music clip (and the rest) must be blurred. -A video announcer cannot promote his own book (example: this can't happen Glen Beck [youtube.com]. Oh, and btw, his analysis of the French riots of 2005 is completely false, ofc. Hello FUD). -Trailers of films cannot be broadcast on TV as ads (only during emission about cinema) Generally speaking this comes from the same law: "No Hidden advertising" You have other reglementations, like 'in average, 6min of ads / hr max', and 'no too noisy ads' (wasn't that a recent proposition from Obama?). More recently, it was decided to stop broadcasting of all advertising on gvt-owned TV channels, which usually account for more than 50% of hearing. Whether you like or not those laws, comparing them to the Freedom Fries stuff is stupid, and shows that the author ignores French culture...

Simply stupid idea (1)

Pecisk (688001) | more than 2 years ago | (#36341060)

Before social network deniers are celebrating and saying "We don't need people to be dependent to this shit!", sorry guys, they already are. People are using Tweets for news what have happened *right* now. People are using this short form to communicate more effectively than any public radio/television have ever done. Denying these additional ways of communication between public press and people is stupid and back-crawling. Also there is quite fine line between endorsement/advertisment and just mentioning additional communication possibilities. For example, public tv news in my country have used Twitter and Youtube so successfully that people watch news again. They ask for opinions, discuss reports, etc. They are rising interest on what's going on in the country in new generations.

Single source... (1)

Bert64 (520050) | more than 2 years ago | (#36341072)

What we really need are decentralised systems, as we already have for email and to a lesser extent IM with jabber...

While it's almost certainly against the rules to talk about gmail because thats promoting google's business, to talk about the general concept of email is just fine because its an open standard that covers thousands of different providers.

So, have a decentralised equivalent of facebook and twitter, then everyone else would be far better off... No single point of failure, no single company having too much power etc.

Banning the words seems harsh but... (1)

matunos (1587263) | more than 2 years ago | (#36341102)

...I wouldn't mind if "newsmen" would stop reading random goddamned tweets on the air as if they're somehow interesting or relevant. If a tweet doesn't have a congressman's penis allegedly contained within, it doesn't belong on your news show.
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