Remember when a British Library patron was barred from reading Hamlet because an “overly sensitive” Wi-Fi filter decided the play was too violent?
The press reported the story incredulously, focusing more on the folly of using faulty software than on any actual effort to block people from seeing content that somebody deemed inappropriate.
Even when I wrote about the episode — citing our ethical obligation, as journalists and technical writers, to serve our readers with content that’s truthful and complete — I regarded true censorship as something far away and remote. It happened in places like China, where authorities tried to silence the late dissident Liu Xiaobo. But not here in the democratic West.
That was four years ago. Since then, the faraway threat of censorship has come to our doorsteps. Continue reading