To those calling for attention to be paid to alleged Russian hacking of the 2016 election, the president-elect says we should “get on with our lives.’’ He also notes, “I think that computers have complicated lives very greatly. The whole age of the computer has made it where nobody knows exactly what’s going on.” Meanwhile, Arkansas investigators ask a court to force turnover of anything overheard by a murder suspect’s internet-connected Amazon Echo.
– Dru Menaker, Chief Operating Officer


DARE: Daily Alert on Rights and Expression

PEN America’s take on today’s most pressing threats to free expression


Trump on alleged election interference by Russia: ‘Get on with our lives’
President-elect Donald Trump distanced himself Wednesday night from the Obama administration’s plans to punish Russia for its alleged interference in the 2016 presidential election, telling reporters that “I think we ought to get on with our lives.”

Alexa a witness to murder? Prosecutors seek Amazon Echo data
Authorities investigating the death of an Arkansas man whose body was found in a hot tub want to expand the probe to include a new kind of evidence: any comments overheard by the suspect’s Amazon Echo smart speaker.

Melania Trump, First Amendment warrior?
A source inside the Trump team stressed the thematic proximity between cyberbullying and the defense of free speech—namely, that meanness on social media is protected speech, but that doesn’t mean it’s proper and constructive.

American Colleges Are Approaching a Constitutional Crisis
Universities and federal bureaucrats are together systematically violating the constitutional rights of students and professors. The stories are legion, the legal standards are unconscionable, and it’s past time for other branches of American government to step in and set things right.

Don’t worry about the media normalizing Donald Trump, worry about them enabling him
Just as the bizarre reality show of a campaign stymied 17 GOP rivals and the campaign of Hillary Clinton, his nascent presidency shows every sign of stymieing the Democrats and the political press.


Turkish journalist Ahmet Sik held ‘over tweet’
Police in Istanbul have detained a prominent investigative journalist, Ahmet Sik, in connection with his social media postings. The arrest of Sik came shortly before writer Asli Erdogan and linguist Necmiye Alpay appeared in a Turkish court.

Investigators Question South Korean Officials About Artist Blacklist
Following a complaint from a group of artists, a prosecution team has begun questioning officials about a supposed blacklist of 9,000 artists who had been deemed unfriendly to the administration.

Chinese state media rails against film review websites for giving new Chinese movies poor marks
Chinese state media have taken popular online movie review sites to task for giving three new domestic blockbusters failing marks, accusing them of trying to undermine the domestic cinema industry by manipulating ratings.

Reporting From the War Zone: Why Conflict Journalism Matters
Perhaps this is an overly idealistic perception to hold about my career as a journalist—but don’t we, as journalists, have a duty to our readers? Shouldn’t our work be about more than page views, Facebook clicks, and retweets? Shouldn’t substance matter, too?

Musical Censorship in India and Pakistan
At the end of September, the Indian motion picture producer’s association announced a ban on all Pakistani artists. In retaliation, Pakistan authorities imposed a ban on airing Indian content on its TV channels. This cultural war, triggered by the September Uri attacks in Kashmir, is far from new.

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