Supporters of far-right provocateur Richard Spencer are suing public universities in Ohio, Michigan, and Pennsylvania in efforts to force schools to allow him to speak on campus. The relationship between state-backed channel Russia Today and YouTube is coming under scrutiny as part of the investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election. Following an investigation by Buzzfeed into Milo Yiannopoulos’ ties to white nationalist groups, Breitbart reportedly cuts ties with their former tech editor. CNN launches nationwide Facts First campaign. -Anoosh Gasparian, External Relations Coordinator

The most pressing threats and notable goings-on in free expression today


Richard Spencer’s supporters sue universities for not allowing speeches
Ohio State, Michigan State, and Penn State have announced they will not allow Spencer to rent a campus venue, citing public safety concerns and serious disruption to school communities. Spencer’s backers argue this is an unconstitutional infringement of his rights.

Russia’s Favored Outlet Is an Online News Giant. YouTube Helped.
YouTube played a crucial role in helping build and expand RT, an organization the American intelligence community has described as the Kremlin’s “principal international propaganda outlet” and a key player in Russia’s information warfare operations around the world.

Steve Bannon Dropped Milo After White Nationalism Revelations. Will The Mercers Stand By Him?
Steve Bannon has told multiple people that he will never work with Milo Yiannopoulos again in the aftermath of a BuzzFeed News exposé linking Breitbart’s former tech editor to white nationalists. But members of the Mercer family have not signaled whether they will continue to bankroll the controversial culture warrior.

CNN Launches New Ad Campaign, ‘Facts First’
“CNN has never been more relevant, and the institution of journalism has never been more important to the national conversation. As a result, we think there is no better time to take a clear stand for who we are and what we believe in,” CNN president Jeff Zucker said while announcing the “Facts First” campaign.


Occupy leaders Joshua Wong and Nathan Law freed on bail and raring to continue democracy fight
Jailed Occupy protest leaders Joshua Wong Chi-fung and Nathan Law Kwun-chung presented a picture of defiance after they were released on bail by Hong Kong’s chief justice, vowing to continue their fight for greater democracy.

Kazakh Journalist and Political Asylum Seeker Arrested in Kyiv
Kazakh journalist Zhanara Akhmet has been detained in Kyiv. According to her lawyer, the journalist and public figure was detained because she is on Interpol’s international wanted list at the request of the Kazakh authorities.

Senior journalist arrested in South Waziristan under FCR
The political administration of South Waziristan has arrested senior journalist Sheheryar Mehsud, who is associated with a number of newspapers as a columnist, under the infamous Frontier Crimes Regulations (FCR).

Israel Arrests Palestinian Because Facebook Translated ‘Good Morning’ to ‘Attack Them’
The Israel Police mistakenly arrested a Palestinian worker because they relied on automatic translation software to translate a post he wrote on his Facebook page. The man was arrested after writing “good morning,” which translated to “attack them”; no Arabic-speaking police officer read the post before the man’s arrest.

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