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Trump Administration challenges University of Michigan anti-bullying initiative. Fifteen Syracuse students suspended over video depicting verbal offenses that students say were intended as satire. Medical resident claims he was terminated from employment by Vanderbilt University due to criticism of Trump. Administration of Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel uses intrusive surveillance tactics to monitor protests. -Suzanne Nossel, Chief Executive Officer

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


Trump Administration Challenges University of Michigan Anti-Bullying Rules
The Trump administration challenged the state university’s longstanding rules against harassment, bullying and bias, saying that the rules discouraged students from expressing their views and left students open to the possibility of penalties for engaging in free speech.

15 Syracuse Students Suspended Over Fraternity Videos That Ignited Campus Protests
Fifteen Syracuse University students who participated in fraternity videos described by the school’s chancellor as racist and anti-Semitic were suspended last week. The students claim that the videos were intended as satire.

Doctor Known for Criticizing Trump Loses Job at Vanderbilt
A Tennessee doctor lost his job at Vanderbilt University, and claims it was because of his criticism of Trump on Twitter. He is one of seven individuals who sued the president and won in the court case that determined Trump violated the First Amendment by blocking Twitter users.

The Administration of Mayor Rahm Emanuel Keeps Monitoring Protesters
The Emanuel administration routinely tracks protesters and activist groups, and now the mayor and police department may soon be able to use drones to monitor demonstrations and other public events.

Ajit Pai is Twisting the Meaning of the “Open Internet”
“The truth is that most Americans have no more than one, maybe two, choices when it comes to high-speed internet. If your internet provider is blocking access to some websites and you don’t like it, you very well may have nowhere else to go.”


Reuters Reporters Say Deprived of Sleep During Myanmar Probe. *PEN Case List
Two Reuters reporters accused in Myanmar of possessing secret documents were subjected to sleep deprivation and asked if they were “spies” during police interrogations. Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo face prison sentences of up to 14 years if they are charged under the colonial-era Official Secrets Act.

US Broadcaster Loses Myanmar Outlet Over Rohingya Name
A U.S. government-affiliated broadcaster that provides news to countries in Asia where freedom of information is restricted is losing its partner in Myanmar after refusing to stop using the word “Rohingya” to describe an oppressed Muslim minority.

Facebook Faces Criticism of Ad Policy From Global Publishers
Facebook is facing more blowback for its decision to categorize the promotion of news articles as political content, with media publishers and broadcast organizations in more than 120 countries now urging Mark Zuckerberg to change its policy.

Vietnam Tightens Grip on Internet With Data-Storage Law
Vietnam has adopted a cybersecurity law that requires internet companies such as Facebook and Google to store their Vietnam-based users’ data on servers in the country. Critics fear the new law could make it easier for authorities to track down critics online.

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