Index on Censorship: Fitwatch closure threatens free speech
Val Swain, a Fitwatch activist, writes a strident defense of the closed site over on Index on Censorship. As pointed out, the site was closed before it got taken to court. The decision to take the website down was taken entirely by the police.
The effect on freedom of expression may not be immediately apparent. While Fitwatch may dig its heels in, others will start to worry about the wisdom of publishing contentious information. And while dozens may rally round to resist police censorship, dozens more may become that little bit more cautious about what they post. Nobody wants to have their website taken down, or be accused of criminal activity. If we value freedom of expression, we should not tolerate the police deciding what websites we should, or shouldn’t be allowed to read.