“Sat Chatterjee has waged a campaign of misinformation against me and Azalia for over two years now,” Ms. Goldie said in a written statement.

She said the work had been peer-reviewed by Nature, one of the most prestigious scientific publications. And she added that Google had used their methods to build new chips and that these chips were currently used in Google’s computer data centers.

Laurie M. Burgess, Dr. Chatterjee’s lawyer, said it was disappointing that “certain authors of the Nature paper are trying to shut down scientific discussion by defaming and attacking Dr. Chatterjee for simply seeking scientific transparency.” Ms. Burgess also questioned the leadership of Dr. Dean, who was one of 20 co-authors of the Nature paper.

“Jeff Dean’s actions to repress the release of all relevant experimental data, not just data that supports his favored hypothesis, should be deeply troubling both to the scientific community and the broader community that consumes Google services and products,” Ms. Burgess said.

Dr. Dean did not respond to a request for comment.

After the rebuttal paper was shared with academics and other experts outside Google, the controversy spread throughout the global community of researchers who specialize in chip design.

The chip maker Nvidia says it has used methods for chip design that are similar to Google’s, but some experts are unsure what Google’s research means for the larger tech industry.

“If this is really working well, it would be a really great thing,” said Jens Lienig, a professor at the Dresden University of Technology in Germany, referring to the A.I. technology described in Google’s paper. “But it is not clear if it is working.”

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Inside Twitter, Fears That Musk’s Views Will Revisit Past Troubles

Elon Musk had a plan to buy Twitter and undo its content moderation policies. On Tuesday, just a day after reaching his $44 billion deal to buy the company, Mr. Musk was already at work on his agenda. He tweeted that past moderation decisions by a top Twitter lawyer were “obviously incredibly inappropriate.” Later, he shared a meme mocking the lawyer, sparking a torrent of attacks from other Twitter users.

Mr. Musk’s personal critique was a rough reminder of what faces employees who create and enforce Twitter’s complex content moderation policies. His vision for the company would take it right back to where it started, employees said, and force Twitter to relive the last decade.

Twitter executives who created the rules said they had once held views about online speech that were similar to Mr. Musk’s. They believed Twitter’s policies should be limited, mimicking local laws. But more than a decade of grappling with violence, harassment and election tampering changed their minds. Now, many executives at Twitter and other social media companies view their content moderation policies as essential safeguards to protect speech.

The question is whether Mr. Musk, too, will change his mind when confronted with the darkest corners of Twitter.

The tweets must flow. That meant Twitter did little to moderate the conversations on its platform.

Twitter’s founders took their cues from Blogger, the publishing platform, owned by Google, that several of them had helped build. They believed that any reprehensible content would be countered or drowned out by other users, said three employees who worked at Twitter during that time.

“There’s a certain amount of idealistic zeal that you have: ‘If people just embrace it as a platform of self-expression, amazing things will happen,’” said Jason Goldman, who was on Twitter’s founding team and served on its board of directors. “That mission is valuable, but it blinds you to think certain bad things that happen are bugs rather than equally weighted uses of the platform.”

The company typically removed content only if it contained spam, or violated American laws forbidding child exploitation and other criminal acts.

In 2008, Twitter hired Del Harvey, its 25th employee and the first person it assigned the challenge of moderating content full time. The Arab Spring protests started in 2010, and Twitter became a megaphone for activists, reinforcing many employees’ belief that good speech would win out online. But Twitter’s power as a tool for harassment became clear in 2014 when it became the epicenter of Gamergate, a mass harassment campaign that flooded women in the video game industry with death and rape threats.

2,700 fake Twitter profiles and used them to sow discord about the upcoming presidential election between Mr. Trump and Hillary Clinton.

The profiles went undiscovered for months, while complaints about harassment continued. In 2017, Jack Dorsey, the chief executive at the time, declared that policy enforcement would become the company’s top priority. Later that year, women boycotted Twitter during the #MeToo movement, and Mr. Dorsey acknowledged the company was “still not doing enough.”

He announced a list of content that the company would no longer tolerate: nude images shared without the consent of the person pictured, hate symbols and tweets that glorified violence.

Alex Jones from its service because they repeatedly violated policies.

The next year, Twitter rolled out new policies that were intended to prevent the spread of misinformation in future elections, banning tweets that could dissuade people from voting or mislead them about how to do so. Mr. Dorsey banned all forms of political advertising, but often left difficult moderation decisions to Ms. Gadde.

landmark legislation called the Digital Services Act, which requires social media platforms like Twitter to more aggressively police their services for hate speech, misinformation and illicit content.

The new law will require Twitter and other social media companies with more than 45 million users in the European Union to conduct annual risk assessments about the spread of harmful content on their platforms and outline plans to combat the problem. If they are not seen as doing enough, the companies can be fined up to 6 percent of their global revenue, or even be banned from the European Union for repeat offenses.

Inside Twitter, frustrations have mounted over Mr. Musk’s moderation plans, and some employees have wondered if he would really halt their work during such a critical moment, when they are set to begin moderating tweets about elections in Brazil and another national election in the United States.

Adam Satariano contributed reporting.

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Russia warns media: don’t report interview with Ukrainian president, article with image

Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelenskiy addresses the Ukrainian people, as Russia’s attack on Ukraine continues, in Kyiv, Ukraine March 23, 2022. Picture taken March 23, 2022. Ukrainian Presidential Press Service/Handout via REUTERS

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LONDON, March 27 (Reuters) – Russia’s communications watchdog told Russian media on Sunday to refrain from reporting an interview done with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy and said it had started a probe into the outlets which had interviewed the Ukrainian leader.

In a short statement distributed by the watchdog on social media and posted on its website, it said a host of Russian outlets had done an interview with Zelenskiy.

“Roskomnadzor warns the Russian media about the necessity of refraining from publishing this interview,” it said. It did not give a reason for its warning.

Russian prosecutors said a legal opinion would be made on the statements made in the interview and on the legality of publishing the interview.

Zelenskiy spoke to several Russian publications.

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Reporting by Guy Faulconbridge, Editing by Jane Merriman, William Maclean

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Russia tells Google to stop spreading threats against Russians on YouTube, article with image

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Youtube logo is placed on a Russian flag in this illustration picture taken February 26, 2022. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration

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  • Russia demands YouTube stop spreading threats to Russians
  • Facebook, Instagram blocked in Russia; Google under pressure
  • Russia says it has tools to develop its own social media

March 18 (Reuters) – Russia on Friday demanded that Alphabet Inc’s (GOOGL.O) Google stop spreading what it called threats against Russian citizens on its YouTube video-sharing platform, a move that could presage an outright block of the service on Russian territory.

The regulator, Roskomnadzor, said adverts on the platform were calling for the communications systems of Russia and Belarus’ railway networks to be suspended and that their dissemination was evidence of the U.S. company’s anti-Russian position. It did not say which accounts were publishing the adverts.

“The actions of YouTube’s administration are of a terrorist nature and threaten the life and health of Russian citizens,” the regulator said.

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“Roskomnadzor categorically opposes such advertising campaigns and demands that Google stop broadcasting anti-Russia videos as soon as possible.”

Google removed an advertisement that was flagged by the Russian government, according to a source familiar with the matter who declined to describe it.

The dispute was the latest in a series between Moscow and foreign tech firms over Ukraine.

YouTube, which has blocked Russian state-funded media globally, is under heavy pressure from Russia’s communications regulator and politicians.

Outraged that Meta Platforms (FB.O) was allowing social media users in Ukraine to post messages such as “Death to the Russian invaders”, Moscow blocked Instagram this week, having already stopped access to Facebook because of what it said were restrictions by the platform on Russian media. read more

Russian news media including RIA and Sputnik quoted an unnamed source as saying YouTube could be blocked next week or as early as Friday.

DOMESTIC ALTERNATIVES

Former Russian President Dmitry Medvedev on Friday wrote a fierce criticism of foreign social media firms, mentioning by name both Meta and YouTube, but he hinted that the door leading to their possible return to the Russian market would be left ajar.

“The ‘guardians’ of free speech have in all seriousness allowed users of their social media to wish death upon the Russian military,” Medvedev, who served as president from 2008 to 2012 and is now deputy secretary of Russia’s Security Council, wrote on the messaging app Telegram.

Medvedev said Russia has the necessary tools and experience to develop its own social media, saying the “one-way game” of Western firms controlling information flows could not continue.

“In order to return, they will have to prove their independence and good attitude to Russia and its citizens,” he wrote. “However, it is not a fact that they will be able to dip their toes in the same water twice.”

VKontakte, Russia’s answer to Facebook, has been breaking records for activity on its platform since Russia sent troops into Ukraine on Feb. 24.

The site attracted 300,000 new users in the two weeks after Russia began what it calls a “special operation” to demilitarise and “de-Nazify” its neighbour.

On the day Instagram was blocked in Russia, VKontakte said its daily domestic audience grew by 8.7% to more than 50 million people, a new record.

Anton Gorelkin, a member of Russia’s State Duma committee on information and communications, pointed Russians to services that would help them move videos from YouTube to the domestic equivalent, RuTube.

“It’s not that I’m calling for everyone to immediately leave YouTube,” he said on his Telegram channel. “But, probably, in light of recent events it is worth following the principle of not keeping all your eggs in one basket.”

He said earlier this week that YouTube may face the same fate as Instagram if it continues “to act as a weapon in the information war”.

Russian tech entrepreneurs said this week they would launch picture-sharing application Rossgram on the domestic market to help fill the void left by Instagram. read more

In November, Gazprom Media launched Yappy as a domestic rival to video-sharing platform TikTok.

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Reporting by Reuters
Editing by Andrei Khalip, Angus MacSwan, Frances Kerry and Grant McCool

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Ukraine Live Updates: 3 European Leaders Say They’re in Kyiv in Show of Support

Shortly after Russia passed a new censorship law that effectively criminalized accurate reporting on the war in Ukraine, CNN executives on two continents gathered for an emergency video call to figure out what would happen next.

The 24-hour news network had employed numerous correspondents in Russia since the latter years of the Soviet Union. Now their future in the country, and perhaps their safety, were up in the air.

Senior producers in New York and London conferred with lawyers at CNN headquarters in Atlanta and reporters in Moscow about the new law, which raised the prospect of 15-year prison terms for journalists who called the war in Ukraine a “war.” Within hours, the network ceased broadcasting in Russia, joining other Western news outlets — including the BBC, Bloomberg News and ABC News — that temporarily or partly suspended their Moscow-based operations.

“When it comes to a potential threat to somebody, that far and away outweighs everything else in the consideration,” Michael Bass, CNN’s executive vice president of programming, said in an interview. “It would be better for our reporting and our coverage of the story to continue reporting every single day and multiple times a day from Russia, but an assessment had to be made of what can be done for your people.”

Credit…CNN

In an echo of the exodus of journalists from Afghanistan after the Taliban swept through the country last year, media executives and editors are engaged in a high-stakes debate about risk in Russia. Is it prudent, they ask their reporters over secure apps each day, to gather news in an increasingly hostile and isolated country? If not, is it feasible to continue from outside its borders?

“There is a constant minute-to-minute triage of that balance,” said Matthew Baise, director of digital strategy at Voice of America, the U.S. government broadcaster, which until recently employed several journalists reporting from Russia. “Every day, we’re attempting to adapt to the situation there while not jeopardizing people’s lives, but we also have to have a way to get reporting out of the country.”

Now a dozen Voice of America employees have left Russia. and others are lying low, Mr. Baise said.

Clarissa Ward, CNN’s chief international correspondent, said in an interview from Kyiv, Ukraine, that “it’s a huge blow to not be able to do the kind of journalism we all aspire to do in Russia at the moment.”

“It’s not just a global audience — there are a lot of Russians inside Russia who look to international news outlets to get a more well-rounded perspective,” said Ms. Ward, who has been reporting from Ukraine for nearly two months. One crucial perspective that can be lost, she said, is “how Russia is viewing this war, what ordinary Russians think about it.”

Inside Ukraine, journalists are facing more direct — and potentially lethal — risks. Brent Renaud, an American documentary filmmaker, was fatally shot in the head on Sunday in a suburb of Kyiv. On Monday, a Fox News correspondent, Benjamin Hall, was hospitalized after he was injured outside Kyiv.

Days earlier, Ms. Ward described via telephone how she and her CNN crew work from 9 a.m. to 4 a.m. each day, starting by assessing whether it is safe to travel outside their hotel. Often, spotty cellular service and security concerns force them to improvise: A 15-minute live dispatch from a subway station, where hundreds of Ukrainians were sheltering from a bombardment, was filmed on a producer’s phone.

For now, in Russia, the threat to journalism is statutory, but still dire: Under the new law, many correspondents there face the prospect of yearslong prison terms for doing their jobs. That has led to a stunning disintegration of Russia’s independent media, and left international news outlets racked with uncertainty.

Amnesty International said on Thursday that 150 journalists had fled the country to avoid the new law, which Marie Struthers, the group’s director for Eastern Europe and Central Asia, called “a scorched-earth strategy that has turned Russia’s media landscape into a wasteland.”

Amid the strangled flow of outside news, some have gone to great lengths to disrupt the information blackout inside Russia. On Monday, a state television employee burst onto the live broadcast of Russia’s most-watched news show, yelling, “Stop the war!” and holding up a sign that said, “They’re lying to you here.” The employee, Marina Ovsyannikova, was detained after the protest.

A bill introduced last week would create a register of anyone involved, currently or in the past, with media outlets or other organizations that Russia has deemed a “foreign agent.”

Credit…Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

News organizations have scrambled to find a working solution as the cohort of credible outlets shrinks and threatens to leave audiences inside and outside the largest nation in the world blind to its dealings.

“There are many other parts of the world where it is unsafe to be a journalist and where newsrooms are having these debates and discussions,” said Damian Radcliffe, a journalism professor at the University of Oregon. “But what’s different here is that this is such a huge, high-profile story that those internal debates are playing out in the public domain in a much more overt way.”

Last week, The New York Times said it would move its editorial staff out of Russia, and The Washington Post said it would protect Moscow-based journalists by removing bylines and datelines from certain stories. Condé Nast said it had suspended its publishing operations there. Correspondents for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation left Russia on March 6.

“It’s definitely a balancing act, and that’s why we are monitoring the situation closely and taking the necessary time to fully understand the new law,” said Chuck Thompson, a spokesman for the Canadian broadcaster.

Some outlets decided to stay put. The German public broadcasters ARD and ZDF said they planned to resume reporting from Moscow after a suspension. But the coverage will focus on the political, economic and social situations in Russia — such as the effects of economic sanctions on civilians — while the war in Ukraine will be covered from outside the country.

The BBC said last week that “after careful deliberation” it would restart its English-language reporting from Russia. (Its Russian-language correspondents have stopped working.) The broadcaster appointed Steve Rosenberg, its longtime Moscow correspondent, to be its Russia editor, and produced segments on public sentiment and McDonald’s closing its stores.

Still, BBC correspondents “have to be wary and careful about what language they use,” said Jamie Angus, a top executive who oversees news output.

On the air, Mr. Rosenberg describes the fighting as “what the Russians are calling a special military intervention.” Analysis that refers more explicitly to a war or an invasion can be delivered from London, Mr. Angus said.

The BBC has begun broadcasting through alternative channels like shortwave radio and TikTok in hopes of eluding Russian censors. Voice of America said that one day last week, 40 percent of its Russian audience had reached its coverage through censor-evading apps such as Psiphon and nthLink. Its Facebook page has also gotten an unusual surge in traffic from Italy, a sign that some Russian citizens may be using VPN services to bypass information blockades.

“There are no challenges that are insurmountable today in the digital world — we just need to be agile,” said Alen Mlatisuma, the managing editor of Voice of America’s Eurasia division.

Credit…Alexander Zemlianichenko Jr/Associated Press

Deutsche Welle, Germany’s state-owned broadcaster, had 35 people working in Russia, which was also the hub for coverage of Ukraine, Moldova, Georgia, Kazakhstan and other former Soviet republics.

Last month, the Russian government withdrew the broadcaster’s accreditation and shut down its Moscow studio. Deutsche Welle’s website is now blocked in Russia, and viewership for its Russian Facebook channel plunged. The outlet has pulled all of its reporters out of Russia, said a spokesman, Christoph Jumpelt.

“The fact that they have revoked our credentials and physically kicked us out of the country, and made it impossible to work inside Russia as officially credentialed journalists, doesn’t mean that we cannot continue to cover Russia from inside Russia,” Mr. Jumpelt said. “There are many, many ways to get access to information.”

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LME suspends nickel trading after prices soar past $100,000, article with image

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  • LME’s biggest crisis in decades
  • Says considering closing for several days
  • Big long and big short positions clashed -broker
  • China’s Tsingshan Holding Group held short position -sources
  • Shanghai raises nickel trading fees, warns investors

LONDON, March 8 (Reuters) – The London Metal Exchange (LME) was forced to halt nickel trading and cancel trades after prices doubled on Tuesday to more than $100,000 per tonne in a surge sources blamed on short covering by one of the world’s top producers.

The LME’s shock move came as Western sanctions threatened supply from major producer Russia and marked the biggest crisis to hit the 145-year-old exchange in decades.

In the 1990s a rogue Sumitomo trader tried to corner the copper market and tin trading was stopped for five years in the 1980s.

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“The current events are unprecedented,” the LME said in a notice to members. “The suspension of the nickel market has created a number of issues for market participants which need to be addressed.”

Amid market panic sparked by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, buyers are scrambling for the metal crucial for making stainless steel and electric vehicle batteries.

Traders said some position holders have also been struggling to pay margin calls.

China’s Tsingshan Holding Group, one of the world’s top nickel and stainless steel producers, had been building a short position in nickel since last year, betting prices would fall, three sources familiar with the matter said. read more

Prices rocketed as Tsingshan bought large amounts of nickel to reduce those short bets and its exposure to costly margin calls, they said.

Tsingshan and the LME declined to comment.

The LME raised margin requirements for nickel contracts by 12.5% to $2,250 a tonne and suspended nickel trading on all venues for at least the rest of the day. read more

The LME announced that all trades will be voided from midnight until 8:15 a.m. on Tuesday when trading stopped and added that it was considering a closure of several days.

“People will be asking if this really a functioning market… This is meant to be a market of last resort and people can’t get inventories to deliver against positions,” said Colin Hamilton, managing director of commodities research at BMO Capital Markets.

The LME also deferred physical delivery of maturing contracts and announced it would temporarily stop publishing official and closing nickel prices. read more

“The LME will actively plan for the reopening of the nickel market, and will announce the mechanics of this to the market as soon as possible.”

PRICES DOUBLE IN HOURS

Three-month nickel on the LME more than doubled to $101,365 a tonne before the LME halted trade on its electronic systems and in the open outcry ring.

Nickel had pared gains to $80,000 a tonne when trading was halted, up 66% on the day and a staggering 177% since Monday.

In China, the Shanghai Futures Exchange raised fees for nickel trading and urged investors to “fend off risks, invest rationally, and work together to maintain market stability”.

Nickel on the Shanghai exchange hit its upward limit in night trading at a record 267,700 yuan ($42,380.39) per tonne and also reached the 15% limit up early on Tuesday.

CITIC Futures, China’s biggest futures company, warned clients that if nickel prices continued to jump on Wednesday, the Shanghai exchange could take action, including forced position cuts, an internal notice seen by Reuters showed.

LME nickel suspended after it doubles

MARKET BATTLE

The explosive gains, which have seen prices quadruple over the past week, resulted from two major players facing off, said Malcolm Freeman of Kingdom Futures, who declined to identify them.

One entity has control of between 50% and 80% of LME inventories, LME data shows.

“There’s a very big short and a very big long who’ve been sparring. And because of their sparring, it’s brutalised so many other shorts,” said Freeman.

Some small industrial users have been caught in the crossfire, having taken positions to get physical delivery but then hit with margins calls costing millions of dollars, he added. read more

The uncertainty caused by Russia’s invasion and resulting sanctions has added to an already bullish nickel market due to low inventories, which have halved on the LME since October.

Russia not only supplies about 10% of the world’s nickel but Russia’s Nornickel is the world’s biggest supplier of battery- grade nickel at 15%-20% of global supply, said JPMorgan analyst Dominic O’Kane.

The LME is owned by Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Ltd.

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Additional reporting by Praima Desai and Zandi Shabalala in London, Eileen Soreng in Bengaluru, Meg Shen in Hong Kong, Emily Chow in Beijing; editing by Jason Neely

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France targets groups, websites with expanded powers under anti-terror law

PARIS, Jan 26 (Reuters) – The French government said this week it was closing down an activist-run media outlet and a Muslim website deemed at odds with “national values”, the latest in a series of steps that rights groups and lawyers say infringe on democratic freedoms.

Following a violent protest against the extreme right in Nantes, Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin said he would shut down “Nantes Révoltée”, a local media platform, which had relayed information about the protest.

Days earlier, he had announced plans to close the website “La Voie Droite”, which publishes Islamic religious content.

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The government has been making increasing use of powers to shut down organisations or groups. In the last two years, there have been 12 such shutdowns, an uptick from seven between 2016 and 2019, according to French public records.

Before dissolving an association, the Ministry of Interior informs the concerned party, which has 15 days to reply with its counter-arguments. Then, once the decree is published, the organisation can take the case to the Council of State, an administrative court.

To date, Nante Révoltée says it has not received any communication from the Ministry of Interior regarding its closure.

Of the organisations shut by decree since January 2020, seven are Muslim-related, including associations to run mosques, a humanitarian organisation and anti-Islamophobia groups, the records show. Three far-right groups have been closed.

Announcing the plan to close “Nantes Révoltée” to MPs in the French parliament on Tuesday, Darmanin described it as an “ultra-left” group that had repeatedly called for violence against the state and the police in the run-up to the weekend protest, at which three people were arrested, shop windows were broken and fights broke out.

Raphael Kempf, a lawyer for Nantes Révoltée, said that a website sharing information on an event could not be held responsible for what happens there.

“We are seeing a government that is using this legal tool to attack voices that criticise them,” says Kempf, adding that the government now has enhanced powers under 2021 legislation that makes inciting violence grounds for dissolution. Previously the groups had to themselves be armed or violent.

CRITICAL VOICES

The 2021 legislation was introduced in response to violent attacks that France has seen in recent years, including the beheading of schoolteacher Samuel Paty in 2020 and the 2015 attacks on Paris that killed 130 people.

But some lawyers and campaign groups say the authorities are overreaching to muzzle critical voices and target anyone practising a form of Islam not approved by the state.

During a TV interview on Sunday, Darmanin announced the Islamic website “La Voie Droite” would be closed using the 2021 legislation for “content inciting for hatred and calling for jihad”.

La Voie Droite denied publishing such content, saying in a statement that “when we encourage Muslims to respect the texts, it is opposed to any type of threat or legitimation of violence”.

The French Interior Ministry did not immediately respond to Reuters’ request for comment.

In another step that has alarmed some rights groups, the French government has ramped up censorship of content on the internet deemed to be terrorist-related or justifying violence under a 2014 law. Officials say that is necessary to stem violent attacks.

Noémie Levain, a lawyer with digital rights organisation La Quadrature du Net, said these powers were open to abuse.

“The decision-making process is opaque,” she said. “[The police] can designate something Muslim as problematic even if it is not violent, they can do the same with something activist that is calling to protest.”

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Reporting by Layli Foroudi; Editing by Alex Richardson

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Judge orders New York Times to return Project Veritas internal memos

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WASHINGTON, Dec 24 (Reuters) – A New York state judge on Friday ordered the New York Times to return internal documents to the conservative activist group Project Veritas, a restriction the newspaper said violates decades of First Amendment protections.

In an unusual written ruling, Justice Charles Wood of the Westchester County Supreme Court directed the New York Times to return to Project Veritas any physical copies of legal memos prepared by one of the group’s lawyers, and to destroy electronic versions.

Wood had entered a temporary order against the New York Times last month, drawing criticism from freedom of the press advocates. read more

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Project Veritas, led by James O’Keefe, has used what critics view as misleading tactics like secret audio recording to expose what it describes as liberal media bias. The group is the subject of a Justice Department probe into its possible role in the theft of a diary from President Joe Biden’s daughter, Ashley, pages of which were published on a right-wing website.

Project Veritas objected to a Nov. 11 Times article that drew from the legal memos and purported to reveal how the group worked with its lawyers to “gauge how far its deceptive reporting practices can go before running afoul of federal laws.”

Wood said in Friday’s ruling that the Project Veritas legal memos were not a matter of public concern and that the group has a right to keep them private that outweighs concerns about freedom of the press.

“Steadfast fidelity to, and vigilance in protecting First Amendment freedoms cannot be permitted to abrogate the fundamental protections of attorney-client privilege or the basic right to privacy,” Wood wrote.

A.G. Sulzberger, publisher of the New York Times, said the newspaper would appeal the ruling.

Sulzberger said the decision barred the Times from publishing newsworthy information that was obtained legally in the ordinary course of reporting.

“In addition to imposing this unconstitutional prior restraint, the judge has gone even further (and) ordered that we return this material, a ruling with no apparent precedent and one that could present obvious risks to exposing sources should it be allowed to stand,” Sulzberger said.

Libby Locke, a lawyer for Project Veritas, said in a statement that the New York Times’ behavior was “irregular,” and that the ruling affirms that view.

“The New York Times has long forgotten the meaning of the journalism it claims to espouse, and has instead become a vehicle for the prosecution of a partisan political agenda,” Locke said.

Project Veritas has been engaged in defamation litigation against the New York Times since last year, when the newspaper published a piece calling the group’s work “deceptive.”

The Times had not faced any prior restraint since 1971, when the Nixon administration unsuccessfully sought to block the publication of the Pentagon Papers detailing U.S. military involvement in Vietnam.

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Reporting by Jan Wolfe;
Editing by Mary Milliken and Leslie Adler

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