FC: Swedish paper found liable for pro-Nazi rants on discussion board

From: Declan McCullagh (declanat_private)
Date: Sun Mar 10 2002 - 10:21:23 PST

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       Swedish court holds forum owner responsible (Freedom & Politics)
       Thu Mar 7th, 2002 at 04:19:42 PM EST
       In a ruling today, a Swedish court holds the editor of thke web
       edition of Aftonbladet (a major Swedish newspaper) responsible for
       comments published on their forum, and the forum has subsequently
       Aftonbladet was one of the first Swedish newspapers with a web
       edition. They are still the most visited website in Sweden, and they
       have up until today encouraged their visitors to voice their opinion
       on different news items in an online forum called 'Tyck till' ("Your
       In October 2000, four posts on the forum expressed Nazi sympathies,
       and owing to some technical problems, they were not deleted from the
       forum (which is moderated) for some time.
       This caused charges to be brought on Aftonbladet for agitation against
       an ethnic group, and the matter was resolved today when the editor of
       the web edition was found guilty of the charges, on the grounds that
       the posts were published in the first place.
       The Swedish constitution states that freedom of speech does not
       include the right to agitate against an ethnic group, and this was
       what the court felt was more important than the fact that the editor
       tried to remove the offending posts.
       This ruling sets a precedent whereby the publisher of a website can be
       held responsible for what is published in an open forum, and it might
       even spell the end for unmoderated online discussion on Swedish
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