Wednesday, July 02, 2003

Bloggers Gain Libel Protection
by Xeni Jardin

The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled last Tuesday that Web loggers, website operators and e-mail list editors can't be held responsible for libel for information they republish, extending crucial First Amendment protections to do-it-yourself online publishers.

Online free speech advocates praised the decision as a victory. The ruling effectively differentiates conventional news media, which can be sued relatively easily for libel, from certain forms of online communication such as moderated e-mail lists. One implication is that DIY publishers like bloggers cannot be sued as easily.

Great news for on-line diarists everywhere!

Wal-Mart Extends Anti-Discrimination Policy To Gay Workers

BENTONVILLE, Ark. (AP) -- Wal-Mart Stores Inc. [...], the nation's largest private employer, will now include gays and lesbians in its antidiscrimination policy, company officials said Wednesday.

The policy change had been considered for months and is now effect, company spokesman Tom Williams said.

Oh, how big-hearted of you, Wal-Mart. What the heck took you so long?!?! It's great that you're making changes, but it saddens me to think how slow you've been to make them.

Vancouver wins 2010 Winter Games, first Canadian Olympics since '88
By JIM MORRIS -- Canadian Press

PRAGUE -- It was close, but the Olympic Games are coming to Canada.

Rallying from a first-ballot deficit, Vancouver edged Pyeongchang, South Korea, by just three votes Wednesday to win the right to host the 2010 Winter Olympics. Salzburg, Austria, was eliminated after the first ballot.

"The International Olympic Committee has the honour of announcing that the 21st Olympic Winter Games in 2010 are awarded to the city of Vancouver," said IOC president Jacques Rogge.

Vancouver edged its South Korean rival 56-53 on the second ballot, with 55 needed to win.

Good news for Vancouver. Unfortunately, the results of today's I.O.C. vote will most likely be the death knell for any Toronto bid in the near future. Precedent shows the I.O.C. is extremely reluctant to award Olympics to the same host country within such a short span of time (the 1996 Atlanta games and 2002 Salt Lake City games seem to be an exception). Vancouver's 1970 bid to host the 1976 Winter Games failed miserably despite strong support. Many attribute that bid's failure to the fact that Montreal was awarded the 1976 Summer Games only hours before the vote on the Winter Games.

Still, all this may mean nothing. If there is one thing the I.O.C. has shown throughout the years, it has been unpredictability.

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