Automattic, the company I work for, has a mission: to democratize publishing – and one of the ways it does it is with the open source software, WordPress.
In other words, because of WordPress, virtually anyone can use the same software to build their site as the large news corporations, and can therefore speak their mind openly online.
As part of that, Automattic publishes a transparency report, which addresses government information requests and takedown demands.
“We work hard to carefully review the infringement complaints we receive and push back against those that are improper,” states the wording on the website. “We’ve compiled a small list of examples of improper takedown demands that we’ve received, to illustrate threats to freedom of speech and expression that we review and resist every day.”
And recently, one of these takedown requests hit somewhat close to home, in my home province of British Columbia.
According to this article, the city took offense to a blog post by a homeless blogger, who wrote a post about the city’s actions – about the city’s reportedly spreading chicken manure on a homeless person’s camp.
In the post, the blogger used a modified version of the Abbotsford City Logo:
The DMCA takedown complaint was rejected, and you can read the whole story here. Check it out, it’s worth it!
And by the way – if you are interested in working for a company that’s making a difference in the world, we’re hiring.