Saturday, March 26, 2016

European Small Claims Court: Facebook blocks me for the seventh time since 1 December 2015

We will wait until the next Facebook block to continue working on our case against Facebook Ireland for the European Small Claims Court. This is paragraph 38 of Declan's updated complaint to the United Nations under Article 19 (freedom of expression) of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights that he dispatched yesterday (see previous blog). It cites the seven Facebook blocks we have experienced since 1 December 2015.



Paragraph 38 of Declan's updated complaint to the United Nations citing seven Facebook blocks since 1 December 2015

38. At a preliminary hearing on 3 February 2016, District Judge Silverman ruled that the county court does not have the authority to intervene in what is an administrative dispute with a public body. The following incidents since the Applicant's lodgement of his claim in the county court in September 2015 - by no means exhaustive - serve to highlight the Applicant and his wife's high needs as a result of strong opposition and disruption:

(i) On 9 December 2015 the Applicant's wife's laptop was rendered useless for work after it was made technically incapable of publishing material on their Church and State website. She could solely not use her laptop to create a WordPress post, add images, or click on most of the platform's buttons. This could only have been an attack on her laptop because the platform worked perfectly well on the Applicant's laptop and on an old laptop they use as back up. She had posted videos of the attack to the N4CM blog before the device was mysteriously returned to normal functioning the following afternoon.

(ii) On 16 December 2015 the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) upheld the Applicant's complaint against the Ministry of Justice for breach of the Data Protection Act 1998. The ICO found that the Ministry had mishandled the Applicant's subject access request for a copy of the GLA's application to contest the court's jurisdiction, filed at Central London County Court on 14 October 2015 (see annex 19, pp 57-59).

(iii) In a letter to the Applicant dated 22 December 2015, Shadow Home Office Minister Lyn Brown stated that she had written to the managing director of Facebook UK in her capacity as the Applicant's parliamentary representative to seek an explanation for why Facebook had twice blocked his wife from posting to groups and removed all her postings to groups since 2010 (1-4 December and 5-7 December 2015), without any stated reason or cause or responding to either of the Applicant's wife's appeals. The Applicant had already issued a Letter Before Claim to Facebook Ireland, the entity with which users based outside the USA and Canada have a contractual relationship, with a view to filing a legal claim with the European Small Claims Court.

(iv) On 3 February 2016, while the Applicant was at the hearing of his claim against the GLA, his wife received for the first time an alert from their hosting company SiteGround stating that the Church and State website had used 90% of its available storage and warning that the site could experience service problems without an upgrade. It took two days of correspondence between the Applicant's wife and SiteGround before this problem was rectified. According to a technical support supervisor, the reason for the 90% usage was "the cPanel upgrade done by our system administrators recently".

(v) Despite the contents of both letters cited in (iii) above, Facebook has additionally five times blocked the Applicant's wife from posting to groups (6-9 January, 12-15 January, 20-22 January, 13-16 February and 23-26 March 2016) and twice removed all her postings to groups since 2010 (6-9 January, 12-15 January 2016), without any stated reason or cause or responding to any of the Applicant's wife's five additional appeals. Facebook Ireland has not responded to the Applicant's pre-action letter of 15 December 2015, nor, to the best of his knowledge, has the managing director of Facebook UK responded to Shadow Home Office Minister Brown's letter of 22 December 2015.

This is what Shadow Home Office Minister Lyn Brown says she wrote to Facebook UK on our behalf last December:

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But in fact it is the secretive censors in Facebook's European HQ in Dublin who decide what is - and what isn't. This is Declan's pre-action letter to Facebook Ireland last December which they have chosen to simply ignore:

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