Bioethics Blogs

Internet Censorship in Academia

As a bioethicist a good deal of source material for
scholarship comes not from academic journals but from popular media. Much of
the information regarding bioethical issues is current and timely and will be
found not in the academic literature but appears in newspapers and magazines.
Moreover social media sites such as Facebook, Linked In, and Twitter have a
large presence in the dissemination of bioethics related information and events
which occur on a day to day basis. Both individual bioethicists and bioethics
related academic and professional organizations actively post current events
related to the interests of bioethics scholars and practitioners on a daily
basis. I review several of these sites daily and often follow links to stories,
current events, and opinion pieces of interest. These are activities I consider
important, in addition to keeping up with traditional bioethics related
academic sources, to function knowledgably in this field.

With that introduction you will understand the frustration I
felt when I clicked a link which I knew would take me to a major mainstream
newspaper. Rather than linking me to the article I sought I received a message
that said, in very large letters, “ACCESS DENIED YOU ARE ATTEMPTING TO ACCESS A
FORBIDDEN SITE”. Seriously! Well apparently yes they were serious. Who would
accidently block my access to a major mainstream newspaper. Like I do so often
I emailed the URL to myself so I could access the “FORBIDDEN SITE” from home
that night. Fortunately we have no rules that precluded me from working at home
or at night.

The views, opinions and positions expressed by these authors and blogs are theirs and do not necessarily represent that of the Bioethics Research Library and Kennedy Institute of Ethics or Georgetown University.