The Art of Darkness

Internet Law and Chilling Effects

December 18th, 2012 by Cobwebs

David from Dark Artifacts dropped me a line to let me know about a truly insane case currently going on in his part of the world. It’s worth mentioning here because something similar could affect many of us.

Rémy Couture, a horror makeup artist in Montreal, posted photos of some of his work online. Someone in Germany ran across the site, mistook the makeup–which was apparently labeled as, y’know, makeup–as photos of a real crime, and reported it to Interpol. Canadian police arrested him and he is being charged with “Corruption of Morals,” which is not only an honest-to-goodness law in Canada, it carries a sentence of up to 4 years in prison.

My gob, it is smacked.

There are so many scary implications for this case it’s hard to know where to begin, but the idea that “corruption of morals” outweighs “freedom of speech” is right up near the top. (Not to mention that somebody in a whole ‘nother country can cause you trouble if they don’t like what you’ve posted online.) David rightly points out that if Remy is convicted it could adversely affect the art community and create restrictions and censorship of horror fans and producers.

This kind of law has been floated in a number of countries, and it behooves us to pay close attention to them and fight their passage. Posting something that somebody else doesn’t like should very definitely not be penalized.

David discusses the case more fully here, and you can read more about the case (and donate to his legal defense) at SupportRemy.

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