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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE


DATELINE: March 23, 2016, Honolulu, Hawai`i
CONTACT: Joe Kent, 808-987-7322, jkent@grassrootinstitute.org

Grassroot Stands Against Internet Censorship Resolution

Watchdog group warns that Senate measure is an attack on free speech

HONOLULU, HAWAII–March 23, 2016–Today, the Grassroot Institute stated its concerns about a Hawaii Senate resolution that seeks to introduce internet censorship in the name of helping defamation plaintiffs. In testimony submitted on SCR 35 and SR 16, the watchdog group criticized the measure for seeking a way to suppress search engine results–a mechanism that is not only an affront to free speech, but is impractical and doomed to fail in its aim of protecting the defamed.

“This is a measure that would shred the Bill of Rights without even accomplishing its goal of helping those who have won judgments for libel or defamation,” stated Keli’i Akina, Ph.D., President of the Grassroot Institute of Hawaii. “The resolution wants the U.S. to join those countries that censor search engine results, an action that would unquestionably end up in targeting protected speech.”

Dr. Akina continued: “That is not how our country works. It doesn’t even reflect an understanding of the technology or the way that media is constantly changing. Though we sympathize with concerns about protecting privacy and one’s reputation in the chaotic online world, this broad-based attempt at internet censorship is not the solution.”
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For more information or to arrange an interview, please contact Kelsey Meehan at (808) 591-9193 or email kmeehan@grassrootinstitute.org.

About the Grassroot Institute of Hawaii:
Grassroot Institute of Hawaii is a nonprofit, nonpartisan research institute dedicated to the principles of individual liberty, the free market, and limited, accountable government throughout Hawai`i and the Asia-Pacific region.  Read more about us athttp://www.grassrootinstitute.org/
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About Grassroot President:
Keli’i Akina, Ph.D.,  is a recognized scholar, educator, public policy spokesperson, and community leader in Hawaii.  Currently, he is President/CEO of Grassroot Institute of Hawaii, a public policy think tank dedicated to the principles of individual liberty, free markets and limited, accountable government.  An expert in East-West Philosophy and ethics, Dr. Akina has taught at universities in China and the United States and continues as an adjunct instructor at Hawaii Pacific University.  Dr. Akina was a candidate for Trustee at Large of the Office of Hawaiian Affairs in the 2014 General Election run-off.