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USC Group Fined For Using 'Free Speech Zone'

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In a display of supreme irony, the USC Free Culture group is being fined for every flier posted in the campus' so-called "Free Speech Zone."

Campus officials sent an e-mail to the group yesterday, warning:

There is a 1$ fine for every flyer posted in violation of policy and at at the moment 14 flyers reading "This is not a free speech zone" have been collected. [...] The fine for chalking is determined by Facilities Management Services, who clean the walk ways on campus.
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USC Free Culture responds:

Our focus was to explore free speech on campus within the given rules (found here) while simultaneously arguing that USC’s controlled definitions of free speech run counter to “the development of human beings and society as a whole through the cultivation and enrichment of the human mind and spirit.”

Cory at BoingBoing, who is teaching a course called "Pwned: Is everyone on campus a copyright criminal?" this semester at USC, suggests:

Maybe we should start a "sponsor a THIS IS NOT A FREE SPEECH ZONE flier" fund -- for $1, someone will laser-print a flier with your sponsorship info on it and post it outside of the USC Free Speech Zone. The $1 will go to paying the fine...

This is not the first time USC has illegally violated students' free-speech rights.

If nothing else, the university should be shamed and embarrassed for hypocritically demanding that permission be required for a university-recognized Free Culture group to post bills demanding free speech in a designated "Free Speech Zone."

More photos of "illegal" sidewalk chalking after the jump.

photo by Lorna Alkana.



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