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Digital Humour, Gag Laws, and the Liberal Security State

Digital Humour, Gag Laws, and the Liberal Security State
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Author(s): Judith Bessant (RMIT University, Australia)
Copyright: 2018
Pages: 14
Source title: Digital Multimedia: Concepts, Methodologies, Tools, and Applications
Source Author(s)/Editor(s): Information Resources Management Association (USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-3822-6.ch064

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Abstract

This chapter presents a case study of Facu Diaz, a Spanish satirist whose on-line ridicule of the Spanish government created a political furor that brought him before the courts. The chapter engages the problem of the criminalization of political dissent by liberal states in the digital age. The case highlights how digital media is now being used to create content for satire, as well as to replicate and infiltrate more traditional political and media forums, changing many traditional forms of political practice. The case [points to some of the central problems inherent in liberalism which may give reason to curb the enthusiasm of those who think that new digital media creates fresh opportunities for augmenting the ‘public sphere'. It is argued that liberalism as a political theory and ethos, tends to be blind to non-traditional political expressions like satire and other artistic work. In addition, the expansion of security laws in many countries suggests, liberalism's ostensible commitment to freedom needs to be reframed by recalling its historical preoccupation with security.

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