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Facebook settles French ‘censorship’ case over vagina painting

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Facebook has agreed to settle a years-long legal battle with a French teacher who sued after the social media giant shuttered his account when he posted a renowned 19th-century painting that features a woman’s genitals, his lawyer said Thursday.

The dispute dates to 2011, when the teacher, Frederic Durand, ran afoul of Facebook’s ban on nude images after posting a link that include a thumbnail image of “L’Origine du Monde” (The Origin of the World), an 1866 oil painting by the realist painter Gustave Courbet.

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The painting is one of many treasures that adorn the Musee d’Orsay in Paris and Durand argued that the US tech giant was infringing on his freedom of expression.

He sought 20,000 euros ($22,100) in damages and initially won his case in a Paris court. A higher court overturned the ruling in March 2018, though it scolded Facebook for not initially explaining why the account was closed.

Durand had been preparing an appeal, but in a statement to AFP, his lawyer Stephane Cottineau said a deal had been reached for Facebook to make an unspecified donation to a French street art association called Le MUR (The WALL).

“This donation ends the legal battle between Mr Durand and Facebook,” Cottineau said, without specifying why the street art association had been chosen, or which side had initiated the settlement talks.

Facebook declined to comment on the settlement when contacted by AFP.

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Already in 2015, it had announced rule changes clarifying that posts depicting nudity in artwork were acceptable.

“L’Origine du Monde”, one of several female nudes completed by Courbet, shocked the stiff bourgeois society of his time.

It is believed to have been commissioned by a Turkish diplomat in Paris who was forced to sell it after racking up huge debts because of his gambling addiction.

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John Bolton ripped for refusing his ‘patriotic duty’ to testify: CNN legal analyst lectures him to ‘show up!’

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CNN legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin didn't have any kind words for former national security adviser John Bolton, who was spotted coming into Washington, D.C. at Union Station Friday.

"Are you concerned they're trying to keep you from testifying?" a reporter asked Bolton.

"No. I won't," Bolton replied.

Bolton complained Friday that the White House had blocked him from accessing his Twitter account, which was the reason for his two-month silence on the social media site. The White House released a statement denying the account.

None of that mattered to Toobin, who quite simply blew up at Bolton.

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Democrats are preparing four different Articles of Impeachment against Trump: CNN

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House Democrats are preparing four Articles of Impeachment following two weeks of public testimony in the impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump, CNN reported Friday.

"CNN is learning that Democrats are looking at multiple Articles of Impeachment against President Trump. they include abuse of power, obstruction of Congress, obstruction of justice, and bribery," CNN's Erin Burnett reported.

"This as House Intelligence Chairman Adam Schiff says his committee has begun writing its impeachment report," she continued.

The host explained how the timeline could look.

"All of this is picking up speed right now, we're learning more about where we go tonight. The Democratic House aides we now know will spend Thanksgiving week preparing that report and hearings now are expected to begin in the Judiciary Committee on the first week in December, the plan is to then hold the vote before Christmas," Burnett reported.

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‘This ain’t right’: Internet livid after Twitter suspends ‘El Bloombito’ parody account mocking Mike Bloomberg

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Billionaire former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg spent $31 million on one-week of political ads -- the most ever spent by a candidate.

While many Twitter users were trashing Bloomberg for attempting to buy the 2020 Democratic Party nomination, one voice was conspicuously absent: the famous parody account El Bloombito, which has long-mocked Bloomberg's Spanglish.

El Bloombito has been around a long time -- in 2011, Buzzfeed ran a story headline, "The Best Of El Bloombito."

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