eBay’s Magical Ban: The Problem With Selling Speech

Internet auction house eBay recently released their Fall 2012 Seller Update, which, starting in September, prohibits the sale of divination services (including tarot readings), spells, tutoring services, and potions. The reason for this move, according to eBay, is to "build confidence in the marketplace for both buyers and sellers.""Transactions in these categories often result in issues between the buyer and seller that are difficult to resolve. To help build confidence in the marketplace … [Read more...]

Otherworldly Communications are Protected Speech

Ordinances against fortune telling have a long history, from bans on sorcery and witchcraft in the Middle Ages and Early Modern Europe, embodied today in places like Saudi Arabia, to anti-fraud bans (often based in various ethnic prejudices) in the 19th century, to current laws that claim to be protecting citizens from fraud, but are often pushed by conservative Christian lawmakers. For generations those who practiced fortune-telling as a profession existed on the margins of society, usually … [Read more...]

Quick Notes: Margot Adler, Marijuana Sacraments, and Fortune Telling as Free Speech

Margot Adler

Just a few quick news notes for you on this Tuesday.Margot Alder on Witchcraft, Cults, and Space Travel: Margot Adler, NPR correspondent and author of the seminal 1979 book "Drawing Down the Moon: Witches, Druids, Goddess-Worshippers, and Other Pagans in America", talks to the Daily Camera in Boulder, Colorado about her life and work in advance of her presentations at the 64th Annual Conference on World Affairs. Of special interest to my Pagan readers will be the story of how she landed the b … [Read more...]

UK Regulates Occult Advertising

shutterstock photo

The UK broadcasting regulatory body Ofcom (Office of Communications) has issued a new set of guidelines for ads peddling psychic and occult services. The new rules outright ban the selling of occult services on British television, and place restrictions on tarot and astrology programs.“Television advertisements must not promote psychic practices or practices related to the occult [...] Psychic and occult-related practices include ouija, satanism, casting of spells, palmistry, attempts to … [Read more...]


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