RealNews

Treasury Department Is Warning Publishers of the Perils of Criminal Editing of the Enemy

Writers often grumble about the criminal things editors do to their prose. The federal government has recently weighed in on the same issue — literally. It has warned publishers they may face grave legal consequences for editing manuscripts from Iran and other disfavored nations, on the ground that such tinkering amounts to trading with the enemy. Anyone who publishes material from a country under a trade embargo is forbidden to reorder paragraphs or sentences, correct syntax or grammar, or replace “inappropriate words,” according to several advisory letters from the Treasury Department in recent months. Adding illustrations is prohibited, too. To the baffled dismay of publishers, editors and translators who have been briefed about the policy, only publication of “camera-ready copies of manuscripts” is allowed. Full Story

OODA Analyst

OODA Analyst

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