Australia's internet will be filtered of prohibited content.
This measure was announced by Stephen Conroy,Minister for Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy.
According to the press release, Federal Labour will be :
Providing a mandatory ‘clean feed’ internet service for all homes, schools and public computers that are used by Australian children, so that ISPs will filter out content identified as prohibited by the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA).
The ACMA ‘blacklist’ will also be made more comprehensive to ensure that children are protected from harmful and inappropriate online material;
Other measures announced include a Youth Advisory Group and a permanent Joint Parliamentary Standing Committee on cyber safety.
Netalert will also be involved.
Senator Conroy has accused those who disagree of equating free speech with watching child pornography.
Reaction in the blogosphere has been hostile,
How far “inappropriate material” may extend was not made clear, for example questioning Government policy where it comes to Aboriginal people could be deemed to be discrimination under Australian law and hence blocked by the censorship regime.
Worst still, bloggers or those (such as forum owners) who allow users to comment or post could find themselves blocked under this proposal should someone say or post the wrong thing.
If there is one certainty in any country that implements broadscale censorship, once they start blocking content it doesn’t stop, and certainly every do-gooder group and special interest lobbyist will be wanting the Government to add to the list.
Some of the posts on the Techcrunch story disagree.
“Sorry, when you start censoring stuff it never stops”
From free republic and democratic nations.
Otherwise all this statement does is show your ignorance and paranoia.
I suggest taking off the tin foil hat and stop looking for black helicopters.
It might clear your mind.
Until you can provide specific examples, you comments and opinions are worthless
I can't even find the contents of the blacklist on the ACMA page.
How do Australians know that ACMA aren't going to censor activist sites such as Indymedia pages?
In Britain sites are censored according to the Internet Watch Foundation, which concentrates on child pornography, incitement to racial hatred, and criminally obscene sites.
Even though what is criminally obscene isn't always clear, the UK's IWF is more open that the ACMA, and is governed by the Obscene Publication Acts of 1959 and 1964 (the 1857 Act is no longer used).
I agree with Stephen Conroy that child pornography should be censored. I also feel that violent and bestial pornography should be as well.
However, what else will be censored?
This will only happen for computers used by children.
Don't adults need protecting from child or bestial pornography as well?
This censorship policy makes no sense. The ACMA should make clear what types of sites are on its blacklist.
The only sites that should be censored are those that depict the abuse of children or animals,promote rape, or contain homophobic* or racist content.
Otherwise, blogs that attack Kevin Rudd or socialist websites may end up on the list as well.
It may be like the Mikardo
As some day it may happen that a victim must be found,
I've got a little list--I've got a little list
Of society offenders who might well be underground,
And who never would be missed--who never would be missed!
PS: * That does not seem to be on the IWF list!