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Just thought I'd pass this along..

Discussion in 'UO Oceania' started by Fink, Dec 17, 2009.

  1. Fink

    Fink Guest

    The federal government is putting a filter on our nation's internet. We won't be able to access anything that hasn't been vouched for by a classification body (read: just about all grass-roots content) or anything the government deems inappropriate (Orwellian much?)..

    Net Filter

    Thought I'd share this here, among other Aussie-oriented places I frequent. I'm not what you call a political beast but then my policy is "I'll stay out of your business if you stay out of mine". They're not, so I'm not.
  2. Jahira-Tor

    Jahira-Tor Lore Master
    Stratics Veteran Stratics Legend

    Jun 3, 2005
    Likes Received:
    Wow. I didn't quite realise it was like that.
  3. Sneaky Que

    Sneaky Que Babbling Loonie
    Stratics Veteran Stratics Legend

    Sep 14, 2006
    Likes Received:
    Google, Greens and Labor MP object to Conroy’s internet filter

    The Federal Government's announcement of its intention to introduce internet filtering legislation next year has been met with opposition in Canberra, with the Greens and even one Labor MP opposing the move.
    The development comes as tech blogs, lobby groups and companies, including internet giant Google, have continued to point out technical problems with the Enex Testlab report, which the Government is using to prove its filtering technology is ready for use.
    But Greens senator Scott Ludlam has said in a statement the report actually exposes the flaws involved in the filter.
    "Despite the release of a discussion paper that tacitly acknowledges the huge concern this proposal has raised, and the flaws in the existing blacklisting process, the Government is intent on ploughing ahead," he said, also noting his party will seek significant amendments to the bill when it appears in Parliament.

    The report itself states technically competent users could bypass the filtering system.

    Meanwhile, NSW Labor MP Penny Sharpe has said in a blog post she believes the filter is a "backwards step".
    "I add my voice to the many that understand that the Federal Government's proposals to filter the internet are a waste of time, a waste of money, a false promise to parents that will not stop kids being exposed to undesirable content online [and] a move towards censorship that a democratic and free nation like Australia should reject," she said.
    "The solutions include the far more difficult, time consuming and gradual process of education for all citizens, especially parents and kids, greater policing and investigation, greater resourcing to support families and communities and continuous law reform in the areas of privacy and communications," she said, adding she urged the Government to consider an alternative.

    Opposition leader Tony Abbott said he was open to proposals but ''on the other hand, I don't want to see wider censorship [or]... the internet destroyed as a tool for people's education or... businesses".

    Former High Court judge Michael Kirby also said in a 2UE radio interview that the filtering system runs the risk of having a global impact.
    ''I understand the problem that is being addressed, but it is an entirely different approach than the approach taken elsewhere in the world."

    The Australian Sex Party also pointed out that blocking content refused classification would mean blocking 95% of pornography sites hosted overseas, which have broader classifications with regards to their X-ratings.

    But the reactions outside Canberra have continued to escalate. A report from professors Catherine Lamby, Lelia Green and John Hartley from the universities of UNSW, ECU and CCI respectively, says the filter would not work as planned and would block legal material.
    "According to the most recent data only 32% of the sites on the Australian Communication and Media Authority [ACMA] blacklist related to child pornography," the report found.

    "The figures indicate 68% of websites on the blacklist were blocked for reasons other than child pornography, including content that has been classified R18+, X18+, RC and unspecified."

    Additionally, internet search giant Google has even given its opinion on the filtering system, saying it is "concerned" by the Government's plans.
    "RC is a broad category of content that includes not just child sexual abuse material but also socially and politically controversial material - for example, educational content on safer drug use - as well as the grey realms of material instructing in any crime, including politically controversial crimes such as euthanasia," Google said in a statement.
    "This type of content may be unpleasant and unpalatable but we believe that government should not have the right to block information which can inform debate of controversial issues."

    The company also said it believes free speech critical to Australia's ongoing reputation of an open and democratic society.
    "Political and social norms change over time and benefit from intense public scrutiny and debate. The openness of the internet makes this all the more possible and should be protected."

    University of Sydney associate professor and communications expert Bjorn Landfeldt has also said the Government has not addressed whether the benefits of the filter will outweigh the impact of having legal content blocked.
    "There's no clear definition of refused classification that can be debated in society... [and] once you put a label such as refused classification in place, that doesn't mean that the meaning cannot be changed," he told The Age.

    Meanwhile, news of the filtering system has spread across the world with major news organisations in the US and Britain reporting on the story.



    Firstly, the filter won't be effective. Getting around it will be so easy it is not funny. If you can post on this forum then you will have the skills required to do it. Simply using a proxy server to access the internet renders the filter completely useless. The proof of the ineffectiveness of such filters is illustrated by the daily circumvention of the "Great Firewall of China."

    Second, this is been done under the guise of protecting children. On the surface this sounds like a good thing. In fact it will do very little to protect children, the filter is so easy to get around that any child that can read (let alone use the internet) would have no problem doing it.

    A far more sensible and RATIONAL way of protecting children is for the parents of said child to take some responsibility, by installing personal protection software on their computer (which is far more effective) and monitoring their child's internet use.

    And besides...

    Don't think this is just the Rudd Government's idea either. The Howard Government had plans to introduce basically the same thing (see: http://www.theaustralian.com.au/aus...net-porn-crusade/story-e6frgamx-1111114150318). In fact, if you read that article by The Australian, Rudd and Howard were inseparable on the issue.

    Don't be fooled into voting for the extremist Coalition because of this. One can only imagine how much worse it would be if the ultra-conservatives got their hands on it.

    Vote Green. Give them the power to block this horrible censorship legislation in the Senate.
  4. Fink

    Fink Guest

    Nobody has satisfactorily explained why I should want this filter.

    "For the kids" doesn't cut it with me. I don't have kids. I don't want kids. If someone left a child in my care, there's no way I'd dump them on a computer unsupervised.

    Also, I've been on the Internet since before the World Wide Web existed, never been offered any of the "material" this is supposed to prevent, never had it forced upon me, never gone looking for it. I don't run netnanny or anything like it, or even google safe search, but I feel those are end-user choices and not something the government should enforce. I'm in no moral peril looking after myself, thanks.