A follow up post, I found a few more articles on this whole censorship issue in Australia from numerous sources and some more thoughts.
There has been a huge discussion on Twitter between social media and web folks who I personally consider experts in the online world but many of them seem confused. Not good. Some of the questions/issues raised, of course many may be overreactions.
- Based on the current interpretations Second Life really should be banned in Australia.
- Seesmic a micro video blogging tool would be banned if it had a dedicated porn feed.
- If YouTube (of related service) had 1 offending video would the whole service be blocked until the 1 video was removed.
- Why is pornography (opt out) more offending than crime or terrorism which has an opt in list?
- What about VOIP tools (ie Skype) will they be banned because they could be used for pornography and cannot be blocked due to the traffic encryption.
Some links first up from The 463 “While You Were Out: Australia Makes Plans to Censor the Internet“:
However, as The Australian notes, “in Britain, only between 200 and 1000 child pornography sites have been included on a blacklist.”
And, Conroy is talking about potentially millions of general pornography sites (however defined) and other sites that depict violence (ditto). Plus, Australian sensibilities are hardly “European” when it comes to community standards.
An Op Ed piece by Dr Peter John Chen in The Age “Who’s afraid of the net?“:
The policy is reminiscent of Douglas Adams’ anti-panic glasses, which turned black when confronted with something that might scare you.
Second Op Ed from the Australian “Net-nanny state worth watching”
The plan risks giving parents a false sense of security because it will not be possible to block all offensive material. Equally, educational and other non-offensive sites will almost certainly be blocked in error. And research shows blanket restrictions can have a dramatic impact on the speed at which broadband services operate.
Finally a link from Peter Black’s Freedom to Differ “More on Australian online censorship“.