"It doesn't matter how beautiful your theory is, it doesn't matter how smart you are. If it doesn't agree with experiment, it's wrong." Richard P. Feynman

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Conroy - Internet Villain of the Year

The Australian reports that Reporters Without Borders has put Australia on its watchlist along with Iran and Korea in it's Internet Enemies Report.

Australia was listed for the government's plan to block access to websites featuring material such as rape, drug use, bestiality and child sex abuse.

Critics say the plan is a misguided measure that will harm civil liberties by blocking a broader range of content than just nasty material.
Communications Minister Stephen Conroy has said he plans to introduce legislation by the end of next week that would require ISPs to block a blacklist of "refused classification" websites for all Australians.
It is not clear if the government will meet this deadline; a spokeswoman for Conroy said the legislation would be introduced "after it has been considered by caucus and cabinet".
Today’s inclusion on "Internet Enemies" follows the naming of Conroy as the "internet villain of the year" last July at the Internet Service Providers’ Association annual awards in London.
The latest report was seized on by Peter Coroneos, the managing director of the Internet Industry Association, who said it showed the international reception to the proposed internet filter.
"This regrettably puts Australia on notice that, despite the Rudd government’s best intentions, any mandatory filtering policy is likely to be perceived internationally in ways that will not benefit our reputation as a free and open society," he said.
"It will likely be used by less open societies as a vindication of their internet censorship regimes, despite any domestic attempts to draw distinctions. Mandatory filtering is mandatory filtering by whatever colour it is painted."

The plan has been criticised because it will not work and the list of banned sites and reason for banning will be kept secret. The average computer-savvy 14year old will bypass it with ease. Unfortunately the internet cat is out of the bag and attempts to put it back in are doomed to failure. This grand scheme will join Grocery Watch , Fuel Watch and the insulation fiasco on the evergrowing list of Rudd's incompetent plans!

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