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[News] Australia Copies China's Web Regime

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Conroy announces first filterers and not a big one in sight

,----[ Quote ]
| Communications minister Stephen Conroy has named the first six ISPs that will 
| take part in the Government's trial of ISP side content filtering, and only 
| one of them comes from the top ten.  


Police state. Can't people use their own filters? Are they adults or are they
adult kids in the hands of Nanny Nation?


Aussie government defends Internet censorship technology

,----[ Quote ]
| He said that the panel didn't test the filtering technology to arrive at its
| conclusions, forgetting that you don't have to waste millions testing
| something when you know it won't work.


Aussie System Admin Guild says NO to net filtering

,----[ Quote ]
| The System Administrators Guild of Australia (SAGE-AU) has sent an open
| letter to Australia’s Minister for Communications, stating that it is “unable
| to support the Federal Government’s proposed Internet filtering initiative”,
| explaining the reasons why and outlining its “significant concerns”.


Psychiatric treatment used to 'silence' Chinese critics

,----[ Quote ]
| Local officials in China appear to be increasingly using forcible psychiatric
| treatment to silence critics, a leading expert said today amid claims that at
| least 18 complainants were held in a mental hospital in Shandong province
| against their will.
| Authorities in Xintai district committed people who had pursued grievances
| ranging from police brutality to property disputes, according to the Beijing
| News, well known for its investigative journalism. Some were force-fed drugs.


Brave New India

,----[ Quote ]
| So when Prime Minister Manmohan Singh says it's the greatest internal
| security threat, it allows various state governments to pass all kinds of
| laws that could call anybody a terrorist. Say, tomorrow, they came into my
| house here. Just the books that I have would make me qualify as a terrorist.


The Net is Under Threat

,----[ Quote ]
| Community advocacy group GetUp is running a new campaign against Australian
| Federal Government plans to censor what we view on the internet. The ‘Save
| the Net’ campaign is gaining momentum, with over 55,000 Australians having
| already signed a petition to Communications Minister Senator Conroy voicing
| their outrage over the Government’s ill-considered ideas.


Simpsons and filters signal new era of Internet McCarthyism

,----[ Quote ]
| Some worrying signs concerning our basic freedoms have begun to emerge
| throughout the free world, with the UK and Australia at the forefront of a
| disturbing trend to censor the Internet. Two recent events indicate an
| erosion of our rights as citizens within a free society.


Anti Internet filtering rebels hit the streets

,----[ Quote ]
| Opponents to the government's Internet content filtering scheme will take to
| the streets in a series of protests planned in Australia's capital cities.
| The protests, organised by members from activist groups including the
| Electronic Freedom Project and Digital Liberty Coalition, will be held at
| Sydney's Town Hall, Brisbane Square, Melbourne's State Library, Adelaide
| Parliament House, Perth's Stirling Gardens and at Tasmania's Parliament
| Lawns.


Cash floods in for anti-censorship protests

,----[ Quote ]
| Political activists GetUp have raised over $30,000 in less than a day to
| support their fight against the Government's plan to censor the internet, a
| response the group has described as "unprecedented".
| The money will be put towards an advertising blitz designed to inform the
| public of the consequences of the plan, which experts say include slower
| internet speeds, significant false positives, failure to stop people from
| subverting the filters and the risk that the blacklist will be expanded to
| include the blocking of regular pornography, political views, gambling and
| pro-abortion sites.


Even child welfare groups don’t want web censorship

,----[ Quote ]
| THE AUSSIE government's plans to build a Great Internet Rabbit Proof Fence
| are floundering with even kiddie welfare groups saying it is a jolly bad
| idea.
| The Aussie government thought that it would protect children by mimicking the
| censorship antics of Communist China but, much to its surprise, has found
| that the idea is a wee bit unpopular.


Aussie government muffs plans for internet filtering

,----[ Quote ]
| Her view is that censorship of sexual material is more often than not
| followed by broader political censorship. The censorship tide in Australia
| today is coming in, and while many individuals may not get terribly excited
| about the censorship of what is generally regarded as smut, proposals by the
| Rudd Government to censor the internet through compulsory filtering feel very
| much like the thin end of the wedge.


Is the Internet going down down under?

,----[ Quote ]
| The battle is now on for the soul of the Australian internet. The outcome
| could have enormous repercussions for the future of the internet in the UK.
| Regular readers will be aware of the Australian Government’s plans to clamp
| down on the internet down under. These, the brainchild of Communications
| Minister Stephen Conroy, have been bubbling away since last year, and began,
| as so many half-baked government schemes do, with the plea that
| someone "think of the children".
| The scheme would put in place a server-level content filtering system, to
| block material unsuitable for children. The cat was put well and truly
| amongst the pigeons with the recent claim by Internode network engineer Mark
| Newton that there will be no opt-out from filtering for parents.


In Conroy’s muddy waters you'll never know what’s being filtered

,----[ Quote ]
| Critics of Conroy's Internet filtering say Australians will not be able to
| find out what the government censors online, and ask: who watches the
| watchmen?
| An Australian law expert has warned that under the government’s proposed
| mandatory Internet content filtering scheme Australians will have no way of
| finding out what “illegal” content has been censored and blocked online,
| while Greens Senator Scott Ludlam voiced his concern over Conroy’s ambiguity
| regarding exactly what content will or won’t be blocked, and who will be able
| to opt-out of the filtering.
| Conroy’s mandatory Internet filtering proposal caused a stir last week when
| it was revealed a member of his department had tried to censor severely
| critical comments made on the Whirlpool broadband forum by an Internode
| network engineer regarding the merits of ISP level filtering.


Big tech companies back global plan to shield online speech

,----[ Quote ]
| Stating that privacy is "a human right and guarantor of human dignity," the
| initiative commits the companies to try to resist overly broad demands for
| restrictions on freedom of speech and overly broad demands that could
| compromise the privacy of their users.
| The initiative was begun after human rights groups and Congress criticized
| the Internet companies for cooperating with Chinese government censorship and
| demands for information on dissidents. In addition to laying out the code of
| conduct, the initiative will provide a non-governmental forum for the
| companies and human rights groups to jointly resist demands for censorship.
| It will also establish a system of independent auditors to rate the
| companies' conduct.


Internet Companies Pay Lip Service To Human Rights

,----[ Quote ]
| While it's nice that they're actually thinking about these issues, the
| guidelines on the whole are pretty weak and don't bind the companies to do
| anything. Basically, it just says that the companies will consider the human
| rights issues in their decision making. If anything, this seems like an
| attempt to just keep the government from legislating on the issues, and it
| may not be very successful on that front. The real test will be in seeing how
| these companies actually act, rather than what sorts of guidelines they've
| signed.


Labor's web gag 'worse than Iran'

,----[ Quote ]
| The Federal Government is attempting to silence critics of its controversial
| plan to censor the internet, which experts say will break the internet while
| doing little to stop people from accessing illegal material such as child
| pornography.
| Internet providers and the government's own tests have found that presently
| available filters are not capable of adequately distinguishing between legal
| and illegal content and can degrade internet speeds by up to 86 per cent.
| Documents obtained by Fairfax Media show the office of the Communications
| Minister, Stephen Conroy, tried to bully ISP staff into suppressing their
| criticisms of the plan.
| Senator Conroy has since last year's election victory remained tight-lipped
| on the specifics of his $44.2 million policy but, grilled by a Senate
| Estimates committee this week, he said the Government was looking at forcing
| ISPs to implement a two-tiered filtering system.


No opt-out of filtered Internet

,----[ Quote ]
| Australians will be unable to opt-out of the government's pending Internet
| content filtering scheme, and will instead be placed on a watered-down
| blacklist, experts say.


Conroy announces mandatory internet filters to protect children

,----[ Quote ]
| "Labor makes no apologies to those that argue that any regulation of the
| internet is like going down the Chinese road," he said.

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