Mar 172009

… can we sue them?  ONE page on Wikileaks was blocked. It was the page about the need for judicial oversight

wikileaksIn late 2008, Wikileaks released the secret Internet censorship list for Denmark, together with a press release condemning the practice for lack of public or judicial oversight. Here’s an extract from the press release:

The list is generated without judicial or public oversight and is kept secret by the ISPs using it. Unaccountability is intrinsic to such a secret censorship system.
Most sites on the list are still censored (i.e must be on the current list), even though many have clearly changed owners or were possibly even wrongly placed on the list, for example the Dutch transport company Vanbokhorst.
The list has been leaked because cases such as Thailand and Finland demonstrate that once a secret censorship system is established for pornographic content the same system can rapidly expand to cover other material, including political material, at the worst possible moment — when government needs reform.
Two days ago Wikileaks released the secret Internet censorship list for Thailand. Of the 1,203 sites censored this year, all have the internally noted reason of “lese majeste” — criticizing the Royal family. Like Denmark, the Thai censorship system was originally promoted as a mechanism to prevent the flow of child pornography.

ACMA blocks a page that is reflecting on the lack of judicial oversight on creating blacklists (blocked pages). Their response?

Complaint Reference: 2009000154 / ACMA-1303474585

Dear *******

I refer to the complaint that you lodged with the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) on 19 February 2009 about certain online content.

Following investigation of your complaint, ACMA is satisfied that the Internet content specified in your complaint is hosted outside Australia, and that the content is prohibited content or  potential prohibited content as defined by Schedule 7 to the Broadcasting

Services Act 1992. (more here, until they block it)

We live in one of the most restrictive countries in the world with regards to access to services.  I’m not exaggerating. From EFS:

Wikileaks is designed as a safe repository for the anonymous posting of documents, especially those Governments would seek to suppress. Few would fail to see the value in such a site, and so it is not a little disturbing to see how casually it was added to ACMA’s list of prohibited web sites. Even under the current regime, a site like Wikileaks could certainly not be hosted in Australia.

But we don’t care, cos it’s better than the alternative right?  I mean, what’s a few pages showing up how poorly blacklists are monitored and maintained? And even discussing these issues is… well, somebody think of the children. (hat tip). That was me being sarcastic by the way.

Jun 122008

I’m tired of being told that we bloggers, (which is, y’know, the general population) are: in an echo chamber and have no original thoughts, that we only copy and paste traditional media articles and add no value, that we find other bloggers we agree with and never hear the opposing point of view (*falls off chair laughing* you have to be KIDDING, right?) that we write crap grammar and can’t spell (oh ok, I’ll pay that one, but ‘ave you read the Telegraph lately?) that we are paedophiles, sometimes spelt pedophiles (depends on the journo’s spellchecker), scam artists, have no Continue Reading…

Jan 012008

EDIT: *getting cross* NO it’s NOT the same ACT. September was Crime and Terrorism. Federal Police inform ACA of sites that are blocked due to crime and err terrorism. December is Content Services. First is Opt In and Second is Opt Out. Cos we know that pr0n is so much worse than crime and terrorism. Back in September I reported on a new bill passed in the government: Australia you can’t be trusted! (blame Chaser?) From Mashable (why didn’t I see this anywhere else? hmmm?): Is Australia the New China? by Kristen Nicole Several privacy advocates are in an uproar Continue Reading…

Sep 232007

From Mashable (why didn’t I see this anywhere else? hmmm?): Is Australia the New China? by Kristen Nicole Several privacy advocates are in an uproar in response to a bill introduced by Australia’s Parliament, which would grant the country’s federal police the power to control which sites can be accessed by users of the Internet. Titled the Communications Legislation Amendment (Crime or Terrorism Related Internet Content) Bill 2007, the federal police would have the power to add onto (or remove from) the blacklist, naming sites that are currently banned from Australia , as determined by the Australian Communications and Media Continue Reading…

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