Australia: Internet filtering and censorship by government

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 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 Authority.

This extends the rights of the ACMA onto the federal police, which appears to some as a way of limiting the rights of freedom of speech. The legislation is being promoted as a way to target phishing and terrorist sites, as well as those that publish information on other criminal activity. However, we’ve all been subjected to politicians taking action under the guise of protecting us from terrorism, and the result is several privacy groups that are wary of this bill being passed. Next thing we know, Australia will be blocking YouTube.

[via zdnet]

Well, it’s heating up again:

Conroy announces mandatory internet filters to protect children

Telecommunications Minister Stephen Conroy says new measures are being put in place to provide greater protection to children from online pornography and violent websites.

Senator Conroy says it will be mandatory for all internet service providers to provide clean feeds, or ISP filtering, to houses and schools that are free of pornography and inappropriate material.

but it’s confusing cos Mandatory gets switched later in the article to:

Senator Conroy says anyone wanting uncensored access to the internet will have to opt out of the service.

So then ACA have given the Federal Police the right to block our access to sites, as opt-in ? and now the Government are about to force ISPs to block access to sites deemed inappropriate, as mandatory?

When did opt-in become sort of mandatory?
Or are there two bills – Federal Police filter, one and ISPs filtering the other?


others who seem to be on top of it:
AcidLabs reports on Duncan Riley (also at TechCrunch), Nick Hodge, Mike Seyfang, Gary Barber, Kathryn Greenhill, Jasmin Tragas, James Farmer and Michael Kordahi.

Facebook groups (they don’t seem to mention that the ISP MUST have it, but that the individual broadband subscriber can opt out. )
Australian ISP filtering plan is stupid
People against mandatory filters in Australia

EDIT: Ack spelt Conroy wrong in tags
Explanation for Content Act

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Laurel Papworth

Named by Forbes™ Magazine in the Top 50 Social Media Influencers globally, named Head of Industry, Social Media (Marketing Magazine™) and in the Power150 Media bloggers (AdAge™). CERT IV Training and Assessment certified trainer (Diplomas and Certificates etc) Adult Education. Laurel has manager Facebook Pages for Junior Masterchef, Idol, Big Brother etc. and have consulted on private online communities for banks Westpac, not for profits UNHCR & governments in SE Asia. Lecturer, social media, University of Sydney for 10 years and Laurel has 11,000 online students. Laurel Papworth personally connects to 6 million followers online and has taught around 100,000 people in the last 10 years how to be social media managers.

2 thoughts on “Australia: Internet filtering and censorship by government

  1. Pretty disturbing and I think a bit of a beat up to divert attention from some of the more difficult things as they develop their strategy to rein in Sol and the boys. Ultimately this is a parent responsibility,which my wife and I have happily embraced.

  2. You can’t opt-out of the clean filter purposed by Conroy. It’s just going to be that you can view only what Conroy wants you to. You wont be able to read bad things about the Australian government(no more drowning boat people), watch porn or play R-rated games on the internet. At all. You’ll have to move to North Korea if you want those sort of freedoms. But don’t take my visa bitches! I’m getting out of this prison colony while i still can. Enjoy your internet containing only the wiggles and stories about how great the Australian government is.

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