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Old 03-18-2009, 07:09 PM   #1
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Australian Government Bans WikiLeaks

Ah, the loveliness of Kevin Rudd and his magical internet censorship scheme, this ought to bury some future scandals
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The Australian communications regulator has issued a stark warning that websites who link out to 'banned' hyperlinks are liable to fine of up to Aus $11,000 a day.

The news comes after web forum Whirlpool was threatened with the fine for posting a hyperlink to a blacklisted anti-abortion website.

Wikileaks blacklisted

One of the newest additions to Australia's 'blacklisted hyperlinks' list is Wikileaks; the website that publishes anonymous submissions of sensitive info on everything from corporations, religion and governments.

The blacklisting of certain pages of the site has come about after Wikileaks posted a list of websites at the tail end of 2008 that comprised the 'secret internet censorship' list for Denmark. On this list were over 3,500 sites that were censored or banned in the country.

Disturbing picture

While Australia's list of blacklisted sites currently stands at 1,370, the Sydney Morning Herald is reporting that that list could increase to around 10,000 sites – most of which are of illegal pornographic content, but could also includes sites that house incendiary political discussions.

"The Government is embarking on a deeply unpopular and troubling experiment to fine-tune its ability to censor the internet," said communications spokesman Senator Scott Ludlam of Australian opposition party Greens.

"If you consider this kind of net censorship in the context of Australia's anti-terror laws, it paints a disturbing picture indeed."

On its website, Wikileaks, which leaked the news that the government had banned it for leaking information, simply said: "The first rule of censorship is that you cannot talk about censorship."

Currently, it is not illegal for internet users in Australia to click on the sites found on the web blacklist. The people targeted by the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) are webmasters linking out to the sites that the government have flagged up as inappropriate.

This could all change, however, if a mandatory internet filtering censorship scheme is implemented – something that is being debated at the moment.
Australian Government adds Wikileaks to banned website list | News | TechRadar UK

Here is the Danish censored website list - Denmark: 3863 sites on censorship list, Feb 2008 - Wikileaks
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Old 03-18-2009, 07:52 PM   #2
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While Australia's list of blacklisted sites currently stands at 1,370, the Sydney Morning Herald is reporting that that list could increase to around 10,000 sites – most of which are of illegal pornographic content, but could also includes sites that house incendiary political discussions.
This is what bothers me, that political commentary is lumped with illegal porn. I understand your rage at there being any control in place, but content-wise, when it's something like illegal porn, can we let go of the indignant outrage for a minute? It's a hell of a lot easier to block it in the first place than to chase after the fact those who participate in things like these exploitative sites. Yes, it's a control state, but it's child porn and shit. I'm not trying to be all, "think of the children!" but I am.
As for political discourse, I'm all for that and this is where I agree with you. I don't see how Rudd will ever implement his netnanny state though. Maybe he's been hanging with the Chinese lot too long. It's all that Mandarin he speaks.
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Old 03-18-2009, 08:06 PM   #3
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The benchmark for illegal pornography includes all X18+ rated material, anything depicting actual sex would be banned.

The child porn issue has been the main issue, the government has used it to label its opponents as kiddie fiddlers and cut short debate. I don't see anything wrong with adults purchasing pornographic material containing consenting adults, it isn't about the illegality of child porn, it is already illegal and people can be prosecuted for possessing it.

As far as it being easier to just block it, I question this in light of the millions of dollars used to push this scheme which will slow down the internet and fail to prevent child porn through other avenues (such as bittorrent, newsgroups etc.). Put more money into the AFP to hunt down paedophiles, launch a wider campaign against the child rape that doesn't end up on the internet, and protect individual freedoms as well.
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Old 03-18-2009, 08:30 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by A_Wanderer View Post
Here is the Danish censored website list
Uhm...judging from the titles the actual link to the list might be a little more information than the forum requires.
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Old 03-18-2009, 08:39 PM   #5
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I'm with Angela Harlem on this, I have strong views on child abuse particularly since reading about the Jersey case ( Haut de la Garenne - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia ) last year. If you read up on that case it leads into a very troubling can of worms. A can of worms that seems to involve organised paedo rings, some of them in powerful positions.

If an image of a child being abused is placed on the internet it is there more or less for ever. In a way the wrong originally done to the child is perpetuated every time someone views that image. Governments should be forcing ISP's to just completely get rid of these sites, in my view.

Granted, it is a tough one to ensure governments don't over-reach. It is in the nature of bureacracy to expand itself.
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Old 03-18-2009, 08:48 PM   #6
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How does an internet filter stop child pornography and how will it effect child abuse?

This isn't shutting down servers that host child porn, it is introducing a mandatory NetNanny scheme on the internet in Australia.
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Old 03-19-2009, 05:42 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Angela Harlem View Post
This is what bothers me, that political commentary is lumped with illegal porn. I understand your rage at there being any control in place, but content-wise, when it's something like illegal porn, can we let go of the indignant outrage for a minute? It's a hell of a lot easier to block it in the first place than to chase after the fact those who participate in things like these exploitative sites. Yes, it's a control state, but it's child porn and shit. I'm not trying to be all, "think of the children!" but I am.
As for political discourse, I'm all for that and this is where I agree with you. I don't see how Rudd will ever implement his netnanny state though. Maybe he's been hanging with the Chinese lot too long. It's all that Mandarin he speaks.
The blocking is not the least more effective than to pursuit those behind it. It's a simple DNS blocking where you just go to the settings of your browser, change the DNS it uses and all sites are freely available again.
Child pornography is exploited by the lawmakers as it is effective to get public support for the censorship of websites. But in the end, more and more websites get blocked. The average joe doesn't know how to get around the blocking, but almost anyone who is surfing for child pornography or other illegal stuff knows much more about computers and the internet than the politicians who decide on those filters will ever do.
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Old 03-27-2009, 02:33 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by A_Wanderer View Post
How does an internet filter stop child pornography and how will it effect child abuse?

This isn't shutting down servers that host child porn, it is introducing a mandatory NetNanny scheme on the internet in Australia.
Well like most laws it changes nothing while punishing everyone. It's easy to get people to surrender freedoms if you can just find a cause they believe it will help.
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