Australia-wide ISP censoring filter is on the way

The new Labor government is moving ahead with its mandatory ISP filtering policy, which a report in the Australian says will put the onus on users to 'opt out' if they don't want their internet to be censored. The plan has been mooted in the name of protecting children at home and at school from porn and other inappropriate content.
But civil liberties group EFA (Electronic Frontiers Australia) has warned that filters won't help protect children, and will erode internet freedom. The group says parents should still supervise their children's internet access.
Both sides of politics have been keen to censor the internet in recent months. Last year the Liberal government was embarrassed when its government-funded content filter was hacked within half an hour by a 16 year old schoolboy.

Labor released its 'Cyber-Safety' policy in November.


    This is truly disappointing. Apart from slowing our internet connections down further this is also having the negative effect of further reinforcing the "won't somebody think of the children" mentality. I agree that somebody should certainly be thinking of the children - the parents who gave birth to them. The government can provide services to assist parents certainly, but censoring everybody just to protect children whose parents don't care about them enough to supervise them themselves is just ludicrous.

    "Protecting the children" can also become disturbingly broad in a short period of time. Perhaps this government mean well, but can we trust future governments to not extend the censorship further? Perhaps a little paranoid, but history has demonstrated often enough that you can't be too careful with leaders of any sort.

    I heard Burma is nice this time of year.

    So, is there a good place to voice concern about this ridiculous business?

    In much the same way that made a difference for "hang outs" in NSW, there must be something similar for this... :D

    Somewhere we can let fly with our strident, informed, and correct opinions ;-)


    If any adults in the house want access to the actual internet, and not the squeaky clean version Labor wants to provide through ISP filtering, then they'll call up their ISP and opt out, and their kids CAN STILL ACCESS ADULT MATERIAL!

    OR If you happen to be a pedeophile then you'll just CALL UP YOUR ISP ANYWAY and get them to unrestrict your internet access!


    And if you do 'opt out' through your ISP will your name instantly go on to a register just because you would like to have a non-filtered connection and therefore faster access?

    Your local MP?

    Great. Here I was hoping that our new government would be better and we're already getting stupid stuff like this.

    Unworkable. Impractical. Lazy parents. Ignorant Govt. Poor ISP's. Sad for Australian society. CRAZY...

    Alec Guiness: Heh, I don't know why local MPs aren't the first thing to pop into my brain.

    I think I have this sneaking suspicion that they don't really _do_ anything.
    But, it's worth a try :D

    Fundamentally - the proposal is for an Opt-in system. I frankly don't know a single person apart from my mum who will opt in for such a service - every parent I know wants to look at porn when the kids are asleep.

    If the Govt actually wanted to do something useful - they should make downloadable nanny-ware with an off mode freely available to Australian citizens. Parents might actually opt in to that sucker.

    I remember Kim Beazley raising this piece of political grandstanding a few years ago and was horrified to hear the current Labor government running with it. And the comments made by the Minister for Christian Values and Luddite's Communications is insulting. I am against any and all forms of child exploitation AND I want an uncensored internet. Claiming the two go together is a really low blow. I know the civil liberties groups are against this so you may want to get in touch with those, and of course your local MP.

    But if you disagree with the opt-out censorship model for internet traffic then you shouldn't have a problem with adult content being shown at all hours of the day on radio and television and in the newspapers.. or even wanton public displays of the same behaviour.
    Let the parents deal with that themselves too.. because we_all_know that parents want this kind of stuff for themselves...

    Both the logistics and the cost of implementing a content filter on every ISP in the country would be huge.. and eventually, someone out there is bound to hack it.

    The millions of dollars in taxpayer's money would be better spent on Mr. Rudd's "education revolution".

    Anybody have anything positive to say? I say it's not the best solution to protecting our children, but it's definitely a step in the right direction! ALL FOR INTERNET CENSORSHIP through ISP's.

    Greg D. are you off your chops? If you want a totalitarian government and censorship of freedom of speech, go to China or Burma. If you're so concerned about kids accessing porn do something about it in your home. People that want to get illegal material will get it no matter how many filter techniques the government wastes tax payers money on. The kiddie fiddlers won't be caught either as they keep digging in usenet and p2p which is not going to be filtered as outlined.

    So think for a second before you surrender your most basic human right to some misguided government individual in Canberra.

    It's absolutely disgusting. Why? Does Rudd want to become dictator or something? First they'll censor porn, but what next? Censor any site that opposes their regime? There must be somewhere we can oppose this stupidity.

    I will vote for ANYONE who is AGAINST this, I don't care what their other policies are, they can be baby-eating serial killers for all I care, as long as this goes back to where it came from.

    Control and laws only stop the people doing the right thing, the people doing the "wrong" thing will get away with it anyway because they are the ones who know how. In this case it's just a sick disgusting move by a sad government.

    Rudd disapoint me.

    dont know where to start.. how about educating the morons who think this will work on how the electronic interweb actually works... its not TV... so why has no other free country caught on to this amazing feat of censorship? because there'd be riots against fascism... pffft.... @Greg - no, no one has anything positive to say, stick to watching TV or move to China if you cant deal with it...

    This has to be one of the most ridiculous things our goverment has attempted to do. The closed ISP filter test performed in Tasmania showed a whopping 75%+ degradation in network throughput on most of the filters tested. Not to mention the concerns surrounding freedom of information/freedom of speech.

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