Secrecy, police censorship and no appeal are the norm
Proposals by UK Culture Secretary, Andy Burnham, to introduce cinema-style ratings for websites across the globe might benefit from a little more fact-finding and a little less rhetoric. On the other hand, the danger of open-minded research, is that it might just expose New Labour waffle to the harsh realities of how things actually work.
Over in Australia, government plans to filter the entire internet are in total disarray, as a pilot exercise planned to be “all over by Christmas” has now been put back to January. Or maybe even February.
At the same time, the cack-handed approach by the Australian government on this issue – most notably by Mr Burn’em’s opposite number, Stephen Conroy - appears to have had the embarrassing effect of creating mass opposition to government proposals, by politicians, ISPs and the general public, as well as kicking off a public debate on the whole question of what the government should be censoring.
A bad year for Stephen Conroy ended in final humiliation, as it emerged last week that he appears to have been sitting on a report, handed to him in February 2008, which explained that the concept of internet filtering was “fundamentally flawed”.
Meanwhile, back in Europe, the Romanian Authority for Communication (ANC) has been asking ISPs to block access to 40 websites hosted in Romania, on the grounds that they do not meet the criteria imposed by article 7 of Law no.196/2003 on preventing and fighting pornography.
Government pipedreams on internet ratings doomed to fail | vote tags: Tracking the Vote