Government Internet Censorship – do something before it's too late




When Zoe found out what our Telecom Minister – Stephen Conroy – was planning to implement under the guise of ‘protecting children’ she was as angry as I am.

Apparently we need to be protected from the evils of the internet and we can not be trusted!
Our government, in its infinite wisdom has apparently seen enough current affairs shows to understand that the internet is full of stalkers, pornography and web sites that teach you how to be a terrorist. Sure – there are a few useful things on the internet too… but basically it’s like trying to read an encyclopaedia in the middle of a highway full of trucks if you believe what you see on TV.

The only way Australians can be trusted to sit at their computers without turning into a porn addicted, terrorist child abusers is to provide us with a MANDATORY ‘clean feed’, ensuring the filthy internet meets the standards politicians believe are required. We all know politicians are infallible and don’t pander to interest groups and so why shouldn’t they be able to provide every ISP in the land with a mandatory checklist of what is decent and what is not, just to be sure that we only see and hear what we should on the Internet. Works in China and Iran doesn’t it?

I am truly appalled at Stephen Conroy’s current trials. What is being proposed is

  • Mandatory censorship imposed on the entire country based on blacklisted sites and real time filters
  • Easily bypassed by those with resources and technical skills
  • Proven to slow our already poor internet access speeds by a further 30% (possibly 80%)
  • May break HTTPS encryption exposing personal / secure details to ISPs
  • Ineffective and results in ‘false positives’ blocking sites unintentionally
  • Tens of millions of dollars of public money has already been wasted on this
  • There are already FREE and effective ways to block offensive sights using applications on your PC, allowing people to decide what level of filtering they want enforced for their children / themselves

For more information please have a read of – – which has lots of media and group links.
no clean feed

I really hope people understand how misguided this type of censorship is before we find ourselves being monitored, censored at the whim of our politicians. Already there have been discussions with minor political parties who would like to further restrict internet access to remove X rated porn and fetish sites, also euthanasia and anorexia have been touted by Government MPs as topics worthy of filtering. The groups the government are censorship  buttonattempting to win favour with are proposing their own changes to the filter in return for Senate votes – unless Australians let our government know this is NOT ON we will end up with a shocking level of mandatory censorship.

Recently we’ve seen our politicians were willing to attack artists and treat them as pornographers to score some cheap political mileage, evidence – if you needed it – that we can’t trust our politicians to impose their popularist and politically flexible moral compasses on our freedoms. You only need to look at the television ratings. Sadistic violence, torture, criminal behaviour and illegal activities are prime time family entertainment for most households while showing consenting adults having sex on TV – no way in hell. Something has seriously gone wrong with censorship already and the same people want to decide what’s decent on the internet.

I work in a Government office where they have implemented keyword internet filtering. This has resulted in searches such as

‘Naked DSL’, ‘Breast feeding’, to be blocked outright because of the limitations of content filtering. Information about sexual health, drug addiction, political protesting, religion could all be ‘accidentally’ censored, even forums of any type where people use ‘bad language’ could be blocked – the currently proposed filtering has not addressed these problems. In fact THIS PAGE could be blocked because of words used on it.

I am an adult and I want the right to access everything on the internet and make my own decisions- if the content accessed or my activities are illegal -there is already legislation in place to prosecute me. Treating the entire populace of Australia as criminals in order to ‘protect’ them from the evils of the internet is misguided at best and a dangerous attack on our freedoms and liberties.

Update : I have sent a copy of this blog entry to the Hon Minister Stephen Conroy if you share my feelings, consider writing to his office yourself.

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