17 December 2008

The lies of the internet censors: Your. Filter. Won't. Work.

The title is the title of a nice essay at Crikey. I especially like this:

Bernadette McMenamin of ChildWise, you've crossed the line, defaming everyone who’s protested the government’s plans. "Most of these people are not fully aware of the facts and secondly, those who are aware are, in effect, advocating child p-rnography," you said. How dare you!

Ms McMenamin, to really stop child abuse we need to spend our resources efficiently. Let's run through it one more time. And let's skip those hysterical, made-up "statistics" you still peddle. Child abuse is bad enough without heading into your paranoid fantasyland.

Kiddie-p-rn is hard to find. As Inspector John Rouse, former head of Queensland Police's Taskforce Argos told the authors of The Porn Report, "the chances of stumbling across this material… are minimal as it isn’t really distributed on web pages." P-dophiles use peer-to-peer software and, as Crikey reported six months ago, none of the filters can deal with P2P. The filter will not work. The. Filter. Will. Not. Work.

Catholics, on the other hand, really like the filtering scheme. So do the major political parties. Can't imagine why - and I can only guess what they will want to be filtered next.

As ITWire says, it's time for a great debate. Now, not after it's in place. In the meantime, iiNet's defence of the suit brought against it for not taking action against its users who had been accused of copyright infringement proceeds. It seems to me that they did the right thing, and if the laws say they didn't, the laws are wrong. Overuse of the Digital Millenium Copyright Act by aggressive corporations and interests are rife, with people being taken down just on the sayso of an accuser. iiNet passed on the complaints to the police, and in the absence of action by them, they shouldn't have acted. This case needs to be settled the right way to set a precedent.

1 comment:

Laurie said...

Too right, John. Those who are calling for these measures from, for instance, caring occupations and institutions, have been beguiled into believing that the Ruddfilter is going to have n effect on child pornography, etc. It's analagous to the Prohibitionist movement of the '30s.

This smacks of a much more deliberate attempt to control cyberspace for whatever nefarious political reasons. A good example is to go to the PM's youtube site and post a considered, rational response to, say, the 10.4 billion giveaway. I've been trying to get a comment on that for weeks. They'll cagily allow a dumbarse protest on it, e.g. "Rudd is a dud", but there are no intelligent, rational rebuttals to be seen anywhere.