[LINK] Web filter debate descends into slanging match at Kickstart Forum 2009

rene rene.lk at libertus.net
Thu Feb 26 20:48:06 EST 2009

On Wed, 25 Feb 2009 13:08:51 +1000, Lea de Groot wrote:

> On 25/02/2009, at 8:09 AM, Bernard Robertson-Dunn wrote:
>> Web filter debate descends into slanging match at Kickstart Forum

> Slightly broader topic... perhaps I haven't read the correct articles,
> but I have some questions about the filter that I haven't figured out.
> Is it supposed to stop anyone looking at child pornography, or is it
> supposed to stop children looking at general porn etc etc? Because it
> seems to me that these are two completely different aims and they can't
> claim to be doing both?

No-one knows what the objective/purpose is - including the government. What 
the objective appears to be varies depending on who is speaking and when 
and to whom (and that includes on the extremely rare occasions when it is 
Senator Conroy speaking).

Labor's 2007 election policy said:
	"A Rudd Labor Government will require ISPs to offer a 'clean feed' 
internet service to all homes, schools and public internet points 
accessible by children, such as public libraries.

	Labor's ISP policy will prevent Australian children from accessing any 
content that has been identified as prohibited by ACMA..."

Nothing about compulsory for adults. Objective was apparently to protect 
children from seeing unsuitable material.

However, in late October 2008, the first instance of changing objectives 
and scope creep occurred. Conroy told Sky News:
	"Cleanfeed is broader than the prohibited sites. You can't opt in or out 
of the prohibited material. The cleanfeed is something you can opt out..."

(Prohibited material as defined in the Broadcasting Services Act Sch 7 
includes RC, X18+, R18+ and some MA15+).

But since then he's claimed they'll decide what will be blocked and in 
which 'tier' (mandatory for adults of optional 'clean feed') after the ISP 
blocking trials. 

All up, it's policy on the run. Currently, the gov't 'plan' appears to be: 
Let's claim to find out what it's possible to 'block' by running 'trials' 
and if that doesn't achieve our (variable) objective/s we'll change the 
objective/policy (again).


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