[LINK] Conroy going ahead

Richard Chirgwin rchirgwin at ozemail.com.au
Sun May 30 13:39:54 AEST 2010

Adrian - I completely agree.

Not only is the "filter=Conroy=filter" a completely simplistic way to 
view what's going on; it's bad tactics. It leads to the widespread 
conviction that "if we can just get rid of Conroy the filter will go away".

The personification suits Conroy. It turns the entire debate into a game 
of "pin the tail on the Senator", and everybody who matters falls for it 
- in particular, most of the press, GetUp, EFA, the IIA and so on. I 
will make a couple of predictions:

1. Conroy will say something this week designed to troll his opponents.
2. The opponents will fall for it.


Adrian Chadd wrote:
> Why is it that people persist to say the filter is due to Conroy?
> Is there some kind of Conroy-is-the-only-one-driving-it agenda that
> I've just missed in all of this?
> Adrian
> On Sun, May 30, 2010, Jan Whitaker wrote:
>> [not sure if this is really news or when he said it, but worth 
>> getting in the Link archives]
>> Filter goes ahead regardless
>> http://www.theage.com.au/technology/technology-news/filter-goes-ahead-regardless-20100529-wmg7.html
>> May 30, 2010
>> Poll: Should the government filter the internet?
>> Poll form
>>     * Please select an answer. Yes
>>     * No
>>     * 
>> <http://www.theage.com.au/technology/technology-news/filter-goes-ahead-regardless-20100529-wmg7.html#viewResult>View 
>> results Yes
>>     4%
>>     No
>>     96%
>>     Total votes: 4910.
>>     Would you like to vote?
>>     You will need Cookies enabled to use our Voting Feature.
>>     Would you like to vote?
>>     You will need Javascript enabled to use our Voting Feature.
>>     Poll closes in 7 days.
>>     Vote now: 
>> <http://www.theage.com.au/polls/technology/technology-news/facebook-privacy-uproar/20100524-w56b.html>Facebook 
>> privacy uproar
>>     Disclaimer:
>>     These polls are not scientific and reflect the opinion only of 
>> visitors who have chosen to participate.
>>     MINISTER for Communications Stephen Conroy has vowed to push on 
>> with his controversial internet filtering scheme, despite a barrage 
>> of criticism.
>>     Senator Conroy told The Sun-Herald that internet advocacy groups 
>> such as GetUp! were ''deliberately misleading'' the Australian public 
>> about the scheme, which will refuse classification to illegal and 
>> socially unacceptable web pages. The legislation, which was expected 
>> to be passed before Parliament rises in June, has been delayed until 
>> the second half of the year while the government fine-tunes it.
>>     The government's $128.8 million Cyber Safety policy includes 
>> forcing internet service providers to block access to a secret 
>> blacklist of website pages identified as ''refused classification'' 
>> by the Australian police.
>>     Web pages will be nominated for blacklisting by Australian 
>> internet users who come across illegal or ''unacceptable'' websites.
>>     ''This is a policy that will be going ahead,'' Senator Conroy 
>> said. ''We are still consulting on the final details of the scheme. 
>> But this policy has been approved by 85 per cent of Australian 
>> internet service providers, who have said they would welcome the 
>> filter, including Telstra, Optus, iPrimus and iinet.''
>>     Figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics show that 72 per 
>> cent of Australian households have home internet access and more than 
>> 2 million children regularly use computers.
>>     The scheme has attracted broad opposition from communications 
>> experts, search-engine companies Google and Yahoo!, the federal 
>> opposition and members of the nation's intellectual elite.
>>     Critics claim the policy will not result in any meaningful dent 
>> in the availability of harmful internet content, will create 
>> significant freedom-of-speech issues and will be prone to abuse by politicians.
>>     ''The scope of filtered content is so broad that it could block 
>> content that would inform political and social debate,'' Google 
>> spokeswoman Lucinda Barlow said.
>>     Former opposition leader Malcolm Turnbull has also condemned the 
>> proposed filtering scheme as a ''white elephant''. ''This system will 
>> not be effective,'' Mr Turnbull said. ''This policy will run the risk 
>> of false impressions [of security], when there should be parental 
>> responsibility.''
>>     Executive director of GetUp! Brett Solomon said the Prime 
>> Minister should step in to ditch the scheme. ''The government would 
>> be better off developing policies to ensure the privacy of 
>> Australians is better safeguarded rather than pursuing the filter. 
>> This should be a promise that Kevin Rudd should break.''
>>     GetUp! national director Simon Sheikh said a online petition by 
>> the activists had received support from 120,000 people and raised 
>> $100,000 to stop the legislation. An additional opinion poll by 
>> research firm Galaxy showed 86 per cent felt that parents, not the 
>> government, should have the primary responsibility for protecting 
>> information on the internet.
>>     ''Consistently the Australian people are saying that they don't 
>> want it,'' Mr Sheikh said.
>>     But Bernadette McMenamin of the child protection group Child Wise 
>> said it was 100 per cent behind filtering illegal material. ''Sites 
>> are going to be blocked that should be blocked, and it's absolutely 
>> essential every parent is taught about the dangers of the internet.''
>>     The Australian Privacy Foundation, however, said the cost of the 
>> filter would be better directed to more internet education.
>>     Yet Senator Conroy said ''blocking material is not considered to 
>> be censorship''.
>>     ''This filter is really not changing much, except that the 
>> blacklist of website pages will be mandatory.''
>>     The fourth Cyber Security Awareness Week starts next week to help 
>> raise awareness of internet privacy issues.
>>     Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
>>     jwhit at janwhitaker.com
>>     blog: http://janwhitaker.com/jansblog/
>>     business: http://www.janwhitaker.com
>>     Our truest response to the irrationality of the world is to paint 
>> or sing or write, for only in such response do we find truth.
>>     ~Madeline L'Engle, writer
>>     _ __________________ _
>> _______________________________________________
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