Internet Censorship Coming to Australia

Australia plans to join China in implementing mandatory internet censorship.  The Australian government will not allow internet users to opt out of the national filter, something originally provided in the initial proposal.

Originally outlined as a way to combat child pornography and adult content, this censorship proposal is reported to possibly include sites containing information on euthanasia and anorexia.

Mr Conroy said trials were yet to be carried out, but “we are talking about mandatory blocking, where possible, of illegal material.”

Many groups have come out against the proposal saying it would “unfairly restrict Australians’ access to the web, slow internet speeds and raise the price of internet access.”

EFA board member Colin Jacobs said it would have little effect on illegal internet content, including child pornography, as it would not cover file-sharing networks.

“If the Government would actually come out and say we’re only targeting child pornography it would be a different debate,” he said.

Not everyone is against this proposal.  The Australian Christian Lobby welcomed it saying, “The need to prevent access to illegal hard-core material and child pornography must be placed above the industry’s desire for unfettered access.”

I have read unsubstantiated stories about Rogers (AT&T) and Telus (both in Canada) looking into blocking the internet, but the original story I read is no longer available (and since it contained no links to any sources) and upon further reading, it appears that what Rogers is trying to do is charge extra for long streams of data which tie up the networks. Capitalism being what it is, I cannot complain about that.  Hopefully, there is enough competition in Canada to allow customers to shop elsewhere should they not want to pay for these extra services.

That said, it  is too reminiscent of rumblings here in the US that providers were going to allow their business customers to pay additional revenue so that their sites load faster, which could lead to limited competition if consumers get tired of one site taking forever to load (remember those “World Wide Wait” commercials?)  Each tiny step taken to place limitations on a free internet is a step in the wrong direction.

And should a western country implement any type of censorship, one must ask oneself, how long before it arrives here?

Read up on Net Neutrality and take action.  Do not allow this to ever come to pass, for what you are reading right now, may become nonexistent in the future.

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Where is Jack Cafferty?

Was it Jack Cafferty’s blistering attack on Sarah Palin that was an instant hit on youtube ?

or was it this comment:

They have stood by and watched their 401(k)s hemorrhage for months. They were also told all weekend by their elected leaders that a rescue plan was on the way. Their elected leaders lied. Again. In the end, politics trumped everything else. Nancy Pelosi gave a speech and that angered some house republicans, and bingo, the whole project went right down the toilet.

Now it’s the Jewish holidays and nothing will happen for a couple more days. And once again, the middle class will take it in the shorts because some Washington moron wanted to make a point. They make me tired.

Fact is: Since October 2nd, when you go to Jack Cafferty’s blog you get this message:

Jack will not be in the Situation Room Today.

When our reader “houseofroberts” asked the question a couple of days ago, I still thought Cafferty’s absence was not out of the ordinary. Personal issues, programming issues, whatever. Now, I’m not so sure.

You can ask CNN what happened to an integer and integral part of the “best political team on TV” yourself here.

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BBC Censors Bhutto Video

The Existentialist Cowboy has an extremely interesting post today, alerting us to the fact that the BBC has censored the portion of Benazir Bhutto’s video where she says Osama bin Laden was murdered. He includes the original video clip from the BBC (YouTube), then adds a link to the BBC website with the same video clip (sans the sentence concerning bin Laden).

Here was the same original video in a post here on The Zoo from two days ago. It was uploaded to YouTube in November 2007, following the first assassination attempt on Bhutto and Frost interview, by AlJazeeraEnglish.

The comment about the murder of bin Laden is at 6:15.

Here is the censored version (downloaded directly from the BBC website):

The missing comment is at about 5:02.

Now, why on earth would they do something like that? Might the answer to that question might go toward solving this crime? Benazir Bhutto may have been the woman who knew too much…

Again, from The Existentialist Cowboy:

Bhutto herself has exposed the fraudulent nature of the Bush/Blair “war on terrorism”. If Bin Laden is dead, as has been reported, then the various tapes that he is alleged to have made are all phony. The war on terrorism itself is a callous, calculated fraud perpetrated by a murderous Bush regime, a murderous Blair regime, a murderous puppet regime of Musharraf.

Below the fold is the exact text of the AlJazeeraEnglish video clip (just the segment that includes the part that was cut from the BBC version):

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