The First Link is forged.

It would seem that while gamers this week were celebrating the news of the Discussion Paper for an R-18+ rating, we have been sucker-punched. On the same day that the Discussion Paper’s existence was made public knowledge on broadcast media, Federal Communications Minister and right royal pain in my backside, Stephen Conroy announced that the ill-fated and otherwise despised Mandatory Internet Filter will proceed, despite the fact that no word about it had existed for nearly 3 months.

Stephen Conroy hoped that the news of the filter would pass unnoticed, with those who would oppose it distracted by the previously mentioned news, unfortunately several blogs, including this one, picked up the story almost as soon as it broke; granted yes I had to hear it from four separate people before I took it seriously, but then, from the reactions a number of my colleagues made when I told them, I am not surprised. Following what could only be called uniform opposition to this, it was any wonder that anyone took news of its proposals green lighting, makes the Mandatory Internet Filter, easily the most despised and unpopular piece of legislation, to make a comparison, the Work Choices of the Labour Party, I had not expected to ever hear anything about this, that Conroy would do the smart move and sweep this under the rug and forget about it.

Then I remembered he was a politician and disregarded my previous statement.

If the Mandatory Internet Filter makes it through the Senate, and with some Political bargaining there is a frightening chance that it might; following the Green light by the Government on Wednesday, it would be fully operational by June 2010 with all ISP’s forced to comply by that point, however it would start cleaning the internet by February the same year.
While Conroy retracted comments made in previous announcements, that the Filter would ‘block content deemed inappropriate by the Government’ he maintained his stance that the Internet filter would not impede users, and that it was 100% accurate. No this does not seem to be the same responses by many of the nine ISP’s that participated in the trial, many of which stating that the trial in itself was designed to succeed.

At this point the Mandatory Internet Filter was tested under current industry standards, and was not extensive enough, in that it did not have enough participants to be an accurate measure of the Filters effectiveness, especially considering the Governments famed National Broadband Network, which supposedly plans to offer 100Mb speeds, a standard no where near what was tested.  Experts in the field, who from day one stated that the filter would not work at existing levels, and at the levels the NBN would provide, it would negate any benefits the new system would provide.

From the onset there were companies that stood against the Filter, in recent weeks, those Internet service providers, have come to disappoint those who where turning to them, with both Telstra and IInet coming out in support of the Filter, completely backtracking all their previous statements; while I have had no faith in Telstra for as long as I can remember, IINet’s back flip gave an air of ‘we’re being coerced or bullied into doing this,’ especially considering the icy relationship between IInet and Conroy.

Unfortunately aside from continuing in campaigns to address this issue, and contacting your local member, there is little more that can be done to stop this from being put before the Senate, except to hope and prey that the Senate rejects the proposal outright.
In the interim however, technocrats in Australia have turned to ‘censoring’ themselves on Social Networking sites like Facebook and Twitter, and all readers of the DocNetwork are encouraged to do likewise.

Take the below image and put it on top of avatars, display pictures and profile images like so, to raise awareness and hopefully gain opposition to the Mandatory Internet Filter

censored docwinterscensored

As always we will continue to monitor this, and bring you our dear readers, the news, no matter how bad it hurts

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  • Comments (2)
  1. Wow – really cool subject. I’m goin to blog about it also!


    • Me
    • January 13th, 2010

    Good points, I think I will definitely subscribe! I’ll go and read some more! What do you see the future of this being?


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