Cencorship, Australian Style

Over here in Oz we’re debating “clean feed” - the option of the Government mandating a filtering system for ISPs so that no objectionable content may be viewed.

On the face of it, this seems like a good idea - protect the children and all that. Except, it’s the start of a slippery slope, where content becomes filtered that challenges the concept of freedom of expression.


The news article. Not to be confused with the name of my fair country, “The Australian” is a national broadsheet newspaper.

“Whirlpool” in this context is not a whitegoods manufacturer :slight_smile: Whirlpool here is an Australian based Internet Technology forum, ostensibly Australia’s number one.

Here is the thread on the Whirlpool forums on the subject:


Simon Wright, the founder of Whirlpool, writes here:


and, apart from the offending link, quotes the post in it’s entirety. In Australia we have a statutory authority called ACMA that regulates content.

The problem is, the “offensive” link was deliberately chosen in order to test the system, it appears one government functionary, unelected and therefore unrepresentative, has a political viewpoint and has acted according to their belief and exercised the ban.

I won’t post the link here as it’s rather graphic, it’s dealing with pictures of aborted fetuses and is from an anti abortion site.

My objection, then, is two fold: a government employee, not a politician is regulating internet content, and that content is of a politically sensitive nature.

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