Bradfield Resident

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Posts Tagged ‘mandatory filter’

Tue 08 Jun 10 | To: Child Wise | B.McMenamin quote in SMH article re mandatory internet filtering

Posted by bradfieldresident on 8 June 2010

From: Bradfield Resident
Date: Tuesday 08 June 2010 04:47 (+10)
Subject: B.McMenamin quote in SMH article re mandatory internet filtering
To: Child Wise – Office

Child Wise,

I refer to an article published on the Sydney Morning Herald website:

Filter goes ahead regardless
http://www.smh.com.au/technology/technology-news/filter-goes-ahead-regardless-20100529-wmg7.html
SARAH WHYTE
May 30, 2010

The article contains the following paragraph:

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.”

Is this an accurate quote and representation of Child Wise’s position?

I note the specification of filtering ‘illegal material’; is that detail part of Child Wise’s particular position, or has it been supposed by SMH? I am inferring from the “Sites are going to be blocked” statement that Child Wise supports the filter being implemented, without restricting it to child abuse material.

I am also concerned by the quote from Ms McMenamin on three separate issues:

1. “Sites are going to be blocked” – from a technical standpoint this is known to be false and any blacklist can only ever be behind in listing any sites that could/’should’ be on the list

2. “should be blocked” – the current definition of “should be blocked”, that is, content that is or would be refused classification, is far broader than many people believe is appropriate; is not well defined (insofar as refused classification is not well defined); is certainly in excess of any child abuse prevention objectives of Child Wise or any other child protection agency; and is subject to arbitrary expansion by this or future governments and possibly even by non-representative groups and organisations.

3. I agree that “every parent is taught about the dangers of the internet”; it is my belief, and a belief held by many, that the implementation mandatory internet filter would likely lead to an actual reduction in the vigilance of parents in both monitoring and educating their children on using the internet, including by parents viewing the need to do so as less important therefore avoiding the necessary (parental) education.

I hope that Ms McMenamin (and Child Wise) are aware of these issues. If you could explain Child Wise’s position, making specific reference to these and any other publicly debated objectioned points to the mandatory filter that you choose to as additional detail, that would be of great interest to me and I imagine also beneficial to Child Wise’s public support for the filter.

Bradfield Resident
Sydney

Tuesday 08 June 2010


Bradfield Resident
bradfieldresident@gmail.com
https://bradfieldresident.wordpress.com

  • Posted in Cyber Safety Plan, Mail Sent, Sydney Morning Herald | Tagged: , , | 2 Comments »

    Wed 10 Mar 10 | To: Senator Stephen Conroy – Minister for BCDE | Cyber Safety Plan

    Posted by bradfieldresident on 10 March 2010

    [Note: instances of “BDCE” are mistakes, and should be “BCDE” for “Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy”]

    From: […]
    Date: Wednesday 10 March 2010 00:30 (+11)
    Subject: Cyber Safety Plan
    To: Senator Stephen Conroy – Minister for BCDE
    Cc: Tony Smith MP – Shadow Minister for BDCE, Paul Fletcher MP – Member for Bradfield, Senator Scott Ludlam – Australian Greens spokesperson for BDCE

    Senator Conroy,

    from some time before 11:30pm (AEDT) on Tuesday 09 March 2010 I have been trying to access the “cybersafetyplan” page on the DBCDE website, but, as my browser informs me, “The server at www.dbcde.gov.au is taking too long to respond.”

    How often is this website unavailable? Does the department maintain statistics on availability?

    If the content allegedly provided at http://www.dbcde.gov.au/cybersafetyplan is available in document form (printed or electronic), please have someone in your department forward a copy to me.

    I am also interested to know, since it seems the vast majority of people I have spoken to, or hear or read about in the news, object to a mandatory internet filter, who exactly, aside from your department, are actually in favour of and support it. Indeed, given the severe technical limitations of the proposed filter, I would like to know who proposed and drafted it in the first place.

    I am deeply concerned that the filter, if it is implemented, will use a secret list of web sites, and especially that it could be the case that sites or pages that end up on the list – for whatever reason, legitimate or not – might not have any option to be removed from the list, or even be confirmed as to whether on the list or not. As the minister I am sure you are aware that such a system is obviously and easily open to abuse (either now or in the future) by design, not specifically by the good intentions (or not) of any particular people involved. If you or your department have done a thorough analysis of this risk and its implications, and subsequently found that this risk can, to a very high degree of certainty, be removed, please enlighten me with the department’s answer to this dire threat to freedom and democracy. Without a detailed guarantee of transparency and/or protection (by methodology, not just a promise) from these potential abuses, I cannot believe that the proposed filter is anything other than a tool for censorship; the thin end of the wedge, being hardware, software and processes installed at ISPs, as well as legislation, subject to feature creep, if you will, including unreasonable surveillance and spying on ordinary citizens, as well as reducing the possibilities for free and equitable access to communication (in this case via the medium of the internet).

    As a final note, about one hour since finding the DBCDE website unavailable, I find this still to be the case. A federal government department’s website should not be unavailable for this long without a serious excuse in the order of serious internet backbone failure or sustained denial of service attack. It does, however, serve to illustrate that the government would do better trying to improve access to content instead of actively trying to do the opposite.

    [name]

    [address]

    Email: [email]

    Posted in Cyber Safety Plan, Department of Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy, Federal Legislation, Federal MPs, Internet, Mail Sent | Tagged: , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »