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Censorship Government Privacy The Internet Your Rights Online

Porn Ban Being Considered In South Africa 240 240

krou writes "Deputy Minister of Home Affairs Malusi Gigaba has gone to South Africa's Law Reform Commission to see whether the law can be changed to allow a complete ban of digitally distributed pornography. Gigaba has also been in discussion with The Justice Alliance of South Africa, 'a coalition of corporations, individuals, and churches committed to upholding and fighting for justice and the highest moral standards in South African society,' which has written its own draft bill regarding the issue, which covers the banning of pornography on television, mobile phones, and the Web. Using a car analogy, Mr. Gigaba said, 'Cars are already provided with brakes and seatbelts.... There is no reason why the Internet should be provided without the necessary restrictive mechanisms built into it.' Related documents and the JASA's proposed bill can be found online, one of which has the wonderful title 'A reasonable and justifiable limitation on Freedom of Expression and Right to Privacy.'"
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Porn Ban Being Considered In South Africa

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday May 30, 2010 @10:48AM (#32396892)

    Shouldn't they be concentrating on more important stuff?

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HIV/AIDS_in_South_Africa

    http://www.avert.org/aidssouthafrica.htm

  • by biryokumaru (822262) <biryokumaru@gmail.com> on Sunday May 30, 2010 @10:49AM (#32396904)
    But couldn't the people who want the filter just, you know, not look at porn?
  • by roman_mir (125474) on Sunday May 30, 2010 @10:49AM (#32396906) Homepage Journal

    So I guess they solved all of the other societal and economic problems in South Africa now, that they are considering this porn ban.

    I don't know of any other single thing that can rile up the masses as much as this nonsense, this including killing of kittens and puppies and eating little babies with some tomato sauce. Well maybe not the masses, but I sure would be quite irritated.

  • Why not? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Hijacked Public (999535) on Sunday May 30, 2010 @10:52AM (#32396930)

    Once you've climbed the hill past every other questionable component of human behavior, why not ban porn? You're past racism and oppression and outright murder of whatever race isn't the one in power. And starvation. And everyone has enough water. And you can grow all the food you need. And you haven't sold everything under the ground to companies that will burn everything above making room to dig.

    No one is actively raping and pillaging their neighbors. People's homes aren't being burned with government approval. You won't be murdered and your gold teeth pried out if you ride a Kombi outside Johannesburg. Not everyone you meet has aids and does nothing to prevent its spread.

    So yeah why not tackle porn?

  • by camg188 (932324) on Sunday May 30, 2010 @11:01AM (#32396994)

    Using a car analogy, Mr. Gigaba said: 'Cars are already provided with brakes and seatbelts... There is no reason why the internet should be provided without the necessary restrictive mechanisms built into it.'

    Cars come with steering wheels that let me go where ever I want, even if it is an off road adventure in some nasty, sticky muck.

    Cars come with radiator caps so if too much pressure builds up, the hot fluids are released into an overflow tank.

  • Re:Why not? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Kjella (173770) on Sunday May 30, 2010 @11:18AM (#32397128) Homepage

    Not everyone you meet has aids and does nothing to prevent its spread.

    So yeah why not tackle porn?

    It's the catholic solution. No porn = no dirty thoughts = abstinence and monogamy = no AIDS problem. No points for finding flaws in that logic, even WoW or slashdot would be more effective.

  • by dogmatixpsych (786818) on Sunday May 30, 2010 @11:23AM (#32397160) Homepage Journal
    Why can't they do both? I don't see how they are mutually exclusive categories. If South Africa wants to filter porn that does not exclude them from also working on the AIDS problem. Governments can focus on more than one thing (usually).
  • by mrsteveman1 (1010381) on Sunday May 30, 2010 @11:47AM (#32397338)

    "Subject" people to porn. Right.

    The .xxx domain is not going to lead to freedom of choice, it will lead to censorship.

    The spice girls google example is a lesson, teachers should not randomly type things into google in front of students, if they want kid-safe search results they need to use a kid-safe search engine. That is not just cause for censorship.

    The answer is to stop catering to the moral objections of people who don't want to see things. Being offended by something doesn't actually mean someone else did something wrong that would justify orchestrating complex systems and requirements to suit peoples personal beliefs.

  • by Jawnn (445279) on Sunday May 30, 2010 @11:55AM (#32397406)

    But couldn't the people who want the filter just, you know, not look at porn?

    Erm..., no. Of course not. They would rather convince themselves that they don't need or want to ever look at porn, and having done that, the cognitive dissonance set up by their envy of those choose not to would be unbearable. So..., everyone must suffer.

  • by ThinkingInBinary (899485) <thinkinginbinaryNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Sunday May 30, 2010 @12:22PM (#32397616) Homepage

    The controversial .xxx domain, if it ever gets approved, would allow people and countries that do not want to see porn to have a way to ensure that they will never see it unless they intentionally go to those sites.

    A "country" cannot decide for its people that it "doesn't want to see porn". I can assure you, at least some people (of legal age) in that country probably want to see it, and it's not (morally) up to the country to make that decision.

  • by Reziac (43301) * on Sunday May 30, 2010 @12:29PM (#32397688) Homepage Journal

    "It is reasonable to limit access of minors to porn"

    I'd rephrase that as "It is reasonable FOR PARENTS to limit access of minors to porn". No need to involve the government or gov't censors.

    Otherwise -- at what point does gov't interference in parenting stop?? Tho from the info quoted in this post, http://yro.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=1669582&cid=32397048 [slashdot.org], it appears that in S.A. gov't interference is allowed to go as far as it sees fit.

  • by phoenix321 (734987) * on Sunday May 30, 2010 @12:37PM (#32397756)

    No, because every idjit voter will recognize the fallacy and dare to speak up against it.

    But who will speak up in favor of online porn without fear of being ostracized? Will honored members of society that DO look at porn please raise their hands and say "Yes, I do look at porn out of my own free will"? Probably not.

    That is the usual hypocrisy behind all those "immoral" things: drugs, prostitution, pornography - "nobody uses that, or better: nobody should" - all while it's a multi billion dollar market with millions of customers.

    And it's another attempt at banning "free speech that might offend someone", ie. killing the "free" part. Popular opinions don't need much protection, after all.

  • Re:Just depends... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by tivoKlr (659818) on Sunday May 30, 2010 @12:49PM (#32397878) Journal
    As if the populous of slashdot needs instruction on finding internet porn pppft...
  • by slick7 (1703596) on Sunday May 30, 2010 @01:11PM (#32398104)

    That is not just cause for censorship.

    When the religious zealots invoke G-D, it is.

  • by ultranova (717540) on Sunday May 30, 2010 @01:17PM (#32398148)

    The spice girls google example is a lesson, teachers should not randomly type things into google in front of students, if they want kid-safe search results they need to use a kid-safe search engine. That is not just cause for censorship.

    Even better, understand that kids aren't going to be harmed by seeing naked women, or even people having sex. Those who are too young will simply ignore it, and those who are old enough will get more fuel for their fantasies. That's all.

    Doesn't mean that you should go out of your way to show porn to children, but if they see it, it's not the end of the world, so stop overreacting.

  • by ultranova (717540) on Sunday May 30, 2010 @01:25PM (#32398224)

    SA needs AIDS to keep the population growth down. If you combat every gawddamm illness in Africa, then many more people will die worse later.

    Bullshit. The population growth rate in every industrial country is around zero. AIDS, by disturbing economy and thus keeping the quality of life down, is making the problem worse, not better. Also, you really can't die much worse than from AIDS.

    The whole "population explosion" scare has been debunked by reality; it turns out that humans simply expand to whatever their environment can comfortably support and then stay there.

  • by ultranova (717540) on Sunday May 30, 2010 @01:59PM (#32398494)

    Why are the more worried about porn than actual crimes?

    Because implementing a filter is easier than stopping actual crimes.

    Any logical person can see that banning porn would likely make the rape situation even worse.

    Any logical person would see than banning porn is completely pointless, since there's no way to stop people from getting what they want. For reference, see: any attempt to ban alcohol ever, any attempt to ban drugs ever, MAFIAA.

    Laws only work when most people agree with them. Legislation does not define morality, morality defines legistalition.

    I'm glad to see they've got their priorities straight.

    The cynic in me says that the priority is for various morality groups make it seem like they're doing something, possibly to themselves.

  • by Pharmboy (216950) on Sunday May 30, 2010 @03:25PM (#32399332) Journal

    Absolutely a country has the moral right to decide that it's citizens are not allowed to see porn just like it has the moral right to make any other decision to protect and provide for it's citizens.

    Here in America, our constitution was designed specifically to NOT allow the government to do those things. While they have whittled at those things for years, some of us believe that it is NOT the governments (any government) job to decide what is moral and what is not. Certain crimes such as murder, rape, burglary and such are illegal not because they are immoral, but because they victimize other individuals. Even the existing laws in the USA that have no victims should NOT be allowed under our constitution (suicide, for example).

    We do understand that other countries do have governments that decide what is moral or not, and many citizens in those countries are ok with that. We just think it is insane to allow a bureaucrat to decide what your poor little mind can handle.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday May 30, 2010 @03:31PM (#32399392)

    I takes many years for countries to recover if they can. Multiple generations. look as some of the eastern European countries after the end of the soviet union, they are still struggling to be on par with the western europe countries and stability is hardly present. At least eastern europe has decent stable neighbors. Not the same in South Africa. Even china is still a mess. After many years of growth some regions are no better than they were in the 1950s. I find the ending of your post quite idiotic, how would bringing back the Boers fix this? Unless you only think about stability from the outside and ignore the suffering of the people who live in those countries. Most of those daylight democracies can be directly link to instability brought in by your friendly colonists. Africa was not always like this. Stable empires existed way before the Europeans came.

    Oh and lets not forget this is only a proposal and that many other "civilized" countries are already putting in place filtering of the web. But your little bullshit post doesn't care. You just wanted to talk crap about a country that is still in it's early years of existence post apartheid.

  • by Phroggy (441) <slashdot3 AT phroggy DOT com> on Sunday May 30, 2010 @03:56PM (#32399620) Homepage

    Any logical person can see that banning porn would likely make the rape situation even worse.

    Not necessarily. You're assuming rape is about sex. It's often about power. Porn isn't a substitute for that.

  • by skine (1524819) on Sunday May 30, 2010 @04:49PM (#32400036)

    While they have whittled at those things for years, some of us believe that it is NOT the governments (any government) job to decide what is moral and what is not.

    A lot of people don't realize that the purpose of law (and government) is to create a successful society, and not for the protection of the individual (though individuals do benefit from a successful society).

    Murder may be morally wrong, but that's not why it's illegal. It's illegal since a society which allows murder will likely not function very well.
    Seatbelt laws are in place because healthy, living people are much more beneficial to society than those that are injured or dead.

    From some points of view, pornography is immoral. The real questions that should be asked are whether it is detrimental to society, what the effect of banning/regulating porn will provide any benefit, and whether the ban will actually cause more problems than benefits.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday May 30, 2010 @05:33PM (#32400394)

    http://censorbugbear-reports.blogspot.com/ [blogspot.com]
    http://www.news24.com/SouthAfrica [news24.com]

    Whites are on level 5 of 8 on genocide watch list.
    Yet the bread winner's money (a 1/3 of the government's income is paid by 4 million whites' income tax, look at income distribution, there are 50 million people we support)and they waste money on things like this, they also go to court to oppose a ban on genocidal hate songs 'Kill the Boer'.

    89 deaths a day, every other rape is a HIV infection which is a death sentence yet they waste their time with an anti-porn bill.

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