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Censorship The Internet United Kingdom Your Rights Online

UK Internet Porn Blocking Rejected 101

Posted by timothy
from the y'kin-never-take-our-freedom dept.
Gordonjcp writes "The BBC are reporting that the proposed automatic blocking of porn websites by UK ISPs has been rejected by the government. Only 35% of the parents who responded to a survey on filtering wanted an automatic block. The report (PDF), drawn from over 3500 responses, found that 80% of all those who responded were in favour of no filtering of any kind."
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UK Internet Porn Blocking Rejected

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  • by kthreadd (1558445) on Saturday December 15, 2012 @12:13PM (#42301545)
    How about not trying to be an automatic parent and actually doing some parenting.
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Kjella (173770)

      Yeah, and if a kid comes into a store and wants to buy a porn magazine with his allowance then clearly the parents are just coasting on the law instead of parenting, so we should just take away the law. No matter how much you parent, kids will sometimes refuse to comply. If they don't want to brush their teeth before they go to bed, explaining it and leaving the choice up to them isn't good parenting. Sometimes you just have to hit that override switch and say either you're brushing your teeth or I'm brushi

    • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday December 15, 2012 @01:37PM (#42301987)

      IMHO that is not even the biggest issue here. It has already been proved in Finland, that the (child)porn filtering is
      - Used to block local websites that tell people the truth about the porn filtering (e.g. by providing a list of websites that are blocked and don't contain information that according to the law should be blocked)
      - The websites that are blocked, have absolutely no way to get out of the list (the owner of the website has tried for over a 4 years now)
      - Already discussions have started about extending the block (e.g. the pirate bay is already blocked)
      - It was not written into the law, but the creators of the law explained that it should be used only on foreign websites, yet right from the start a local website (mentioned above) was blocked.

      This is absolutely insane.

    • by Joce640k (829181)

      In other news, 35% of parents are clueless about how the Internet works.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Sorry, could not help myself... :)

  • Translation (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Opportunist (166417) on Saturday December 15, 2012 @01:02PM (#42301755)

    So, in other words, 2/3 of parents actually don't want government to think of their children all the time and instead want it to stay the hell out? Who would have thought...

    Who would have thought that the majority of parents do NOT want government to take over raising their kids and instead want to hand down their own values instead of letting government dictate what values they should have?

    I'm surprised. For a change, it's a positive surprise.

    • Who would have thought that the majority of parents do NOT want government to take over raising their kids and instead want to hand down their own values instead of letting government dictate what values they should have?

      The article states that 50% of parents wanted some form of content filtering. Besides which, I'm not sure what part of the world you're from, but the parents I've been around do try to protect their children from pornography... It's not one of the values they hand down.

      I would wager that the reluctance is due in part to: 1. the parents actually wanting access to porn for themselves, but not their children (hypocrisy); and, 2. the parents weighing the consequences of accidental blocking content, such as sexu

      • This article seems a little confusing to me. It states:

        A public consultation found 35% of parents wanted an automatic bar while 15% wanted some content filtered, and an option to block other material.

        and then,

        The report found that, taking respondents as a whole, the majority were against all forms of control with more than 80% answering no to each of the three questions.

        These two figures don't add up.

        • by Patch86 (1465427)

          35% of parents. 80% of all respondents, which included non-parents, academics, industry reps, etc.

          It is notable that while more parents wanted blocking than the rest of the respondents (proportionally), it was still not a majorit yin favour. That's a pretty sound rejection.

      • 1. the parents actually wanting access to porn for themselves, but not their children (hypocrisy)

        That doesn't need to be hypocrisy. It might also just be them considering their children still too young for porn.

      • I can see the parents' wish to keep kids from watching content they do not deem suitable for them (personally, I'd make sure they never have to endure a second of those Teletubbies), but consider this: ONE of their friends WILL have unfiltered access. Either because his parents don't care, because he knows how to outsmart the filter or because his parents use insecure passwords. And kids have a LOT of time for guessing...

        And then he'll get his sex ed from his friends and their computers. Is that what you wa

        • I believe the opt-in approach was supposed to take this into account... but yes, it would be possible to circumvent the system. The idea is that it is made at least somewhat difficult to do so, such as filtering at the ISP level. This would remove the convenience factor, which I think would eliminate a good deal of the problem, and is something that parents could not do without government intervention.

          Though, like I said, the heavy handed approach of blocking at ISP through content sniffing will cause other

        • I work at a school. We block all TCP and UDP traffic except port 80, which transparently redirects to a filter proxy. We use one of the best network filters on the market (Smoothwall). We have DNS filtered, HTTPS blocked. The stations are locked down, the list constantly updated, and on a semi-regular basis a technician (me) rummages through every image in every student area.

          And guess what? I still find porn.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    The UK government doesn't care what ordinary people think. You can be sure this or something like it will be back in the near future. It is a small comfort that the general public isn't as much brainwashed sheeple as I might have expected, but it will make no difference in the long run.

    • The current UK government doesn't want this. So they will be using the figures to support their position.

      The government doesn't want it as it is imposing excessive regulation on industry. The only reason they looked at it in the first place was a backbench MP got together with the Daily Mail (yes, the Mail of all people was complaining about access sexualised content on the internet, I guess they want a monopoly...) and caused a lot of fuss.

    • by Patch86 (1465427)

      The UK government was only doing this as a response to a vocal (and typically vicious) campaign from the Daily Mail and other members of the right-wing gutter press. They didn't really want to implement anything like this (being expensive and difficult), but they couldn't afford to have their usual support base turning against them.

      This consultation lets them drop it while saving face. "We tried our best, but the people have spoken- sorry grass-root supporters!".

  • by Heebie (1163973) on Saturday December 15, 2012 @01:51PM (#42302093) Homepage
    Censorship is *ALWAYS* wrong under *ALL* circumstances. There are *NO* reasons that justify it under any circumstance. Every human being should have access to the sum total of human knowledge.
    • by Anonymous Coward

      Agreed. Now let's get the Americans to stop bleeping out supposedly "bad" words for religitard reasons.

    • I would add one exception... I wish goatse was censored... Now it's burned into my memory... arrrrgh!!
  • As someone who responded, my 14 families are all grateful that the MP's have listened to reason.

    Now, back to redtube.

  • ...no survey, just an order to the ISPs to block it. No real threat to people, just big money heading towards politicians pockets...

    • That was a court, not politicians. The law was introduced by the EU in the early 2000s, so Labour was behind it, not the Tories. Labour love interfering and nannying (and cosying up to has-been musicians). The Conservatives don't like interfering with businesses unless its to make other businesses they prefer richer, so were against this web-blocking proposal from the beginning (and only looked into it because a backbench MP and the Daily Mail kicked up a fuss) - the survey was to give them an excuse to she

    • by wvmarle (1070040)

      Blocking torrents was targeted at blocking people from accessing outright illegal material.

      Porn (most of it at least) is afaik not illegal in the UK.

      And that is a key difference. Also the torrent block is non-optional: it applies to all subscribers. The porn block would be optional (albeit probably on an opt-out basis).

      And yes I know those blocks are generally ineffective, but that's not the point here.

  • "...80% of all those who responded Enjoyed watching porn on their computer..."
  • For all those brainless sheep suggesting that Blocking Child Pornography is a good thing, please take a few seconds to think through the actual real world implications of what you're suggesting.

    - In practice when they talk about filtering "the internet" they mean filtering HTTP (and HTTPS) access ONLY.
    - That means that OTHER distribution means (HTTP over VPN, TOR, encrypted files over P2P, URLS to FTP servers, private email servers, etc) will not be filtered.

    Functionally it's just sweeping the problem und
  • by Handpaper (566373) on Sunday December 16, 2012 @01:14AM (#42305705)
    About 70% of the 78 voluntary and community sector organisations that responded answered "yes" to an automatic block while a strong majority of respondents from all other groups answered "no".

    For "community [ ] organisations" they don't seem very much in tune with "the community", do they?

    Nothing new there then, the NSPCC [nspcc.org.uk] et al have to keep the pressure on or their State Funding might dry up.

    Policymaking with the aid of government funded pressure groups - more incest than you'll ever find online!

    • by wvmarle (1070040)

      They are idealists, have their opinion, and will seek as much publicity as they can with that opinion. Now they certainly will do good work within their niche, those strong opinions are not usually a reflection of the overall community.

      And that's not about government funding (which they normally get for their real activities such as manning a child abuse report hotline), those remarks are to get private funding, which comes from people that have the same strong opinions, and think that by donating to like-m

  • Automatic porn blocking is wrong on so many levels. Firstly, it should be opt-in so "concerned parents" are probably the only ones using it. Secondly, it's very likely to block non-porn sites as false positives and yet there will never be a porn list you can check publicly check against (because a) it'll be a good source for your porn bookmarks and b) it's done in "secret" to avoid a rival org taking the list and putting it in their porn filter list for free). Thirdly, it *will* be use as stepping stone to

  • Google image search already made that decision for them.
  • hey kiddos, click this link [google.com] for porn, just make sure your parents aren't around ;)

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