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Australia Censorship Government The Internet

Australian Government Backdoor Internet Filter Shuts Down 1,000 Websites 90

An anonymous reader writes "The Australian government has secretly censored over 1,000 web sites through a hitherto-unused internet censorship law. In April the Melbourne Free University was blocked without any explanation. Section 313 of the Telecommunications Act allows the government to close web sites without warning to "uphold laws, protect public revenue and safeguard national security". This is open to abuse as Australians only have limited free speech rights which already make it difficult for the press to report corruption."
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Australian Government Backdoor Internet Filter Shuts Down 1,000 Websites

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday May 17, 2013 @05:54PM (#43757917)

    "uphold laws, protect public revenue and safeguard national security" are vague enough that many things can be engulfed based on the government's point of view of any particular website on any particular day. I wish they put this much effort into "uphold laws, protect public revenue and safeguard national security" when it came to politicians telling the truth, consumer protection and shite advertising.

  • Re:Too bad (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday May 17, 2013 @06:05PM (#43758027)

    But don't forget the median household income is $43,960 and they have 5.6% unemployment. Free healthcare and education. So don't get too crazy about free speech and all. They can go at least another 20 years before they have sold the whole country to China.

  • by icebike ( 68054 ) on Friday May 17, 2013 @08:08PM (#43758933)

    You pretty much contradicted yourself. If it was blocked in error then SOMEBODY must have some blocking in place, No?

    Australian Securities and Investments Commission was behind the blocking of the Melbourne Free University website

    Further, this was already admitted by the Australian government:

    The news came tonight in a statement issued by the office of Communications Minister Stephen Conroy, following a controversial event in April which saw some 1,200 websites wrongfully blocked by several of Australia’s major Internet service providers.

    Over the past week, a number of different Federal Government involved in Internet regulation, including the Attorney-General’s Department, the Australian Federal Police and the Australian Communications and Media Authority have denied involvement in the April block. However, tonight Senator Conroy’s office revealed that the incident that resulted in Melbourne Free University and more than a thousand other sites being blocked originated from a different source — financial regulator the Australian Securities and Investment Commission.

  • by manu0601 ( 2221348 ) on Friday May 17, 2013 @09:35PM (#43759429)
    As opposed to another country that has free speech, but citizen votes have no effect at all on most outcome.

Enzymes are things invented by biologists that explain things which otherwise require harder thinking. -- Jerome Lettvin