Tuesday, March 31, 2009

censoring those who oppose censorship

Wikileaks offices in Germany were raided by police on March 24. This wikileaks editorial is a must read:
Western internet censorship: The beginning of the end or the end of the beginning?

Australia and Germany are the only liberal democracies proposing a mandatory internet censorship regime ...

Although originally marketed, in all countries, as a way of combating child pornography, the blacklists obtained by Wikileaks show that the systems have already been corrupted into censoring other content, including political content.

For instance, the secret blacklist for Thailand censors thousands of sites per year deemed to be critical of the Thai Monarchy, from academic books and YouTube to the Economist magazine and Wikileaks itself.

Similarly, the blacklist for Australia contains an anti-abortion site, fringe religions, a dentist clinic, gay sites, gambling sites, islamist sites, euthanasia activist sites, an astrologer's blog, misclassified material, and, like Thailand, Wikileaks itself. Even the Australian government's "Minister for censorship", Senator Stephen Conroy, has admitted that fully half of the sites on the secret list are unrelated to child pornography.

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