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Australia's Vast, Scattershot Censorship Blacklist Revealed

timothy posted more than 5 years ago | from the please-don't-click-here dept.

Censorship 401

mask.of.sanity writes "Australia's secretive Internet filter blacklist held by its communications watchdog has been leaked, revealing the government has understated the amount of banned Web pages by more than 1000. Multiple legitimate businesses and Web sites have been banned including two bus companies, online poker sites, multiple Wikipedia entries, Google and Yahoo group pages, a dental surgery and a tour operator. Andrew Twaits, CEO of Betfair, a billion-dollar business blocked by the blacklist, was furious the government has potentially annexed tens of millions of dollars in revenue after the Betfair.com gambling site was blacklisted. The blacklists were reportedly leaked by a Web filter operator to wikileaks which has published the full list of banned URLs. Outraged privacy advocates say the government has effectively lied about the amount of URLs included in the blacklists, totaling more than 2300, and the type of content which it would ban. The leak follows a series of attacks on the watchdog in which irate users successfully lobbied for web sites to be banned, only to be threatened with an $11,000 fine for publishing the link contained in the PR response. It was also revealed the watchdog can ban Web sites at a whim, with no accountability."

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401 comments

first post revealed (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27264469)

now chug my frosty piss and eat my asshole you fags!

I did a CTRL+F (5, Funny)

pecosdave (536896) | more than 5 years ago | (#27264495)

Then I typed the word "Goat" - I saw the .cx variation - well, at least they're making some attempt at saving the populace from the horrors of the web.

Re:I did a CTRL+F (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27264553)

As I stated on the petition to reinstate Goatse's domain, instead of having a single site to block there we are now stuck with dozens of mirrors. The internet now has more gaping arsehole to gaze at than ever before. Furthermore, the constant attempts to shut down shock site's domains leads to them registering multiple domains in various TLDs to ensure at least one or two of the domains stays registered.

Re:I did a CTRL+F (5, Insightful)

unlametheweak (1102159) | more than 5 years ago | (#27264609)

Then I typed the word "Goat" - I saw the .cx variation - well, at least they're making some attempt at saving the populace from the horrors of the web.

So that would mean that Slashdot has (or likely will be) blacklisted, because it has most of the criteria for blacklisting: it posts secret, patented numbers; sites about gay Negroes, goats, gambling, and references the links to banned and immoral Internet domains (like in this front page story).

Re:I did a CTRL+F (5, Insightful)

ghostcorps (975146) | more than 5 years ago | (#27264997)

Yes! That is exactly what it means. Australians have very few 'rights'. The free speech thing.. forget it.

There is a big issue with blogs, because, by Australian Law any presentation that may encourage dissent is illegal (remember: we were originally a penal colony). So the very nature of blogs.. ie opinionated ranting, ensures that they can be shut off without notice if anyone says they were offended. Indeed we have already seen this with wikipedia, wikileaks, yahoo and google group pages. Essentially, any ideas that have not been vetted by the govt is open to any misinterperetation and repurcusions..

Behold ... the future

Re:I did a CTRL+F (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27264613)

So they're banning perfectly legal gay porn?

Re:I did a CTRL+F (2, Funny)

Ethanol-fueled (1125189) | more than 5 years ago | (#27264837)

It is unlikely that Mr. Goatse is completely gay because you can see his wedding ring in the famous shot.

Mr. Goatse may be bi, or he may just like to put stuff in his butt. According to Cosmopolitan magazine, a surprising number of men enjoy inserting things in their anuses. Additionally, God invented homosexuality -- why else would a man be able to have a prostate orgasm? So Mr. Goatse and his wife may have fooled around, starting with a finger or two and moving on to inserting whole forearms years later.

Re:I did a CTRL+F (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27264859)

I never noticed the other ring...

Re:I did a CTRL+F (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27265129)

they blocked lemonparty as well :(

thanks, australia! (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27264527)

i took a quick look at the blacklist and found some porn sites that i didn't know about. awesome! it's like a pre-filtered list of quality porn links! they saved me a lot of surfing time!

Re:thanks, australia! (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27264749)

Some of it looks like it would be underage stuff... I clicked a few random links (particularly the google groups and wikipedia ones), and it seems like a lot of the stuff that's on the banned list doesn't even *exist* on the varied websites anymore. I didn't get one valid link out of about five or six I clicked.

Warning (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27264801)

Some of it looks like it would be underage stuff...

Yes... I highly recommend against clicking around on that blacklist. There's virtually nothing interesting on the list. Mostly dead links and things that will make you want to clear your browser cache.

Re:thanks, australia! (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27264897)

Are you in Australia per chance?

*This is fake* (3, Informative)

kestasjk (933987) | more than 5 years ago | (#27264857)

Conroy and ISPs implementing the blacklist confirm that this is a fake:
http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2009/03/19/2520929.htm [abc.net.au]

I read about this earlier today; news media really have to check WikiLeaks out carefully before reporting it.

I think the black-list is absurd, it's baffling that we can actually have censorship here in Australia, and my reps know how I feel at least. But I don't think stunts like this help :-(

Re:*This is fake* (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27265003)

Strangely the government is still going to try and find out who "leaked" this fake list.

Re:*This is fake* (2, Interesting)

unlametheweak (1102159) | more than 5 years ago | (#27265061)

Strangely the government is still going to try and find out who "leaked" this fake list.

I could presume it's because the Australian government is intent on fighting fraud, since the blacklist is evidently fraudulent.

Re:thanks, australia! (3, Funny)

Spit (23158) | more than 5 years ago | (#27264861)

It's like a "What's HOT!" zeitgeist for the discerning pervert.

To Article Poster: (1, Troll)

Jane Q. Public (1010737) | more than 5 years ago | (#27264531)

If they understated the number of blacklisted URLs by 1000, then there were 2300 when there should have been 1300. If they understated the amount of URLs blacklisted by 1000, then while there were actually 2300, there should only have been 2.3.

I am pretty sure you meant the former, not the latter. Please try harder next time.

False alarm (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27264535)

The Australian govt say that the "leaked" list is a hoax. http://www.news.com.au/technology/story/0,28348,25210931-5014239,00.html

Re:False alarm (4, Insightful)

afaik_ianal (918433) | more than 5 years ago | (#27264597)

No they haven't, they've just said there are things on the published list that are not on the official list. They don't say that there's anything in the official list that's not on the published list. I suspect it's been intentionally seeded. It's kind of typical of politicians to say things in a way that sound like they're saying something else. You'll also notice he's threatening to launch an investigation into the people who released it. If it's not the list, then what exactly are they going to investigate?

Re:False alarm (4, Insightful)

TubeSteak (669689) | more than 5 years ago | (#27264795)

You'll also notice he's threatening to launch an investigation into the people who released it. If it's not the list, then what exactly are they going to investigate?

Who embarrassed them.

Kinda like when it was discovered the CIA was running secret prisons around the globe.
Government didn't want to investigate "what are they doing at these prisons" it was "who leaked their existence."

Shameful really, no matter which government or political party is doing it.

Re:False alarm (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27264913)

Well how exactly can you have secret prisons if people keep leaking it. I see the CIA's point on this one.

Re:False alarm (5, Insightful)

TapeCutter (624760) | more than 5 years ago | (#27264963)

"It's kind of typical of politicians to say things in a way that sound like they're saying something else. You'll also notice he's threatening to launch an investigation into the people who released it. If it's not the list, then what exactly are they going to investigate?"

I agree, speaking of "saying things" I still haven't heard Conroy say he is in favor of a blacklist...here let me clean up then cut&paste my theory from the last story...

Labor is playing the same game with Fielding [wikipedia.org] as Howard did when he "wanted" to implement mandatory filters (that his party are now blocking in opposition). There were similar circumstances for Howard at the time (ie: a censorship nut holding a deciding vote on more important legislation). Here let me spell it out.

Labour have a full majority in the house that the Lib's can't block, (that's what makes them the government of the day). However they need the support of the all the Green's and the two independents (ie a coalition) to pass legislation through the senate that the Lib's cannot block. The Lib's also need a coalition to sucessfully block but only have to find one senator to join their coalition if they want to block the legislation.

Xenophon[sic] and Fielding (the two independents) both wanted a mandatory filter, (Xenophon has an anti-gambling platform). Labor set up a "trial" to keep them onside for as long as possible. Xenophon to his credit has seen the glaring human rights error in his plan to ban offshore gambling sites, Fielding has nowhere to go because he is now in the position of voting for a blacklist that bans his supporters (anti-abortionists), an independent's vote is no longer of much value since the major reform is out of the way ready for the next election, the Lib's, Labor and Greens are happy because they have collectively screwed "Mr 2%" for winning on their preference fuckery, Rudd is happy because Conroy is showing loyalty instead of challenging him in the back rooms like Costello did with Howard,....get my theory.....it's a YES MINISTER episode if ever I saw one.

Oh and check out the nude pictures of Hanson, unfortunately it's only funny because it's happening to someone I don't like.

Re:False alarm (2, Insightful)

afaik_ianal (918433) | more than 5 years ago | (#27264993)

Oh and check out the nude pictures of Hanson, unfortunately it's only funny because it's happening to someone I don't like.

I know this is off-topic, but it's looking less and less likely that it was Hanson.

How bad must the woman who posed for some guy 30 years ago be feeling? She probably has a family now, and I doubt would want that kind of thing being dredged up (Some might say she "wouldn't like it" ;)). It's pretty irresponsible of the Telegraph to basically post nude photos of some nobody in a major newspaper just because she looks like a politician...

Not a hoax (5, Informative)

muzzy (164903) | more than 5 years ago | (#27264707)

Not a hoax. I've confirmed it myself by ripping websites_ACMA.txt out of Integard filtering software. Even if it's not identical to ACMA's own list, it damn well is identical to Integard's version of ACMA's list.

The list is real.

Re:False alarm (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27264709)

That's just obvious attempt at spin/cover-up. Some simple (as these things go) binary reverse engineering of the "Intergard" content filter already showed a similar (though not-identical, earlier) [snapshot of the] list - after all, it's a dynamic blacklist.

http://techwiredau.com/2009/03/was-an-acma-blacklist-leaked/ [techwiredau.com]

So, yeah, of course it's the real list, as at mid-2008. The current ACMA list is probably even bigger and more abuse-of-power filled.

Look, nobody not mentally ill likes true child porn. But consider keeping something valuable - do you demand everyone chop off their hands so they don't steal your gold? Or do YOU put it somewhere safe, with CCTV surveillance? So it is with children -
they don't have adult legal rights, being children. So monitor _children_, perhaps even encrypted feeds over the internet (and monitor who's watching the feeds, mind - unless they're parents or peers they're almost certainly sickos). When children turn 18, they get full adult legal rights, including right to privacy, and the camera monitoring is disengaged.

i.e. if you want to keep children safe, restrict and monitor them, not everyone else, just like keeping anything else precious safe.

When someone says "think of the children" about installing internet censorship, their goal is internet censorship, not keeping children safe!

Re:False alarm (5, Insightful)

unlametheweak (1102159) | more than 5 years ago | (#27265019)

When children turn 18, they get full adult legal rights, including right to privacy, and the camera monitoring is disengaged.

By then it's too late. You've already conditioned them to accept the fact that Authority can and should monitor them for their own good. They're already used to the idea, so the next thing you know they'll think it is normal to pee in a bottle for a Manager so that employers will know what drugs they've taken, or they may think it's normal for companies or governments to monitor what you email to people. Nope, if you treat children like shit then they will grow up to be assholes. Garbage in garbage out.

That they would get power, then abuse it... (4, Insightful)

Fluffeh (1273756) | more than 5 years ago | (#27264537)

I can only watch as my jaw is hanging limply. I can't believe that anyone who got power to do something would abuse that power. Really. Truly. They promised they wouldn't when we brought it up before. They said they were only doing it for us.

Re:That they would get power, then abuse it... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27264729)

They don't go far enough IMO

Re:That they would get power, then abuse it... (5, Insightful)

zappepcs (820751) | more than 5 years ago | (#27264767)

Is I told you so redundant?

There is NO reason to trust any government, ever. period.

The more they ask you to trust them with, the less you should trust them. This is the rule of the land. Governments are not here to help anyone but themselves. When you get rid of one bad politician, 10 more are ready to take their place. They say that absolute power corrupts absolutely. Think about that for a minute. These people are not absolute rulers and look how fucked up they are. The more we trust them with, the more fucked up they will get.

No, there is no simple answer, but citizens should never allow such things as this to exist in the first place. In the US, the second amendment helps to ensure that citizens have a method for revoking license given to governments... if it comes to that.

P.S. They are NEVER doing anything for you, they (the government) always do things for themselves. They just say it's for you, kind of in the same way that a rapist says "this is for you" before they start in on you.

Re:That they would get power, then abuse it... (1)

Oswald (235719) | more than 5 years ago | (#27264917)

Very earnest. However, I think the poster you have "educated" was simply being a smartass. The. One. Word. Sentences. Are. A. Tipoff.

Computerworld employee, anyone? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27264567)

Could you fit any more links to computerworld.com.au in your text? :)

Wikileaks (5, Insightful)

LordKaT (619540) | more than 5 years ago | (#27264569)

god bless wikileaks.

Re:Wikileaks (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27264601)

In the news they reported that the AFP (the Fed Police) may be used to find the person who leaked the list. This will be a good test of wikileaks as well.

Re:Wikileaks (1, Insightful)

afaik_ianal (918433) | more than 5 years ago | (#27264691)

Yeah, because the Swedish are really going to give a shit.

Re:Wikileaks (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27264715)

Yeah, because the Swedish are really going to give a shit.

I meant technically not politically.

Re:Wikileaks (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27264873)

For a minute there, I meant you meant physiologically.

Black Lists help open up the Internet (5, Funny)

unlametheweak (1102159) | more than 5 years ago | (#27264577)

The blacklists were reportedly leaked by a Web filter operator to wikileaks which has published the full list of banned URLs.

These numerous government blacklists have proven to be a boon to porn and gambling industries. There are Web sites that I never would have even thought to go to if it weren't for these black lists. I want to thank the government of Australia for helping to open my eyes and my mind to the vast unseen Internet.

Re:Black Lists help open up the Internet (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27264619)

The blacklists were reportedly leaked by a Web filter operator to wikileaks which has published the full list of banned URLs.

These numerous government blacklists have proven to be a boon to porn and gambling industries. There are Web sites that I never would have even thought to go to if it weren't for these black lists. I want to thank the government of Australia for helping to open my eyes and my mind to the vast unseen Internet.

I came here to say this. For those interested, there's some excellent pornography on that list; provided you don't follow any blatantly-illegal-in-the-united-states links.

Re:Black Lists help open up the Internet (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27264841)

... provided you don't follow any blatantly-illegal-in-the-united-states links.

At least not while you're on a network that can be associated with you. Spoof your MAC, get on a public or open private wireless network, get what you want and leave.

Of course some other poor dumb sap might end up in federal prison, especially since it seems half the lawyers in the country seem to think that a compromised or open network is not a valid defense.

lolcats being censored (5, Informative)

muzzy (164903) | more than 5 years ago | (#27264607)

My favourite from the list: files.kavefish.com/pictures/collections/funny_cat_pictures/_index-list.html

It's just funny cat pictures and nothing suggets there's ever been anything else.

Also, the list (although a month older than one on Wikileaks) can be obtained from Integard filter software. Hex edit the integard.exe and change first occurence of "datetimepicker.js" to websites_ACMA.txt, then login to integard's webUI and request that file. Apparently there's a whitelist of files the webUI server can give to the user. I've confirmed myself that the lolcats URL is indeed in that ACMA file from the filter software...

Re:lolcats being censored (5, Funny)

schon (31600) | more than 5 years ago | (#27264753)

It's just funny cat pictures

Well, it's understandable why they blocked it - it's kitty porn. /me ducks.

Re:lolcats being censored (5, Insightful)

unlametheweak (1102159) | more than 5 years ago | (#27264803)

Well, it's understandable why they blocked it - it's kitty porn. /me ducks.

I could presume it's because Australians aren't allowed to see any "pussy".

Re:lolcats being censored (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27264781)

clearly our tax money is paying a cat hater somewhere...

Re:lolcats being censored (5, Informative)

muzzy (164903) | more than 5 years ago | (#27264825)

Before anyone mentiones about it, yes, I did check the commented out images too. They're funny cats as well, probably commented out to ease the load of the page.

Other gems from the list:
www.kids.net.au/forward.php?url=www.energizingbuddies.cc/ ... apparently the domain expired, and the ACMA decided to censor the redirect link instead of telling kids.net.au to remove the link!
The whole forward.php has disappeared since, as well as that entry, the energizingbuddies.cc existed back in 2002...

The happysong.com.tw url ... which has phpBB2 url with a sid in it. A session ID! So, nobody browsing the forum would actually get their access censored, only the guy with that specific session ID and the people that link to that specific URL.

Ofcourse, 4chan's /b/ and encyclopedia dramatica are on the list, too. Since they censor stuff like animal cruelty as well I can understand that, because there probably is plenty of risque material on the sites.

Also spotted sam hocevar's (VLC developer) site on the list, with two urls. Apparently he saved an animal abuse image from 4chan and somehow got it on the ACMA blacklist.

There are also plenty of porn sites with a referrer in the url, a lot of TGP's like that on the list. Shows that whoever submitted them for review was browsing porn and actively clicking around. Some of the sites are listed multiple times with different referrer IDs in the URLs too, egrep '/\?(id=)?[a-z.]*.?$' for a list. One site is listed 3 times with different referrer in the URL :)

A bunch of newsgroups have been censored at either myusenet.net, free-usenet.net, groups.google.com, groups.google.com.au or usenet-replayer.com. Only single groups, pages or messages. And ofcourse, the same content is still available at the other usenet archive sites.

Well, that's some gems to begin with. Haven't bothered doing a full analysis of the content, kinda lacking the willpower to do more than just random dabbling.

Dear Apple (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27264625)

Dear Apple,

I am a homosexual. I bought an Apple computer because of its well earned reputation for being "the" gay computer. Since I have become an Apple owner, I have been exposed to a whole new world of gay friends. It is really a pleasure to meet and compute with other homos such as myself.

I plan on using my new Apple computer as a way to entice and recruit young schoolboys into the homosexual lifestyle; it would be so helpful if you could produce more software which would appeal to young boys. Thanks in advance.

with much gayness,

Father Randy "Pudge" O'Day, S.J.

stupid (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27264639)

As I said in the prior story about the same subject: ALL Australians are stupid AND BEFORE YOU MOD ME NEGATIVELY, I can justify that statement completely. Those who are perpetrating this crime are stupid for the obvious reasons and the rest of the Australian population, which is allowing this crime to be perpetrated in their country, are stupid for allowing it to take place.

Try to curb any impulses to click... (4, Informative)

NevarMore (248971) | more than 5 years ago | (#27264645)

I just loaded up the wikileaks page and I hope I didn't make a mistake I'm going to regret.

Some of those links at are perfectly normal, the gambling ones, the wikipedia ones, nothing unusual.

Some of those links at are icky. Things that the extreme pro-lifers like to use in their pamphlets while I'm eating lunch icky.

Some of those links are actually very nasty and abhorrent. Worse than goatse.

Don't go randomly clicking.

Don't go randomly clicking!!

Re:Try to curb any impulses to click... (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27264699)

Some of the innocuous looking ones actually do have CP. Like this one [print.org.ua] . The /geoip/ in the URL made me think "Yup, there's a sure-fire false positive.", and lo and behold, pre-teen hardcore. Now I've gotta go and shred my cache. Joy.

That was easy... (5, Funny)

happyslayer (750738) | more than 5 years ago | (#27264649)

[Bookmarks] -> [Bookmark This Page] -> [Done]

Australia's Secret Internet Filter: Your one-stop shopping for porn!

Re:That was easy... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27264823)

Bookmark? Seriously?

I thought everyone used something like the Firefox addon Scrapbook nowadays to save pagesforever.

Re:That was easy... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27265015)

Yeah, I think your right. With this recent spate of news article they've given large scale exposure to a huge list of morally abhorrent material. I'm not simply referring to the usual glut of porn and stuff, but the REALLY BAD stuff - kiddy porn and the like. It would seem they've done exactly the opposite of what they intended.

I've said it before (5, Insightful)

twostix (1277166) | more than 5 years ago | (#27264689)

And I'll say it again.

In the haste to throw out the smarmy blue blooded $50k a year private school aristocrat wannabes known as the liberals out of government, we've introduced something that's so far been *far* worse. And I say that as someone voted for them!

At least the liberals had a solid grounding in running the country and seemed to know what the hell they were doing. So far Rudd and that dimwitted treasurer Swan have been blundering about without any sort of cohesive strategy and burning through billions of dollars a day doing it.

It would seem that like any 'revolution', when the dust settles usually the country ends up worse off when the populist leader takes power.

Even my father, a dyed in the wool blue collar labour man has started questioning whether Rudd's more interested in selling us out to China, financially AND ideologically than the he is in the national good. What sort of politician pushes something like this onto his own free country?

Who is Rudd really? (Seriously I'm genuinely interested).

"National good" -- write that equation for me (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27264819)

A mythical beast, not quantifiable.

Just like "for the kids" and "anti-terrorist".

Re:I've said it before (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27264939)

That's why I'm voting LNP tomorrow...the local labor mob in charge now are greedy commies; yeah I'm talking to you Bowen mayor Cr Brunker!

Re:I've said it before (2, Interesting)

tg123 (1409503) | more than 5 years ago | (#27265167)

That's why I'm voting LNP tomorrow...the local labor mob in charge now are greedy commies; yeah I'm talking to you Bowen mayor Cr Brunker!

NO!!!!!!!

please... I'll even beg [beg]

If you can not vote labor, vote greens at least then you can have a clear conscience and a warm inner glow.

I do not want the cops to be in charge again.

http://catalogue.nla.gov.au/Author/Home?author=Whitrod,%20Ray,%201915-2003 [nla.gov.au]

I least labor lies with a smile on their face.
(grama nazis are you happy ? correct syntax that time.)

The nationals, thats what LNP really are (the liberals in qld do not exist anymore), are a corrupt bunch of country bumpkins.

Re:I've said it before (1)

daver00 (1336845) | more than 5 years ago | (#27264975)

With you all of the way there buddy, and as a die hard despiser of wannabe blue bloods myself, I'm so far very tempted to vote for the enemy next time (if and only if Turnbull is still leader). Why? Rudd is a cunt, a slimy arrogant ultraconservative cunt with less than no concept of economics and a dangerous penchant for signing blank cheques. Harsh? Well thats how I'm feeling right now, I am so mad with this useless excuse for a new government. The response to the Henson photos was inexcusable, and now this stimulus bull has just gone too far, $30 billion in the hole, 5 years of deficit budgets in one fell swoop, we've gone from having the strongest government balance sheet in the OECD to being doomed to years of deficit... and we're in recession anyway? For what? A few new DVD players and a whole lot dropped on the pokies? Fuck that! I've yet to meet one single person of any ideological background that agrees with this cash handout business, it scares the hell out of me...

Anyway, enough rant, this stuff tends to boil over once I start thinking about it.

Re:I've said it before (5, Interesting)

Cathbard (954906) | more than 5 years ago | (#27265147)

It was a damned if you do and damned if you don't sort of thing. We had to get rid of Howard with his IR laws and his other extreme right policies or we would have become america. However the alternative was a pack of wankas. Still, he had to go or else we would have ended up with the poor dying in the street like other hard core right wing countries (you know who you are).

As for Rudd? He's one of the richest politicians in Canberra (oh sorry, it's all his wife's money /snark) and he's the leader of the Labour Party - I mean wtf? It just shows that we don't have a Labour Party any more. Thats what we really need, an old school Labour Party so we can switch back and forwards between the left and the right and retain a sensible balance like we once had.

It's like Lewis Black said about the Bush vs Kerry election - "we were offered two bowls of shit, the only difference was the smell." All you can do really is vote for the opposition at every election so each bowl of shit doesn't create a permanent stain.

Conroy on ABC's Q&A next Thursday (4, Informative)

kramulous (977841) | more than 5 years ago | (#27264693)

Conroy is going to be on the ABC's QandA next Thursday evening at 9.30pm.

That should be good viewing :)

Re:Conroy on ABC's Q&A next Thursday (1)

dwywit (1109409) | more than 5 years ago | (#27264895)

I watch or tape that show every Thursday - it's great to see politicians in the spotlight, having to actually answer people's questions instead of spewing the usual sound-bite cliches. Some try it, and the audience express their disapproval big-time - I love to see their smarmy smiles and watch them squirm when a really meaty question gets asked, and they can't just spit out the usual whaargarbl. And can't you just see what's going on behind the rabbit-in-the-spotlight eyes?

Case in point - last night Tony Abbott cracked a funny about Kevin Rudd being a better advocate for celibacy than Kate Ellis - http://www.pm.gov.au/team/ministers.cfm [pm.gov.au] scroll down to see them side by side and make up your own mind. Ellis almost came out and agreed with Abbott before she started laughing.

Some of them take it on the chin and I have to give credit for that. Malcolm Turnbull's appearance some time ago gave me new respect for the man.

Re:Conroy on ABC's Q&A next Thursday (4, Interesting)

Cameron McCormack (690882) | more than 5 years ago | (#27265151)

I'll be in the audience. Suggestions on the most effective way to point out flaws in the proposed censorship regime welcome. :)

Not the ACMA blacklist (4, Informative)

Flynsarmy (1071248) | more than 5 years ago | (#27264705)

It should be noted that this isn't actually the ACMA blacklist. It's actually a list derived from the ACMA blacklist as stated on the wikileaks article in the summary.

Re:Not the ACMA blacklist (2, Interesting)

beta.services (1396063) | more than 5 years ago | (#27265141)

Also of note: The list displayed is apparently about twice the size of the official list. - This, of course, is the claim of the Government. I would like to see some proof that this is or isn't the official list. From either the Government or WikiLeaks (Un)fortunately, the only way to do this is for the official list to be released.

UK and Australia (1)

zxjio (1475207) | more than 5 years ago | (#27264711)

Is there anything about the culture or government in the UK and Australia that makes them so prone to using CCTV, censorship, and all of this?

Re:UK and Australia (5, Informative)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 5 years ago | (#27264773)

In the US there is a lot of overlap between the Christian extremists and the Libertarians. The few christian extremists we have in Australia don't subscribe to libertarian views.

Another factor here is the role of minor parties in the upper house of parliament. The Christian senator pushing the filters got in with less than 1000 primary votes. Most likely he got a lot of preferences because of the number of worse sounding groups on the senate ballot paper.

Re:UK and Australia (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27265155)

Australia was founded as a UK penal colony.

Think of the kids (1)

elashish14 (1302231) | more than 5 years ago | (#27264741)

Let's all keep in mind that, as we review this list, this entire effort is made to protect the kids from being used for child pornography. Or something.

Re:Think of the kids (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27264831)

Nooo. It, at most, prevents kids/us from seeing banned sites. I note that the only way you can see most of these sites is if you actually look for them.

If we can be fined for 'visiting' one of these sites then it is at least useful to know what sites we cannot look at. But of course they wont tell us so clicking ANY link becomes russian-roulette.

The porn market was around before the internet so it won't prevent kids from being IN porn. For that we need policing, which is where I would prefer we put our money into instead.

I don't know who is pulling Conroys strings but either they are idiots or there is another agenda.

Ok Australia, time to show us your true colors (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27264747)

When Bush took over America and went down many, many bad roads, the world took us to task. For cause. It wasn't news to us, and admittedly many of those taking us to task lived in even more corrupt places, but this is America. We don't do 'wrong', and that shit was clearly wrong, and it should never have happened.

We're supposed to be the good guys, dammit. Well, now the money's on the table, the vote came, the vote was made, we exorcised our demon and repairs are being made at record pace. We are the good guys, that never changed, and we're cleaning the tarnish that those brought to our shine. It's never perfect, nothing is, but we're at least going to try.

Well here in America, last we knew, Australia was a land of good guys too. Inviduality. Freedom. The good fight. SO WHAT THE FUCK'S GOING ON DOWN THERE?!? How the hell is this going on WITHOUT a 9/11?

It's time for the citizens of that fair nation to show us what they got. Time to whip out the vote and make things perfectly clear. Write a letter. Make a sign. Anything. I don't doubt that Australia has it in them, but if you're waiting for the right time, it looks like it's passed!

Conroy has dismissed this list as a hoax. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27264833)

The ACMA list was stated as a hoax by the communications minister:

http://www.news.com.au/technology/story/0,28348,25210931-5014239,00.html

Its well past time to bale-out of Australia anyway.

Re:Conroy has dismissed this list as a hoax. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27264947)

Read above, it was decompiled from the NetFilter software and the post above says how you too can decompile it. It is genuine. Of course Conroy would say it's a hoax, he is trying to save his arse.

Wikileaks on the list now too!?? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27264847)

I'm in Australia at the moment, and I'm not able to access wikileaks directly, though it works perfectly fine through a proxy ... not sure if it is just my workplace ... wikileaks worked just fine yesterday ...

An email from the Minister (4, Funny)

sam_v1.35b (1296319) | more than 5 years ago | (#27264869)

Senator Stephen Conroy would like to recall the message: "ACMA Blacklist - see attachment".

They call it "down under"... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27264875)

Because it's the nearest to hell you can get on Earth.

/b/ is censored? Why could that be. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27264905)

Somewhere down the page:
http://img.4chan.org/b/imgboard.html [4chan.org]
I don't see any objectionable content.
Oooh look, the 4-chan party van just pulleCARRIER LOST

It's gone viral (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27264971)

So... The ACMA (i.e. the government) is playing a losing game with the child pornographers who are always going to be one step ahead. They are also going to be fighting on anther front when "smart trousers" (credit to jimboot) are going to be leaking the black lists.

By the time the list is reverse engineered most of the questionable web-sites are going to be relocated and it starts again. Hopefully government will see the futility of the whole exercise...after 10 iterations :D

Careful if you have a link accelerator! (2, Insightful)

atmurray (983797) | more than 5 years ago | (#27265083)

Goes without saying for us lot, but be really careful looking at the list if you have a browser with a link accelerator (that crawls forward links and caches them). Could find yourself catching someone's attention, not if you're in Australia though, the feds are too busy running after the people who leaked the list that isn't really the list.

http://www.main-hosting.com/privacy/alert.htm (1)

TheVelvetFlamebait (986083) | more than 5 years ago | (#27265123)

Can anyone tell me WTF is wrong with this page?

WARNING: I haven't checked personally, since I live in Australia, so it may not be work-friendly.

fascinating (3, Insightful)

okmijnuhb (575581) | more than 5 years ago | (#27265153)

It's fascinating to see what occurs behind the kangaroo curtain.
When the hell did they become Soviet Australia?

The government is hurting us (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27265157)

The real victims of internet filtering are those poor souls who are in charge of creating and maintaining the filter list. They are exposed to the most vile, the foulest and most disgusting content on the Internet.

Imagine the worst Internet sites you have ever been tricked into seeing, and multiply the horror tenfold. That is nothing compared to the daily workload of a filtering technician, who checks thousands of those sites every day.

Then, they must gather in panels of judges to determine which material must be censored, to ensure greater accountability and protect the moral safety of all citizens. Together they discuss the content and images found on the foulest of Web sites.

So you know why this whole censorship thing is such a terrible idea? Because these images are so dangerous, so damaging, that they cause irreparable mental trauma to the workers who are exposed all day long. It is a barbaric practice.

Until the day we can develop an Artificial Intelligence that can automatically censor all content correctly according to moral criteria defined and enforced by the government, we must stop hurting the workers who are condemned to this, the most traumatizing of jobs, and put an end to Internet censorship.

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