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Australian ISPs Soon To Become Copyright Cops

timothy posted more than 5 years ago | from the classic-multitasking dept.

The Internet 183

srjh writes "In the Australian Federal Government's latest assault on the internet, draft legislation has been released that allows network operators to intercept communications to ensure that their networks are being 'appropriately used.' Such legislation is particularly important given the interference of Communications Minister Stephen Conroy in a recent copyright lawsuit against iiNet, one of the largest ISPs in the country. Conroy called prominent filtering opponent iiNet's inaction over copyright infringement 'stunning,' whereas iiNet claimed that it would be illegal under current Australian law to intercept its users' downloads. While this latest legislation appears to be a concession of that point, the government is said to be watching the case closely and along with attempts to introduce a three-strikes law in Australia, it appears the law will be changed if the government dislikes the outcome of the case. The internet villain of the year just continues to earn his title."

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Stephen Conroy (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29062429)

Is an incompetent, idiotic, totalitarian, vindictive, morally bankrupt cunt.

Same with Rudd. You can assume this assault on the internet is coming from the top.

Re:Stephen Conroy (0)

spyder-implee (864295) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062455)

I disagree, you should have spelled it INCOMPETENT.

Re:Stephen Conroy (1)

X0563511 (793323) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062621)

... he did!?

Re:Stephen Conroy (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29062827)

The prison niggers appreciate those crackers proteking the AOL. Now we know we have whitey looking after web pages and shit and we look to take aussies bitches up the ass. It be the best thing to run a train on a chubby low self esteem white chick, fucking her pussy and asshole all night long. It is almost as good as tapping some puerto rican ass, but that shit is tighter and when that bitch get violent (PR chicks always do) we just duct tape that mouth shut while we take turns cumming in that ass over and over. Mexican bitches be the best cause you can run up on a bitch with a fat ass in broad daylight and run a pimp train on that bitch in her anus and that immigrant husband won't do shit. When we got some gay ass niggers who want to fuck some male asshole, we just run up on a mexican man, who they gonna report. Sometimes we just abduct the bitch to our projects apartment for the week and fuck the shit out of her, until we get tired of that bitch. White bitches are more fun though, sometimes when the bitch is chubby and horny enough we just fuck her through for 2 weeks and come back in another week cause her fat ass is ready for more. Smack bitches with a 10 inch cock. I once raped this indian chick, she was mad weak, so i got my boys to run a train on her that lasted 3 days. She looked like frosty the snowman after we all got done with cumming on her. She got that shit so hard she must of spit cum for a month. I recently visted her and punched her in the face before I got inside that ass again. We be grateful.

Re:Stephen Conroy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29062845)

I think his point was the yelling (upper case bold). In other words, merely saying the word wasn't strong enough to be accurate. (Jokes are never as good explained.)

Re:Stephen Conroy (1)

Therefore I am (1284262) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062457)

You are not wrong, but I doubt that your assessment will make any difference. The ballet box is the only way to get rid of these goons.

Re:Stephen Conroy (4, Funny)

Stormwatch (703920) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062479)

ballet box

Wow! Dancing and fighting at the same time!

Re:Stephen Conroy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29062571)

Here's recent footage from an Australian movie about Conway [youtube.com] . Looks like he needs a shave.

Re:Stephen Conroy (0, Troll)

Ihmhi (1206036) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062615)

There is something kinda like that called Savate [wikipedia.org] .

Re:Stephen Conroy (1)

DuranDuran (252246) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062637)

If I had moderator points etc. etc. :)

Re:Stephen Conroy (1)

Paaskonijn (1220996) | more than 5 years ago | (#29063229)

Very Billy Elliot [wikimedia.org] .

Re:Stephen Conroy (1)

Therefore I am (1284262) | more than 5 years ago | (#29063397)

My typo could have been worse. "Bullet" would have sent a very poor message. I am off to iron my tutu now :)

Re:Stephen Conroy (4, Insightful)

Cinnaman (954100) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062575)

"The ballet box is the only way to get rid of these goons."

No it isn't, because Liberal will implement basically the same polcies. We don't have a viable third party so for the forseeable future we will be at the mercy of the same bunch of goons (Labour/Liberal).

Re:Stephen Conroy (2, Funny)

dotgain (630123) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062707)

Agreed - it's the same here in New Zealand.

Except our chicks are hotter.

Re:Stephen Conroy (5, Funny)

dangitman (862676) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062793)

Except our chicks are hotter.

Yes, we're well aware of your predilection for farm animals. You can keep that to yourself in future.

Re:Stephen Conroy (1)

cujo_1111 (627504) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062981)

Chicks are baby chickens, I'm sure you mean ewes.

Re:Stephen Conroy (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29062653)

We've got a saying around here: If elections could change anything, they would be prohibited.

The way governments are expanding their power all across the western "democracies", the only thing that will be able to change anything is a ballet with U.

For the time being, teaching people how to use foreign VPNs is still adequate. It's just a matter of time before shit will hit the fan, though. Oppression never ends peacefully, unfortunately.

Re:Stephen Conroy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29063467)

But when shit really does hit the fan and VPNs end up blocked, it won't just be your average joe who goes apeshit insane, it will be businesses, then things will be interesting to watch.

Hey Ausssstraaalia, VPNs are the DEVIL of copyright infringement and child porn, best block that ASAP, for the sake of the country!

Re:Stephen Conroy (3, Insightful)

FriendlyLurker (50431) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062471)

From watching him in various public speeches, I begin to suspect that this Pommie [wikipedia.org] wanna-be Aussie Senator Conroy [wikipedia.org] actually believes he is doing the right thing and genuinely believes he is fighting for the good of the children, and that's all mate. Ignorant, naive, incompetent, complacent or actively plotting (take your pick - nobody knows but him) that the tools he is pushing for will become powerful weapons of political and corporate-profit maintaining control later on down that long track. "I would use this ring from a desire to do good... But through me, it would wield a power too great and terrible to imagine"... If only Senator Conroy could be so wise.

Re:Stephen Conroy (0, Redundant)

twostix (1277166) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062593)

Rudd and Conroy are secretly in love with China.

Much like how in the 1920's and 1930's the western "elites" including Churchill and Rockefeller were openly in love with the Fascists and their magical economies and tightly bound and strictly regimented states, Rudd and Co similarly see China as an amazing combination of state power and industry. They see themselves allying this country closely with the coming super power and in typical low self esteemed Australian fashion (among international political circles) will emulate the big kid as much as possible. Howard did the same thing; doing everything he could to turn Australia into a carbon copy of the US as he was embarrassed internationally by our apathy towards making this country an economic power house as he and his friends wish that it would become. Rudd's doing the same but with China which far more satisfies his idealogical leanings (a career politician certainly doesn't keep themselves fluent in Mandarin for no reason).

Stuff like this is just the beginning of the top down "re-adjustment" of Australia from a country heavily influenced by American and British political values to Asian.

Dark days ahead for Australia.

Re:Stephen Conroy (2, Funny)

twostix (1277166) | more than 5 years ago | (#29063725)

Troll?? What a waste of a mod point ya tool.

Re:Stephen Conroy (5, Informative)

Gwala (309968) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062609)

It's pandering to the Australian Christian Lobby, who are a bunch of self-important wankers and have far too much power for a country where 28% of the population puts down 'atheist/agnostic/no-religion/blank' on the census.

Re:Stephen Conroy (3, Interesting)

AHuxley (892839) | more than 5 years ago | (#29063555)

http://www.abc.net.au/compass/s1358912.htm [abc.net.au]
Family First: A Federal Crusade
Should give slashdot readers some ideas about the decade of work that was put into subverting both of the main Australian parties.

HTTPS by Default (3, Insightful)

copiedright (1357445) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062441)

What stops more servers using HTTPS to get around this? All Internet communication should even have basic encryption.

Re:HTTPS by Default (3, Insightful)

swilver (617741) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062781)

It's stopped by the stupid valid certificate requirement.

Re:HTTPS by Default (1)

zwei2stein (782480) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062909)

What stops government from making even basic encryption illegal?

Re:HTTPS by Default (2, Insightful)

phyrz (669413) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062961)

for a start, the backlash from every person and business that uses banking websites?

Re:HTTPS by Default (1)

zwei2stein (782480) | more than 5 years ago | (#29063461)

Banks and businesses can be "certified" to allow encrypted communication or storage. After all, goal would not be to hurt businesses, but make communication of ordinary person transparent.

Re:HTTPS by Default (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29062989)

Probably the public outrage over the fact that everyone's CC#s and internet banking passwords would become fair game for Teh Evil Hax0rz.

Re:HTTPS by Default (1)

AHuxley (892839) | more than 5 years ago | (#29063563)

Some new physical device from your bank given out with your account?
That would allow you to communicate, but allow the government to ban the evil https.

Do we want the government watching us? (0)

BadAnalogyGuy (945258) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062443)

When it comes to having a choice between private enterprise providing a good or service and the government providing that good or service, I tend to lean towards the choice that doesn't expand the government. I can always choose whether to use a particular company's service, but I can't choose easily to ignore the government.

Maybe that makes me out of touch with today's society, but I just don't think growing the size and powers of government is a good idea.

Which is why I think enabling ISPs to police themselves is a good idea. I would much rather ISPs who I can choose from do this monitoring than the government which I can't.

Re:Do we want the government watching us? (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29062473)

It's probably worth reading between the lines here.

Along with trying to get ISPs to remove all pornography from the internet (laughable, yes, but if you look at the current legislation and current filtering policy, this is exactly what they want to do), the Australian government has been strongly backing copyright lawsuits against ISPs for not snooping on its users.

This isn't just "we're allowing you to monitor your own networks", it's "monitor your networks for us, or suffer the consequences".

Re:Do we want the government watching us? (1, Troll)

V!NCENT (1105021) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062759)

So what's next? Sueing bus companies for delivering terrorists to certain locations without being able to search all their backgrounds of all the passengers?

"Hey you transported a criminal to a certain location. IT'S YOUR FAULT HE COMMITED A CRIME! You should have played the police for us or face the consequences!

People like this, although I do not even live in Australia, makes we want to form a group of people, buy a shitload of waepons and shoot these idiotic assholes.*

*DISCLAIMER: which I am not going to do ofcourse!

Re:Do we want the government watching us? (4, Informative)

mjwx (966435) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062525)

When it comes to having a choice between private enterprise providing a good or service and the government providing that good or service,

I disagree, the government is accountable to me once every four years, a private corporation never has to ask for my consent or co-operation. In addition to this, the governement does not have a profit motive where as a corporation must not only be making a profit they must also be increasing shareholder value. So either way the money needed to run the service comes from my pocket, with the government I get a say in how well they are spending and they dont need to make increasing ammounts of profit on it.

The idea that a government is inherently inefficient is a misnomer, the same as the idea that a corporation is inherently efficient is a misnomer. Both are inherently neither. Government organisations like Medicare in Australia and our Canadian analogue provide better care and service for a lower cost then the US private health system. I pay A$500 a year for health care.

As for this bit of stupidity, it will never pass parliament as the internet filter never passed parliament, its already been voted down (thanks to the Green's), despite the fact that the trials are still ongoing (Conroy is permitted to waste taxpayer money on the trial unfortunately). The Rudd government is in a precarious position due to parliaments rejection of their Emissions Trading Scheme. The ETS may be enough to trigger a double dissolution of parliament, which at this point in time would not be entirely a bad thing.

Re:Do we want the government watching us? (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29062733)

When it comes to having a choice between private enterprise providing a good or service and the government providing that good or service,

I disagree, the government is accountable to me once every four years, a private corporation never has to ask for my consent or co-operation. In addition to this, the governement does not have a profit motive where as a corporation must not only be making a profit they must also be increasing shareholder value. So either way the money needed to run the service comes from my pocket, with the government I get a say in how well they are spending and they dont need to make increasing ammounts of profit on it.

That's naive. You've got a say in what your government does? Where do you live and who made you believe that? Happy-fairy land? Without the sarcasm: governments are profit-driven, too. For them it's not money, it's power and votes. They optimise their fake promises and claims to increase their share of power. They also invest their power to pass laws, pass contracts to corporations, etc. to further increase their power and wealth. Governments are horribly inefficient and wasteful because it's not their money, they are not accountable for it and they benefit from spending it.

Private corporations aren't much better, either. I give you that. At least they usually don't have the same power for abuse as the government has.

As for this bit of stupidity, it will never pass parliament as the internet filter never passed parliament, its already been voted down

The thing with politicians is, they try until they get it through. They will not stop until they will have gotten what they want. No matter how often they have to try, no matter what shady tricks they have to use. If need be, they'll just ignore laws and do what they want. They'll get away with it because of their immunity. Three-strikes in France, censorship in Germany, databases in the UK, censorship in AU, etc. they all keep going until they get what they want, no matter how often they get turned down, they'll get it through bit by bit and there's nothing you can do about it.

Re:Do we want the government watching us? (3, Interesting)

mjwx (966435) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062829)

It must be sad in your world AC.

You've got a say in what your government does? Where do you live and who made you believe that?

Let me tell you a story about why you are wrong, lets call it Work Choices,

Work Choices was the IR policy of the previous Fascist government (not to be confused with the current Fascist government) that stripped Australian workers of their rights, this policy was unpopular with the people who then made it clear this was the reason they were voting out the Liberal Facists. Howard, die Fuhrer zum Zeitpunkt, lost his job and Rudd, die aktuelle furher immediately scrapped Work Choices.

The Liberals will never utter those words again. They learned what it cost them. So yes, I have a say in what my government does, at the very least once every 4 years. It's called an election.

The thing with politicians is, they try until they get it through. They will not stop until they will have gotten what they want. No matter how often they have to try, no matter what shady tricks they have to use. If need be, they'll just ignore laws and do what they want. They'll get away with it because of their immunity. Three-strikes in France, censorship in Germany, databases in the UK, censorship in AU, etc. they all keep going until they get what they want, no matter how often they get turned down, they'll get it through bit by bit and there's nothing you can do about it.

Yes there is, often when an Australian politician loses an election, they are sacked. No matter how greedy a polly gets this will always, always be over-ridden by their sense of self preservation. It's the extremists who aren't greedy that are the problem but these guys will always be outnumbered by the greedy who want to survive (and they'll happily sacrifice one another to ensure it).

Not only are you an ignorant nutter with an extremely limited view of the world, you're wrong.

Re:Do we want the government watching us? (4, Interesting)

Cimexus (1355033) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062949)

This guy has a point.

From my experience of living long term in all three of: Australia, USA and UK, there is far more actual power in the people's hands (at election time) in Australia than either of the other two.

Partly this is because Australia's population is quite low, so there's less 'layers' between the wishes of the people, and the politicians (one example: the Prime Minister of Australia happened walked right past me on the street in Sydney few weeks ago ... but in America you will almost NEVER just 'happen to see the President' when you go out to lunch). Hell the previous Prime Minister went on a walk around the suburbs every morning and waved and said hi to people. Sure he had a few bodyguards trailing him, but nothing like the 30 guards, 20 armored vehicles etc that accompany the US President around.

But a bigger reason for this is the fact that there are very very strict laws against corporate influence on politics in Australia. And there are similarly tough regulations surrounding what companies are allowed to do when it comes to advertising, donations, etc etc. Far more stringent than in America. Sure there's still lobbyists and things in Australia. But realistically, the corporate world can't do much in politics in Australia, and they know it. In America, it's all about big business and corporations when it comes to setting the political agenda. In Australia, the issues that average people care about really can decide the elections. (See: Work Choices)

A final but more minor point is that we do have third and fourth political parties that actually matter. They aren't enough to actually take power away from the big two. But due to the preferences system that we have in Australia, it means that minor parties can influence things in Parliament and aren't just there to make up the numbers. In the US however there really is no serious alternative to the Dems and the Republicans.

Americans like to point to Australia and say "ha, your democracy isn't as good as yours, you don't even directly elect your head of State!". This is true. Our head of State is technically the Queen of England, and our Prime Minister isn't voted in by the people. But in practice, the Australian system reflects the wishes of the public a lot more quickly and more closely. (The Canadian system is like this too I believe, although I haven't spent enough time in Canada to comment).

Disclaimer: I'm Australian by birth but have lived 8+ years in the US and 4+ years in the UK. I also hold dual US and Australian citizenship, and love both countries dearly. Both have their strong and weak points. But when it comes to government, I'm afraid the Australian system is just ... better.

Re:Do we want the government watching us? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29063689)

But a bigger reason for this is the fact that there are very very strict laws against corporate influence on politics in Australia. And there are similarly tough regulations surrounding what companies are allowed to do when it comes to advertising, donations, etc etc.

Unfortunately [aec.gov.au] not [abc.net.au] strict [apcmag.com] enough [itnews.com.au] .

Re:Do we want the government watching us? (4, Insightful)

WeirdJohn (1170585) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062879)

Yes, you do have a say. I contributed to the Green Paper on the Service Card, which was in danger of being owned by Motorola and Gemsmart. It was people like me, giving valid clear technically correct explanations of the failings of that "backdoor ID card" that resulted in it being a no-go. When have YOU been a part of the process - there's nothing to stop you! Have you petitioned parliament? Written to your local member? Shown up to ALP branch meetings and asked polite, informed but pointed questions? It's when everyone says "we have no power over the people we elect" that we give up our power. Fact is that if enough people go on record (by the 3 means I listed above) then politicians listen, purely out of self interest.

Re:Do we want the government watching us? (3, Insightful)

mjwx (966435) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062971)

Fact is that if enough people go on record (by the 3 means I listed above) then politicians listen, purely out of self interest.

Exactly,

When push comes to shove you can always count on a polly's survival instinct. All you have to do is convince them they are about to lose their job. Most people have no say in government because they don't get involved. Become part of an interest group like the EFA or a the very least write a letter. All Western Australian's got a say in Daylight Savings changes earlier in the year, despite the fact it did not pass (I voted YES) I did get my say. There is no way you can say you cant change government, most people just say that to console themselves with the fact they never tried.

Re:Do we want the government watching us? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29062935)

Uh, a misnomer is a name which does not accurately describe the thing which it names. For example: "ladybug" is a misnomer as they may be male and are not bugs. (technical definition of "bug") Neither of your examples are misnomers.

Self Correction (1)

mjwx (966435) | more than 5 years ago | (#29063041)

Australian elections are every 3 years, not 4.

It's late, its Friday, its time for a beer.

Re:Do we want the government watching us? (1)

digitalchinky (650880) | more than 5 years ago | (#29063385)

I hope you're right mjwx, but your vote doesn't look like it ever mattered much to me. I left the Defence Signals Directorate, and subsequently Australia a decade ago because I saw from the inside just how simplistic it is for this particular agency to have new laws made, old laws modified, and more worryingly, just how much latitude they give themselves for interpretation of existing laws. I lived through a couple of royal commissions focused on the very departments I worked in, those investigations never ventured beyond the walls of the "Director DSD's" office. Farcical to say the least.

If you weren't already aware of this, the government has long been doing whatever it pleases regardless of which sock puppet is in power. No doubt the driving force behind half of these initiatives are a handful of drones from ASIO and the NCA. Politicians don't know squat about real life.

I lost the faith a long time ago, I ain't ever coming back.

Guess what! (1)

thatkid_2002 (1529917) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062453)

They can bite my shiny metal ass!... I mean SSL!

Re:Guess what! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29062661)

Hey look, my beta access to https://www.ipredator.se/ [ipredator.se] just arrived, what perfect timing! Sad that I need such a service -just- to know my internet is -generally- safe...

This will never happen. (3, Interesting)

mjwx (966435) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062469)

This will never happen.

With the Emissions Trading Scheme, being voted down yesterday the Rudd government could be on it's way to an early election. The Rudd government has not got a majority, relying preferences from the Greens to secure a parliament majority. The Greens are opposed to both the Internet Filter and the Three Strikes law. Rudd and Labour will do an about face as soon as it looks like they are losing the support of the Greens.

This is just more scare mongering reporting in preparation for the upcoming iinet/AFACT (MPIAA in disguise).

Re:This will never happen. (3, Interesting)

srjh (1316705) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062509)

That's assuming they don't have the support of the Liberals - the traditional social conservatives in Australia. They've known all along that the Greens aren't on board, so it's the Liberals they're relying on to back the government.

Labor is much stricter on crossing the floor than the Liberals and the threat of an early election might push them into avoiding any double-dissolution triggers.

And if an early election is held? Labor likely takes the Senate and pushes through the changes anyway.

Re:This will never happen. (1)

mjwx (966435) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062543)

That's assuming they don't have the support of the Liberals

The Libs wont support this on the principal that they don't support the Labour govt. It sucks just how polarised the Australian government has gotten. I think that it is an incredibly good thing that no party got a majority in the last election, we would have been screwed by ether side for sure.

Re:This will never happen. (4, Interesting)

rtb61 (674572) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062725)

As always the opposition party is the opposition. The will always side with the general public to gain votes, gain seats and gain a higher pay packet. What voting for the Greens well and truly demonstrates is the real power of the ballot box in Australia and the ability of Australian politics to resist corporate pressure at this stage not enough but it is growing.

Three strikes, is dead in Australia, filtering is dying, ISP spying is a no show, all that is happening is the Australian government is being pressured by the US government and the not so free trade agreement, which is basically being used as political blackmail.

It looks very likely that the greens will gain a lot of public support because the right wing abused their power not so long back and the left wing just ain't left enough. Right and left is really starting to look like minority rich (plus gullible poor) versus everybody else (middle class the survivors and working class with a brain). The internet is driving power and control back to the people and there seems to be a real fight on around seizing back that power by corporations and mass media, that had it for 30 years and they really do not want to let go.

Re:This will never happen. (3, Interesting)

twostix (1277166) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062855)

Double dissolution elections have *never* been kind to Australian governments who force them.

It starts to smell a little to much like brute force when a sitting government dissolves the whole parliament and calls an election simply because they don't want to accept the will of the Senate.

Australians place a lot of trust and faith in the Senate and where they see the Lower House as nothing more than slimy untrustworthy politicians they view the Senate as a much higher and esteemed authority - and the senators as trustworthy "protectors" of Australian democracy (more or less).

So when a government goes against the Senate it'd better be damned sure of itself...

Re:This will never happen. (3, Informative)

thelamecamel (561865) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062515)

The libs and greens are voting against the filter, so yes the dentist-filter plan is dead in the water. But I wouldn't be surprised if the libs supported this copyright bill, which would be more than enough to get it through.

I never thought I'd say this, but I think I preferred Richard Alston, who had the international reputation of "Worlds Biggest Luddite", as IT minister. At least he was too incompetent to do much damage.

Re:This will never happen. (1)

kestasjk (933987) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062527)

Please lets vote Turnbull in, enough is enough (already)

Re:This will never happen. (4, Insightful)

mjwx (966435) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062567)

Please lets vote Turnbull in, enough is enough (already)

If a Double Dissolution happens Turnbull (or another Lib, I doubt Turnbull could run) that might just happen, so long as no-one utters the words "work choices" they should get in.

It's bad that we have to choose between two parties, one who wants to be a dictator over my home life and one who wants to be a dictator over my work life.

Re:This will never happen. (4, Interesting)

Gwala (309968) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062597)

>It's bad that we have to choose between two parties, one who wants to be a dictator over my home life and one who wants to be a dictator over my work life.

Except we don't have to support one of two parties. Australia's first-past-the-post prefential voting system means if you vote for a small party (such as say the Australian Democrats), you can direct your preferences if they don't get elected -- effectively, vote for the party you want first, then vote for the lesser evils further down, and your vote still goes where you want it to.

Re:This will never happen. (3, Insightful)

grrrl (110084) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062625)

you've described the voting system correctly in all but name - it is NOT first past the post. It IS preferential. First-past-the-post describes the one vote, winner takes all (without having the win the majority) system that is employed in the US.

Re:This will never happen. (1)

Gwala (309968) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062799)

Actually it is, the post is 50%.

Re:This will never happen. (1)

ishnaf (893700) | more than 5 years ago | (#29063257)

Please lets vote Turnbull in, enough is enough (already)

If a Double Dissolution happens Turnbull (or another Lib, I doubt Turnbull could run) that might just happen, so long as no-one utters the words "work choices" they should get in.

Last time I checked, Turnbull's popularity was at record low: http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2009/07/28/2638114.htm [abc.net.au] . It's going to take more that just not uttering "Work Choices"...

Re:This will never happen. (1)

Mag7 (69118) | more than 5 years ago | (#29063307)

Please lets vote Turnbull in, enough is enough (already)

If a Double Dissolution happens Turnbull (or another Lib, I doubt Turnbull could run) that might just happen, so long as no-one utters the words "work choices" they should get in.

You assume the majority of voters are concerned about this single issue. Most wouldn't even know there is an issue. Others honestly think filtering and stopping "pirates" (who fund terrorism, didn't you know) is a good idea that must be done by the government (think of the children!).

Nope, unfortunately the people who understand the pitfalls of both are vastly in the minority.

Re:This will never happen. (1)

m0rm3gil (567905) | more than 5 years ago | (#29063077)

There's considerable speculation that Rudd & Co may not care if they can't get support from independents and minor parties.

With the opposition in disarray they may use one of these failed laws as a trigger for a double dissolution election.

If that happens then they may stand to gain more seats and we'll be in the same position we were with the last term of the Howard govt where they have a majority in both houses and can push through whatever nonsense they like.

What's stunning.. (1, Interesting)

anomaly256 (1243020) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062477)

is that Conroy is still in office. I'm fairly certain this guy is on crack.

Re:What's stunning.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29062573)

Nah, he's on holy water, ten times more potent than crack. As a fellow Catholic, I probably shouldn't say that, but I don't think he is on the right path (as well intentioned as it is). The Internet isn't an "immoral" thing, and it is capable of great good and change for the better. Conway's plan will curtail the good applications of the Internet (whistle blowing, fighting corruption, exposing crime, ...) along with the bad. As such it fails the test of "you can't do bad in order to do good".

Re:What's stunning.. (1)

anomaly256 (1243020) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062715)

Conway's plan is even scarrier than Conroy's plan ;)

Re:What's stunning.. (5, Interesting)

twostix (1277166) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062695)

Whatever he is he's a goddamned hypocrite.

His home state of Victoria of which he is an elected government representative has a law banning "altruistic surrogacy" - that is - having another woman carrying a fertilised egg to term then handing the baby over when it's born.

Disregarding any moral argument on the matter, it's criminally illegal in Senator Conroys home state. So what do he and his wife do? "Route around" the law by skipping over the border to New South Wales to have it organised WHILE STILL REPRESENTING VICTORIA IN PARLIAMENT.

So the Victorian minister Stephen Conroy doesn't think he should be subject to the laws of Victoria when he doesn't feel like it (notice he kept his seat in parliament and still lives in Victoria) and the hypocrite thinks he has the moral authority to make judgments to form controversial legislation affecting thousands?!

Convenient isn't it.

The more I learn about these Labour goons the less I like them.

Stupid law in Victoria in my opinion but, so is every law Conroy pushes regarding the Internet I wonder if he'll be understanding to anybody who ignores the federal laws that they don't like.

Re:What's stunning.. (1)

Merls the Sneaky (1031058) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062819)

He is a hippocrit, but he was pushing the laws he thinks he was voted to push for. Personally I hope Rudd is just using him as a pawn tp push through certain legislation but will not actually be honoring the filter promis he made to Conroy. I really don't want libs in power again so soon.

Do your research please (2, Informative)

jamei (1387007) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062881)

Firstly, Conroy is a Senator at the *Federal* level. This law was a *State* laws, meaning Conroy would not directly be able to introduce legislation to change these laws.

Secondly, crossing the state border to get around state laws is not hypocritical unless he actually supported those same laws. Nor is it Illegal.

But most importantly, despite being a Federal Senator, Conroy prompted a review of surrogacy laws [theage.com.au] which led to those laws being changed for the better [news.com.au] .

So while Conroy may be a fool (Internet filtering, Copyright Cops etc.), he is not a hypocrite.

Across the Sea (3, Insightful)

Renraku (518261) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062483)

Meanwhile, across the sea in the United States, the 'Land of the Free,' various employees of various music/movie/video game agencies are taking notes. They're following this with a keen eye. If it works in Australia, why can't it work here?

Pretty soon, files such as Bellsouth Sucks.txt and Comcast Blows.rtf will be blocked in the US due to 'copyright infringement.'

Re:Across the Sea (1)

Ricardo (43461) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062689)

Can you repeat that please.

The words after "Pretty soon," were replaced with "{redacted for your security}"

Re:Across the Sea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29062693)

Australia is used as a guinea pig for US policy. You'd better believe it.

Re:Across the Sea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29063349)

I'm sure I'm not following enough of this with a outsiders look it. I'm jealous of the fervor that this is generating here on this site (and there) and wish I could inspire such a spirited debate between family and friends here. I don't work for the industry. Looking at things now I shudder at the thought of ever doing that. I'm one of those who grew up here believing those things so often mocked elsewhere... Justified or not. I'm not holding you up for judgement. It seems more and more likely the day that will come when we the people (to use a oft overused quote, hopefully you will not think less of me our friends from down under and I don't mean that in a nationalistic way) unite against the corporate monsters we have given birth to and slay them with the power of the common man's will. You shall hold sway over us no more ye foul beast! I know flash mobs are passe but any one interested in a good old fashioned torches and pitchforks mob?

Hmmm.... (1)

Antony1Kenobi (1602169) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062505)

...and people complain about having it bad in America.

Re:Hmmm.... (1)

Lord Fury (977501) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062919)

Yeah, so far American corporations only have the power to bankrupt you and ruin your life, not spy on you. Only the government holds that right.

Mesh network (poll) (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29062529)

Straw poll:

If an Australian engineer was to design a box that could you could buy/build to set up a nationwide mesh network (thereby eliminating ISPs and telco infrastructure from the loop), would you buy or build it?

What would be your preference?

a) An open source design that you build yourself.

b) An assembled and testbed box (for a price of course).

How much would you be prepared to pay for such a box (assembled and tested, ready to used)?

Re:Mesh network (poll) (1)

mjwx (966435) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062743)

Straw poll: If an Australian engineer was to design a box that could you could buy/build to set up a nationwide mesh network (thereby eliminating ISPs and telco infrastructure from the loop), would you buy or build it?

What would be your preference?

a) An open source design that you build yourself.

b) An assembled and testbed box (for a price of course).

A, of course, if its an open source design then multiple 3rd party companies can build them, test them and improve the design in order to compete with one another.

How much would you be prepared to pay for such a box (assembled and tested, ready to used)?

This would be beyond the wage of the average Australian given the price of Unobtanium these days.

Re:Mesh network (poll) (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29062801)

Both, of course. a) for the nerds, b) for the technically inept.

Of course, then they would be declared illegal, and would be rounded up.

Re:Mesh network (poll) (2, Funny)

SanguineV (1197225) | more than 5 years ago | (#29063001)

Both, of course. a) for the nerds, b) for the technically inept.

Of course, then they would be declared illegal, and would be rounded up.

I dream of the day when the technically inept are rounded up!

Re:Mesh network (poll) (4, Insightful)

Archon-X (264195) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062889)

Being australian, and being part of the (very muchly mostly useless) mesh network project in AU, here's my thoughts:

#1- Australian landscape (mountains, bush, vast distances) isn't compatible with mesh networks.
#2 - You need to get the connection to the internet at some stage.

Re:Mesh network (poll) (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29063079)

#1 Not as inhospitable as you think, given the right techniques multipath and fading can be assets. If they're cheap enough, scatter them like confetti.

#2 If it's big enough, it IS the Internet.

Re:Mesh network (poll) (1)

DuranDuran (252246) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062983)

I think if you did a good job of (a) you would inevitably get (b).

Re:Mesh network (poll) (4, Insightful)

jonwil (467024) | more than 5 years ago | (#29063169)

And how do you propose to link this mesh network to other networks? Its not like you can just plug into the Southern Cross Cable or Australia-Japan Cable to get connectivity to the outside world. Nor can you just plug into fiber links between all the different isolated towns and cities that would be part of this network (and even if it was possible to string up enough wireless boxes to go from Sydney to Melbourne, the latency would be so big as to render it unusable).

I have an idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29063569)

And how do you propose to link this mesh network to other networks....

Run it through the sewers using a small RC Submarine?

http://tech.slashdot.org/story/09/07/03/0411224/RC-Submarine-Lays-Fiber-Through-Sewers-In-Italy

Re:I have an idea (1)

jonwil (467024) | more than 5 years ago | (#29063607)

Thats great but I dont think there are sewers or pipes running to America :)

Stunningly bad (1)

countach (534280) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062683)

This Labor Australian government has been stunningly disappointing, and everyone I know thinks the same. There was a hope that Labor would bring a bit more enlightenment to a government that was previously seemed to be out of touch, but they have been infinitely worse. Who would have thought we would pine for the good old days?

Re:Stunningly bad (1)

Ricardo (43461) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062769)

I agree.

I would not go so far as to say "infinitely worse" - remember only 3 years ago howard said global warming was not happening.

But I was expecting far better. this kowtowing to the american copyright tzars is disgusting, especially since everyone knows it will make no difference in the end (filtering WILL go the same way as DRM in the end - ie itll be dropped)

Re:Stunningly bad (1)

mjwx (966435) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062839)

This Labor Australian government has been stunningly disappointing, and everyone I know thinks the same. There was a hope that Labor would bring a bit more enlightenment to a government that was previously seemed to be out of touch, but they have been infinitely worse. Who would have thought we would pine for the good old days?

I'd be happy if we could get a polly who could skull a yardie, they don't have to be a record breaker like Hawke. Now days we cant find a blue arsed fly who can finish a middy, let alone skull one. Latham wasn't too bad, in fact I consider anyone who breaks a taxi drivers arm to be doing this countries roads a favour.

Australia, who are you? (5, Insightful)

grrrl (110084) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062717)

I just don't understand where this government's sentiment comes from!! I live in a country that is full of people who are easy going, enjoy life, and who are generally quite non-idealistic - we do not tend to have the passion for politics and causes and pep-talks that seems to drive a lot of US-centric life. And yet the government takes these crazy stands that are SO against the Australian way of living!!

Re:Australia, who are you? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29062929)

thats it. i'm defecting and voting liberal.

I'm sure New Zealand is watching (1)

Kupfernigk (1190345) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062771)

And encouraging the Australians every step of the way. (NZ is trying to expand its IT economy, this kind of application of projectile to pedal extremity is just the kind of thing they need.)

Re:I'm sure New Zealand is watching (1)

Kalriath (849904) | more than 5 years ago | (#29063119)

Not if the Department of Internal Affairs destroys NZ internet first!

Australia is the testbed. (3, Insightful)

master_p (608214) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062823)

If successful, then it's the UK, then the US, then the rest of the world.

By the way, if governments cared about other things as much as they care about copyright infringement, things would be so much better...

I thought Down Under is no more a colony? (1)

kubitus (927806) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062825)

but it seems they are being colonialized again by the media megacorporations.

Do you have a better suggestion? (0, Troll)

MacTO (1161105) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062859)

It is easy to blame the totalitarian actions of governments or the protectionist desires of industry for bad laws, yet illegal activities that are screened by the relative anonymity of the Internet are a persistent problem. Screaming about our loss of freedoms and privacy through draconian laws does not solve the problem of illegal activities, because the government and industry are not the root of the problem. Indeed, it may even make the problem worse since those who commit the crime will believe that they won't have to do the time.

Re:Do you have a better suggestion? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29062967)

There is not much anonymity, as evidenced by all the people actually being sued. It seems the the current laws basically work; but too slowly, too expensively, and with too much bad publicity for the convenience of BigContent.

BigContent would rather put all the cost of, and bad feeling generated by, enforcing their government granted limited time monopoly on everyone else. At the same time they are trying to escape the 'limited time' end of the deal.

In the US you need court orders to do phone taps, but these jokers want to be able to monitor every byte in and out as a normal part of life. We would have to be very foolish to put in place the tools for totalitarianism just to ensure that content can be monetized by a tiny fraction of the population.

We stand at a crossroads; we can choose 'free speech' and 'reasonable privacy' or we can choose an Orwellian dystopia.

Re:Do you have a better suggestion? (1)

freedom_india (780002) | more than 5 years ago | (#29063003)

yet illegal activities that are screened by the relative anonymity of the Internet are a persistent problem

Yup. Eating Bread suffocates 98% babies, Water is responsible for 100% of drownings, and kitchen knives are responsible for 80% of knife deaths. Shall we ban all these?
Quoting statistics is easy, even a fool like you can do it.
Making it relative to something else is harder.

Screaming about our loss of freedoms and privacy through draconian laws does not solve the problem of illegal activities, because the government and industry are not the root of the problem.

Oh... and you say the laws are magically drafted and magically passed by fairies masquerading as MPs?

Re:Do you have a better suggestion? (1)

cpghost (719344) | more than 5 years ago | (#29063499)

Perfectly natural activities (like file copying) are only illegal, because some guys in a building called Parliament have decided that it should be that way. Maybe, just maybe, the problem is the copyright law that criminalizes a large portion of the Internet population? How about reforming that law, or at least adapting it to the 21st century? Like, you know, legalizing private non-commercial copying, as the various Pirate Parties in other countries are already asking for?

It'll happen (1)

enter to exit (1049190) | more than 5 years ago | (#29062933)

Anybody who cant see this happening world-wide must be living on another planet. What reason does any government have for not supporting this? Do you donate to election campaigns and political parties as much as the "entertainment" industry and celebrities?

sure the average slashdotter and a few loud-mouth civil-libertarians don't want it, but most people are apathetic and the general public have a short memory. A few weeks after it become enforced it'll transform itself into "the natural order of things" and we'll move onto complaining about politician travel expenses again.

Governments don't make laws for you. They make laws for the elite. If it happens to benefit you, they say they did it for you. The leader of the opposition and the PM are both multi-millionaires and have done well in buiness (nothing wrong with that) but one has to ask: What are they doing in politics? Do they give a damn about the "average joe"? Are they just "hobby positions" for the too-rich-to-work?

This will get through and everybody will say: "Isn't Kevin Rudd nice? He gave me $900 stimulus money and said sorry to the Aborigines. A true blue!"

An observation (1)

BhaKi (1316335) | more than 5 years ago | (#29063099)

I can't help but notice one thing. If the same happened with Iran, N. Korea, China or any other political enemies of US, the media would be promoting more hatred towards those countries... would have tagged "tyranny" or "dictatorship", would have edited wikipedia pages about those countries to display false facts, would have created stories about "hackers" from those countries "stealing sensitive information from internet" (as if sensitive information is put on internet. oh wait! i'm sorry, i forgot. creating such stories is CIA's job. not media's.) The question is: does any one notice the amount of influence of US government (or its agencies) on media?

What the fuck (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29063165)

I'm fucking outraged.

Why the hell do we vote for these idiots? Labor does something shitty, so we all vote Liberal, Liberal does the same thing but calls it something different, so we all vote Labor. We just switch back and forth from one incompetent to another. The only party who has a clue about anything seems to be the Greens, but they don't get a look in.

[/rant]

The liberals wouldnt be any better (2, Interesting)

jonwil (467024) | more than 5 years ago | (#29063225)

I guarantee you that the Liberals (under Howard, Turnbul or anyone else who has a snowballs chance of being Liberal leader) would have supported this kind of "ISP as copyright cop" legislation had they won government instead of Rudd.

The big push for this stuff is comming from the commercial TV networks (7, 9 and 10), the Pay TV operators (i.e. Foxtel and all the various owners of the various channels) and the movie studios. All of these parties have been arguing that without some kind of "ISP as copyright cop" enforcement to stop piracy (why the same copyright legislation and court system that has served this nation for over 100 years is not suitable for this I fail to see), it will become more and more un-viable to continue to produce content in this country.

bleh (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29063359)

I'm Australian.

this is disgusting.

public libraries, download warez, sneakernet it to all my damn friends.

move to any other country asap.

Draconian (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29063403)

This clown is an anal retentive, pico-minded, obtuse, over-reaching, wrong-headed, intellectually-stunted bureaucrat with little knowledge of how this technology works, a power-hungry mentality, and an amazing ability to make really poor, uninformed, short-sighted decisions. His simple-minded world view hampers his country, and the wider world. I thought Ted "Tubes" Stevens and Orrin "All your base belong to my paid backers, the **AA" Hatch were living in 1430, but no, poor decision making can travel to Australia too.

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