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Italy Floats Official Permission Requirement for Web Video Uploads

timothy posted more than 4 years ago | from the state-v.-man dept.

Censorship 131

An anonymous reader writes with some bad news from Italy, noting that new rules proposed there would "require people who upload videos onto the Internet to obtain authorization from the Communications Ministry similar to that required by television broadcasters, drastically reducing freedom to communicate over the Web." Understandably, some say such controls represent a conflict of interest for Silvio Berlusconi, "who exercises political control over the state broadcaster RAI in his role as prime minister and is also the owner of Italy's largest private broadcaster, Mediaset."

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What's with the Italians, anyway? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30793554)

-nt-

Italian Booty (4, Insightful)

Blasphemy (78348) | more than 4 years ago | (#30793580)

I get the distinct impression will be seeing a surge in Italian YouTube videos with a "Screw you, Berlusconi" theme.

Re:Italian Booty (3, Funny)

geegel (1587009) | more than 4 years ago | (#30794572)

That or the sale of small metallic cathedral replicas will really take off.

Re:Italian Booty (1)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 4 years ago | (#30794922)

The guy is going to be drummed out of office anyways. He's become a laughing stock in Italy and in Europe. Not just a laughing stock, a dirty old laughing stock.

Re:Italian Booty (1, Insightful)

omb (759389) | more than 4 years ago | (#30795744)

No he isn't, Things play differently in Italy, and

BTW he is one of the most successful, post WW 2, Italian leaders. I very much doubt he will be out anytime soon.

Re:Italian Booty (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30796550)

you mean succesfull in not being prosecuted and thrown in jail yet.

succesfull in increasing the italian public debt (never been so high... 2.565.963.751.438.435 $ or 1.783.858.000.000.000 €)

and increasing his personal bank accounts too

Re:Italian Booty (1, Funny)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 4 years ago | (#30796712)

Unfortunately, that is an awfully low bar...

Re:Italian Booty (1)

Fred_A (10934) | more than 4 years ago | (#30796814)

BTW he is one of the most successful, post WW 2, Italian leaders.

Successful at what ?

You don't evaluate success by the number of underage bimbos you screw, sneak into your government or by the number of trials you weasel your way out of while claiming it's all the fault of the "red judges" and the "communist press" (aka. newspapers he doesn't own).

Italy is going down the drain at such a speed that it's dizzying to watch.

Re:Italian Booty (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30796948)

He'll be out in a few years anyway due to his age, but that's not a good reason to celebrate as some of the people he put in power are much more dangerous than him.

Re:Italian Booty (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30796268)

Someone should punch Berlusconi in the face! Oh, wait...

That's insane (5, Insightful)

PenisLands (930247) | more than 4 years ago | (#30793594)

That's horrific. An extremely oppressive requirement. I expect that anyone who disagrees with Silvio will be denied permission to upload anything. This is also impractical, because you can't expect every single citizen to apply for permission just to post videos of their cat onto youtube.

Thankfully, I think that this could be circumvented easily, by transferring video files to another country in an encrypted form, then getting friends in the other country to unencrypt and upload it for you.

Right... And you think this because... (4, Insightful)

Colin Smith (2679) | more than 4 years ago | (#30793816)

Thankfully, I think that this could be circumvented easily, by transferring video files to another country in an encrypted form, then getting friends in the other country to unencrypt and upload it for you.

You've never mentioned the word "encryption" in casual conversation with non I.T. related friends and relatives?

 

Re:Right... And you think this because... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30794136)

Clearly Mr. Penis has no friends and family beyond forums and IM. I can't think why...

Without encryption, you're sending postcards (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 4 years ago | (#30795976)

You've never mentioned the word "encryption" in casual conversation with non I.T. related friends and relatives?

"Of course you couldn't read it; it's encrypted."
"What's that?"
"Encrypted means I sent it in a secret code so that other people can't read it. The difference between regular e-mail and encrypted e-mail is like the difference between a postcard and a sealed security envelope. Encryption helps keep your personal information private. I'll help you set up a program on your computer so that you can read encrypted mail sent to you and make your own encrypted mail to send to other people. What program do you normally use to read e-mail: the clock or the bird?"

Re:That's insane (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30793942)

easier to circumvent by posting an image consisting of still frames from said video. could even use 'aalib' to post the images as ASCII

Re:That's insane (1)

starbugs (1670420) | more than 4 years ago | (#30795946)

for a 1 min clip:

1 create a web-page with 1440 still jpegs
2 create a 1 min ogg vorbis file
3 viewers use a download manager or script to download images and sound
4 viewers use a program to combine images and sound into a video

A simple script can be used to do this.
Even on windows, it shouldn't be too difficult to write a program to do all this in one step.

Re:That's insane (2, Interesting)

Narpak (961733) | more than 4 years ago | (#30793962)

This is also impractical, because you can't expect every single citizen to apply for permission just to post videos of their cat onto youtube.

Indeed. One thing that could kill such a policy quickly is the huge number of people applying for permission for all sorts of material would swamp the institution. But seriously the oppressiveness of such a policy seems excessive; even for Italy. And to make this have any sort of effect at all they would have to block all access to foreign sites since they would continue to upload more or less whatever they would wish.

Re:That's insane (1)

mdwh2 (535323) | more than 4 years ago | (#30794116)

I don't know about Italy, but here in the UK, video/film producers have to pay for the privilege of being censored by the BBFC (thankfully it doesn't apply to Internet uploads though ... yet). So they could easily get round that problem by charging a fee.

Even if it is free, swamping it would just leave a massive backlog, meaning that content would take ages to be approved. Although I can see the idea could work from a protest point of view of showing how bad the system is.

Re:That's insane (3, Interesting)

DMiax (915735) | more than 4 years ago | (#30794268)

No need to circumvent for private individuals, fortunately. Our government is sloppy and has not thought of a single way to enforce this. It will be used against competitors to Berlusconi's TVs and against Murdoch's Sky, which is in the scope of the bill. Not that it is so much better...

Re:That's insane (2, Informative)

DMiax (915735) | more than 4 years ago | (#30794290)

Ah, and I do not think the bill will pass. Their strategy is to throw as many bad ideas out there that at some point one is bound to pass.

Re:That's insane (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30794480)

And that's why we must hit them with as many souvenirs as we can get our hands on!

Seriously, the situation is getting out of control, the only reason we haven't been already tagged as a third world country is probably inhertia. The current dirigent class is mainly composed of uneducated, stupid, tecnophobic people, who genuinely think we'd be better off with another "zio Benito".
This nation is failing in so may ways it's becoming almost impossible to find something that works as it should...
It's depressing.

Re:That's insane (2, Funny)

cbiltcliffe (186293) | more than 4 years ago | (#30795442)

This nation is failing in so may ways it's becoming almost impossible to find something that works as it should...
It's depressing.

Are you saying the trains don't run on time?

Re:That's insane (2, Insightful)

Hurricane78 (562437) | more than 4 years ago | (#30794370)

No. You know how it will be circumvented?
By about 60 million people just not caring.
Or is there even a single person there who still does not think and say fuck Berlusconi at every chance he can get? ^^

Of course, Italians are a bit like we here in Germany: The broad majority of the people, including the military, the police, and other state workers, might agree that they strongly disagree with something. And they might even know that they all agree. Yet they still cave in and fear a teeny tiny group of assholes who are very sure of themselves, excusing it with the like “But alone, I can’t change anything!“.
Was the case back then. And unfortunately, nothing is changed. :(
Somehow I have the feeling that’s also the reason for the mafia.

And yet I can’t give up on them. Their food is too delicious! ;)

Re:That's insane (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30794890)

From what I understand, the problem is this law will make service providers responsible for the content. So... say, YouTube would be responsible for the Mediaset video clips users uploads, and would have to carry the cost of censoring its users.

And it could well be seen as yet another conflict of interest of our loved prime minister: his family company has sued google for this issue already, and a law like this would help his advocates.

And obviously it would silence the only channel which is not under his control, which is the really bad part.

Re:That's insane (2, Insightful)

sopssa (1498795) | more than 4 years ago | (#30795420)

No. You know how it will be circumvented?
By about 60 million people just not caring.

That doesn't really help. No, they won't be enforcing and punishing everyone. But they will target specific persons with it to silent and shut them down.

Re:That's insane (2, Insightful)

Kikuchi (1709032) | more than 4 years ago | (#30794430)

I think people who uploads videos of their cat on youtube aren't the one who gonna be affected by this law. Italian government obviously doesn't intend to apply this law thoroughly but rather pop it out from nowhere when they'll need to apply censure.

Constitution, People! (1)

Afforess (1310263) | more than 4 years ago | (#30794710)

This is exactly the reason the USA has a constitution. It limits the power of government, so that if Congress ever tried to do something that boneheaded here, the Supreme Court would just strike it down.

Re:Constitution, People! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30794856)

since when has congress been prevented from doing something unconstitutional? for the last several decades/century it's been a free for all

Re:Constitution, People! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30794932)

In Italy we have a very good Constitution.
However, for lack of a better word, it is being hacked.
It is being ignored/worked around/changed/reinterpreted as needed.

Remember how your USA's administration managed to reinterpret its ban on torture?

When enough power is concentrated, a piece of paper does not protect anyone
if there is not the will to actually protect, trust and stand by its principles.

For more info on the actual attack on internet freedom, see

http://www.beppegrillo.it/en/

"Attack on the Internet"

Re:Constitution, People! (4, Insightful)

John Hasler (414242) | more than 4 years ago | (#30795034)

Italy has a constitution [senato.it] which this law may violate.

Re:Constitution, People! (3, Insightful)

dunkelfalke (91624) | more than 4 years ago | (#30795332)

Paper doesn't blush.
The Soviet Union also had a constitution. With rights for free press, free speech and so on in it.

Re:That's insane (1)

mikael (484) | more than 4 years ago | (#30795684)

And in other news ... sales of memory sticks, external USB drives and blank DVD's have suddenly skyrocketed along with the use of 'secure-ftp'.

Re:That's insane (1)

rtb61 (674572) | more than 4 years ago | (#30796792)

Fortunately it is also a idiot's doomed 'FAIL', video phone calls over VOIP any one, literally millions of videos being uploaded to the internet all the time. Even if that were not the issue, how many people would need to be paid to view all those videos, each and every submission. Let me guess what also will be part of the lie, a two stream approval process. One for companies which corrupt Italian politicians have a financial interests in who get approvals free and another for the general public who must pay the full cost of getting approval and who must get on the end of the line to access the one censorship officer, don't worry waiting list will only be a few decades.

I need bureaucracy! (3, Insightful)

negRo_slim (636783) | more than 4 years ago | (#30793604)

It's things like this that make me lament the US giving up any shred of control of the Internet and related systems to the international community.

Re:I need bureaucracy! (2, Insightful)

omglolbah (731566) | more than 4 years ago | (#30793898)

Yup, not like the DMCA causes problems on the net...

Or American businesses bullying other countries or generally making a mess of things.

The US has plenty of their own shit to fix before yelling at anyone else :-p

Re:I need bureaucracy! (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30794442)

Yea, we have shit to fix, but be fair. It's nowhere near as bad as this bullshit in Italy, or even 99% of the rest of the world.

Re:I need bureaucracy! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30794662)

I will happily accept the great firewall of Australia over the DMCA/ACMA approach advocated by the USA.

Re:I need bureaucracy! (1)

Artraze (600366) | more than 4 years ago | (#30794718)

Honestly, the DMCA is the best thing to happen to the net. Why? Because instead of everyone suing everyone for everything, it provides a fair method of resolving disputes... How nice is it that the plaintiff has to make a statement under penalty of perjury that you need to take something down, and also provides a formal way to refute the request? What would you prefer? The RIAA method of threatening to sue and just hoping people settle?

Granted, the fact that the DMCA gives DRM the force of law (among a few other things) makes the bill as a whole terrible. However, as far as the net in general has been concerned, it has helped a lot of content sites flourish without the risk of being sued into the ground as soon as a copyrighted work shows up.

Re:I need bureaucracy! (1)

russotto (537200) | more than 4 years ago | (#30795280)

Honestly, the DMCA is the best thing to happen to the net. Why? Because instead of everyone suing everyone for everything, it provides a fair method of resolving disputes...

Fair? Because the DMCA I know of, the "method of resolving disputes is:

1) Complaintant makes a complaint
2) Work is taken down.
99% of the time, dispute resolved. Not so fair, IMO. But that's a bit unfair to the DMCA, because there is the option of

1) Complaintant makes a complaint
2) Work is taken down
3) Respondent agrees to meet complaintant in US court
4) Complaintant says "OK, we'll sue your ass"
5) Work remains down for duration of dispute
6) Much time passes
7) Respondent loses ass because complaintant has better lawyers.

How nice is it that the plaintiff has to make a statement under penalty of perjury that you need to take something down

All they have to say under penalty of perjury is that they represent the owner of the work they say is being infringed on (not, mind you, the work being taken down!)

What would you prefer?

The rule under the Netcom decision, where the ISP is not liable even without a takedown requirement, and if someone wants something taken down, they can try to get a preliminary injunction rather than just write a letter. It still isn't fair, but at least it's slightly burdensome for the censor.

Re:I need bureaucracy! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30795326)

heck you can complain about USA and DMCA and other things all you want, its way better than many European countries, including Italia soon.

PHBbbbbbt! (1)

codegen (103601) | more than 4 years ago | (#30795890)

When is the last time you saw a DMCA complainant found guilty of perjury? In legal circles, this is considered a nuclear weapon, and the Judges rarely if ever find anyone guilty. Instead we get defenses such that "it was an honest mistake!" and the weasels live on to sue another day. No the DMCA is one of the *worst* things to happen to the net. The rarity in which a perjury charge sticks allows the weasels to issue takedown notices with little regard for consequences. How else would you justify a take down notice being sent to a printer?

This is not new in Italy (3, Insightful)

Extremus (1043274) | more than 4 years ago | (#30793674)

Some time ago, they tried something similar [slashdot.org] with blogs.

Re:This is not new in Italy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30793730)

They've been doing this sort of thing since 1922. It's certainly not new.

Re:This is not new in Italy (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30793806)

There are also requirements for niggers, gays and trolls [goatse.fr] to obtain written permission before posting or trolling on the Internet.

Re:This is not new in Italy (1)

Hurricane78 (562437) | more than 4 years ago | (#30794540)

Hmm, and I thought, more like... 70 years ago...

Italy isn't a good place. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30793712)

Most people don't realize it but Italy is a totalitarian regime that pretends to be parliamentary. Most communications in the country are censored and/or overtly political. Also the police (who are much more like a military than even in the states) have the power to collect fines on the spot.

Re:Italy isn't a good place. (2, Informative)

lukas84 (912874) | more than 4 years ago | (#30793970)

Also the police have the power to collect fines on the spot.

It's the same here in Switzerland, i never found that unusual.

Re:Italy isn't a good place. (3, Insightful)

IgnoramusMaximus (692000) | more than 4 years ago | (#30794448)

It is "unusual" in the sense that all the countries that at least pretend to operate under some sane judiciary principles do not allow cops to also become juries, judges and executioners all rolled into one, instead they go for the "innocent until proven guilty" ideal. Allowing police to collect fines on the spot is the very anathema of this, the assumption is that whomever the cop fingers is "guilty until proven innocent".

Consider what happens if an incompetent or malicious cop decides to go after you: you get for all practical purposes robbed at gun-point and it is then up to you to run through the hostile, bureaucratic rigmarole to attempt to prove your innocence and maybe even to get some of your fine back. Most people will simply be cowed into subservience and the police will assume the role it ever desires in every country: as the lynch-pin of a police-state.

Re:Italy isn't a good place. (1)

lukas84 (912874) | more than 4 years ago | (#30794624)

This may be different in Italy, but we're talking about fines here. These are usually traffic violations. You can pay them on the spot, or you can ask for a bill. This will add an administrative fee (i think around 40CHF) to the list, but has no consequences otherwise.

In either case, you can contest the fine in 30 days. Of course, most traffic fines are below the hourly rate of a lawyer, so contesting them makes no sense, even if you think you're innocent.

Swiss traffic fines (1)

omb (759389) | more than 4 years ago | (#30796012)

There is no cost to be billed, you just need to show that you will pay valid penalties, so before I lived here, I commuted, and once had my car clamped in the Zeurich Innenstadt, because I owed more than CHF 100 in overspeed fines. To stop that happening again I registered my ausleander Kontrolschield (licence plate) with the Kantonalpolizei Zeurich.

If you live abroad you can still write in and contest a penalty, and there is NO cost for that, if you are correct you get your money back. Swiss process is almost entirely fact based, not like the US adversarial system, the only real disadvantage the foreigner has is the courts, but not necessarily the polizei, speak Swiss German or French or Italian, they may, but are not required to listen to you in English (but they may, at the president's discretion). If you write to the polizei or the Kantonalanwalt (District Attorney) you can write in English, but the answer is likely in German or French, see Languages in Switzerland.

Showing you underwear again. (1)

omb (759389) | more than 4 years ago | (#30795914)

In Switzerland, under the Eidgenössische strassenvehrkersverordnung (Federal Street Rules) the Polizei are authorized to ticket-fine for small infractions, eg No Seat Belt, a very little overspeed, parking, ... these proceed by issuing a bussen (penalty) which is normally billed to your home address. You can dispute a bussen, and if you can produce evidence it is withdrawn, if you don't pay it goes to a court where (i) you must defend, and (ii) a fine and costs now get added.

Only for aliens, or people without Swiss domicile do you have to pay cash on the barrelhead since you are not a Good Swiss and cannot be trusted to pay if you have no defense.

Speeding 140k+ (120k limit on autobahn), no Swiss Tax (40f), or drink (>0,5pm) will get either a big fine or your licence (fuerherausweis) pulled, on the spot, walk home.

Re:Italy isn't a good place. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30794694)

Also the police have the power to collect fines on the spot.

It's the same here in Switzerland, i never found that unusual.

Maybe Swiss cops are just very honest... For the rest of us, it's asking for trouble for a police officer to determine that you committed a crime, and collect the penalty in cash.

The reason we have a criminal court system is that not everyone accused of a crime is guilty of the crime.

And what happens if you don't happen to have cash on you at the time?

Re:Italy isn't a good place. (1, Troll)

couchslug (175151) | more than 4 years ago | (#30793990)

If one doesn't live in Italy, there is no reason to care what Italians choose for themselves. The country has been a joke since before the Great War, the citizens choose their fate, and it's none of our business what they do to each other.

Re:Italy isn't a good place. (2, Insightful)

calmofthestorm (1344385) | more than 4 years ago | (#30794040)

If one doesn't live in North Kora, there is no reason to care what Italians choose for themselves. The country has been a joke since before the Korean War, the citizens choose their fate, and it's none of our business what they do to each other.

Re:Italy isn't a good place. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30794102)

excactly.

Re:Italy isn't a good place. (1)

Velodra (1443121) | more than 4 years ago | (#30794396)

If one doesn't live in North Kora, there is no reason to care what Italians choose for themselves.

So the only people who should care about Italy is North Koreans? I don't think that would work out very well.

Re:Italy isn't a good place. (1, Insightful)

couchslug (175151) | more than 4 years ago | (#30795440)

How cute and clue-free is THAT comparison?

North Korea is an active military threat to South Korea and an exporter of weapons to our enemies. North Korea is no joke, and nearly pushed UN forces into the sea during the first part of the Korean War. While what Norks do to each other DOESN'T matter much (Asia follows Asian rules beyond our judgement), what their government does has considerable effect.

Italy is a peaceful country at the bottom of Europe. and unlike North Korea is run by its people however imperfectly. It has little effect on anywhere else, no military that mattered since WW1, and no interest in regaining its Empire. So what if Italians do silly shit to each other? That's an internal matter.

Re:Italy isn't a good place. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30795474)

i don't consider any fascist country "peaceful".

Re:Italy isn't a good place. (2, Interesting)

calmofthestorm (1344385) | more than 4 years ago | (#30795648)

Yes that was a bit over the top. However:

>> is run by its people
That's the point I'm trying to challenge here. North Korea is an extreme example, perhaps China makes more sense.

You know the arguments we all laugh at in the rest of the world, that Chinese want their internet censored? A surprisingly large number do (based on accounts from Chinese friends who left in their late teens/early 20's). I have no idea if they're 10% or 90% of the population but I'd put good money it it being in this range. With internet censorship as a proxy for other things the government does. Is it a people's right to be censored to such an extreme extent? In my opinion that point is debatable. If you preach social contracts too hard, soon you have ones that are binding on children and children's children.

The problem here is that when a country "run by its people" goes too far, it becomes a tyranny, sometimes by a majority. A well run country in my mind needs to respect the rights of the minority while carrying out the will of the majority, and I'd argue that Italy's systematic censorship (I'm not just talking about Youtube here) and fascist [literally] economics, this is not the case.

But as you say, sovereignty is sovereignty, and it's not the American president's duty to go around Liberating countries we don't like the government of *cough* *cough*. But that doesn't mean I can't call it what it is.

Re:Italy isn't a good place. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30796502)

You are correct. If North Korea wasn't a threat to the South, a US ally, nobody would give a shit.
s/North Korea/Sudan/ and you have a better comparison.

Re:Italy isn't a good place. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30794818)

I live in Italy, you insensitive clod!

Re:Italy isn't a good place. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30795164)

In Soviet Russia Italy lives in you!

Wait... That doesn't even make sense.

Re:Italy isn't a good place. (1)

chiui (1120973) | more than 4 years ago | (#30795202)

When I hear some bad decision made in the United States I don't think the same of US Citizens. I don't think it's their fault, and I don't think they deserve whatever happens after that decision. I expect people from all over the world to express their opinions about my government and I like to do the same to other governments than my own. We are citizens of the world. Of course, there are smaller issues we don't understand and which are better discussed by people living in their state.
(An Italian citizen)

Re:Italy isn't a good place. (2, Informative)

PopeRatzo (965947) | more than 4 years ago | (#30794000)

Most people don't realize it but Italy is a totalitarian regime that pretends to be parliamentary. Most communications in the country are censored and/or overtly political. Also the police (who are much more like a military than even in the states) have the power to collect fines on the spot.

I've spent a lot of time in Italy in my life, and when I tell people that I don't believe the Italian system of government has not changed very much since the days of the Caesars, they think I'm crazy. Caligula would feel right at home.

If you ever want to have your eyes opened to Italy, Italians and Italian culture, a great place to start is the very entertaining book my historian Luigi Barzini, The Italians. He claims that it's all about theater, which is not nearly as innocuous as it sounds.

Re:Italy isn't a good place. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30794508)

That's because we have a lot of draconian laws that we happily ignore. Around here the problem is that it is very hard to get someone who is caught red handed to pay anything up.

(i'm from milan)

And yet, the italians keep voting for this guy (1)

SmallFurryCreature (593017) | more than 4 years ago | (#30793906)

Amazing, bread and circuses, it still works after 2000+ years.

It may become time to end the secret ballot. Else we keep getting people like this elected because people vote for their wallets thinking everyone else will save their freedom.

Democracy is the worsed system except for all the others is a common bit of dogma, I think it has made us lazy. Keep us from trying to find something better. Because democracy sure as hell doesn't seem to be working anymore.

Re:And yet, the italians keep voting for this guy (2, Insightful)

couchslug (175151) | more than 4 years ago | (#30793966)

They vote for him, thus they get what they want and deserve.

Democracy works that way, and people are not entitled to good outcomes when they make stupid decisions.

Re:And yet, the italians keep voting for this guy (1)

nyctopterus (717502) | more than 4 years ago | (#30794614)

They vote for him, thus they get what they want and deserve.

Except--and this is a really critical point, many (probably nearly half) of the people did nothing of the sort! Why should they live under an oppressive ruler who they did not vote for?

Re:And yet, the italians keep voting for this guy (1)

ShakaUVM (157947) | more than 4 years ago | (#30794708)

>>Except--and this is a really critical point, many (probably nearly half) of the people did nothing of the sort! Why should they live under an oppressive ruler who they did not vote for?

Democracy is a terrible system of government, except all the others

Re:And yet, the italians keep voting for this guy (2, Interesting)

orzetto (545509) | more than 4 years ago | (#30794632)

In the present Italian electoral system, about 2-3 people decide who will be a candidate for parliament (party leaders). Voters can only choose between parties, not single candidates. Add to that the fact that the "opposition" of Italy's Democratic Party is ludicrously weak (and, I suspect, several of its leaders are on Berlusconi's payroll). Whenever the present opposition was in power, they always "forgot" to pass laws to either strip Berlusconi of his media empire, or to ban him out of politics until he sells; they even left alone one of his major TV stations, Rete 4, which was broadcasting illegally.

Italy resembles more and more the GDR: control of media, check (not complete, but enough to control 50% of the people); illegal wiretapping operations on opposition, check (last week, government covered on grounds of "safety of the state" a wiretapping scandal in private companies); kidnapping and torture, check (with the help of the CIA, an imam was kidnapped from Milan and extensively tortured in Egypt). Only thing different is that the judiciary is somewhat holding out because of the constitutional checks and balances, so we are going more for a kleptocracy than for a re-edition of fascism.

Only good thing about Berlusconi is that he surrounds himself with idiots, who will not try or be able to take his place. At least when the son of a bitch finally dies, his system should crumble. I have no more faith in the possibility of simply voting him out.

Re:And yet, the italians keep voting for this guy (1)

Hadlock (143607) | more than 4 years ago | (#30795360)

This is how it works in the US as well, its just that we happen to have the formality of presidential primaries. The cannidates are largely chosen and supported by the party. Technically we have write-ins but those rarely, if ever work.

Re:And yet, the italians keep voting for this guy (1)

eaman (710548) | more than 4 years ago | (#30795236)

Democracy works as long as you can chose who to vote for, and you have means to chose between differents candidates based on facts of your interests.

In the latest years in Italy citizens have lost the right to choose who to elect, as the very same politics choose who can be elected, and small parties are automatically left out of parliament. If you are not part of the system you just don't get any space in TV (80% of electors base they votes on TV programs), or as soon as you do anything to gain attention you are turned in monster by a media system (look fo Minzolin of TG1) where politics chose the journalists and/or own the newspapers or TV.

Population is very old so is not used to internet (BTW: remember they used to study French at school instead of english) , government puts taxes on the Internet and digital media [1], money for the net infrastructure have been always redirect to other projects (this year was the deficit of Sicily who is one of the biggest elector of the actual government) since always, but Italy is the first country of Europe for digital TV: they give money to anyone for buying a new TV and old people almost can get new ones for free.

Right now as seven TV news shows exist (3 mediaset + 3 RAI + La7) tree are owned by Berlusconi (Mediaset), of 3 public channels 2 are controlled by the governament (TG1 wich is the prime time and most watched one, and TG2. While Tg3 is left to the opposition but RAI3 is supposed to be the "local / regional" TV so most of the news space is not about nation interests, and it's not even able to transmit the news show on prime time as Tg1 and Tg2 take both half an hour aorund prime time. So they decided to make the national interests TG shorter (as in 5 minutes). )

Then you have La7 wich is owned by Telecom: the telephony monopoly which could not exist without the government. Then there's SKY (Murdoch) which is pay-per-view, it get two times the taxes of the other channels, can't get as much advertisement of the others channels.

Berlusconi usually doesn't ever bother to partecipate to any political debate where anyone from an other party or journalist could pone questions to him. Lately Berlusconi goes around claiming that his is "The party of Love" and anyone who tries to speak against him (and there are many! ) is just "manufacturing Hate" and is against Italy: because as you said, Italians did vote for him so he shouldn't be bother with trials and other annoyances.

1 - http://punto-informatico.it/2787994/PI/Commenti/equo-compenso.aspx [punto-informatico.it]
       

Re:And yet, the italians keep voting for this guy (1)

cpscotti (1032676) | more than 4 years ago | (#30794306)

Amazing, bread and circuses, it still works after 2000+ years.

Precisely.. it's just that it evolved into pasta and soccer.
ps: I'm temporarily living in Italy and most Italians seem to be unaware or such things...
Well.. every bar or Italian's house I get into has a tv with Mediaset (Berslusconi's privately owned network) on..
Italy REALLY looks like "Citizen Kane meets The Godfather"..

Re:And yet, the italians keep voting for this guy (1)

DMiax (915735) | more than 4 years ago | (#30794310)

What makes you think that in this semi-dictatorship a public ballot will make the votes for Berlusconi *decrease*?

Re:And yet, the italians keep voting for this guy (3, Insightful)

John Hasler (414242) | more than 4 years ago | (#30795064)

> Democracy is the worst system except for all the others...

Which is a good reason to have as little democracy as possible and none of anything else.

What did some one do upload a video of some one ge (1)

Joe The Dragon (967727) | more than 4 years ago | (#30793910)

What did some one do upload a video of some one getting beat up buy the cops for not paying a bribe?

Fascism 2.0 (1)

CranberryKing (776846) | more than 4 years ago | (#30793996)

from the country that invented it! But I doubt it will fly with the people. They would recognize it.. No?

Re:Fascism 2.0 (1)

TeXMaster (593524) | more than 4 years ago | (#30794172)

from the country that invented it! But I doubt it will fly with the people. They would recognize it.. No?

Sadly, many of us aren't able to. OTOH, since the principal news sources are under Berlusconi's control, how would they ever even realize what's really happening?

Youtube isnt everything (2, Interesting)

gmuslera (3436) | more than 4 years ago | (#30794028)

p2p will be a problem, even if what is being transfered is legal. What if i.e. a linux distribution includes a package with demo video of something... that linux distribution will be forbidden to be transfered using bittorrent or required a bunch of permissions for that?

Same with videochat, i.e. skype, googletalk and others.

Wonder if the selling of webcams will have some kind of requirement, like signing something. Because with this you will not be able to turn them on without getting a permission.

Re:Youtube isnt everything (1)

eaman (710548) | more than 4 years ago | (#30795302)

Italy politics are very found of privacy: as in no web cams, no data should be saved, no telephones conversatin shoud be intercepted.

Then you have most of the mesia system in the very hands of the government, so they don't like newcomers.

Thank goodness for German Amateurs (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30794034)

If Italy cuts of my amateur pron, I'll have to make due with the Germans. Both rock the leather nicely, but Italian women tend to be sexier, not always, but most of the time.

Re:Thank goodness for German Amateurs (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30794110)

Seriously. "do" is not that hard to spell right.

So whats next? (1)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 4 years ago | (#30794154)

So whats next? Having to get permission to type a paragraph? To post in forums? To update Facebook? To post on Twitter?

Re:So whats next? (1)

SteveFoerster (136027) | more than 4 years ago | (#30794604)

Dude, stop giving him ideas!

CANADA next? (0, Troll)

misnohmer (1636461) | more than 4 years ago | (#30794192)

CRTC in Canada already controls TV, magazine publications and other media - blocking media without sufficient French content amongst other rules. If this passes in Italy it will only be a matter of time before they realize “Oh, we should do the same!” and require everyone to apply for permission to post videos – “I’m sorry sir, before uploading to the web your home made porn must be subtitled in French, credit attribution must be given for French kissing and your wife is not allowed to shave her legs”...

Re:CANADA next? (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30794280)

CRTC in Canada already controls TV, magazine publications and other media - blocking media without sufficient French content amongst other rules.

Not true.

1. The CRTC is the Canadian Radio Television and Telecommunications Commission [crtc.gc.ca] . Similar to the FCC in the USA. As you might guess from their name, they have no control or jurisdiction over magazines.

2. The CRTC doesn't block media without sufficient French content. There are many, many TV & radio stations with ZERO french content. The CRTC does require TV & radio stations to have a minimum CANADIAN content, which is very different.

If you're going to bring up Canada's language issues, you could at least get your facts right.

"I'm sorry sir, before uploading to the web your home made porn must be subtitled in French, credit attribution must be given for French kissing and your wife is not allowed to shave her legs"...

I assure you that french Canadian women do shave their legs, quite different from their french European counterparts.

Re:CANADA next? (1)

yacc143 (975862) | more than 4 years ago | (#30795240)

I admit that I've found that dual-language fetish in Canada always very charming ;)

Canada has similar laws (2, Interesting)

stimpleton (732392) | more than 4 years ago | (#30794308)

On YouTube is a regular poster. He drives around on his farm and does crazy things in cars. Jumping over things etc. Friends come over and do the same. They post the videos to YouTube.

Local authoritys have said he needs a "Movie Studios Licence". His property have been raided. He currently is posting videos from his house mostly these days.

I should add he has a conviction of a sexual nature against a child back in the 80's, so the motivation of autorities might be on that.

http://www.youtube.com/user/Davidsfarm [youtube.com]

Re:Canada has similar laws (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30794850)

That was obviously "Local Authorities" which means by-laws. That is not federal or provincial law.

I invite Mr. Berlusconi (1)

Arancaytar (966377) | more than 4 years ago | (#30794420)

To move to his apparent favorite country, the People's Republic of China. He'd love to see his utopia in practice, I'm sure.

Re:I invite Mr. Berlusconi (1)

eaman (710548) | more than 4 years ago | (#30795338)

Actually he's Putin best buddy (when Berlusconi was elected last time he just disappear for a couple of days to celebrate with Putin in Sardegna as private jets took of the TV starlets to they amusement: Putin is well known for having donate to B. a gorgeus bid bed).

But second choice would be Mu'ammar Gheddafi, dictator of Libia, where he goes quite often embarrassing Italy (this year he sent the national acrobatic air patrol to Libia to celebrate the anniversary of the dictator: the "air force" refused to take off).

Fun (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30794740)

Whoever has to look at these videos will have real fun when a bunch of people submit loads of goatse videos

Not again (1)

shar303 (944843) | more than 4 years ago | (#30794858)

Anyone have an alabaster model of Milan cathedral handy?

Enforcement? (1)

vampire_baozi (1270720) | more than 4 years ago | (#30794906)

How exactly would they enforce this? At best he can force Italian ISPs to comply, which could be circumvented by simply having a decent enough proxy outside Italian borders, or just sending files to users in other countries. I'd also hate to see how these licenses were handled- on a computer basis, in which ISPs authorize individual accounts? The entire idea simply seems absurd and unworkable.

On another note, IANAL, but would this in any way conflict with any European Union laws regarding freedom of speech?

Re:Enforcement? (3, Insightful)

John Hasler (414242) | more than 4 years ago | (#30795114)

> How exactly would they enforce this?

Selectively, of course. That's the whole point of such laws.

Re:Enforcement? (1)

chiui (1120973) | more than 4 years ago | (#30795288)

How exactly would they enforce this?

You don't know how things works in Italy. The government makes random laws and never think how to enforce them. The result is that there are plenty of laws which are never enforced. And do you know how they fix this? They make more laws :)

Re:Enforcement? (1)

eaman (710548) | more than 4 years ago | (#30795382)

They just won't: they don't even bother to know how the internet thing works, they probably would throw some millions of public money to a "thrusted friend" of the governament just to show that they invest on the net in behalf of the Italian population.

Obviously such a ting would never work, so they can blame the internet thing forever (the only media they don't control) and ask to remove whatever they don't like from time to time without any criteria.

Best tag (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30794908)

!freedom

Digital Mafia? (3, Funny)

The Wild Norseman (1404891) | more than 4 years ago | (#30795954)

He'd better be careful otherwise he could wake up with an ASCII horse's head in his email inbox.

Push the Italians too far and see what happens!

from an italian perspective (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30796830)

i'm italian. posting AC for obvious reasons.
i can tell you that's funny that they are now seeking for an authorization for internet's videos "similar to that required by television broadcasters" when one of the three tv channel of berlusconi himself doesn't have the permission to broadcast. in fact, that channel is illegally occupying frequencies already assigned to a new competitor in the italian's tv market that can't broadcast because of this. i'm not so much up to date, but the European Union (god bless them to try something against our dictator) already gave us a multi-million euros fine for that.

just for the record, the italian tv system look like this:
analog transmission: 3 public channels (controlled by the parliament, so by mr. berlusconi) with an average 50% share, 3 berlusconi channels with an average 45% share, and 2 channel owned by the local telco giant (about 5%), one of which broadcast the local mtv.
dvb-t: still not everywhere in italy. 3-4 more public channels, other 2 free-to-air and 10 pay-per-view of berlusconi, 1 of murdoch's sky, bbc world, france 24, and almost nothing else apart from a couple of local tv stations airing mainly commercials.
satellite: only murdoch himself. also, if you count that the average income is 1200-1300€/month and the cost for the subscription to the satellite tv is from 45€/month, you understand that the average joe can't afford this.

and remember: when you say that mr. berlusconi was elected so is how democracy works and bla bla bla, keep in mind this fact: when you sum up his control over the televisions and the control over the press (where he controls different newspapers and magazines directly and a lot more indirectly, mainly by _controlling the advertising_) you know how is it possible that a man bound with mafia can win an election. the majority of people in italy are brainwashed and for them is ok that a man had a mafia killer as groom (vittorio mangano) and as co-founder of his party a man strictly tied with mafia (a mafioso himself, i would say: marcello dell'utri). note: berlusconi and dell'utri said that vittorio mangano was a "HERO", long after he died and where everything about him was know. YES! they said that a mafioso killer is a HERO!

also, berlusconi did some illegal wiretapping with men at the lead of the our telco giant (the one with the others two tv channels :blink-blink:) and now he pose the state secret on that stuff so they can't prosecute him or the men that did this for him.

if you count that a lot of opposition to berlusconi comes from the video blogs of beppe grillo, marco travaglio, piero ricca and others, you understand how much in trouble we are. (well, actually they go against everybody, but berlusconi is so dominant in the italian scenario that he takes 90% of the time)

now, can you understand that Italy is FUBAR?

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