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Sen. Ted Stevens Introduces "Son of DOPA"

kdawson posted more than 7 years ago | from the tubes-tied dept.

Censorship 221

DJCacophony writes "Ted 'series of tubes' Stevens has introduced a bill, going by the interim name S.49, that aims to block access to interactive websites from schools and libraries. The wording of the bill is vague enough to apply to Wikipedia, MySpace (and other social networking sites), and potentially even to blogs. The bill is apparently so similar to the failed Deleting Online Predators Act of last year that it has been termed 'Son of DOPA' by some." Stevens introduced S.49, the text of which is not yet available, on the opening day of the legislative session.

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221 comments

FIRST POST! (0, Offtopic)

kmweber (196563) | more than 7 years ago | (#18025886)

Yay!

Jeez... (5, Insightful)

The Anarchist Avenge (1004563) | more than 7 years ago | (#18025916)

Dammit Alaska, will y'all do something about that guy sometime soon?

Re:Jeez... (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18026178)

Senator Stevens needs his tubes tied.

Re:Jeez... (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18026180)

Dammit Alaska, will y'all do something about that guy sometime soon? I'm sorry to say... not until he keels over on the Senate floor. Up here in Alaska, he's known as "Uncle Ted." He brings obscene amounts of money into this state. The international airport in Anchorage is the "Ted Stevens International Airport." The man is still alive! His eleventh hour ads supporting Lisa Murkowski turned the election around and won her the junior seat in the Senate two term, popular former governor, Tony Knowles. This was the lady who was APPOINTED to the Senate by her FATHER when he was elected governor. Can we say nepotism? Most Alaskans hated her... right up until Uncle Ted endorsed her. In this state at least, the man walks on water (or tubes... or bridges to nowhere). But the people here have no choice. We have a population of around 700,000. We're constantly having to argue with government agencies for them to even have a presence here. To them, it's not worth spending money on services for such a small population spread out over such a large area. (Never mind the billion dollar oil, fishing, mining, and tourism industries.) So we have to have someone who can make our voices heard. Stevens has a lot of clout in Washington, which means Alaska has a lot of clout in Washington, and I doubt we'll give that up until we absolutely have to.

Re:Jeez... (4, Insightful)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026352)

Part of this is due to the committee system in the US government. Committee positions are where the real power lies, and these are awarded by seniority. This means that a state which replaces its senator will automatically have less influence on Capitol Hill, making it in a state's best interest to elect the incumbent unless they are acting against the state's interest.

Alaska's pork should be reduced in 2007 (5, Interesting)

stomv (80392) | more than 7 years ago | (#18027016)

Alaska's pork should be reduced in 2007 for two reasons:

1. Uncle Ted Stevens is a Republican, and the Dems have the majority in the Senate (49+1+1=51 vs. 49). Therefore, Uncle Ted isn't in the majority, and he can't use his majority status to ram things through appropriations.

2. The Senate has "eliminated" pork, known as earmarks, for this budget cycle (source [chicagotribune.com] ). I'm sure it won't be a 100% freeze, but given that the amount of earmarked appropriations skyrocketed under the GOP-led Congress (60% increase in the past five years [bloomberg.com] ), it's reasonable to expect that it will be reduced dramatically -- especially to states with two Republican Senators and a Republican Representative, such as Alaska.

So, with Uncle Ted presumably bringing in less pork for the foreseeable future, will Alaskans react by electing a Dem, or will they re-elect Uncle Ted in the hopes that the GOP recapture the senate and Stevens' seniority becomes valuable locally again?

Re:Alaska's pork should be reduced in 2007 (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18027376)

Unfortunately, I doubt we will elect a Dem in the near future. I think the majority of Alaskans love their guns and hate taxes. (There is currently no state income tax.) While there is a sizeable liberal, environmentalist population in the state, they just don't outnumber the gun-totting hunters, fishermen, oil workers, and paranoid recluses who hate the idea of big government. Too bad that they haven't figured out that Republicans now stand for that very thing.

A better method? (1)

Kadin2048 (468275) | more than 7 years ago | (#18027020)

Just out of curiosity, and I agree that the committee system seems to be broken, how else should we determine appointments?

My personal feeling is that it should be via some sort of single combat, or perhaps trial by ordeal (first one to the other side of the Potomac gets Ways and Means!) ... some sort of intelligence test would probably be best, but I'd be afraid they'd all fail.

Secede (0, Troll)

Bloke down the pub (861787) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026360)

Secede - I'm sure Canada would be glad to have you. Heck, with 3 As in your name there's no way they'd refuse!

Re:Jeez... (2, Funny)

soft_guy (534437) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026544)

Great. Maybe you could talk to uncle ted about being less of an asshat.

Re:Jeez... (1)

blowdart (31458) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026476)

What you wouldn't vote for someone that would remove myspace from the internet? Geez

Re:Jeez... (1)

The Anarchist Avenge (1004563) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026638)

Only if by "remove myspace from the internet", you mean "bludgeon all myspace users to death with their ub3r-1227 LCD monitors that their parents purchased for them."

Sex Trafficking Site Covered By Proposed Law (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18026668)

The proposed law is appropriate. Would you want your kids to visit myRedbook [myredbook.com] ? It is a web site at the center of a sex trafficking scandal in San Francisco. myRedbook facilitates the sale of prostitution services offered by women having a wide range of ages and coming from many countries.

myRedbook actively promotes prostitution services offered by "dancers" working at the Mitchell Brothers O'Farrell Theatre.

WARNING: myRedbook stores and traces IP addresses in order to defeat law enforcement. Click on the site's web link at your own risk.

Re:Sex Trafficking Site Covered By Proposed Law (3, Insightful)

The Anarchist Avenge (1004563) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026802)

Nice troll, but I'll bite anyway. The problem isn't that the law targets sites like that, but that its scope is too broad. It would also apparently block access to legitimate sites like Wikipedia and weblogs. This is unacceptable, our government should never be allowed to expand its own powers with the promise that it will only use them for good. Doing so invites tyranny.

Re:Jeez... (1)

element-o.p. (939033) | more than 7 years ago | (#18027416)

I tried, in the last election :( Unfortunately, too many of my neighbors don't have any more clue than Sen. Stevens does....sigh.

Not Online? (4, Informative)

pi_rules (123171) | more than 7 years ago | (#18025920)

It's right here [gpo.gov] (PDF).

Do the Slashdot editors not know how to find stuff on Al Gore's Tubes of Internets?

Re:Not Online? (1)

GPHemsley (970273) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026530)

It's also available at GovTrack [govtrack.us] , which also allows for the tracking of the bill.

Re:Not Online? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18026778)

It's also available on http://thomas.loc.gov/ [loc.gov] , which is the standard place to look for bills online.

If only there were... (2, Funny)

TBone (5692) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026680)

...some sort of mechanism to have a computer automatically read the contents of a page that was in the Tubes of the Intarweb, and then create indexes on the words contained therein, and then allow users to access those indexes via another page on the Interweb, and look for pages which contain those words.

I'll be back later, I need to go to the Patent Office.

Once again... (3, Funny)

AltGrendel (175092) | more than 7 years ago | (#18025926)

...he engaged his mouth before using his brain.

Re:Once again... (0, Troll)

devnull17 (592326) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026020)

What brain?

Re:Once again... (2, Insightful)

iminplaya (723125) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026062)

The brain he uses to fill his bank account while trying to ram this crud down our throats.

Obligatory... (3, Funny)

Apocalypse111 (597674) | more than 7 years ago | (#18025936)

Yeah, because the bandwidth from all these interweb pages is clogging the tubes. I mean, just yesterday, my staff sent me an internet...

Re:Obligatory... (1)

UbuntuDupe (970646) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026002)

Which of the internets did they send you?

Re:Obligatory... (1)

EugeneK (50783) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026108)

The same one that Bush got, with all the the rumors about the draft.

Re:Obligatory... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18026010)

Yeah I noticed even Googe was kinda slow. The Intertubes were leaking or something.

Seems OK today, Googe is running full speed. Maybe it was just too many lovers on MySpace for VD.

Re:Obligatory... (1)

VJ42 (860241) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026236)

Won't this bill block the tubes deliberately? And if they're blocked, how will everything else get through, or will they use a truck?

You may laugh, but legislators in your country will probably using logic similar to that above to make law. The sad thing is my country (the UK) will probably follow suit at some point.

Re:Obligatory... (1)

M1FCJ (586251) | more than 7 years ago | (#18027358)

Don't worry, if the tubes get blocked in UK, we'll just call a Polish plumber and he'll do his eastern-european magic and interwebs will start flowing again.

Guys not too bright (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18025968)

if the idiot was actually smart he would keep libraries out of it since adults have full rights and therefore this law would be unconstitutional. He would have a better chance arguing for blocking only at school which takes place anyway.

Re:Guys not too bright (1)

GiovanniZero (1006365) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026358)

adults have full rights and therefore this law would be unconstitutional

Not really. Libraries may be public but they are still owned and operated by the government. That means it's their call as to what goes on there. It's not violating your rights because you can still access whatever you want anywhere else.

Even if they somehow blocked a website for everyone it still wouldn't be a violation of your rights but rather the rights of the person running the website being blocked. Even that would be questionable because they aren't actually stopping you from saying something(freedom of speech intact) but they may as well be.

Re:Guys not too bright (2, Interesting)

Bassman59 (519820) | more than 7 years ago | (#18027024)

adults have full rights and therefore this law would be unconstitutional

Not really. Libraries may be public but they are still owned and operated by the government. That means it's their call as to what goes on there. It's not violating your rights because you can still access whatever you want anywhere else.

Even if they somehow blocked a website for everyone it still wouldn't be a violation of your rights but rather the rights of the person running the website being blocked. Even that would be questionable because they aren't actually stopping you from saying something(freedom of speech intact) but they may as well be.

Dunno what universe you live in, but here in the US, "Owned and operated by the government" MEANS "public."

And it's called censorship when the government decides what someone can and cannot read/hear/view.

A private company (like your employer) is well within their rights to block any and all Internet traffic it deems inappropriate, in much the same way they can say, "No porno mags in the bathroom." No, this is not censorship, as it's not the government doing this.

Of course this leads right into the Net Neutrality debate, as the tubes are owned and operated by private companies who are arguing that they can do anything they want with their property. This differs from the airwaves (broadcast radio and TV), which are actually owned by the public, and an agency operating in the public trust (the FCC) grants a monopoly on the usage (transmission) to whoever can pony up enough dough for a license. The FCC (the government) also retains the right to censor broadcasts (hence big fines for profanity and wardrobe malfunctions).

So with all of these contradictions, my head is spinning ...

Re:Guys not too bright (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18027166)

"Not really. Libraries may be public but they are still owned and operated by the government. That means it's their call as to what goes on there. It's not violating your rights because you can still access whatever you want anywhere else."

And the US government is supposed to be owned and operated by the citizens of the US, thus making them the libraries of the citizens. It is in fact a violation of my rights to tell me what I am and am not allowed to view on a library that is in fact and in spirit owned by me and others like me. My taxes pay for it.

That so many seem to disassociate "The Government" from the citizens who have the right to be in charge of it, despite how often they seem to refuse to do so, is perhaps the greatest sign of something wrong with American society.

Re:Guys not too bright (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18027222)

Libraries may be public but they are still owned and operated by the government.

Uh... and the government is owned and operated by whom? Your logic is *extremely* scary. Does this ring a bell?

We the people of the United States, in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

Note it doesn't say "We the government of the United States."

Think of the (poorly educated) children (5, Insightful)

Megajim (885529) | more than 7 years ago | (#18025980)

Well we wouldn't want anyone actually LEARNING but using the Internet, would we? I particularly find it offensive when non-porn, sexually-related material is blocked from the very people who could use that information the most.

Re:Think of the (poorly educated) children (1)

Marxist Hacker 42 (638312) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026306)

Yeah. If you really want to promote learning and prevent communication, block POST packets at the firewall, and force the kids to learn scroogle instead of google.

Re:Think of the (poorly educated) children (1)

ArcherB (796902) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026320)

Well we wouldn't want anyone actually LEARNING but using the Internet, would we? I particularly find it offensive when non-porn, sexually-related material is blocked from the very people who could use that information the most.

What have you learned from MySpace that has any value in an educational environment? Besides, this is only for schools and libraries. The case could be made that there is no valid reason for someone to be accessing MySpace from a library other than wasting time.

However, I am assuming that by "schools", he is not including universities and colleges.

Re:Think of the (poorly educated) children (2, Insightful)

morsdeus (1059938) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026560)

What about people who can't afford to have a computer at home? You've applied regressive censorship - only the poor are prevented from accessing certain information.

Re:Think of the (poorly educated) children (5, Insightful)

99BottlesOfBeerInMyF (813746) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026616)

What have you learned from MySpace that has any value in an educational environment?

I learned:

  • introductory Web site design and examples of what not to do.
  • the sociology of cliques
  • the psychology of conformism and subcultures

Besides, this is only for schools and libraries.

Federal funding means responsibility to act constitutionally, including upholding free speech/expression for adults. The government judging that posting to MySpace is less valuable than posting to Slashdot, or some purely educational forum, is an unconstitutional act. The government should never be making these decisions, individuals should. It is called freedom, even if it is the freedom to waste an hour writing about how cute your poodle is and publishing it.

The case could be made that there is no valid reason for someone to be accessing MySpace from a library other than wasting time.

The case could be made that doing anything other than praying to Allah is a waste of time. The case could be made that reading literature instead of car repair manuals is a waste of time. The point is that it is not the government's responsibility or right to make that call, it is the right and responsibility of the individual.

However, I am assuming that by "schools", he is not including universities and colleges.

Public schools are one thing. The people there are children who are assigned by our society a subset of rights and responsibilities belonging to other people. In that case it is up to the parent's to decide, possibly through the democratic process of the government, subject to some limitations. In public libraries, however, there is no justification. If people actually went to said libraries and read the constitution as well as the essays of the founding fathers, maybe they'd understand why.

Re:Think of the (poorly educated) children (1)

DJCacophony (832334) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026792)

Upholding free speech does not mean facilitating it, as occurs in a library.

They could, uh, open a book? (0, Offtopic)

everphilski (877346) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026334)

I mean, how did we who are a generation older figure it out? My library didn't have internet... we snuck into the adult section and looked at anatomy/sex books before the girls let us into their pants.

Re:Think of the (poorly educated) children (1)

outsider007 (115534) | more than 7 years ago | (#18027308)

Schools and libraries have access to real encyclopedias. Stop overreacting.

Great Idea! (4, Funny)

rlp (11898) | more than 7 years ago | (#18025986)

Hope it passes. After someone adds an amendment stating that it only applies to Alaska.

Re:Great Idea! (3, Funny)

gnarlin (696263) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026302)

Hope it passes. After someone adds an amendment stating that it only applies to Alaska.
Don't you mean Nebraska?

Re:Great Idea! (2, Funny)

rovingeyes (575063) | more than 7 years ago | (#18027172)

WTF did Nebraska do? Do you even know that one of the original developers of Apache was from Nebraska? No more corn for you!

Re:Great Idea! (1)

DamnStupidElf (649844) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026492)

Hope it passes. After someone adds an amendment stating that it only applies to Alaska.

I'm an Alaskan, you insensitive clod!

Priority (1)

truthsearch (249536) | more than 7 years ago | (#18025990)

Stevens introduced S.49... on the opening day of the legislative session.

Yes, because it's just that important. There really is no other crisis or issue which needs legislative attention before this. At least someone is thinking of the children. *rolls eyes*

Re:Priority (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18026976)

Welcome to America. There will be no real politics until after 2008. You see, a lot of these types of laws will come up for vote and then people will make all these ad campaigns to say how horrible such and such is because they voted against protecting your children or voted to violate your freedom of speech. They do this stuff all the time. Look at some of the ads from the '06 campaigns, where people apparently voted against things without voting against them. You will some tons of these red herrings, and if you are lucky, maybe one or two actual legislations will get actually get discussed and voted on.

Re:Priority -protection=ignorance & disempower (1)

SimBuddha (924737) | more than 7 years ago | (#18027058)

I find it funny how instead of believing that what needs to be done is to create an age appropriate way to educating children to recognize the threat of online predators and feel confident and comfortable talking with parents, teachers, counselors and guardians about interactions that seem questionable. Legislators think that simply blocking access to social networking online will preclude the need to raise the awareness of social predators, leaving children vulnerable. Ignorance of harm does not protect against it.... The same illogic and "easy solution" allows society to avoid creating age appropriate education for children such that they understand how wholesome fondness, affection, intimacy and adult partner commitments of love which lead to appropriate and meaningful sexual expression are missing in lude and emotionally devoid, objectification oriented pornography. Children need to understand that people take pictures and make movies about people who do not really love the person they are depicted to be engaging in sexual experiences with and that seeing this can hurt them and damage their ability to be happy and have good sexual relationships when they get older. Schools already teach various subjects related to this, so this could be added to that curriculum. But I beleive the real issue is that if children learn how to form social networks and become collective groups, they form an independent social force that is not controlled by the 3 media companies that control most media and the powers that use that media to manipulate and control society. Imagine millions of children networking and discussing and coming to an independent collective opionion about social, ecological and power structure issues. They might have a voice that is not defined by the unholy cabal (the most powerful and self serving energy, food, drugs, housing, technology, banking, transportation, chemical, defense industry, news media and other organizations that form overwhelming lobbist groups. Groups that force lawmakers to slowly rewrite law, not in the service of the public good or with the intention of improving the global ecosystem or helping to create healthier, happier, more optimally actualized citizens, but to serve their goal of market dominance and profits. This is a goal to keep american citizens devided and disempowered. It is couched as protections against harm, like war with Iraq is a protection against terrorism. We need to resist grabs for power and laws that seek to disempower and further divide human connections and collectivism. SimBuddha

Look on the bright side (4, Interesting)

cdrudge (68377) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026012)

It will be the end of Flash advertisements, javascript and other "interactive" tools. Heck, I won't have to waste hours and hours learning AJAX for Web 2.0 because I would want my sites to be able to be seen in schools and libraries.

Wait...my local library has an interactive catalog. Would they have to block themselves? They probably should already turn themselves in. They have a subscription to Playboy and I'm sure there are countless books that have "porn" in them teaching kids about sex.

Re:Look on the bright side (1)

Shadow99_1 (86250) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026640)

by the time their bodies function well enough sexually kids know about sex... I happened to be in a 8th grade class room the other day and overheard a class discussion including who was knocking up who and why one girl in particular (in 8th grade) wanted to get pregnant (she thought she'd look cuter pregnant).

We seriously don't need to teach them anything on the subject, I'm sure some of these kids no more than a lot of adults from a generation ago...

Re:Look on the bright side (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18026830)

Actually that's the exact reason you need to teach children about sex. You want them to do it right if they're going to do it at all. That means all kinds of nasty discussions about prophilactics, STDs and which hole to stick it in. Otherwise you're asking for the spread of disease, teanage pregnency and rather embarasing injuries.

Re:Look on the bright side (1)

ResidntGeek (772730) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026868)

Yeah, those eighth graders talking about sex know all they need to know. Why, if they already know how cute being pregnant makes them look, what more could we possibly teach them?

Re:Look on the bright side (1)

Shadow99_1 (86250) | more than 7 years ago | (#18027102)

So you somehow think I like the idea? Uh No.

I was trying to imply that some other twisted view of sexuality (from porn or similar) wasn't going to be 'damaging' them anymore than they were already damaged.

I'm all for open discussion on sex and sexuality, but so many law makers aren't because we have to many warped people who think sex==bad.

Can we (-1, Flamebait)

iminplaya (723125) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026032)

Can we kick Alaska(Stevens), Utah(Hatch), Connecticut(Lieberman), California(Feinstein), and New York(sorry folks, but that's what you get for electing Hillary) out of the union? The people they elect are going to wreck the country.

Alaska (1)

Tony (765) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026422)

Alaskans might like that. There's always a secession movement going on, but it's usually because the rest of the country passes laws like this, not t'other way around. Alaska is a strange mix of independent, liberal, conservative, and crackhead -- and that pretty much defines every single person. It's just the ratio of the mix that changes.

I miss Alaska. It's the best state in the union, and deserves better than Stevens and Murkowski (father and daughter).

They Want to Take Away the Power to Publish... (5, Insightful)

eno2001 (527078) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026060)

...under the guise of protecting children. Bloody typical. The fact that anyone can walk into a public library and post their uncensored views of the government, politicians, policy, business, etc... is "dangerous". This is why the internet is destined to become just another medium like television where you only consume and are limited in what you can produce and how many hearts and minds you can reach. Unless you fight things like Son of DOPA. This is the typical approach in many segments today. Take something that you REALLY want to enforce on people that they would likely balk at if they really understood it, then attach it to some "noble cause". Make sure that the noble cause is something that makes it easy to paint the opposition as "pro-evil". And you win.

Re:They Want to Take Away the Power to Publish... (3, Insightful)

Captain Sarcastic (109765) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026520)

Bullseye.

We get web censorship by explaining that we are protecting our children from the evils of pornography, and in their defense, no measure can be too extreme, so we'll ban sites at the schools and the libraries, and leave the potential open for banning them in homes.

You balk at this idea? What are you, some kind of pervert who wants kids to have open and free access to porn?

We get personal tracking by explaining that we are protecting our children from the dangers of child molesters, and to prevent that, no measure can be too extreme, so we'll put GPS collars on convicted child molesters and other sex offenders, and leave the option available for putting them on everyone.

What? You don't like this? Why are you standing up for perverts, anyway?

We are good. Un-we, then, are un-good. Mini-love will see they become un-persons. This is plus good.

<irony=0%> (Oh, for crying out loud, did I forget the <irony=100%> tag again?)

Re:They Want to Take Away the Power to Publish... (1)

monkeydo (173558) | more than 7 years ago | (#18027324)

I don't understand. When they want to take away my guns "for the children" people stand up and cheer. But God forbid they want to take away the be all end all of freedom, MySpace.

I haven't read the bill yet, and if anyone has specific objections I am very interested in them. But all I have read so far is objections to the general idea of limiting children's access to information. That's as extreme a position as saying that any American, regardless of psychiatric or criminal history, should be able to own any firearm he can get his hands on.

Who's backing this bill? (1, Interesting)

FunkeyMonk (1034108) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026086)

Where do bills like this come from? Surely, anybody who actually uses and understands these websites would never propose such a thing. Is there some massive, lobbying corporation out there who stands to gain a fortune by the blocking of web 2.0? (Maybe Microsoft Encarta is behind this!!!!) Or is this just a pathetic case of "won't somebody please think of the children?"

Re:Who's backing this bill? (1)

joeytmann (664434) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026912)

Sorry, but did you read the article. Sen. Stevens from Alaska introduced the bill, in other words he is its biggest backer and I am sure there are others that will ride it to make them seem like strong supports of protecting children from that nasty internet thing all the while their teenage page is blowing them under their desk back in their offices. Con is to Pro as Congress is to Progress.

Expect later this year from Ted "tubes" Stevens (3, Funny)

mobby_6kl (668092) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026100)

Return of the son of Deleting Online Predators Act.

Nice to see the feds aren't immune to the same bullshit stunts Illinois and Georgia tried to pull.

You know it's an election year... (4, Interesting)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026132)

...when politicians come up with laws restricting... well, anything.

I just wonder why there's so much support for laws restricting freedom in the land of the free. Or was that rewritten and nobody told me?

Re:You know it's an election year... (5, Insightful)

Tackhead (54550) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026346)

> I just wonder why there's so much support for laws restricting freedom in the land of the free. Or was that rewritten and nobody told me?

It got rewritten and nobody told you.

Republicans are the party of Big Daddy Government: their platform is to put cameras in your bedroom to make sure you're not having sex the wrong way, because pornography is a national epidemic.

Democrats are the party of Big Mommy Government: their platform is to put cameras in your kitchen to make sure you're not eating the wrong kinds of food, because obesity is a national epidemic.

Once upon a time, Americans valued "freedom to" over "freedom from". The past 40 years of "every life is precious" and "you are a unique and valuable snowflake" rhetoric has changed that; as a nation, we've pretty much decided we'd rather be safe than free. Kinda sucks for us oldthinkers who unbellyfeel amsoc, but that's our problem, not New America's.

Re:You know it's an election year... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18026482)

Seriously, that's sick. It's a punch in the face of all those dead people who *built* America, as a free country *unlike* regulated-to-death Europe.

Those who don't like freedom should move to Europe (after all, we have that socialist paradise here they all dream of), so I could emigrate to the US. If they don't speak European, they could at least move to the UK (or Australia, for that matter), it's all the surveillance society the Republicans want, and more.

Re:You know it's an election year... (1)

Moofie (22272) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026696)

""you are a unique and valuable snowflake" rhetoric"

Seriously, I do not understand the parallel you're trying to draw. Isn't that just a different way of talking about rugged individualism, one of the founding principles of our nation?

We need MORE respect for individual liberties, not less.

Re:You know it's an election year... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18027044)

We need MORE respect for individual liberties, not less.

The "unique and valuable snowflake" brigade is part of what started this mess, with their "no more red ink because it might hurt little Timmy's feelings" and the like. The people who gave out ribbons to everyone because no matter who came in first or did the best, everyone's "special". No more valedictorians, no more competition... why try to excel when you can be "special" anyway?

Once it was determined that kids shouldn't compete, the kids got left behind by the rest of the world.

Re:You know it's an election year... (2, Insightful)

Knara (9377) | more than 7 years ago | (#18027110)

No, I believe he's talking about the opposite. The "you are a unique and wonderful snowflake" analogy works great... for snowflakes. However, the problem is that the crowd we speak of also subscribes to such ideas as placing more emphasis on self-esteem in education than actually making sure kids learn and can perform what they learn correctly. It's the "all opinions are equally valid" crowd, where we have to make sure not to offend anyone because we all need to get along in HappyFunLand.

This crowd encourages individualism... so long as the individuals conform to what they have decided individuals should be. It's pretty much the opposite of what people typically mean when someone says "rugged individualism."

Re:You know it's an election year... (1)

Moofie (22272) | more than 7 years ago | (#18027192)

Huh. I guess I just don't understand the broad overgeneralizations some folks use as shorthand for, you know, thinking. : )

Re:You know it's an election year... (1)

gnarlin (696263) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026386)

I just wonder why there's so much support for laws restricting freedom in the land of the free. Or was that rewritten and nobody told me?
What? Didn't you get that memo?

Re:You know it's an election year... (1)

14CharUsername (972311) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026584)

The scary thing is, its not actually an election year. It seems like it though doesn't it?

Re:You know it's an election year... (3, Insightful)

99BottlesOfBeerInMyF (813746) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026844)

You know it's an election year... when politicians come up with laws restricting... well, anything.

When do politicians ever come up with laws that don't restrict things? When was the last time a politician ran on the platform of repealing all our stupid, useless, counterproductive laws? Americans do not value freedom very much anymore. It is no longer an important cultural value. Most people see the government and laws as a battleground where they try to force other people to conform to doing things their way rather than the way the other party wants. Very few people want to take a stand in favor of personal choice.

Ever talk to a die hard "pro choice" advocate? They say it is every woman's right to make choices for herself, not have them forced upon her by others. I agree. My opinion might be that abortion is unethical, but it is not up to me to make that choice and force others to agree with me; it is up to each individual to choose. The problem is most of the people I talk to are a lot less in favor of the right to own a firearm or the right to hunt some non-endangered animal, or in some cases the right to eat meat. It is sick and sad that someone can have a "pro choice" bumper sticker, but not even think about the fact that they don't advocate personal freedom to choose in general, just personal freedom to make one particular choice, while they advocate taking other choices away from people. Is it any wonder so many children these days don't even think freedom of speech is an important right?

Freedom in the US died as a cultural value and is dying in our legislature as well. People don't even see it as an issue or concern. They just want to tell other people how to live at gunpoint, whether that is "worship Jeebus" or "don't shoot bunny rabbits."

Powerless Tubes (1)

Ted Stryker (998462) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026136)

Thanks to last year's election, Stevens has a lot less power than he used to... And we're all the better for it...

No t-shirt (3, Funny)

dylan_- (1661) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026204)

I can't find a "Ted Stephens blocked my tubes!" t-shirt on Thinkgeek yet.

No need for a law. (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18026264)

Any principal with half a brain is already blocking access during school hours. It's a distraction at best, and a potential source of lawsuits by parents when the students themselves use such sites for bullying or gang-related activity.

States Rights Trashed Again (2, Insightful)

TonyXL (33244) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026278)

Ever heard of the Tenth Amendment [cornell.edu] , Ted? Just goes to show that the GOP is no longer the party of smaller constitutional government.

Re:States Rights Trashed Again (2, Insightful)

$RANDOMLUSER (804576) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026700)

Just goes to show that the GOP is no longer the party of smaller ^W constitutional government.
There. Fixed that for you.

People Dont read (2, Insightful)

majortom1981 (949402) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026318)

This wont be mandatory. The article states that only if you get money from the government would you have to do this. Some Libraries (like the one i work for) dont get money from the government or the state government so it wont apply to us. please read the article before going crazy.

Re:People Dont read (4, Insightful)

dabraun (626287) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026494)

Are you serious? This is an old standby to get laws passed that would otherwise be considered outside the juristiction of the federal government. Go look up how the 55mph national speed limit was enforced (hint: it didn't apply to ALL roads, just ALL roads in states that wanted funding for interstate highways)

The federal government collects this money from all the working members of society, then they withold it from anyone who won't accept rules that they are not actually supposed to be able to make. That's generally considered extortion.

Re:People Dont read (1)

Shadow99_1 (86250) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026724)

It however would apply to almost every school library that isn't completely privately funded. The charter school I work for, for example, would be required to enforce this through the current wording as it receives funding from the federal government with regard to certain programs.

Predators? Well, in that case.. (5, Insightful)

Grashnak (1003791) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026328)

I understand a lot of child molesters use public washrooms to attack kids in, so we should ban access to public washrooms. Come to think of it, most kids are molested by members of their own families, so clearly we should ban families. Heck, I once heard that a molester drove a volkswagen, so hell, lets ban them too.

Re:Predators? Well, in that case.. (1)

Knara (9377) | more than 7 years ago | (#18027198)

Goddamn Mongolians! Get away from my shitty wall!

(your idea was explored humorously in a South Park episode)

Halfway there (2, Interesting)

HomelessInLaJolla (1026842) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026366)

The library here in La Jolla is already halfway there [slashdot.org] thanks to a little program called CyberSitter. 90% of everything I click on results in "IE cannot display this page" though, sometimes, if I click reload enough times I'm able to recieve enough page text and click stop before CyberSitter receives whatever part of the page it is which causes the page to be dumped.

Poison Placebo (3, Interesting)

Doc Ruby (173196) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026376)

Every time this old crank or any of his fellow Senators wastes time with these fake "child protection" systems that screw adults instead of actually protecting children, they leave children actually exposed to the real threats. And their sneaky smokescreens using children as "human shields" from criticism of their sweeping attacks on American liberty makes it even harder to trust any plan offered to actually protect these people.

All they do is damage everyone. Delete Stevens and his technocrat cronies.

UGH PLEASE READ THE ARTICLE (0)

majortom1981 (949402) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026430)

Please read the article. The library will only need to follow those rules if they get federal funding. A library does not have to get the funding. Here at the huntington Library we dont receive any state or federal funding so we dont have to filter if we dont want

Re:UGH PLEASE READ THE ARTICLE (1)

Rob the Bold (788862) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026860)

The library will only need to follow those rules if they get federal funding.

And where do the feds get the money that they will be using to coerce the libraries with? Now tell me again that they can do anything they want with "their" money and if we don't like it we don't have to take their money.

Block everything? (1)

ESRB (974125) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026460)

Why don't they just introduce a bill that blocks the internet (Or internets, since we're dealing with politicians) and be done with it?

Re:Block everything? (1)

Eudial (590661) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026774)

Why don't they just introduce a bill that blocks the internet (Or internets, since we're dealing with politicians) and be done with it?


If one argues that that hyperlinks are interactive, that would effetively be what this bill does.

Job Corps (3, Informative)

jrwr00 (1035020) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026470)

I'm in a Government Program Called Job Corps, I'm in Comp Tech to get my A+ Cert, so i can get a good job, thing is that bill is insane! that would block our main info for computer parts, try finding (in the same place) what the 8086 was and the meaning to DDR2..... Oh well, Proxys around here are so common, i can just use those

Nice thing about ridiculous legislation ... (1)

Alan426 (962302) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026480)

The good news about ridiculous legislation like this is that it has little or no chance of actually passing. The extreme level of stupidity should be apparent to most average law-school graduates / politicians. Then again, that's what I thought about DMCA.

Govt computer, govt rules (0, Troll)

stratjakt (596332) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026486)

The rules may be draconian, but it seems fair enough. Plenty of libraries and schools aren't federally funded, and the people who fund those can make their own decisions.

I'd like to see them shut the internet right off in public schools, except for maybe "internet class". It's just a giant source of bullshit. Another crutch that teachers can use instead of teaching - send the kids online to "research".

Tangent: Wikipedia has no place in a school. It's only good at illustrating how the stupidest in society can always trump the masses.

When kids graduate they can find out how easily Sonic the Hedgehog could beat up a Pokemon, or how "faggy" shakespeare was.

Re:Govt computer, govt rules (1)

VWJedi (972839) | more than 7 years ago | (#18027032)

I'd like to see them shut the internet right off in public schools, except for maybe "internet class". It's just a giant source of bullshit. Another crutch that teachers can use instead of teaching - send the kids online to "research".
There are several major problems with your idea. It would:
  • Cut off teachers and staff as well as students.
  • Hamper communications between teachers, parents, and students.
  • Render a large amount of technology already paid for by federal, state, and local funds (virtually) useless.
  • Eliminate many useful resources (although you may disagree with this).
  • Require schools to duplicate resources that are already available online.
  • Not prepare kids for life outside of school (where they will have access to the Internet, and it will probably not be filtered).

Tangent: Wikipedia has no place in a school. It's only good at illustrating how the stupidest in society can always trump the masses.

It serves the same function as any other encyclopedia: to provide an overview of a subject and direct further research.

Re:Govt computer, govt rules (1)

Mr. Mikey (17567) | more than 7 years ago | (#18027238)

If the job of public schools is to prepare kids for the world of 1970, you'd have a point.

Instead, these kids will need to learn how to deal with the world of 2007+, a world neck deep in networked computers.

As for your anti-Wikipedia bias, that's what it is... a bias, and not a rational one. I use Wikipedia regularly for technical subjects, and have no problems at all with bogus data.

Sure, there is definitely a problem with kids googling an assload of data, and not knowing how to knit it into a coherent whole, or knowing how to judge just how much confidence they should put in any one source or piece of data. The solution isn't to run a backhoe through the school's internet connection... the solution is to teach them how to use this resource to further their ends. Likewise with bad teachers or bad teaching methodologies.

Finally, I would hope that schools were funded in an effort to enhance education, rather than used as a weapon to coerce schools into, of all things, denying students access to information. How much more backward and counter-productive could they be?

Ted in a Tube (0, Redundant)

Kynmore (861364) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026524)

God, all i can say is Tubes.

TUBES!

How could anyone take this guy seriously?

"Lets ban, in school, what 90% of the tubes are for. And by tubes, I mean phone lines, which these internets are run over! If we don't block these interactive sites, that let you click on things, and view things, then out tubes will be filled! TUBES!"

Someone needs to order him a case of "for Dummies." books.

States rights (1)

Orange Crush (934731) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026598)

This is none of Congress's business. Butt out and let my state and local officials make the decisions I've elected them to make rather than a meddlesome and idiotic Senator from Alaska.

Webmail (1)

Rolgar (556636) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026646)

Webmail (Hotmail, Gmail, and Yahoo Mail, etc.) services are interactive webpages, so I should think they'd technically be included in this ban. We should also include regular email too, since kids might get pornographic span or solicitations from child molesters in their school email accounts.

Re:Webmail (1)

NotAnotherExit (1054048) | more than 7 years ago | (#18027060)

They already do, here, at least (in Alaska). The schools have their own e-mail system that students can use, and access to all other e-mail services is pretty well blocked. Wouldn't want schools to be responsible for students stumbling into something they shouldn't. Someone might sue. Anyway, I'd normally be against this sort of thing, but my mother was a librarian in a school (and is now a second grade teacher) and spends a lot of time monitering the computers. Books are just as useful as the internet, and a lot more reliable. That more people don't use books instead of the internet is ridiculous. A law like this (however poorly conceived) will help that.

News sites are interactive. (2, Interesting)

insomniac8400 (590226) | more than 7 years ago | (#18026764)

Most news sites have polls, blogs, comments, and messageboards. This bill would block students form going to their local newspapers site or the big sites like cnn and msnbc. Politicians are stupid.

block Ted (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18026796)

...i think i will send a letter to my state senator asking he draft a bill blocking Ted Stevens from introducing ANY legislation regarding the Internet.

Define an "Interactive Site" (1)

RareButSeriousSideEf (968810) | more than 7 years ago | (#18027368)

In true /. fashion I did not RTFA or the text of the proposed legislation, but it's probably moot on this point anyway: I cannot imagine a way to define "interactive sites" that would yield consistent rulings when these things inevitably end up in the courts.

Does emailing blog entries to WordPress count? Reading RSS feeds of interactive content? Google groups? Google answers (may it rest in peace)? Experts-Exchange? Fedora Forums?

This is infeasible to implement, really. They'd have to start by, uh, I dunno... blocking http POST verbs? Then start whitelisting "safe" sites (those that use POSTs only for innocuous activities, whatever those might be)? That'd keep the adults out of the bad neighborhoods (and out of the library, probably). Kids will catch on quickly and find workarounds like Psiphon (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Psiphon) so they can, you know, continue using the library to become pedophile victims. Kids are a crafty and determined bunch, don't you know...
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