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Italy Wants to Restrict Blogs

CmdrTaco posted about 7 years ago | from the now-wiat-a-minute-here dept.

The Internet 242

nx writes "Italy wants to restrict bloggers' rights by forcing everyone to register their blogs, pay a tax and have a journalist as a "responsible director". This law is clearly designed to curb critical voices and free speech, although it has yet to be approved by parliament."

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

And a staunch EU supporter at that! (-1, Flamebait)

BadAnalogyGuy (945258) | about 7 years ago | (#21098743)

Gosh, who would have thought that an ultra-communist would have been against free speech?

http://www.governo.it/Governo/Biografie/sottosegretari/levi_ricardo_it.html [governo.it]

Not the truth (5, Informative)

AlbertoP (1178873) | about 7 years ago | (#21099071)

The statement about blogs is not true, and the source of the information is questionable. As you can read on this article of Corriere della Sera, http://www.corriere.it/politica/07_ottobre_23/levi_legge_editoria_no_bavaglio_ai_blog.shtml [corriere.it] (sorry, it's in Italian), where Mr Levi has been interviewed, the law you're discussing about refers to the editorial market, which means newspaper, magazines, books. As a consequence it only affects professional operators who produce them. Personal sites and blogs are excluded from these categories. The law only wants to extend to Internet newspapers the existing rules for the editorial market. Regards

Re:Not the truth (2, Funny)

BadAnalogyGuy (945258) | about 7 years ago | (#21099117)

Thanks for the clarification. However, what sort of site would Slashdot be if not for the sensationalist headlines and trumped up accusations?

Why, they might even be required to pay a tax in Italy!

Re:Not the truth (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#21099153)

That was a good analogy... something's obviously very wrong!

Re:Not the truth (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#21099181)

hello , my name is Richard and I know you get a lot of spammy comments , I can help you with this problem . I know a lot of spammers and I will ask them not to post on your site. It will reduce the volume of spam by 30-50% .In return Id like to ask you to put a link to my site on the index page of your site. The link will be small and your visitors will hardly notice it , its just done for higher rankings in search engines. Contact me icq 454528835 or write me tedirectory(at)yahoo.com , i will give you my site url and you will give me yours if you are interested. thank you

My Name Is Earl (0, Offtopic)

sm62704 (957197) | about 7 years ago | (#21099319)

hello , my name is Richard and I know you get a lot of spammy comments , I can help you with this problem

Hi, my name is steve, and I'm a trollbiter. In the attempt to rid myself of this horrible addiction, I founded Biters Anonymous [kuro5hin.org] back in 2005. Although I stopped responding to K5 trolls some time that year, I still have an occasional relapse (as you can see from this post).

If you have a hard time ignoring trolls, you should join our organization. As the linked text states,

Biters Anonymous is a crowd of losers who share their experience, roflcopters and lolerskates with each other that they may solve their common problem and help others to recover from the ravages of biting.

The only requirement for membership is a desire to stop biting.

There are no dues or fees for BA membership; we are self-supporting through our own contributions. BA is not allied with any sect, denomination, politics, organization or institution or endorses nor opposes any causes.

Our primary purpose is to stay troll-free and help other Biters to achieve bitelessness.
The twelve step program is listed in the linked text.

Thank you for your support.

-mcgrew

Re:Not the truth (1)

spamking (967666) | about 7 years ago | (#21099915)

So you're a Dick huh . . .

Re:Not the truth (3, Funny)

dintech (998802) | about 7 years ago | (#21099353)

what sort of site would Slashdot be if not for the sensationalist headlines and trumped up accusations?

Something like this [archive.org]

Re:Not the truth (1)

mikael (484) | about 7 years ago | (#21099557)

Like this The Random Slashdot Story generator [bbspot.com]


Games: John Carmack On Centipede
Posted by brian on Wed October 24, 10:26 AM
from the have fun hitting reload page dept.
Cpt_Garthos writes "John Carmack says that there is too much violence in today's games especially Centipede. Game makers should focus on playability and include more lasers in their games rather than more gore. The interview is here"

Re:Not the truth (4, Interesting)

scosta (191483) | about 7 years ago | (#21099479)

Yes, the original post was basically vaporware, and "questionable" in origin in the sense that who has written it (http://www.beppegrillo.it/ [beppegrillo.it] ) has a personal interest to make things worse then they are.

But it is true that the law text was extremely generic, and so prone to every kind of interpretation, pessimistic or optimistic.

The basic problem is that italian laws are often very badly written (in the sense that are basically and fundamentally unclear). And in the confusion, everyone can say everything...

In other news (2, Insightful)

UbuntuDupe (970646) | about 7 years ago | (#21098757)

[Every country in the world] wants to restrict entrepreneurs' rights by forcing everyone to register their businesses, pay taxes on undistributed and phantom profits, and get a license for all activities that compete with politically-powerful groups. The law is clearly designed to curb competition with government monopolies and free association, although it has yet to be approved by its legislature.

I just wish y'all would worry about economic regulation *before* it starts getting applied to World of Warcraft and blogging.

Re:In other news (3, Insightful)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | about 7 years ago | (#21098833)

just wish y'all would worry about economic regulation *before* it starts getting applied to World of Warcraft and blogging.
Nobody cares about economic regulation. For the average American, as long there's beer in the fridge, two new SUV's in the driveway, a white picket fence, bowling on Friday night and Monday Night Football, no one will ever complain, no matter how far they go. It doesn't even matter who wins the presidency, really, at this point.

Re:In other news (2, Insightful)

Elemenope (905108) | about 7 years ago | (#21098975)

For the average American, as long there's beer in the fridge, two new SUV's in the driveway, a white picket fence, bowling on Friday night and Monday Night Football, no one will ever complain...

I've heard this meme quite a bit, and while I agree that bread and circuses play a significant role in pacifying the public, I think it is quite overselling the point by implying that the middle class standard (2.2 kids, SUV, owned home) is representative of many peoples' condition. On the contrary, the middle class is vanishing, such that of all the things you listed, perhaps only the beer and the TV with football are still affordable for many, many Americans. The SUV and the white picket fence are far out of reach.

Re:In other news (2, Insightful)

BadAnalogyGuy (945258) | about 7 years ago | (#21099067)

The SUV and the white picket fence are far out of reach.

The former is demonstrably false, just take a drive anywhere in town. Either you are yourself driving an SUV, or the idiot woman driver who hits you is.

As for the second, that's only because people are unwilling to move further than Eagle's Creek, Deer Run, Craggy Highlands, or any number of other 2nd rate housing developments in the suburbs. I think you'll find that there are quite a few places in the US that offer the white picket fence at a reasonable price. And considering the ability to telecommute for those of us in the IT business, the only real reason to stay where the prices are high is vanity and the desire to live there.

Re:In other news (2, Insightful)

Firethorn (177587) | about 7 years ago | (#21099623)

As for the second, that's only because people are unwilling to move further than Eagle's Creek, Deer Run, Craggy Highlands, or any number of other 2nd rate housing developments in the suburbs. I think you'll find that there are quite a few places in the US that offer the white picket fence at a reasonable price. And considering the ability to telecommute for those of us in the IT business, the only real reason to stay where the prices are high is vanity and the desire to live there.

Besides work, there's also the concern of services. Living in a small town(1 bar/restraunt, no gas station), I batch my trips to somewhere larger for shopping. For example, there's no good chinese restraunt in at least four hours drive. Schools are pretty good, but a good distance away. Going to the store is a fairly major expidition, not something jumping on a bicycle for something forgotten for dinner is an option(did that as a kid quite a bit, two grocery stores within 3 miles).

On the other hand, my house cost less than half a year's income for me, and it's quiet with no crime.

Life is tradeoffs.

Picket fence living is not ideal for everyone - some prefer not having to worry about a yard, like not having to drive to eat out, etc...

Not the white picket fence part... (3, Informative)

SIIHP (1128921) | about 7 years ago | (#21099095)

"The SUV and the white picket fence are far out of reach."

US home ownership has been increasing for years and continues to do so.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Homeownership_in_the_United_States#Historical [wikipedia.org]

Re:Not the white picket fence part... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#21099339)

Yeah. Ever hear of Suburban Sprawl? Guess what it's made of! Homeowners!!!

Re:Not the white picket fence part... (1)

DaedalusHKX (660194) | about 7 years ago | (#21099483)

Actually, unless you're a true homesteader, you neither own your home, nor ever will. Unless you're willing to pull your estate OFF the economic market, you'll always be paying rent to your local, state and federal leeches (taxmen).

Home ownership is up only if you count the UNPAID mortgages that are skyrocketting.

No surprise there. In typical true geek fashion, many of us still count the numbers on the screen as a measure of true wealth.

As a friend of mine told me several years back... "Those numbers on paper or on the screen mean NOTHING until you've converted them into real, tangible, physical goods. Until then, they merely show potential wealth that you aren't acquiring."

The more I deal with my "fellow geeks" the more I realize this to be a truth.

Re:Not the white picket fence part... (1)

Lord Ender (156273) | about 7 years ago | (#21099861)

When you said "rent," I think you actually meant "fees necessary to provide essential services, including fire-fighting, police protection, and an educated local population."

Also, I would love to see you tell Warren Buffet that his portfolio is worthless because stock certificates aren't "real, tangible, physical goods."

You know you're a bit of a kook, don't you?

Re:In other news (1)

pebs (654334) | about 7 years ago | (#21099183)

Change "two new SUV's" to "two old SUV's" then. Americans like their SUV's.

Re:In other news (1)

Firethorn (177587) | about 7 years ago | (#21099759)

Given how much longer vehicles can last today, I don't see that as a bad option - the rich buy a new expensive vehicle every ~3 years, the middle class buy them and drive them for the next 5(or purchase a more reasonable new vehicle, and keep it for ~5 years).

Then the poor get the decade old vehicle at a very reasonable price.

Re:In other news (1)

Pig Hogger (10379) | about 7 years ago | (#21099465)

Nobody cares about economic regulation. For the average American, as long there's beer in the fridge, two new SUV's in the driveway, a white picket fence, bowling on Friday night and Monday Night Football, no one will ever complain, no matter how far they go. It doesn't even matter who wins the presidency, really, at this point.
Panem et circenses [wikipedia.org] .

Re:In other news (3, Insightful)

oliderid (710055) | about 7 years ago | (#21099041)

IMHO it is classic amongst European politicians. But this example is clearly the worst of all.

They write down law proposition for the Internet without using it.
They don't know how it works, all they know about it is what they read in the newspaper or what they heard in their pompeous conferences. They don't use emails, staffs check their mailbox for them..And print the relevant ones. They don't type, they 've got an assistant for that. A computer is a black box for them, like black magic. So they get scared, they need a way to connect this new tool to the old bureaucratic society that they understand.

And when you mix ignorance with the european left tendency to regulate/classify anything crawling on the surface of this planet. You end up with this monstruosity.

Only Europeans? (1)

keirre23hu (638913) | about 7 years ago | (#21099285)

This sounds like global politcal practice to me. I don't about TFA's veracity, but if this is true, its quite sad. I'll also say that politicians the world over attempt to regulate things about which they have little to no knowledge, and fail to enlist knowledgeable impartial people in the lawmaking process. This is how we end up with things such as the DMCA and the ability of RIAA to sue their customers for thousands of dollar per song shared, enforcement of ridiculous software EULA's, software patents, ineffective anti-spam legislation, and other misplaced attempts ad infinitum.

Re:In other news (1)

oliverthered (187439) | about 7 years ago | (#21099073)

I can imagine a world without money,
I cannot imagine a world without speech.

Re:In other news (1)

UbuntuDupe (970646) | about 7 years ago | (#21099131)

At risk of sounding too reductionist, they're more similar than you might think.

Speech is expression of information.

Money is expression of information [paulbirch.net] . (scroll to part 3)

Re:In other news (1)

oliverthered (187439) | about 7 years ago | (#21099279)

So what your saying is that what this guy did [theregister.co.uk] .
Linking to some sites that had bomb making info in them. Is equivalent to donating money directly to terrorist organizations.

Re:In other news (1)

UbuntuDupe (970646) | about 7 years ago | (#21099515)

I don't think they're morally equivalent. However, they do have a subtle similarity.

Give money to terrorist group = "Hey world, you actually owe me $500 worth less in goods, and these guys over here, $500 more."

Post bomb-making materials = "Hey world, this is actually how you can make an explosive device."

You said you can't imagine a world without money. That includes all worlds in which people don't collectively change decisions about who is entitled to what, because that process is functionally equivalent to monetary transactions.

Re:In other news (1)

oliverthered (187439) | about 7 years ago | (#21099599)

that's why I can imagine a world without money, there are currently systems called LETS that operate without money and aren't always subject to taxation etc....

Re:In other news (1)

achilles777033 (1090811) | about 7 years ago | (#21099077)

*before* it starts getting applied to World of Warcraft
wait, wait, I'm having a little trouble here. Are you telling me there is something *besides* World of Warcraft? ... I just don't think I can accept this. Next thing you're going to tell me is that the so-called "Outside" actually exists.

Re:In other news (1)

Pig Hogger (10379) | about 7 years ago | (#21099427)

[Every country in the world] wants to restrict entrepreneurs' rights by forcing everyone to register their businesses, pay taxes on undistributed and phantom profits, and get a license for all activities that compete with politically-powerful groups. The law is clearly designed to curb competition with government monopolies and free association, although it has yet to be approved by its legislature.
Hey! You're stealing Dada21's lines!!!!

Re:In other news (1)

SIIHP (1128921) | about 7 years ago | (#21099697)

"Hey! You're a raving moonbat!!!!"

FYP.

Oh wait, sorry, you said the same thing I did.

Re:In other news (2, Insightful)

bhmit1 (2270) | about 7 years ago | (#21099761)

Sadly, in any democracy where money and votes result in power, entrepreneurs will always lose. We are a minority of the vote, so all the wealth redistribution fans will put people in power that take money from anybody but them. And when it comes to money, the shoe-string garage operations just don't compare to the mega-corporations and their government sponsored monopolies.

This is why we are seeing more and more laws passed that tax hotel guests, reckless drivers, smokers, the self employed, and um-teen other small groups to fund something like (to use Virginia as an example) our traffic problems when the gas tax is forbidden from being touched, not indexed to inflation, and unchanged since I was born. The more we tax the minorities, the more the minorities will go elsewhere, and eventually they will come for those in the majority because there's no one else left.

I'd much rather see taxes targeted at people that use the given service. Every person needs to fund the police, property owners need to fund the fire departments, families with children need to fund the schools, drivers with cars or people buying gas need to fund our roads, etc. These kinds of taxes should encourage people to live a more efficient lifestyle and for those that want to pay more to live better, that's their choice. Today, we have a system setup to encourage the poor to have more children to collect a bigger welfare check, I'm paying for their school, and some smoker is paying for the roads that I drive on. The disconnect means that roads are overcrowded and under maintained, schools use trailers to handle the overflow, and every politician promises to do something to cut down on the high property taxes.

This article can be summed up in one word.... (0, Redundant)

8127972 (73495) | about 7 years ago | (#21098767)

.... Censorship.

(What more needs to be said? But since this is /., more will be said)

Re:This article can be summed up in one word.... (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#21098893)

Already 4 days ago, the Italian Minister of Communications, Paolo Gentiloni, declared:

"The alarm is justified, and the law proposed has to be corrected because it leaves room to absurd and restricted interpretation".

The law is just proposed, not yet approved, and it is not going to be further pushed in the current form.

Re:This article can be summed up in one word.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#21099123)

An opinion worth sharing is worth reposting 27 times in every vaguely related article...

Re:This article can be summed up in one word.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#21099163)

You are wrong. The correct word is stupidity

Re:This article can be summed up in one word.... (1)

sm62704 (957197) | about 7 years ago | (#21099509)

You are wrong. The correct word is stupidity

Wrong word. The difference between stupidity and ignorance is that one of them is curable.

-mcgrew

Coming soon to a government near you... (4, Insightful)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | about 7 years ago | (#21098787)

I expect blogs to be taxed and licensed almost everywhere, eventually. We can't have people saying things critical of the governm....errr...I mean, we can't have people saying anything offensive. Will someone please think of the children????

Re:Coming soon to a government near you... (1)

Marcos Eliziario (969923) | about 7 years ago | (#21099261)

What amazes me is that some poster a few posts up was *surprised* that it was a socialist that proposed this. Damned ignorance is going to head us all into totalitarism.

Blog (3, Insightful)

mwvdlee (775178) | about 7 years ago | (#21098793)

So, what is the definition of a "blog" anyway?

Re:Blog (2, Interesting)

Marcion (876801) | about 7 years ago | (#21098815)

Exactly, just remove the word blog and call it a website.

Re:Blog (1)

madman101 (571954) | about 7 years ago | (#21098843)

Anything they don't like. The other websites are news outlets.

Re: Blog (1)

Black Parrot (19622) | about 7 years ago | (#21098847)

So, what is the definition of a "blog" anyway?
It's what squares call a 6109.

Re:Blog (5, Funny)

aicrules (819392) | about 7 years ago | (#21098953)

A Blog can be identified via the following characteristics:

1. There is very little traffic to the site other than the bots posting link back comments still trying to fool google.
2. There is a flurry of postings near the creation date of the site waning down to many once a month with the six of the last 10 postings being the message "No time to post today, too much work. Will try to catch up later."
3. The posts with content contain many unsubstatiated statements proclaimed as fact all discussed in an exasperated matter in a hardly subtle attempt to garner emotional support from people they don't know.
4. There are very few comments to postings other than self-posted comments providing clarification or an update.

I'm sure there are other identifying characteristics, but these are the ones that you can count on...

Re:Blog (1)

Critical Facilities (850111) | about 7 years ago | (#21099247)

You did forget one important characteristic:

5. There are banner ads framing the text and graphic ads peppered throughout the body in a not very subtle attempt to generate AdSense income.

Re:Blog (1)

aadvancedGIR (959466) | about 7 years ago | (#21099667)

-Terrible spelling
-Most articles are about the latest boys band, or who dates who in the classroom, except a few "nazis aren't good" or "we should ban war" vain attempt to bring some intersting content.

Re:Blog (1)

Jugalator (259273) | about 7 years ago | (#21099741)

Very funny, is this from your own experiences with your blog or something? ;-)

This sure applies to many, but far from all, and many, many blogs are quite popular over time.

But I hope I don't even have to tell that, and that was mostly just a joke on generalizing blogs.

Re:Blog (1)

aicrules (819392) | about 7 years ago | (#21099897)

Okay, you're right. It only applies to blogs that would say that they are part of the "blogosphere" then...

The more things change, (3, Interesting)

Black Parrot (19622) | about 7 years ago | (#21098801)

I remember a news story from way back when I was a kid, of some group getting raided in the USSR for possessing an unregistered mimeograph machine.

As this and the current Burma censorware article show, nothing threatens the powerful like a free exchange of ideas.

what's the standard for (2, Insightful)

ameoba (173803) | about 7 years ago | (#21098813)

Does Italy have some sort of registration/licensing of journalists or periodicals? Are their already laws in place that force professional, mainstream journalists to be "responsible"?

It might go against my USian belief in free speech, but I'd have a hard time arguing against this law if its merely placing blogs & websites under the same scrutiny as other publications. OTOH, I see enforcement of the law as a colossal failure waiting to happen.

Re:what's the standard for (5, Insightful)

UbuntuDupe (970646) | about 7 years ago | (#21099085)

It might go against my USian belief in free speech, but I'd have a hard time arguing against this law if its merely placing blogs & websites under the same scrutiny as other publications.

Actually, that's what a lot of people find objectionable about these types of laws: that stringent regulation of "bad people" might actually apply to them too! (Sort of a variant of "a liberal is a conservative who's been arrested".)

I see this kind of thing all the time:

***

"I think it's HORRIBLE how corporations EXPLOIT all these tax loopholes to avoid paying their FAIR SHARE!"
"To consistently enforce tax law, we will have to monitor MMORPGs like World of Warcraft so as to insure income earned there is taxed."
"WHAT???? That's RIDICULOUS!"

***

"I think there should be STRINGENT regulations on businesses to make sure they don't DISCRIMINATE."
"Excuse me sir, your site, 'Craig's List' has acted in contravention of Fair Housing law so we're suing you."
"Er, what? I mean, those laws are for bad people, not me."

***

common internet discussion:

"Corporations are OBVIOUSLY inefficient. Look how easy it is to make something and sell it cheaper."
"Yeah, but you didn't obey these regulations and pay these taxes."
"Well ... those shouldn't exist!"
"And if they didn't, the corporation could sell for less."
"No, because they're inefficient."
*falls out of chair*

No need to worry. (3, Insightful)

ZwJGR (1014973) | about 7 years ago | (#21098819)

Like all laws in Italy which are unpopular and/or unenforceable they will be totally ignored by law-enforcement and people alike...

Although I'd be surprised if this law makes it through parliament without being heavily diluted, or at all...

Re:No need to worry. (3, Insightful)

cryfreedomlove (929828) | about 7 years ago | (#21098917)

I am worried. Yes, the law is silly and unenforceable. However, having lots of unenforced and silly laws on the books makes everyone a criminal and subject to capricious arrest anytime anywhere. Hitler, Stalin, Mao, Pol Pot, maybe even George Bush love laws like this because they can employ them at a moment's notice against their perceived threats.

Re:No need to worry. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#21099129)

Mussolini [wikipedia.org] is dead. Long live Mussolini [wikipedia.org] .

Re:No need to worry. (2, Insightful)

Phil-14 (1277) | about 7 years ago | (#21099255)

Like all laws in Italy which are unpopular and/or unenforceable they will be totally ignored by law-enforcement and people alike...


And that's just the sort of laws the bureaucrats like, laws everyone's guilty of violating and which they can selectively enforce.

Re:No need to worry. (1)

Opportunist (166417) | about 7 years ago | (#21099269)

It's gonna be one of those "just in case" laws. Like

Officer1: "Dammit. I just KNOW that guy's hiding something, but we don't have anything 'gainst him."
Officer2: "Does he have a blog?"
Officer1: "Yeah, but he doesn't write anything..."
Officer2: "Get your gun and let's roll."

Good luck enforcing this (1)

llirik (1074623) | about 7 years ago | (#21098821)

How would they stop some dodgy Nigerian site from hosting Italian blog?

Re:Good luck enforcing this (1)

Percent Man (756972) | about 7 years ago | (#21099227)

Precisely my thoughts.

Step 1: rent space on an offshore server
Step 2: encrypt your sessions
Step 3: ???
Step 4: blogit!

You can pass around a foreign URL just as easily as a .it... "Hey, I <cough> found this really neat blog that speaks to us as Italians."

One day soon (5, Interesting)

davegravy (1019182) | about 7 years ago | (#21098827)

PirateBay will have a new torrent section called "thoughts", where one can download all the latest illegal ideas people have uploaded.

Re:One day soon (1)

Marcos Eliziario (969923) | about 7 years ago | (#21099337)

+1 SadlyInsightful

Re:One day soon (1)

TheMeuge (645043) | about 7 years ago | (#21099701)

Please, mod parent up.

Great! (1)

tomknight (190939) | about 7 years ago | (#21098841)

Sounds like a vote for sanity to me....

Re: Great! (1)

Black Parrot (19622) | about 7 years ago | (#21099047)

Sounds like a vote for sanity to me....
You didn't register your post, Mr. Knight. I'm afraid you'll have to come with us.

Re: Great! (1)

AlbertoP (1178873) | about 7 years ago | (#21099161)

Read my answer above. The law doesn't affect blogs and personal sites at all. It justs asks for registrations of professional editorial operators who work on the we, exactly as it happened for others non-online editorial operators (newspapers, magazines, ...) since ever.

Re: Great! (1)

Marcos Eliziario (969923) | about 7 years ago | (#21099377)

Oh, sure... and it doesn't affect freedom of speech...
Man, I think it's time for you to take a red pill.

The EU may come to the rescue (2, Interesting)

andyh3930 (605873) | about 7 years ago | (#21098845)

Surely the EU will overrule this law with regard to Human Rights Legislation. UK national law has been deemed illegal on a number of occasions by the EU, so I'd expect the same with this.

Also how are they going to stop it. It'll be difficult to prove as the bloggers can use proxies and the like and how are the authorities going to prosecute 1000's of people.

 

BUSHITLER (-1, Troll)

syrinx (106469) | about 7 years ago | (#21098851)

Obviously this is a stifling of patriotic dissent by Chimpy McBushitler, who stole the election and now is planning to declare martial law! Soon he will be rounding up all gays and old people and black people (not to mention old gay blacks) into internment camps! It all started when he used his evil genius (which he is, except when he is stupid!) to pull off 9/11! Now is the time to fight back, and...

Oh, wait. Italy. Never mind. Carry on then.

Re:BUSHITLER (1)

sdkramer (411640) | about 7 years ago | (#21098897)

Back under your bridge troll.

even non-commercial. (2, Funny)

sdkramer (411640) | about 7 years ago | (#21098861)

I'm in favor of at least taxing that guy's blog. Interesting approach to using boldface he has.

On a somewhat serious note this is regardless of whether the blog is intended to be profitable. Yikes!

Freedom shmeedom! (1)

Dystopian Rebel (714995) | about 7 years ago | (#21098899)

What we all want is more assurances that we're safe, more flag-waving, and more cores in our CPUS, and more pictures of Britney, Paris and Lindsay stumbling through life.

Can we at least pretend to be unbiased? (3, Insightful)

dws90 (1063948) | about 7 years ago | (#21098923)

This law is clearly designed to curb critical voices and free speech, although it has yet to be approved by parliament."

That's one interpretation, yes, and in fact a good one. Nevertheless, it shouldn't be there. Linking to a blogger with strong opinions about the issue is one thing, but could we at least avoid biased summaries? The summaries are supposed to be about news, not opinion. If I wanted one-sided views, I'd read Digg.

Give us the story, facts-only. Let us decide if it's an assault on free speech. Allowing the reader to come to that conclusion on their own is far more powerful and effective.

I'm guessing links to articles with different opinions would be too much to ask for.

Re:Can we at least pretend to be unbiased? (1, Interesting)

Mr. Underbridge (666784) | about 7 years ago | (#21099017)

Give us the story, facts-only. Let us decide if it's an assault on free speech. Allowing the reader to come to that conclusion on their own is far more powerful and effective.

I don't care what the motivation is, anytime someone needs to get permission from a government to express their views, that's an assault on free speech.

The more controversial question is whether it's an assault on free speech designed to stifle criticism of the government.

Il Duce (4, Funny)

Ukab the Great (87152) | about 7 years ago | (#21098931)

Don't be paranoid. You'll still be able to blog about how great it is that the trains are running on time.

Re:Il Duce (1)

Opportunist (166417) | about 7 years ago | (#21099387)

But the trains ain't running on... hold on, there's someone at the door.

Censorship or unclear thinking (1, Troll)

boyfaceddog (788041) | about 7 years ago | (#21098941)

This does not need to be censorship. It could be that the proposed law simply needs to be tweaked to define which sort of blogs need oversight. As the lines between online magazines/newspapers and blogs blurs it becomes important to define the new criteria of what is and is not a "trusted" new source. Although the proposed law seems to attack all blogs, I think it could be tweaked to define a certain type of blog that fits the definition of a news source rather than an opinion source.

The simplest solution is usually short-sightedness or fuzzy thinking rather than an evil plot.

Fine I think Ihave the criteria (1)

SIIHP (1128921) | about 7 years ago | (#21098989)

"As the lines between online magazines/newspapers and blogs blurs it becomes important to define the new criteria of what is and is not a "trusted" new source"

How about "anyone the government defines as a trusted news source is not to be trusted".

Seriously though, you want THE GOVERNENT to tell you what news sources are trusted? Yikes...

For sufficiently small values of "Italy" (3, Informative)

Sockatume (732728) | about 7 years ago | (#21098963)

The headline in this rather implies that Italy as a nation is behind moves to limit blogs in general, when it would be more accurate to say that certain parts of the Italian government approve of moves to limit blogs in their country. Can we be a bit less gung-ho with the article titles, please?

Re:For sufficiently small values of "Italy" (1)

thatskinnyguy (1129515) | about 7 years ago | (#21098997)

You must be new here. The titles are sensationalist all the time yet the articles rarely deliver 100% of what the title promises.

USSR? (1, Insightful)

thatskinnyguy (1129515) | about 7 years ago | (#21098965)

It seems like every day we get closer and closer to changing the name of the planet from Earth to "The Union of Soviet Socialist Republics"

Re:USSR? (1)

Marcos Eliziario (969923) | about 7 years ago | (#21099475)

I Agree, and I think that as Schumpeter has sadly predicted (or sort of) it's unavoidable.
So, let's see this on the bright side:
- No more Eminem
- No more problems with obesity (it's hard to get obese with socialist-style supermarkets, unless, of course you are a high head in the Party)
- Plenty of space on even the most crowded highways.
- Your daughters will learn to play oboe instead of listening to Britney Spears

Of course, I will have to burn all my Rush's CDs, and that books are going to help me keep warm for a few winter also. But, as I said, it's unavoidable.

Article totally misleading.... get the facts (5, Informative)

dan211a (928395) | about 7 years ago | (#21099011)

The post is very inaccurate. Editors, please check the facts before posting sensationalistic headlines.

There is a law being discussed in the Italian parliament which intends to set the rules for online publications, and define their responsibilities.
The goal is to recognize and treat professional online news sites in the same way as traditional newspapers, where there is an editor ultimately responsible and accountable for the information
published. This is not unlike press laws in most western countries: if, for instance, the New York Times publishes unfounded corruption allegations against a politician, its editor is ultimately responsible for those allegations, and the politician could sue him for defamation.

There was some initial concern in the blogging world that this law could also apply to bloggers, but this concern was already cleared by the undersecretary to the Cabinet, Ricardo Franco Levi, which is the main curator of the text of the proposed law. He clearly stated that the new law would only apply to professional journalists, and that it would absolutely not apply to bloggers of any kind.

More information (in italian): http://www.corriere.it/politica/07_ottobre_23/levi_legge_editoria_no_bavaglio_ai_blog.shtml [corriere.it]

Re:Article totally misleading.... get the facts (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#21099191)

It was cleared but at current state the law is dangerously vague,
it not need to be 'explained' it need to be corrected to be more
explicit.
Fortunately this seems the route that will be taken, corrections
to avoid any misinterpretations.

Re:Article totally misleading.... get the facts (1)

AlbertoP (1178873) | about 7 years ago | (#21099375)

What sure is that it was misinterpreted, probably on purpose just to get some attention.

I agree it has to be clear that blogs and personal sites are not involved, but it's also clear that they're not "professional editorial services and operators". There's really not much to play around these words.

Re:Article totally misleading.... get the facts (1)

e-scetic (1003976) | about 7 years ago | (#21099507)

The bill/law as you've described it is sufficiently vague (i.e. "online publications", "professional journalists") that I can easily see it being used against bloggers.

And I don't for a minute believe any politician who says "Don't worry, I promise we won't."

As for holding people responsible and accountable, using the example you provided of unfounded corruption allegations what's wrong with current defamation laws? Or doesn't Italy have any?

Re:Article totally misleading.... get the facts (1)

Marcos Eliziario (969923) | about 7 years ago | (#21099513)

Oh. So it's more or less like. We used to restrain the freedom on traditional media, so what's the point on restricting freedom on the internet?
And if a law needs clarification by it's owner because it's not clear enough if it applies to a certain situation or not, what blocks him from changing his idea after the law is approved?
Man, you trust government too much.

Italy, a person, political party, country? (1)

Pond823 (643768) | about 7 years ago | (#21099013)

Who is this 'Italy' you talk of?

Hurray! (1)

supertsaar (540181) | about 7 years ago | (#21099021)

Finally. The whole net is clogged with those things.
They all copy each other and some seem to be so popular that they register as top hits on Google when I search for something.
I find it very irritating to find blog posts by some unemployed twat with too much time on his hands seem to matter more to Google (or other engines) than for instance the official company website for a certain product do.
So in stead of finding tech spec for something I find rants on it sucks because they dont make it in pink, sign a petition here
I say hurray to Italy.

Sounds hard to enforce (1)

reabbotted (871820) | about 7 years ago | (#21099075)

would this law apply to someone posting to a message board? or to an email that gets posted to the Internet? in the end, this sounds like a tough law to enforce that has some easy workarounds.

Unlikely to pass (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#21099091)

The proposed law has very little change to pass unaltered,
or pass at all, most of the ministers already have dissociated
themselves from the law and various parties on the parliament
will not vote the current form.
Pretty dumb, this demonstrates that the governement don't read
their own laws, since the proposal was voted unanimously.
Also, this is not the first time: the preceding government tried
the same trick (registration of all news related site with very
vague terms) but resulted in the same outraged response and the
law being trashed.

They fail. (1)

Bender Unit 22 (216955) | about 7 years ago | (#21099093)

It has been a long going joke that Italy would not be able to join the EU, if they had to sign up today.
Silvio Berlusconi has done a good job of dragging them back in the hole.

Apparently, the law wil be changed (3, Informative)

Baumi (148744) | about 7 years ago | (#21099109)

BoingBoing covered [boingboing.net] the story, too, and the comments on it are rather encouraging.

Especially this one:

For now, I can report that this proposal is apparently not going anywhere: Paolo Gentiloni, one of the ministers involved in drafting the law, admitted of "not having thoroughly read the proposal" because he thought that "it was not going to alter the status quo". He is now declaring that this law will certainly be changed in order to keep blogs out of the picture, and
that he's sure that Mr. Ricardo Franco Levi is the first who will be willing to take action to change it.

Missing a tag ----Mussolini (1)

HW_Hack (1031622) | about 7 years ago | (#21099111)

some things never change

Re:Missing a tag ----Mussolini (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#21099325)

No, because Mussolini started out as a Communist newspaper editor (Il Popolo). Now the Communists are in charge of Italy and editing all the news papers. At least Alessandra Mussolini gets returned to the EUP for MSI on the regular. Better to be a fascist than a fag and all that - but its somehow different.

The next step... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#21099357)

will be banning Rails from italy

Do they have tanks? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#21099373)

Will they run over protesters with them?

Come on... (1)

bestiarosa (938309) | about 7 years ago | (#21099559)

Come on, it's Italy after all. Do you really think this is going to pass? And should it pass, do you really believe anybody's going to actually enforce this law? Italians are comendians, and this comes from an Italian.

Wouldn't you know (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#21099785)

Italy seems to have this vicious circle about it when it comes to these sort of things, huh.

This is false NEWS! (1)

zborro (591127) | about 7 years ago | (#21099931)

First, this is not a law, but an already discarded law proposal.
Second, as already cited elsewhere among the replies, an interview with the law proponent
has already clarified the situation saying that it does not apply to blogs or personal sites
but just to internet newspapers.

Actually there is no Mussolini in Italy at the moment.
He's just waiting in the right opposition side...
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