UK govt sidles towards censorship
The UK government, under the leadership of David Cameron, is on the brink of mandating nationwide censorship, requiring Internet service providers to filter, block and report on all citizens’ browsing habits, starting with pornography. The UK will join a growing number of countries which actively censor the Internet, including most Arab states, China, and Australia. Not for lack of trying - SA ventured down this road, with Malusi Gigaba’s aborted attempt to push through Internet filtering in 2010.
They make many of the same mistakes, stem from similar sources, and often conceal the real motives. In SA, commentators at the time noted that the proposed anti-porn Bill was likely unconstitutional, and it failed to progress.
Other nations setting precedents for filtering will give new weight to the inevitable next attempt, which could well succeed if it avoids the wider-reaching parts which raised constitutional concerns last time. In the UK, attempts to automatically filter pornography have been rejected in the past, but that never stops the lobbyists.
Cameron may this year succeed where the government was previously thwarted by the will of the people. As the UK and Australia have shown, the important step is the first one.
Any filter is a start, from which governments can expand later, especially since the actual filter lists are kept secret.... Read the full, comprehensive news article and discuss at ITWeb