[AusNOG] Conroy announcement on filtering
Skeeve at eintellego.net
Mon Jan 4 16:21:07 EST 2010
An awesome enlightening post Mark...
Skeeve Stevens, CEO/Technical Director
eintellego Pty Ltd - The Networking Specialists
skeeve at eintellego.net / www.eintellego.net
Phone: 1300 753 383, Fax: (+612) 8572 9954
Cell +61 (0)414 753 383 / skype://skeeve
www.linkedin.com/in/skeeve ; facebook.com/eintellego
NOC, NOC, who's there?
From: ausnog-bounces at lists.ausnog.net [mailto:ausnog-bounces at lists.ausnog.net] On Behalf Of Mark Newton
Sent: Monday, 4 January 2010 4:42 PM
To: Skeeve Stevens
Cc: Pinkerton, Eric; ausnog at lists.ausnog.net
Subject: Re: [AusNOG] Conroy announcement on filtering
On 04/01/2010, at 3:40 PM, Skeeve Stevens wrote:
If I was the government, I would basically offer $$$ (or a tax break, or something) to ISPs who chose to join a filtering programme or offered products based on some sort of filtering standard.
SAGE-AU suggested something along those lines over a year ago, it fell
on deaf ears.
Note that the Internet industry itself has been totally deficient in coming up
with (or endorsing) alternative proposals. Most of the big ISPs haven't been
able to get out of their way quickly enough to make public statements about how
they applaud the Government's efforts in this area, and the small ISPs have
barely said anything at all. Disappointing, but completely expected.
If users are really screaming for this, surely they would just go and connect to an ISP who is offering the filtering solution.
If there were really a massive demand for this, wouldn't someone have developed their own product by now and selling tons of it?
Webshield has existed for years. They have about 3500 customers, nation-wide.
So there's your anticipated market size. Customer demand is virtually zero, so
nobody should be surprised by any disinterest shown by developers in this
Or.. is this just the government not trusting people to be adults and responsible - and assuming that there are paedophiles everywhere.
We'll see this in a number of issues that come down the pike in the next
The ALP left and the ALP right generally have more or less consistent visions
for how they expect society to work. But they take very different paths to
implement that vision.
In general terms, the left take the view that if they elucidate a compelling vision
and use Government to provide incentives to empower people to achieve it,
most people will, out of their own good graces, pick up the incentives and play
Also in general terms, the right take the view that society is too dumb,
unimaginative and riven with special interests to behave like that, so they use
the Government to set rules which penalize failure to attain the vision.
The right is currently in charge. The online censorship policy is the right's
way of implementing their desire to facilitate a "civil and confident society."
They do this by making sure that anything uncivil is criminalized, rather than
by supporting civility and encouraging confidence among the Australian
population (and they also ignore ACMA's research which shows that
Australians are civil and confident online already)
We'll see this story repeat when copyright comes up: The progressive
way of dealing with copyright is to provide incentives for artists so that
creativity can continue to flourish while the business/marketing/promotional
side of creative industries flounders until they sort out their new business
models. The conservative way of dealing with copyright is to slowly
screw-down the restrictions and amp-up the penalties so that behaving in
a way which doesn't support existing copyright business models becomes
increasingly illegal and risky. The right wingers are in charge, so we're
going to get the conservative approach -- for all the same reasons that
they're trying to implement censorship. The ideology is the same, the
effects will be the same too.
In short, the left behaves as if laws are supposed to support and encourage
"good" behaviours; The right behaves as if people will change "bad"
behaviours in response to laws. Are the citizens controlling the Government,
or is the Government controlling the citizens? As the "V for Vendetta" tagline
said, "People should not be afraid of their governments, governments should
be afraid of the people."
While the right is currently ascendent, history will show that their approach
is wrong, and that the laws they pass won't be worth jack ten years from
now, that their implementation will oscillate between catastrophic and
hilariously incompetent, and that the only tangible outcome they'll achieve
is to burn long-term goodwill.
But we citizens are going to go through a lot of pain as we collectively teach
them that lesson. And because the right is such a bunch of control
freaks who neither know nor care what they're doing, the ISP industry is
going to bear much of the brunt of it too.
That's why I think the industry's continual efforts to appease the Government
are misplaced. The Government isn't even remotely interested in dealing
with ISPs in good faith. Conroy treats the ISP industry with total contempt
right now, how could it possibly be any worse if the industry was actively
opposing what he's doing?
Mark Newton Email: newton at internode.com.au<mailto:newton at internode.com.au> (W)
Network Engineer Email: newton at atdot.dotat.org<mailto:newton at atdot.dotat.org> (H)
Internode Pty Ltd Desk: +61-8-82282999
"Network Man" - Anagram of "Mark Newton" Mobile: +61-416-202-223
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