posted Feb 20, 2001

Draconian net censorship push in Australia Country Watch: Australia2/20/2001; 9:14:39 AM 'HARSH internet laws that give police power to prosecute anyone posting content deemed unsuitable for minors are likely to be passed by the South Australian Government next month.''The Classification Amendment Bill, which goes far beyond legislation in place in any other state, allows police officers to decide whether online material is illegal.'Emphasis mine. Of course, here's half of the root problem:'The federal law treats all internet content as film, and requires material to be rated by the Office of Film and Literature Classification accordingly.'The Internet is not a movie. As a small example, when's the last time a movie performed an adult check, no matter how rudimentary or easy to defeat, on somebody? Many Internet sites do.The other half of the problem is the abject terror embodied in the ruling.According to some local correspondants, aka "Slashdot posters" on the Slashdot article, specifically cynthetik, the government may not actually enforce the law.Still, this leaves the axe hanging over everybody's head. The power to prosecute is the power to destroy a persons life, regardless of guilt, and this law is tailor made for that use.


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