Friday, January 16, 2009

China, Hong Kong, British Commonwealth all interesting in rating and filtering sites with filter technology

Danny O’Brien of the Electronic Frontier Foundation has a interesting perspective, dated Jan. 14, 2009, “Global Net Censorship in 2009: For the Children, For the Rightsholders, link here.

On this COPA blog, we already considered the Internet Safety Technical Task Report, which seems to indicate that children are safer than we thought. Everyone knows that China has strict Internet censorship, mostly to quash political dissent, but to “protect children” with respect to their Confucian values. Less known is the fact that Hong Kong is implementing a somewhat “milder” censorship practice, restricting bandwidth and imposing a “three strikes rule” for offenders, similar to what the RIAA wants ISP’s to do now regarding copyright infringement. The same is coming true in Britain and Australia, which are considering ratings systems. But we’ve already noted the ICRA (centered in London) is already making strides getting the net publishing and browsing community to adopt a filtering system, that would probably be more effective than the “adult ID” concepts that had been proposed for COPA. I would expect to find the same trend in socially conservative countries, like Singapore and Malaysia.

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