Australia dumps Cleanfeed, Egypt porn ban Twitter backlash #EgyPornBan

Australia dumps Cleanfeed, Egypt porn ban Twitter backlash #EgyPornBan

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Australia has abandoned its anti-porn campaign to force internet filtering on the ISP level, in the guise an of anti-porn crusade Egypt has decided to censor its citizens' internet access to extremes, and a consent-violating porn site abuses the DMCA over porn content.

Australian government dumps ISP filter plan Cleanfeed with the rest of the trash

australia-cleanfeed

First the great news: today the Australian government has formally announced that it will no longer pursue the deeply flawed, speech threatening, ISP filtering plan Cleanfeed - whose primary platform was anti-spam/malware and anti-porn - and implementation relied on secret internet blacklists.

The anti-porn positioning by proponents was based on little to no substantiation beyond porn hysteria and helped define Cleanfeed as the worst example of using loose definitions of sexuality and imagined threats to society as an excuse to censor topics that segments of the population simply did not like.

Cleanfeed's proponents also continually revealed a disturbing ignorance about the technology they attempted to police and filter; Australia's Minister for Broadband and Communications Stephen Conroy once said,

There’s a staggering number of Australians being in having their computers infected at the moment, up to 20,000… uh… can regularly be getting infected by these spams or scams, that come through the portal.

The implementation - secretly curated blacklists - were shown publicly to be a shadowy program with no oversight, and a leaked blacklist revealed many websites on the list that were not in violation of the public-facing rules of the blacklist.

The Next Web Australia's Joel Falconer wisely writes,

It has been axed, shafted, given the boot, killed off — pick a phrase, any phrase from the broad range we’ve employed to describe the best course of action for this moronic idea since it appeared five years ago.

Are you paying attention, UK?

Egypt orders extreme censorship in the form of a porn ban

In a free society we can argue the varying definitions of porn ("I know it when I see it") all we want.

But when a country such as Egypt declares it will begin censoring internet speech and censoring its citizens' internet access in the guise for a porn ban, we know the content it bans will be, well, pretty much anything Egypt's government doesn't like (such as, oh political dissent).

The EFF has a salty post that sums up the soon to be dire situation for free and open internet access for the (majority of) Egypt's citizens - unless, as EFF puts it, "Censorship circumvention software is about to become very popular in Egypt."

Backlash in Egypt against "porn ban" begins on Twitter

As soon as it was announced, the backlash against the Egyptian government's intent to censor its citizens internet under the banner of an anti-porn campaign was met with protest.

On Twitter, people in increasing numbers are using the hashtag #EgyPornBan to openly protest and question the legitimacy of restricting freedom of expression.

The title of FP's article (linked below) is misleading - those using the hashtag are not "porn fans" but enraged citizens running out of options with which to keep their internet access free and open. In fact, the article's angle is plainly idiotic, but is the source of the hashtag information I have reported here.

Hypocrisy, interrupted

I love TechDirt. They write,

Craig Brittain, the owner of "revenge porn" site "Is Anybody Down" (whose first skirmishes with Marc Randazza were covered here) is trying to remove posts criticizing his site, his inability to keep his story straight, his likely extortionate "photo takedown service," and, well, pretty much everything, actually. 

He's sent a DMCA notice demanding the removal of three posts at Popehat, claiming that these posts contain copyrighted material.

Geek dad changes video game gender, hopefully some minds, too

A truly awesome geek dad spent a lot of time changing the gender of a video game hero so his kid could look to a hero of her own gender as she played Zelda.

Lucky girl! Let's hope his work puts ideas in the heads of game developers, so the next generation of kids - whatever gender they are - can play games that reflect the gender of the heroes they are (and hope to become) in real life.

Topics: Privacy, Censorship, Legal

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