Sunday, 19 December 2010

Thin end of the wedge

I said the IWF list was just the thin end of the wedge. The objective of stopping people accidentally encountering child porn on the web was a crazy one (IMHO) as it did not even try to stop people that want to access such material, and (as has been shown) has side effects.

The only real reason for IWF blocking list was to get in place a mechanism to allow arbitrary web sites to be blocked. Then the list can be conveniently expanded to other things. Start with something nobody can object to like "child porn", and build from that.

The quote on that article is "Technically we know it can be done because the ISPs are already removing child porn after the government put pressure on them". This kind of shows why the otherwise pointless IWF block list was encouraged so much in the first place - it was a foot in the door.

The latest is to add all porn (completely legal porn) on the basis children might see it, and allow adults to opt-in to access it. It's think of the children mentality. Of course these blocking systems are trivial to get around. There are already plenty of ways for parents to control what their children see on their computer. And, whats to bet that such opt-in systems will be on IP and so mean (with NAT) that the whole house has opt-in, including the kids machines?

You can see where it goes. I am sure terrorist web sites will be next on the list, after all, who can argue with that. Of course, any extreme political web sites will need to be next. Basically any wrong thinking.

Thankfully, due to other oppressive governments around the world, there are already well established and well documented ways to bypass all of this crap to allow people to communicate and access the Internet without trace and without filters.

Utter incompetence on the part of our government, IMHO.

Oh, and they are talking of doing it without legislation. OK, so they want communications for a perfectly legal purpose between two parties via a communications network to be intercepted and blocked without the specific (opt-in) request of either of the parties, and somehow this is legal under RIPA?


  1. From the article : "We just want to make sure our children aren't stumbling across things we don't want them to see".

    Perhaps then "we" should try supervising our children rather than dumping them in front of the babysitting PC and then demanding the entire world be child safe.

    Apparently it's easier to force society to look after "the children" than for the parents to take some responsibility...

  2. Pete Favelle is 100% right

    I detest ppl's brain dead approach who use the TV or the computer as the prime educator / entertainer and engager of time of their children

    here's me fighting with the school to maintain ME as the person who decides what is and isnt appropriate for my daughter, so much so that we are now definitely going to be home schooling and then theres those who simply divest themselves of their RIGHT never mind their RESPONSIBILITY to have a say in what their child is exposed to


    GOVT keep the fsck out of my life!!

    remember remember the 5th of november

    oh and in keeping with #iamspartacus .... insert appropriate phrase here -->

  3. Always made me wonder why they couldn't (or rather I suppose wouldn't) do it for phishing sites...

    Anyway... as mentioned trivial to sidestep, and perfect for all the sheeple out there that don't know which end of a mouse to talk into.

  4. Much as I don't want my children to find pr0n on the internet, I am far more worried about censorious governments trying to prevent anything that might conceivably cause them the slightest embarassment being published by any means.

    That they have no grasp of technology is a given. They will fail at first. Then big corporations will join in, promoting their own agenda on that back of this, and eventually the once-was-internet will be locked down property of big-media and everyone will be 'safe' once more.

    It's going to take a few years, but history shows us that this is pretty much how it goes with any new medium: at first they lose control but eventually they get it back, and then they turn it to their own purposes.

    Fortunately, by then, there will be something else that they don't understand and can't control.

  5. Face it, this is just a pathetically veiled attempt at implementing a national firewall after the WikiScare.

    I'd be all for it if it was OPT-IN. If I had a child, I'd quite like that I could opt in to something to help block the pr0n. But no, they're wanting to make it OPT-OUT. Yeah, 'cos everybody is gonna make a phonecall to their ISP and announce "I WANT TO DOWNLOAD PR0N!"

    The opt-out option will probably convince large portions of the naive... "oh, whats to complain about, you can still get the pron if you ask".

    And then the government has a lovely list of pr0n downloaders to hand. So, should anything major happen that you just must join a protest about, or make a stand and become a spokesperson... you're on a list of FILTHY PR0N DOWNLOADING VERMIN for authorities to tarnish your character with.