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UK ISP Filter Will Censor More Than Porn

timothy posted about a year ago | from the knows-it-when-it-sees-it dept.

United Kingdom 329

The UK's on-by-default censorship, as you might expect, presses with a heavy thumb: coolnumbr12 writes "The Open Rights Group spoke with several ISPs and found that in addition to pornography, users will also be required to opt in for any content tagged as violent material, extremist and terrorist related content, anorexia and eating disorder websites, suicide related websites, alcohol, smoking, web forums, esoteric material and web blocking circumvention tools. These will all be filtered by default, and the majority of users never change default settings with online services."

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Esoteric material? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44397971)

So will it also block cult sects like scientology and other major religions like cristianity? How about homeopathy?

Re:Esoteric material? (5, Insightful)

SuricouRaven (1897204) | about a year ago | (#44398073)

It'll only block cults that are too small to sue in retaliation.

Re:Esoteric material? (4, Funny)

dintech (998802) | about a year ago | (#44398171)

extremist and terrorist related content

No doubt opting in for porn will get you on the 'special attention at MI5' list.

Re:Esoteric material? (5, Interesting)

gadget junkie (618542) | about a year ago | (#44398211)

extremist and terrorist related content

No doubt opting in for porn will get you on the 'special attention at MI5' list.

No. it will mark you as "normal", but with a less than ignorant approach to technology. Expect a movement to help people opt out of the filter altogether tough. If it happened here, I'd start one myself. Where in the world, except in the book "1984", the government decides what I am allowed to see? it only decides the media, anyhow: child pornography or else will not stop because Joe Soap does not see it by default. And the reasoning by which access to an uncontrolled internet is the fountainhead of social problem is beyond moronic, it's deceitful.

Re:Esoteric material? (3, Interesting)

jaseuk (217780) | about a year ago | (#44398311)

Known Child Porn is blocked by all or most UK ISPs anyway. There is no opt-out of this.

Jason.

Re:Esoteric material? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44398079)

You are starting to make me think that it is a good thing...

Re:Esoteric material? (4, Interesting)

nosfucious (157958) | about a year ago | (#44398207)

"You can calculate the worth of a man by the number of his enemies, and the importance of a work of art by the harm that is spoken of it."

"Give me six lines written by the most honorable of men, and I will find an excuse in them to hang him"

I think it's very easy to make this all unworkable. Every and any website, publication, speech or media appearance of a supporter of net cencorship should be analysed to death. Any remote measure that would fall under the terms of the ban should be reported. Make sure the supporters of this ban are the first to feel its bite.

Most religious sites are easy game. Not one of the backers of this legislation will be pure as the driven snow and there has to be a reason for them to be banned. Then it is so easy to show inconsistencies and favouritism that the whole lot will be abolished because the responsible minister will look like an idiot.

I give it less that 12 months from the day of implementation until its fall.

Re:Esoteric material? (3, Interesting)

AmiMoJo (196126) | about a year ago | (#44398255)

You don't even have to submit a lot of material. Just leave comments arguing in favour of having sex with 9 years olds (because Mohammed did it so it must be okay, endorsed by God and all that). Then submit the site for blocking due to the comments. Should be possible to get most many pages on the BBC and various newspaper web sites banned that way.

Figured this might happen (5, Insightful)

Goose In Orbit (199293) | about a year ago | (#44397977)

Though most people are still too busy cooing over the royal baby to notice...

What one has... (-1, Troll)

mitcheli (894743) | about a year ago | (#44398023)

So Canada and the UK have universal health care... And soon we (USA) will too, sorta. We've already had bills like COPA that have failed, but if the UK does succeed at implementing this, how long will it be before we have it too, sorta?

Re:What one has... (4, Insightful)

SuricouRaven (1897204) | about a year ago | (#44398087)

The USA doesn't have universal health care. What you have at the moment is a system where everyone (almost) will have some level of health insurance coverage - but they still have to get their healthcare paid for by companies that continue to profit by doing everything they can to avoid paying for it.

Re:What one has... (2)

MysteriousPreacher (702266) | about a year ago | (#44398159)

And it's a non sequitur.

So France has its gendarmerie, and the United States has the Coast Guard. Although a military organisation, the Coast Guard has scope to enforce Federal laws against civilians. How long before the DHS sends military police out in to the streets to enforce littering statutes, sorta?

Thinking back, this analogy will hopefully not be prescient.

Re:What one has... (4, Informative)

SuricouRaven (1897204) | about a year ago | (#44398191)

About 2004: http://www.prisonplanet.com/articles/october2004/291004toystore.htm [prisonplanet.com]

The DHS enforces patent and trademark law. The official justification is that patents are vital to US economic prosperity, prosperity is part of national security, therefore patent infringement is a threat to national security.

Re:What one has... (1)

blippo (158203) | about a year ago | (#44398333)

This is so cynically arranged so it makes me think it was the original intention, and the actual security business was used just to fund the agency.

But I guess it's convenient for the copyright police to have swat teams available...

Re:What one has... (3, Insightful)

Zemran (3101) | about a year ago | (#44398121)

Not letting poor people die of preventable illnesses vs. censorship?

Point one, America is no where near getting the health care options that the UK has. A good free system as well as excellent private options. Or to simplify that, the US does not have any health care options that are not available in the UK but the UK does have health care options that are not available in the US.

Second point, the UK is going to filter it, bad, the US spies on its people and will arrest you for accessing it, worse.

Point two has a lot of scope for discussion but do not start propaganda from Fox News.

Re:What one has... (0)

mitcheli (894743) | about a year ago | (#44398157)

Actually, I hate fox news. Too biased. But that's not the point. My point was that the US attempted to address healthcare by creating a Universal system. That got turned into something completely different. So if in the future, the UK puts together a firewall for blocking the unacceptable social content (be it porn, or anorexia, or whatever). So then the US says, "we need that too!" And what do we end up with? Seems that every time we decide to implement something that solves plagues within society, we miss the mark. As for the UK friends, I already mentioned to some that I have I wouldn't be surprised if a few years down the road that they get exploited. For instance, say there is a rape and the suspect is unknown. How hard would it be to pull up the list of exceptions of folks who enjoy porn and to start there?

Re:What one has... (1)

Rockoon (1252108) | about a year ago | (#44398297)

My point was that the US attempted to address healthcare by creating a Universal system.

Thats just what they told you.

Suppose a universal system was not put to a vote because they knew that it would have failed to get enough votes. In that case, was where ever going to be one?

If there was never going to be one, then what were they doing? Clearly they were trying to do something different than a universal system. It wasn't an "accident." It was on purpose.

Re:Figured this might happen (4, Interesting)

Godwin O'Hitler (205945) | about a year ago | (#44398075)

I'm not sure royal babies are rich enough in content to keep a whole nation cooing for long.
I'm sure most people probably won't even notice or care anyway regardless.

When I was with O2 in the UK five years ago these things were already opt-in.

Nanny state. Pan. Water. Frog. Heat.

Opt in?? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44397981)

I don't know how you do it, but I "opt in" by sending a page request in the form of a URL.

Humanity (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44397983)

Humans are stupid little creatures aren't they.

"Web forums" (5, Interesting)

eexaa (1252378) | about a year ago | (#44397985)

...seriously?

On the other hand, more stuff they block, more users will opt out. I guess it can easily become a "traditional first thing you do with Internet", like removing IE and installing fox/chrome is now.

Re:"Web forums" (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44398003)

If you need anything more than Facebook, you're suspicious. Conform or Die!

Re:"Web forums" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44398055)

You could argue that Facebook is a kind of "web forum".

Re:"Web forums" (5, Insightful)

SuricouRaven (1897204) | about a year ago | (#44398093)

I'd argue that Facebook is many times more dangerous to children than pornography.

Re:"Web forums" (5, Funny)

AmiMoJo (196126) | about a year ago | (#44398269)

Facebook's minimum age for signing up is 13, so there is a pretty good case for adding it to the list of blocked by default sites. At the very least there is a vast amount of hate material and pornography on individual pages which could be submitted.

Re:"Web forums" (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44398321)

I'd question how, rationally and with a sane mind, pornography is *at all* dangerous to children.

I have yet to see a sane answer not based on oppressive tactics invented by churches to perform eugenics on religious schizophrenics. (Who gets to have or even think about sex and who doesn't: Only those "married" do. And only if the church approves it, is it "marriage". At least that was the plan. And since everything else that's sex-related is a "sin", everyone is a sinner, and everybody has to "repent". Aka obey or be punished.)

Hell, I know of tribes where big sex orgies in the village center were a regular occurrence used for all kinds of reasons, much like parties are in the "western" world. And kids would run around the outskirts, and playfully imitate the grown-ups.
Am I the only one who thinks that's cute and so stunningly natural and healthy?

I mean, who else, apart from a religious nutjob who repressed his sexuality, to the point of being basically a compulsive predator, would think of child abuse in that situation?

Re:"Web forums" (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44398361)

You're a sick, sick bastard.

Re:"Web forums" (3, Funny)

Zemran (3101) | about a year ago | (#44398135)

Anyone that uses Facebook must be a terrorist and should burn...

We will start with a simple test where we tie their hands and feet and throw them in the river. If they float they must be a terrorist and we must burn them. Simple.

Re:"Web forums" (2)

mwvdlee (775178) | about a year ago | (#44398113)

I know that you meant that as a joke, but by lumping in "violent material, extremist and terrorist related content" with the porn, they are making it very easy to say that anybody that opts in to porn also opts in to terrorism and is to be suspected.

Re: "Web forums" (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44398209)

No, no, no. Go RTFA. In fact just go look at the picture in the article. Violence, et al, is in the same group of settings as porn and the others but it is not one opt-in for all the categories listed in the summary. Each category has its own opt-in.

Re: "Web forums" (4, Insightful)

gl4ss (559668) | about a year ago | (#44398241)

No, no, no. Go RTFA. In fact just go look at the picture in the article. Violence, et al, is in the same group of settings as porn and the others but it is not one opt-in for all the categories listed in the summary. Each category has its own opt-in.

that's actually much worse. profiling.

Re:"Web forums" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44398119)

and get added to the pervert list and later a new law demands that everyone in the pervert list can't be near children

Re:"Web forums" (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44398183)

Not later, now!

Cameron has already stated that the list should be available to police and Social Services.

Social Services have said they would like to use the list to determine custody of children.

Re:"Web forums" (1)

AHuxley (892839) | about a year ago | (#44398173)

...seriously? I think most govs see forums as a gateway.
Post enough and a user becomes liked, builds trust and the same interests gets strangers chatting. A useful person who is respectful or productive might get invited into darker time limited/ or "alphanumeric" chatrooms where they are further tested..
Beyond that is encryption and historically hard to track, invites into user generated chatrooms that last hours with very few members.
So from the govs view, stop the meetings, stop the easy entry, stop the introduction chats, stop the sites using the First Amendment to push the limits of 'art', 'politics', 'food', 'war', 'sex', 'faith', 'computing'...citizen journalism
Or the long term exposure to "thoughtcrime" material thats upsetting to new gov/mil staff exposing the actions, corruption, deaths, theft, lies ...of the organisations they entered.

Re:"Web forums" (2)

AmiMoJo (196126) | about a year ago | (#44398289)

Looking at the image [ibtimes.com] in TFA it appears that Facebook, MySpace, Instagram, G+, LinkedIn and all the other social networking sites people seem to love will be blocked by default. Presumably very large numbers of people will opt-in to seeing them, and hopefully at the same time untick all the other boxes as well. Unfortunately the fact that their choices are logged will probably discourage them for deselecting everything.

Re:"Web forums" (1)

Idetuxs (2456206) | about a year ago | (#44398331)

Web forums are the heart of the Internet, seriously. If you're looking for info about a subject, I have no doubt that you'll find a forum, within seconds, full of users talking about that and willing to give you more information, tips and tricks.

From TFA: "The company argued that porn filters will not solve the problem of child pornography and will only create new problems." I don't think that kind of pornography is in the 'open' web, but buried in parallel networks. That move is obviously for other reasons.

What a surprise (4, Insightful)

El_Muerte_TDS (592157) | about a year ago | (#44397991)

And in the future years it will also include sites critical of the government, large corporations, etc.

Re:What a surprise (1)

boorack (1345877) | about a year ago | (#44398007)

Content critical of the government, banksters and corporations is already included in this list as "esoteric material".

Re:What a surprise (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44398069)

The real question is:

Who decides what is to be considered extremist?

Re:What a surprise (1)

cheekyjohnson (1873388) | about a year ago | (#44398259)

That's far from the only question; much of what they're trying to block is ambiguous. I guess some think that subjectivity simply doesn't exist and everything is set in stone, or more likely, everything that they personally disagree with will be blocked so they simply don't care.

Re:What a surprise (2)

TheBogBrushZone (975846) | about a year ago | (#44398303)

Given that they are keeping the blacklist secret surely WikiLeaks is already going to be on said list.

Just like 1984. (4, Insightful)

bejiitas_wrath (825021) | about a year ago | (#44397995)

The ministry of truth will define what is allowable content and which is not. This using the Royal baby as a distraction to implement totalitarian control of the Internet. Just waint until they start blocking all "unwanted" content.

Re:Just like 1984. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44398027)

Wait until it's not possible to opt-out anymore.
Give em finger they will byte off your whole hand.

Re:Just like 1984. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44398161)

The ministry of truth will define what is allowable content and which is not. This using the Royal baby as a distraction to implement totalitarian control of the Internet. Just waint until they start blocking all "unwanted" content.

Allow me to continue the flow of cliches:

  • Who will filter the filterers?
  • First they came for the child molesters, then they came for the porn addicts, then they came for the environmentalists, Xbox mod-chippers and the moslems and I never spoke out. By the time they came to take me to the KZ camp for downloading information on "liberalism, atheism and freedom of speech" there was none left to speak out.
  • The tree of liberty must be watered from time to time with the blood of Internet users and ISP filtersystem administrators. It is it’s natural manure.

I don't mean to trivialise this draconian policy but let's not start making up gutter-press headlines quite yet. I'll be surprised if this survives a trip to the UK Supreme Court and if they fail to strike this down there are EU level courts that deal with this type of censorship and restriction of freedom of speech. That's assuming people can be bothered to take an active interest in squelching this sort of thing at birth. At the very least it should be possible to force a change from opt-in to opt-out by default.

Re:Just like 1984. (1)

spottedkangaroo (451692) | about a year ago | (#44398267)

[quibble: You may be shocked to find that you have your its and it's backwards...]

Re:Just like 1984. (1)

mpeskett (1221084) | about a year ago | (#44398355)

UK Supreme Court

We don't have one in quite the same sense as the US. There's a "court of last resort", but it can't overturn laws as passed by Parliament.

Powers could really stand to be more separated. As it stands, we have a powerful Prime Minister (chief executive type) selected by being the leader of the largest party in Parliament (legislative), and normally with a safe enough majority to pass whatever law they want. The judiciary is independent but can't change the law.

Re:Just like 1984. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44398185)

How long will it be until the opt-out option is no longer available.

Re:Just like 1984. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44398251)

You are a conspiracy theorist.

It is a curious feeling when conspiracy theorists dominate the moderation on Slashdot.

I for one (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44397997)

I for one welcome our new goverment overlords

Of course. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44398001)

I doubt anyone who thought about it expected anything else. Give someone the power to censor one thing with near impunity, and they'll censor everything that they don't like. This is what happens when the government mandates that 'offensive' things be censored.

Why yes! I WOULD like to opt in! (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44398009)

I want to opt in to block all ads, spam and popups!

What do you mean no?

I find them offensive!

The terrorists! (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44398019)

Everyone who now opts-out will be held as a terrorist if they should ever enter a court of justice, now.
Or a pedo.
Or a suicider, or criminal, or mass anarchy organizer, or unsuitable as a parent because they consume porn.

America, please take back your lobbyists and religions zealots.
It is those people that are leading the entire thing. These people should be kicked out of government for corrupting the process.

Remember when government used to be the tool of the people, the will of the people, to do their bidding on a larger scale?
Long gone are those days. It is now a separate entity.
It may as well be a 2nd genesis of life living in amongst Life As We Know It since it is so autonomous and separate from what We The People actually WANT done.

Plausible deniability (2)

Hentes (2461350) | about a year ago | (#44398029)

I just opted in cuz I wanted to read some forums, Mom!

Re:Plausible deniability (2)

moderators_are_w*nke (571920) | about a year ago | (#44398059)

Well yes. The more they filter, the more people will opt out.

Yes please, I'd like to view terror training vids. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44398035)

What!? Why don't they just put a "Drop me into some hellhole and throw away the key." check box on the form?

yes, but will it block the important ones? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44398037)

will it block access to pr0n, h4xX, wrz, TPB, Goatse, Rick Astley and cat videos?

Only a matter of time (2)

next_ghost (1868792) | about a year ago | (#44398047)

How long until the filter includes "fringe political content"? Reply with your guess.

Re:Only a matter of time (1)

aaaaaaargh! (1150173) | about a year ago | (#44398081)

0 days

and if not from the beginning sites like Wikileaks will probably be on the list very soon, too...

Re:Only a matter of time (2)

SuricouRaven (1897204) | about a year ago | (#44398103)

That's what the 'extremist' in 'extremist and terrorist content' means.

Re:Only a matter of time (1)

next_ghost (1868792) | about a year ago | (#44398131)

Sure, from the viewpoint of the establishment, it's the exact same thing, but let's define the terms from the viewpoint of average Joe Citizen. Joe Citizen can usually tell the two apart.

Re:Only a matter of time (1)

Carewolf (581105) | about a year ago | (#44398229)

Especially because they are not blocking just extremist and terrorist content, but extremist and terrorist relatedt conten. That can be anything. Other than that web forums can pretty much covers anywhere you can exercise free speech.

Re:Only a matter of time (1)

AHuxley (892839) | about a year ago | (#44398287)

They could do it in a very quick way.
Your "fringe political content" link would be flagged to say wikipedia and would not be displayed in the UK. A point would be added to your isp's tacking database
So the actions of big pharma, UK mil, UK gov, agribusiness, oil, countries the UK loves, organ harvesting, deaths would be blocked/protected as "a matter before a court" can be now.
Citation needed would be an invite to memory hole.
In a very short time, interested/trusted parties could delink any historical or political or news reports/sites.
More news would be locked behind pay walls, sites could be blocked per 'page' by 24/7 global sock puppets.
Your "ability to link" is reduced to freedom to speculate in the UK.
Return to work after clicking too much on a site over the weekend and you get the "violent material, extremist and terrorist related content, anorexia and eating disorder websites, suicide related websites, alcohol, smoking, web forums" chat.
Your isp reported to your local gov who informed your boss again.
Too many chats and your job is gone, security clearance gone and your on some community protection list for life.
What the Soviet Union and China had/have to ban, the UK gov can shape with private sector "community standards".

Did I told you so? (1)

devent (1627873) | about a year ago | (#44398049)

In the news of http://news.slashdot.org/story/13/07/16/0030227/leaked-letter-shows-uk-isps-and-government-at-war-over-default-filters [slashdot.org]
I have prophesied that it is not about porn and that the filter will expand beyond porn.
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3977245&cid=44294083 [slashdot.org]

Re:Did I told you so? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44398125)

That's not very prophetic, since they did exactly the same thing in the past [edri.org] (see bottom half of page 7).

Re:Did I told you so? (1)

devent (1627873) | about a year ago | (#44398225)

Of course not since there are no true prophecies that have come true. I use prophecy as the second definition: 2. a prediction or guess. My guess was based on earlier experiences in other countries and the overall opinion I have of politicians.

Re:Did I told you so? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44398339)

Let me rephrase: that wasn't exactly a very wild guess/hard prediction, since they did exactly the same thing in the UK in the past [edri.org] (see bottom half of page 7).

Who will make the list? (1)

aaaaaaargh! (1150173) | about a year ago | (#44398063)

Huawei or another private company, or a government "ministry for cencorship"? And who controls the people who make the list?

Just curious...

Re:Who will make the list? (1)

AHuxley (892839) | about a year ago | (#44398307)

Violent material some expanded films and videos, computer games, publications and 'web' gov classification team.
Extremist and terrorist related content - police/MI5/6
Anorexia and eating disorder websites, suicide related websites, alcohol, smoking - Medical teams.
Add in the public–private partnerships and faith based groups, business, foreign diplomats, multinationals, legal teams, NGO's... contractors..

This is the fucking Nanny state (2)

vikingpower (768921) | about a year ago | (#44398083)

Are people so bored, and mentally so obese from their consumption patterns, that they actually take this crap without protesting ? If this happened in the country I live in, I would be nagging MPs, protesting loudly and write mag / newspaper articles. How can Brits just take this silently ?

Re:This is the fucking Nanny state (1)

Godwin O'Hitler (205945) | about a year ago | (#44398109)

How can Brits just take this silently ?

Whoa, at least give us a day or two to react.

Re:This is the fucking Nanny state (5, Insightful)

peragrin (659227) | about a year ago | (#44398151)

How can the people of the USA stand idly by while the NSA snoops through their personal files by the minute?

How can the people of the USA stand idly by while the TSA has the authority to search your car while your not there.(see Rochester NY about a month ago)

How can the people of the USA stand idly by while the Border Patrol are allowed to randomly inspect and any within 150 miles of the border at any time without a warrant?(again in NY)

All those things have been done in the USA in the last two years.

Re:This is the fucking Nanny state (1)

cheekyjohnson (1873388) | about a year ago | (#44398275)

How can the people of the USA stand idly by while the TSA has the authority to search your car while your not there.

Well, they also grope you or scan you with invasive scanners if you try to get on a plane.

Oh, and free speech zones and protest permits. Can't let people who say things we don't like be heard, now can we? If it's to keep us safe, I'll accept anything!

No surprise (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44398097)

As I recall, when Australia tried the same trick, the filters were even blocking out any site criticising the filtering.

Once politicians start censoring there's no limit.

Schools And Universities (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44398107)

I'm a school governor here in the UK. We will not be in a position to 'Opt Out' of this blocking for our School'. I expect it to be the same for universities. I would also image that Corporate Governance would find it very difficult to opt out too. So just forget the internet at all those places.

Re:Schools And Universities (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44398143)

Don't worry. Your students already have Tor.

-- Peacefire

Re:Schools And Universities (1)

AHuxley (892839) | about a year ago | (#44398327)

Cleared academics will have the 'net'.
Support staff and students can make do with the filter as they do at home.
They have all the tax payer funded catalogues, electronic databases and journals for free... why do they need the net?
If a student needs to do research on the 'net' they can do it in the library under the new CCTV.

Checkbox (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44398117)

I'll opt in for everything but "smoking". That should make the scratch their heads.

How will this be sold? (3, Interesting)

longk (2637033) | about a year ago | (#44398127)

Will they continue to call these connections "Internet" connections? At what point does it really become an "Intranet"?

Re:How will this be sold? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44398155)

Will they continue to call these connections "Internet" connections? At what point does it really become an "Intranet"?

It's to be known as the Puritanet

Most dont matter..... (1)

djsmiley (752149) | about a year ago | (#44398145)

but web forum |Yup, that'll kill it.

Re:Most dont matter..... (1)

djsmiley (752149) | about a year ago | (#44398147)

As in....... facebook?

Re:Most dont matter..... (1)

Carewolf (581105) | about a year ago | (#44398245)

As in any place users can post content uncensored. So all of the internet.

Re:Most dont matter..... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44398217)

First off, the screenshot in TFA refers to "social networks" not "web forums". Second, TFA is talking about an existing filter run by one ISP, not the government's requirements for mandatory filtering. Third, in the example filter in TFA, you can opt into the categories independently: you don't have to affirm "I am a terrorist" to get
porn or "I am a wanker" to get on Facebook.

Talk Talk's option for filtering social-network sites probably suits parents who don't want their younger children broadcasting on Facebook. I doubt it's there because of government pressure.

(Un)forseen beneficial side-effect (3, Funny)

HetMes (1074585) | about a year ago | (#44398165)

UK's citizen becoming experts on web technology, encryption and obfuscation in 3... 2... 1... I mean, take a man's porn away and he'll build a rocket to Mars to get it.

Relax (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44398175)

This is just an efficiency measure in order to know which folks' communication to wiretap.

It's only a temporary measure until the capacities for wiretapping 100% are there. Even if they have to give it up after a few months, they will have a lot of profiling data to work with for years.

Opt in on what? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44398181)

Just the content or also special surveillance?

I see what they're doing (5, Interesting)

magpie (3270) | about a year ago | (#44398187)

The ISPs don't want to implement this as it will cost them money to run so what they are doing is stymieing it by putting everything that could possibley be non-child friendly on the filtered list. Thus making the net largly usless to the majority of adults, thus getting everyone to opt out and then they can say to the gov, "look we implemented it, infact we went beyond what you asked". As almost everyone opted out they can put most of the kit they had tied up running this to more profitable use.

"Opting out" (1)

Cant use a slash wtf (1973166) | about a year ago | (#44398195)

Sounds like a free ticket on to several government watch lists.
If you opt out of the filter, you can guarantee all of your internet history will be saved by the government and I wouldn't be surprised if you could find your way on to no-fly lists and such.
I am very, very glad I don't live in the UK right now. Although, living in Australia, it probably won't be too long before my government follows suit.

Retroshare. (2)

SuricouRaven (1897204) | about a year ago | (#44398201)

I'm already teaching several friends how to use it. Got a little network set up now. There is porn.

Well, not photographic porn. We're just not into that. It's all explicit artwork and comics.

Between this and the NSA/GCHQ/everyone-else revelations, I'm expecting Retroshare and similar things to grow in popularity a great deal. It's like WASTE, but less buggy.

THIS IS NOT "opt in" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44398257)

Please stop propagating the spammish tactics employed in the law(!) where "opting in" (to free, unfiltered access) now means what rightfully is termed "opting out" (of filtering). Are we really that stupid and easily hoodwinked by hysterical pressure groups and their pet lawgivers?

removing of the filtering can be an embarrasment. (5, Insightful)

blackest_k (761565) | about a year ago | (#44398291)

Opting out of filtering isn't easy,
I use 3 mobile and after several years of unfiltered content began hitting the blocks fairly regularly and not because of porn.

With the rather extended winter in Ireland the traditional start of spring and the gardening calender is 17th of March but this year the cold miserable weather continued through to May. One area I looked into was grow lights and thats where I started to run into blocks, as the greatest source of information on grow lights are cannabis growers. The filter provider, who ever that is, obviously thinks its impossible for an adult to want to investigate grow lights for anything else.

In my youth i might have been interested but as an older adult with little interest in fecking up my life any further not really. I just wanted to have a nice garden.

So then I went to the phone shop for 3 and asked about getting these blocks removed, having to deal with 20 something women and being the typical neck beard geek wanting the porn filter removed it was pretty obvious what they thought of me and what I wanted the filter removing for. Being the type not to give a crap what anyone thinks of me I jumped through the hoops, I had to provide Id they had to get in touch with the area managers office for his/her personal approval and it was something nobody had asked them for before apparently. Eventually the middle aged pervert got the filters lifted on his internet access.

The real problem with internet filtering is the blocking of any and all sites deemed to be unsuitable. I'm an adult I can make my own choices. Is my aged mother going to jump through hoops so she can get an unfiltered connection? I don't think so and who else who cares about their reputation will stand up to these tactics.

The wholesale blocking and censoring of objectionable material is fundamentally wrong because what is objectionable for the censors will never match up with what people being censored want and need to know. Even if 95% of what is blocked we have no interest in its the other 5% which matters.

I would be surprised to think that many people on this site wouldn't have long been aware that we are monitored and censored already, just mostly unobtrusively. It doesn't make a big difference if your not interested in becoming a terrorist or criminal.

Unfortunately the public outing of Prism seems to be not causing a retreat on the states attempt to control our access to information but instead a more overt approach. To be honest there is little we can do about it, we change our political leaders of one shade to another and you'd have to be an idiot to think that the surveillance and censorship ever recedes with a change of office.

Maybe a fringe party might change something if they ever got any power but that will never happen while the majority of people are apathetic to whats going on. Doesn't help that most fringe parties are usually complete loons over some core value which right minded people will never accept.

There is a chance that the "Porn" filters will not hold, there is a more liberal society, we don't twitch behind the net curtains like our parents generation who are long retired. May be enough people will opt out of filtering if they realise that its necessary to resist the decay of our freedoms to think and make our own informed choices. The wisdom of age, tends to be to keep your head down, work hard and don't get noticed but with popular public support from the younger generations the older generations may quietly revolt too.

And more (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44398293)

I've been in UK and their porn filter also censors a lot of spanish websites. Regular news sites nothing fancy.

The Law or the Implementation? (1)

TheBogBrushZone (975846) | about a year ago | (#44398295)

The ORG surveyed ISPs on what they will be implementing rather than what the government is asking them to do which (and I think this sets a far more worrying precedent) is not subject to public scrutiny and, given the lack of information even from 'rebel' ISPs, may well be classified under the Official Secrets Act as it is in Australia.

Even worse... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44398323)

Why are we focusing on UK? At least, all ISPs there have "smart" systems that are supposed to block only offending URLs, and the whole thing is opt-out.

In Russia, the same things are blocked, with no possibility to opt out, and with most ISPs implementing the block by IP address (together with all other sites that happen to share it), not by URL, (that's why www.dreamwidth.org is completely inaccessible due to one suicide-related post).

A strike is scheduled on the1st of August against additional laws that add more categories of banned content.

No porn please, we're British. (1)

__Reason__ (181288) | about a year ago | (#44398341)

n/t

So whose advertising will be on the blocked page? (2)

mysidia (191772) | about a year ago | (#44398349)

That's the real question one should be asking.

There will be plenty of people and companies who suffer by this arbitrary government-supported webjacking --- and probably some small number of companies getting a big fat check by this.

Personally; I think it's a very bad thing that the UK ISPs are even looking at traffic headers; let alone performing traffic interception and blocking of sites based on someone's opinion that the site is too violent, or offensive and such and such.

How long before sites that degrade the monarchy or the current government parties or officials, or competing candidates during the election/other politically inconvenient sites get blocked too?

And by asking to be unblocked (2)

dgr73 (1055610) | about a year ago | (#44398359)

.. you will end up on a watchlist. -- Now that is a guess, but I guess it's not too far out of considering recent events.

Hey! What happened?!? (3, Insightful)

tlambert (566799) | about a year ago | (#44398373)

Hey! What happened?!?

I ticked the "block intolerance" checkbox, and now I can't reach the web filter configuration page any more!

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