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Old 04-21-2006
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Default Gonzales calls for mandatory Web labeling law

http://news.com.com/2100-1028_3-6063554.html

Quote:
Web site operators posting sexually explicit information must place official government warning labels on their pages or risk being imprisoned for up to five years, the Bush administration proposed Thursday.

A mandatory rating system will "prevent people from inadvertently stumbling across pornographic images on the Internet," Attorney General Alberto Gonzales said at an event in Alexandria, Va.

The Bush administration's proposal would require commercial Web sites to place "marks and notices" to be devised by the Federal Trade Commission on each sexually explicit page. The definition of sexually explicit broadly covers depictions of everything from sexual intercourse and masturbation to "sadistic abuse" and close-ups of fully clothed genital regions.

The path to hell is paved with good intentions.

This is a baby step down a long, painful road of government regulation of the internet.


Mark my words: Someday this site will be forced to have 'marks and notices' that define it as 'assault weapons related' or some such, all for the good of the children, of course.


Last edited by UZI4U : 04-21-2006 at 10:25 PM.
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Old 04-22-2006
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Default Internet Governmental regulation...

...is a sad truth not only in China or North Korea, as you can say. It's actually the USA that led the way immediately after 9/11... for "National Security reasons", you know... All other nations just followed the marked path. Even here in Italy, the (luckily now "PAST") Government has imposed registration of all users that acceed the Internet via public places like Web-Caf?s, through a Law that follows many of the steps of the Patriot Act, especially where it says that the Law Enforcement authorities have the right to inspect your "Internet Traffic" (read: whatever you see/do on the Internet) without warrant.

I see dark times coming, guys... :mad:
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Old 04-22-2006
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Default

Actually, China was the first to step down this path.

But they won't be the last.
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Old 04-22-2006
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Stupid moralists. This won't prevent anyone from accessing inappropriate content, simply due to the fact that it's easy to get from many different sources. Off the top of my head, I can think of P2P, instant messaging, message boards, friends trading CD-Rs - many ways. Many sites and services with possible or absolute adult content have clean disclaimer pages, anyway.

The principle of the proposal is horrible, but the reality of enforcing it is totally laughable. Porno spam? Good luck busting someone (or someone's hijacked computer) in Russia, Estonia, Poland, South Korea, China, Taiwan, or the Philippines. Even if they got rid of all the US spammers, unscrupulous e-mail marketers would just pay bulk-emailers in Mexico, Canada, the Caribbean, and the aforementioned countries to peddle their crap.

Enforcing the law for websites would be even more laughable amd likely cause the whole thing to collapse under its own weight. Just one hundred "valid" complaints in a week could likely overwhelm whatever agency was enforcing this - and they would likely get even more than that. Some busybodies who can't stand adults talking adult talk would actually be more trouble than assets with all the stuff they submit. Anti-porn crusaders would probably clog the agency with reports of valid, obvious porn sites in an attempt to get them shut down.

Hell, many sites already generate unique addresses for content (for administrative ease and media security reasons), and directly linking to such addresses would either bring back invalid results or a restricted content warning. And it's already possible to have threads on many message boards system be automatically deleted after a certain amount of time. In addition, there are many foreign websites who don't have to follow US law in this matter.

P2P and instant messaging? Forget about it. P2P users and servers are harder to track down, bust, and shutdown than websites. Additionally, most of the porn one would inadvertantly come across is either in the search results (which likely wouldn't be valid or worth following up on), or the result of downloading porn content renamed as something valid (like, oh, some pirate DVD rip that the downloader really should be buying - I'm sure the MPAA would appreciate the complaint that your illegitimately acquired DVD rip of "King Kong" was really a renamed video file of "Gangbang Grannies 66" ).

Instant messaging? Many sex-talking IMs are either desired by the user, or software robots. It's very easy to make new IM accounts. Good luck busting or following up on any of it.

Finally, the ACLU, EFF, and porn industry lawyers would probably be all over this like flies on honey. Total First Amendment violation the moment someone gets busted over this.

So, I wouldn't worry too much about it. It'll just be another failure like the War On Drugs, if they ever decided to implement and enforce this ruling. Actually, it'd be even harder to enforce than the drug laws. I know that I could probably generate 1000 misrepresented obscenities in a day. A motivated programmer with a bunch of porn (and what programmer doesn't have 10+ gigs of porn?) could write a simple program to generate 10,000 or more . It's not like synthesizing cocaine or growing cannabis, which are physically limited by production and transport methods.

Gonzales can wish out his ass about this all he wants, but it ain't going to fly so long as the US Constitution is in effect.
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Old 04-23-2006
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Default All with you.

It's hard already to put an effective LEGITIMATE surveillance on the Internet (I'm talking about the investigations about child pornography, etc.). Complete governmental control over the Internet simply isn't feasable by now. It could have been done if the necessary steps were taken by the time that Internet was a newborn baby, but now, it's simply too spread to be all regimented under a control system. Just imagine how many US-based domains should be controlled by the US authorities...
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