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Leaked Australian blacklist reveals banned sites

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Asher Moses
Sydney Morning Herald
Friday, March 20, 2009

The Australian communications regulator’s top-secret blacklist of banned websites has been leaked on to the web and paints a harrowing picture of Australia’s forthcoming internet censorship regime.

Wikileaks, an anonymous document repository for whistleblowers, obtained the list, which has been seen by this website, and plans to publish it for public consumption on its website imminently.

Wikileaks has previously published the blacklists for Thailand, Denmark and Norway.

University of Sydney associate professor Bjorn Landfeldt said the leaked list “constitutes a condensed encyclopedia of depravity and potentially very dangerous material”.

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He said the leaked list would become “the concerned parent’s worst nightmare” as curious children would inevitably seek it out.

  • A d v e r t i s e m e n t

But about half of the sites on the list are not related to child porn and include a slew of online poker sites, YouTube links, regular gay and straight porn sites, Wikipedia entries, euthanasia sites, websites of fringe religions such as satanic sites, fetish sites, Christian sites, the website of a tour operator and even a Queensland dentist.

“It seems to me as if just about anything can potentially get on the list,” Landfelt said.

The blacklist is maintained by ACMA and provided to makers of internet filtering software that parents can opt to install on their PCs.

However, if the Government proceeds with its mandatory internet filtering scheme, sites on the blacklist will be blocked for all Australians. The Government has flagged plans to expand the blacklist to 10,000 sites or more.

Full article here

This article was posted: Friday, March 20, 2009 at 11:07 am





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