This post is part of my 30 days of geek challenge.
I’m totally against internet censorship, whether that’s full blown censorship (eg china style) or the western so-called “child-porn filtering”.
The fact is, any system capable of censoring the internet can be taken by someone in power and used against the population, to block undesirable websites – that could be alternative political parties, websites discussing legislation of Marijuana, euthanasia websites, sites featuring “immoral” content such as gay/lesbian content, BDSM, atheist or other non-mainstream interest sites.
It’s a dangerous tool to hand over to someone, even if you trust the government that’s currently in power, will you be able to do the same in 10, 20, 50 years?
The role of a government should be to protect it’s citizens from harm, not make moral questions about what we should think or access to suit their own beliefs.
Governments love using the claim of blocking child porn as a way of getting filtering established – after all, who’s going to try and argue against stopping child porn?
However filtering it won’t stop abuse of children or pedofiles from downloading content, much of the illegal content sharing is done via alternative protocols and wouldn’t be impacted in the slightest.
I entirely support governments going after people downloading or producing that content, but we should not be handing over our freedom in order todo so.