• Concerns over the scope of the filter

    Mar 29 2010, 6:40

    The Australian reports this morning┬áthat some leading academics are concerned that the Government’s Internet filtering policy will lead to censorship of news and current affairs:

    Three leading academics, including UNSW Journalism and Media Research director Catharine Lumby, warned that the classification mechanism behind the filter was so broad that it could result in the work of professional and citizen journalists being placed on the filter’s blacklist.

    The federal government has proposed using the Office of Film and Literature Classification’s Refused Classification (RC) setting to qualify material for the blacklist.

    Communications Minister Stephen Conroy has consistently used RC as a synonym for material that is illegal offline, such as child pornography and content that incites racial hatred, crime and terrorism.

    However, Professor Lumby and colleagues Leila Green and John Hartley argued in a recent submission on the filter scheme that the RC rating, which also deals with themes around drug use and suicide, could potentially trap far more because it was designed for films.

    Read more here.

    This view was also contained in a report that these same three academics – Professor Catharine Lumby, Professor Lelia Green and Professor John Hartley – released last year, “Untangling the net: the scope of content caught by mandatory internet filtering.” You can access that report here.