Show your Support for an Open Internet

How?
Here are ten things you can do to show your support for an Open Internet against Government censorship of the Internet.

Please add yourself to our Supporter database and mark off when you have done one or all of these ten things, so that we can keep track of how our collective lobbying efforts are going. We will also post a weekly list of Open Internet Advocates, who are supporters who have marked off five or more of these things.

 

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1
Lobby a Lib.

Possibly our best chance to stop the filter from ever becoming law, is to convince the Liberal Party to vote against it in the Senate. Therefore, we need you to Lobby a Lib by:

 

1. Visiting a Liberal Member of Parliament or Senator;

 

2. Writing to the Liberal Party Senators in your State;

 

3. Calling or emailing as many different Liberal Party Members of Parliament or Senators as you can;

 

4. Letting us know what your Liberal Member of Parliament or Senator says.

 

We explain in more detail how to a Libby a Lib with each of these four steps on this dedicated page.

 

Tweet This Tweet that you have Lobbied a Lib

2
Write a Letter to the Editor.

Writing a letter to your local newspaper achieves two things. First, it highlights the issue of Internet censorship to people to read newspapers; and second, it emphasises to editors that this issue is important and should receive more mainstream media attention.

 

When writing to your letter to the editor, keep in mind the following:

  • Make sure your letter is timely. Try and respond to a story, op-ed piece, or letter that was recently printed in the paper. Also, the sooner you respond and the sooner you get your letter in, the more likely it is to be printed.
  • Comply with the newspaper's letter writing guidelines. All letters should include your name, home address and day and evening phone numbers. Newspapers do not accept pseudonyms. Also, do not send your letter as an email attachment.
  • Keep it short. Most newspapers will not publish any more than 200 words.
  • Stick to one issue in the letter. Although there are many arguments against the Government's plan to filter the Internet, each letter you write should focus on one issue or argument. Also, be specific and make your letter persuasive.
  • Where possible, use a personal story or anecdote to draw the reader into the letter. This will make your letter more relevant and interesting.

 

Here are the contact details for some of the major newspapers around the country:

 

The Australian

The Daily Telegraph

The Courier Mail

Herald Sun

Adelaide Advertiser

The Mercury

Northern Territory News

Sydney Morning Herald

The Age

Australian Financial Review

Canberra Times

 

Tweet This Tweet that you have written a letter to the editor

3
Call talkback radio.

Talkback radio is a great way to get the community talking about the Government's plan to censor the Internet. Importantly politicians also listen to talkback radio, so it also reminds the Government and the Liberal Party that this is an important issue that matters to Australians. Before calling make sure you read the Learn More page on this site as well as the Fact Sheets so that you have all the facts at your disposal. Also, try to tie your call to a current news story or topic, as you are more likely to put on air if your call is considered relevant to the events of that day.

 

If you regularly listen to a particular talkback show, start by calling into that show, as you are likely to know how to frame the issue to appeal to its host and audience. But if you don't listen to talkback radio, or if you want to reach a wider audience, here are some of the various radio stations that you might like to call.

 

Tweet This Tweet that you called talkback radio

4
Donate to Electronic Frontiers Australia.

EFA relies on membership fees and donations to fund its activities. Renew your membership or make a donation so that we can continue to fund our campaign against the Government's mandatory Internet filter. Learn more about why we need your support and how your money is spent here.

 

Tweet This Tweet that you have donated to EFA

5
Collect signatures for the Senate Internet Censorship Petition.

In addition to signing the online petition, we are also looking for volunteers to collect printed signatures. If you would like to gather signatures for the petition, please download and read the Senate Internet Censorship Petition - Instructions before printing the Senate Internet Censorship Petition. Simply print out the petition and take it to work, parties, and anywhere else you might be able to talk to people about Internet censorship and persuade them to sign this petition.

 

We have badges that you can use to help promote the petition. If you would like to help publicise the petition, you can copy the code (next to each badge) and paste it onto your blog or website. Or feel free to right click on the image, save it, and use it however you would like.

EFAPetition
EFAPetition

 

Tweet This Tweet that you collected signatures for the petition

6
Contact Senator Conroy, the Minister for Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy.

Calling, writing or emailing Senator Stephen Conroy will let him know that his constituents, the Australian public, do not support his impractical plan.

 

Call You can call the Minister's office on (03) 9650 1188 and let them know your objections.

 

Write You mighty also wish to write a personalised letter to the Minister. If you are not sure what to say, you might wish to use this as a template:

 

Dear Minister,

 

As an Australian and an internet user, I have serious concerns about your mandatory Internet filtering initiative.

 

Given the importance your Government has attached to modernising Australia's broadband network, pursuing a policy that can only slow down and increase the costs of home internet access seems misguided at best. Australian households are diverse, and most do not have young children, so mandating a one-size-fits-all approach will not serve the public well. Home-based PC filters give parents the power to choose what is right for their families. And, as you well know, the mandatory filter will not provide any real protection for children from inappropriate content or any other online threat.

 

We value our freedom of communication. Given the amount of Internet content available, the Government will never be able to classify even a small percentage of it. I feel that the time and money could be spent in better ways both to protect children and improve Australia's digital infrastructure. Australian parents need better education about the risks their children face online. Trying to rid the Internet of objectionable content is futile, and can only distract from that mission.

 

Sincerely,

 

Internet User

City, State

 

Send your letter to:

 

Senator Stephen Conroy

Minister for Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy

Level 4, 4 Treasury Place

Melbourne Vic 3002

 

Email Although not as effective as a letter or call, every bit helps. Email Senator Conroy at: [email protected].

 

You might also want to have a look at Bernard Keane's advice on how to write a great letter. Also, if you receive a form letter reply from your Member of Parliament, Mark Newton has drafted a form letter that you might like to send in reply.

 

Tweet This Tweet that you have contacted Senator Conroy

7
Create content.

You can help spread the word by creating content online that illuminates the flaws in the Government's policy. Write a blog post, create a YouTube video, or draw a cartoon that comments on the proposed filter. Disseminate your content virally by tweeting about it and/or posting it on Facebook. Use the #openinternet hashtag to make easier for people to find your content online.

 

Also, we are looking to create a library of material that people can refer to and use, including fliers, posters, fact sheets, cartoons, videos. Please email [email protected] with your content, so we can add it to the library.

 

Tweet This Tweet that you have created some Open Internet content

8
Engage with the Open Internet Campaign Hub.

This website is designed to be the campaign hub for all the different individuals and organisations that are that are campaigning against the Government's mandatory Internet filtering policy. Learn more about these groups here.

 

The Open Internet Blog is a space where individuals and organisations can come together to talk about the campaign. Also, follow EFA on Twitter for updates @efa_oz and become a Fan of an Open Internet for Australia on Facebook. By becoming a fan on Facebook you are showing your support and staying informed about the campaign. There is also a lot of lively conversation and debate on the Open Internet Facebook fan page.

 

Tweet This Tweet that you support an Open Internet

9
Talk to your friends and family.

Talking personally with your friends, family and colleagues is probably the most effective way of communicating what is wrong with the Government's mandatory Internet filter. We find that people who work and live on the Internet every day understand why the Government's policy is flawed, but we need to do a better job of communicating to people who don't necessarily have the same familiarity with the Internet why the Government's policy simply won't work. This is why talking to your non-technology savvy friends about the Internet filter can be particularly effective. You might like to start by giving your friends and family this Fact Sheet.

 

Tweet This Tweet that you talked to your family and friends

10
Let us know what action you have taken.

Please add yourself to our Supporter database and mark off when you have done one or all of these ten things, so that we can keep track of how our collective lobbying efforts are going. We will also post a weekly list of Open Internet Advocates, who are supporters who have marked off five or more of these things.