Sunday, November 11, 2012

The Muzzle

I was on the Internet surfing sites when my dog, Nawab, walked in.

"I have never really liked muzzles" said Nawab.

"Neither do I" replied I wondering where this conversation was going to take us.  Yes my dog talks! And no I will not go through that story again.  I mean Google it up if you care.

"Easy for you to say, you are not the one wearing them" said the feisty dog.

I squirmed, clearly this was not going to be an easy conversation.

"Well you know that the Council does have certain restrictions on noise levels"


"So when they receive a complaint they have to act upon it".

"What's that got to do with muzzling dogs".

"Well they can fine dog owners on the spot, you know".

"You could have asked me first" and that hurt expression on the doggy face again.

"I had and I know you said something about the freedom of expression".

"Well considering freedom of expression is enshrined in your constitution I see no reason to curb it".

"Yes but if it disturbs other people then you can be asked to tone it down".

"And a muzzle is what 'toning it down' means?"

I did not feel like getting into another dogfight so I walked towards my computer.

"So does the Internet still permit free speech?".  Sheesh this dog never lets up!

"Of course it does, what a silly question".

"So why are they proposing that some websites can be filtered out? And who recommends that these websites get to be filtered out?  I thought the Labor Party was forced to abandon its promised mandatory Internet filter because it would never have worked and would not have passed through parliament".  Clearly this dog was a serious news hound.

"Sooo it's all good now?"

"Haven't you read the news?  Experts claim that Australians could see political and religious websites disappear if the Federal Government backs a plan  to hand control over the Internet to the UN's International Telecommunications Union (ITU).  It's bad enough already that comments on websites are getting filtered out.  Gah! I could bite someone right now!"

I knew just what the problem was.

"Don't tell me you have got been filtered out on that forum you post on?".

"Well that is to say..grrr.."

"So have you been 'filtered out as per recommendation' or just 'Filtered Out Forever'?"

"Hey its their loss not mine."

Thank you Stephen Conroy - you fine "keepers of morals" and "upholders of free speech as long as that free speech meets your recommendations". Keep up the good work there is an extra bone sorry wrong reward.

LABOR was forced to abandon its promised mandatory internet filter because it would never have worked and would not have passed through parliament, the Coalition and the Greens said yesterday. 

AN unfettered internet, free of political control and available to everyone could be relegated to cyber-history under a contentious proposal by a little known United Nations body.