Goodbye Down Under???

I wish this were a hoax. I really hope this will turn out to be a hoax. My Plurk buddies are all posting links to Australian news sources claiming that Australia will ban/block access to SL and other games. (Let’s not get side-tracked on the “other games” part of that sentence, okay??? That is the terminology the articles are using.)

This stinks. Big time. I chatted with a friend of mine who lived in Australia for 18 months on corporate assignment. He assures me that Aussies love their games as much as anyone. I asked if they would fight this. He said he thought it depended on how easy it was going to be to circumvent the blocks. But….. in matters such as these….. I think I would become a radical. Protest, write letters, march. Do whatever to get this overturned. Get your laws out of my personal PRIVATE behavior.

Taken from the online Sidney Morning Herald:

This means that even Australians who are aged above 15 and want to obtain the adult-level games online will be unable to do so. . It will undoubtedly raise the ire of gamers, the average age of which is 30 in Australia, according to research commissioned by the Interactive Entertainment Association of Australia.

Taken from the online Inquisitor:


And this from the online Herald Sun:

AUSTRALIA will join China in implementing mandatory censoring of the internet under plans put forward by the Federal Government.

The revelations emerge as US tech giants Google, Microsoft and Yahoo, and a coalition of human rights and other groups unveiled a code of conduct aimed at safeguarding online freedom of speech and privacy.

The government has declared it will not let internet users opt out of the proposed national internet filter.

3 Responses to “Goodbye Down Under???”

  1. 1 daleinnis June 25, 2009 at 2:01 pm

    Wild! My impression is that that law was originally a bad on selling any video game with an Adult (or anything worse than “15”) rating (whatever the Aussie equivalent is of an ESRB rating) in Australia (which is stupid enough), and that it was recently extended to cover online sales as well.

    The (stupid) intent being to prevent stores from selling bloody or sexy games to people in Australia. I doubt that the legislators were thinking (if the verb “thinking” can even be applied to them) of things like Second Life in particular. But it’ll be interesting to see what happens!

  2. 2 Brian June 25, 2009 at 2:34 pm

    Before you get to upset you should be aware that this is a proposal and, as of yesterday, seems to be going nowhere.

    Doing some quick googling shows that some blogs and a lot of comments are saying that it has happened or will happen. Most news sources show it as a bill that was introduced, but that was then scuttled because they couldn’t get enough votes.

    Your second source (Herald Sun) says that “Communications minister Stephen Conroy revealed the mandatory censorship to the Senate estimates committee …”, but that was back in October and it still hasn’t been voted on.

    I’m discounting your first source (Inquisitor) for two reasons. One, it doesn’t say anything new, just the quotes of Conroy. Two, he equates Conroy with “Goebbels” which, while it may or may not be accurate, doesn’t make me feel that he’s an unbiased reporter.

    So, something to watch, but it may just be much ado about nothing.

  3. 3 ahuva18 June 26, 2009 at 6:05 am

    @Brian – thank you. you know I value your opinion. so you pointing out that it has not yet in fact HAPPENED, is nearly as comforting as it being a hoax. *hugs* and I have to agree with your remarks about the reporter from the Inquisitor. 🙂

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