back to article 'Happy slapping' vids prompt Brown to push net filters

The availability of gore and violence on the internet has prompted the UK Government to consider backing a campaign to encourage wider awareness and use of net-filtering software. Gordon Brown has ordered ministers to work with ISPs and media watchdog Ofcom to devise a strategy to regulate access to smut and violence online. …

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Hurray!

Everyone loves censorship.

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Anonymous Coward

Stalin era Russia

There was something called the Cold War where people made sure we didn't become part of the USSR.

We though the Cold War was won - it was, and not by us. Gordon Brown and others are moving us into the sort of the society that we used to be so critical of.

Net Filters, neighbourhood snoops tipping off the authorities, cameras at every corner.

Welcome brothers and sisters to Comrade Browns glorious Socialist Republic.

The Thought Police will soon be visiting to ensure your thoughts are pure.

Of course parents could just not give camera phones to their children.....

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internet savy kids

I thought the idea was to get more children in this country online and computer literate (if not actually literate), as hollywood has taught us the draw of violence and sex is a great way to get people interested, and its worked, where is the problem?

I really wish politicians would stop with their meddling in this country. Either fix the deeper issues of discipline, education and decent values in youngsters (and give them something to do when not in school) and we might not have such a problem with them happy slapping each other and the rest of us.

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Anonymous Coward

Always a good idea

I mean, if you cannot see it, it might as well not have happened at all. Slick move.

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Ministry for the bleedin obvious...

Could it be that they are speaking of some kind of "parental control" software? Hmmm it's a tough one, where would kids get parental control from?

Hang on a minute, maybe the parents could ask as some kind of moral guardian (crazy, radical, I know) and restrict what their children see and do until adulthood.

And for anybody who says "yes, but the kids are out of control!", I regularly see parents buying 18+ ultra violent computer games for their kids, even after being warned that it is extremely graphic and disturbing.

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Bronze badge

How about getting coppers...

Off their ar$e and out on the beat - for me it would seem better that the government is telling the yobs that "you will now have a chance of getting caught" rather than "you have a chance to appear in black and white on candid camera", but this will not get much media coverage for Gordon "Babysham" Brown.

OK, so people will get happy slapped, and they will send their video by mms to their friends, and not upload it to youtube. Build a better moustrap, and better mice find their way through it...

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and as if by magic...

http://plif.andkon.com/archive/wc161.gif

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Silver badge

Adult Net filter

dear Mr Brown,

Can I get a filter that allows all the smut and violence through and censors all the crap e-commerce & work type stuff please.

thanks

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Anonymous Coward

@ Stalin era Russia

At least in the cold war you had a clear idea of who and where your "enemy" was. These days, it just becomes just a little too evident that the "enemy" is whithin. See, the problem with Socialism is not the concept itself, but the way it is implemented. It is not per se a repressive regime with Orwellian ambitions. As evident, you can have that – and call it a democracy.

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Anonymous Coward

FFS..

The mainstream news is sanitized to such a banal level that we need sites like youtube to act as a reality check.

Yes much of it's content is disturbing, sickening, obscene and terrifying but there are disturbing, sickening, obscene and terrifying things happening every day and hiding our heads in the sand will not stop that.

We need MORE gore, violence and horror - not on youtube but on the 6 o'clock news so that we can see the unvarnished truth about how badly those 'in charge' of our world are fucking it (and us) up.

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Silver badge

The Lure of the Forbidden

If half of all children look at pornography and violence on-line, putting in filters to stop them will just attract the other half to also want to look at it all.

Whatever happened to parental responsibility?

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Wankers

The solution to the availability of 'unsuitable' material is extremely simple and widely known, don't allow your children unsupervised access to the internet.

No piece of software can compensate for the absence of parental attention. If you aren't prepared to spend time supervising your children, you have no right to complain about them being exposed to things you'd rather they didn't know about.

Seems pretty straightforward to me. No need for any technological solution.

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Anonymous Coward

FFS

why are these retards so intent on pissing our money up the wall on things that wont ever work and intelligent people don't want (and decent parents don't need becouse they actually raise their children themselves instead of letting the TV and Internet do it for them.)

Only a few days ago I was lolling at the Australians, but I knew this day would come, I just wasn't expecting it so soon.

Useless, technotard politicians living in magical fairy land where the magical techno fairy makes everything happy.

So how much cash do you think's gonna go on this one, million quid consultation, 10 million quid speccing, 150 million quid initial porjection, 500 million quid over budget and a 50 million quid winfall when the project is finally announced to be a retarded pipe dream 10 years later?

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Gmm

Andy - I know where you're coming from, but this is not about ISP side filtering and is in a completely different direction - this is about informing parents that they can block their kids from seeing a small amount of the violence on the net. (ha ha)

jeremy - I personally found that once a censoring software (or any piece of software) was put in my way in any shape of form, my number one priority was to get around and destroy it. This meant I learned a lot more about computers than if I was just handed my free internet on a plate ;] If it wasn't for censoring proxies, I wouldn't know half what I know about CGIproxies etcetera.

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About time...

It is a joke - you are 13 but

-you can't watch a 18 film from blockbusters as it might damage you

-you must be shielded from ads that could be sexy, racist , etc as it might shape your thoughts

-you can't play Manhunt 9 or Doom 56 as it might cause you to go nuts with a knife

but you can simply go online and view hardcore smut or anything else - pretty pointless having the above then isn't it - we as a nation agree that censorship is requried as people are to young to recongise the difference between fact and fiction and often the lines get blurred but then we don't enforce at an ISP level - anything else is pointless as it can be broken easily

The internet is a media just like the above and requries central control just like the above - websites are a start but then you have p2p, etc

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Silver badge

Will no one think of the police?

How are the police supposed to catch the perpetrators if they (the perpetrators) are not able to upload the video evidence against them?

Surely no one is suggesting that they (the police) should go out in the cold and wet and try and catch the bad people like they did in the last milleneum?

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Anonymous Coward

Blame the parents

Presumably these 'focus groups' are packed with middle class parents who don't want to believe that their children actually view this sort of thing and that 'something must be done' [tm]

Here's the solution: put the computer in the living room. No kitemark, no pointless legislation, no more meddling in our private lives...

It'll never work.

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Sam

Oz

Yeah, because the state's sponsored filter s/ware Down Under turned out SO well...

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Government covering its arse thats all

Oh look, another example of the government being able to say... "Well, we did show you how to stop your kids accessing <insert recent blame of someones death/de-humanisation/corruption here>...."

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Silver badge

Perfect solution...

This could work out as the perfect solution to all those annoying blame the Internet scare stories. Install filtering software on the PCs of all Daily Mail readers and the makers of Panorama. Then they won't be able to see the sex and violence so they will stop making their supposed moral majority complaints. Of course their kids will be able to circumvent it in 5 minutes when left alone but who cares as long as middle England stops shouting for their nanny and leaves the rest of us to get on with life.

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Re: Stalin era Russia

While I appreciate and agree with the sentiment in general, I think it's an unfair comment in this context. Educating parents on how to protect their kids from online violence and helping them has nothing to do with government censorship. Every parent has the right to be able to protect their kids, and even though I'm not a parent I'm not naive enough to believe that it's possible to watch your kids every minute of the day, or even the time they spend online. Anything that helps parents is good, and no doubt if the parents got charged with neglect for letting their kids look at violence because they didn't understand what their kids were doing critics like you would be quick to suggest that the parents should 'educate themselves'. Of course they should, but then criticising a government initiative to help them educate themselves is a little bit hypocritical.

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Anonymous Coward

Yet another fool

Oh great!

I thought Cameron's stupid assertion about the evils of video, game and music had made him look like a fool and would be a warning to other politicos who were looking for an easy target to blame various ills on. Now it looks like Brown wants a bit of that too. Well I am happy to call him a fool as well, but it does leave me with a problem of who to support. A bit like 1930s Germany where the only avenues left open to alternative options were the extremists.

Am I the only one wondering who has a chance at the big job and has some common sense? (The LibDems are no hope when it comes to common sense.)

Somebody give these idiots a clue. "Censorship doesn't work."

I wonder what underground data networks are running in China about now.

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Striking similarities

Ive just finished reading 1984 by Orvell and The Penultimate Truth by PKD again. It is chilling to find so many elements of recent day politics in fictional books of cold war era and general paranoia. Politicians constantly babble about securing society and protect public interests, I wonder, who is going to protect us from them?

Perhaps Ill reach for The Futurological Congress by Lem tonight and forget about it all.

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I am the law!

It seems that Gordon Brown-nose has taken the whole becoming Prime minister thing a bit too far, do you think that he and our tony sat down together one day to chat about the role of prime minister and tony thought he would wind gordon up and tell him that he had "the power of grey skull" or something leading him to believe he could control the internet? thank the lord for techies!

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Anonymous Coward

Ridiculous!

Gordon should look at the country's police force. If they did their jobs, no one would have to worry about "happy slapping" or the like. The problem does not lie with the internet — it is taking place on the street, where it should be policed. Using sites like YouTube as scapegoats is absolutely ridiculous. Do your job.

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Anonymous Coward

@Adam

"-you can't watch a 18 film from blockbusters as it might damage you

-you must be shielded from ads that could be sexy, racist , etc as it might shape your thoughts

-you can't play Manhunt 9 or Doom 56 as it might cause you to go nuts with a knife"

I'm afraid mr Technotard with your magical fairy wand you are proving a point.

All of the above forms of censorship only work aslong as the parent abides by the rules and does not purchase games they arn't allowed to play or get them movies they can't rent.

The same applies for the internet, if a parent can't be bothered to supervise their child it's their fault.

Join the real world mr woolly thinker, and take responsibility for your kids don't expect the rest of the world too.

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Almost as silly as........

hug a hoody........ i reckon cameron and brown-nose went to the same school for the bloody ridiculous....

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Put the damned PC in the lounge/living room!

It's that easy. Yes you can't watch your kids 24/7, no one can. My 2 kids won't be getting TVs/PCs/phones etc in their bedrooms, when asked why I will answer with "I don't have a TV so you don't have a TV". Your bedroom has always classically been a place to chill out, read or sleep. Keep the technology in the central living area. Definitely the department of the bleedin' obvious here, you don't need any filter software, you can just look over your shoulder for the dodgy flesh pics ;o0

Of course what doesn't help is that Hollywood and its like push the violence/horror/etc films because after all they sell well and of course kids just want to be adults and do and see all the things that adults do. Perhaps all of us adults could become better role models for our and other peoples kids and lead by example?* </daydream>

* I say this with the full knowledge that I, like most people, will never live up to my own standards which I suppose is exactly why the problem is here in the first place.

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Anonymous Coward

God forbid parents find out what theyre kids are up to.

The problems isnt really in sites like youtube that host vids like this - its the fact that the kids are doing it in the first place.

Try sorting that out before slapping censorship all over the internet.

With videos of this kinda crap popping up all over the net parents actually find out what theyre kids are up to - is that really a bad thing.

I guess we can always stick our fingers back in our ears and hope all our kids grow up to be ikkle angels.

lalalalalalalalalalal

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@ the @Adam guy

Don't worry I'm sure you will see be able to see your favourites like Cum Hungry Grannies etc

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Rob

I don't see the problem...

... if the kids want to see violence, then let them. Bring back national conscription and show them real violence, up close and personal so much so that they can smell the blood and then throw up.

In the meantime though, I blame the bloody parents, lazy gits who have no idea why they had a kid in the first place (oh yeah, cause everyone expects you to, flippin sheeple).

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Why the obsession with one medium?

Surely reason would have to follow that the same 'filtering' would have to take place for other media - books, paintings, sculpture, radio etc.

First of all you could destroy any artistic works containing violence or nudity (Romeo and Juliet amongst other 'smut' perhaps? Most Disney cartoons?). Of course you'd then need to police new works - perhaps a state body to authorise any book publications, and to publish itself a list of 'authorised forms' to portray in other artistic forms.

I think the germans had something similar in the late 1930's, & their economy was pretty strong at the time so it must have been a good plan.

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It really is time to censor the web

Like it of loath it, the time has come to place safe guards around the internet. There is content out there that should not be seen by anyone and as such should be filtered. Everyone likes to jump on the big brother idea but there really is a need to protect us from some of this content. Newsgroups is where the internet started and is now almost a no go area, try going to a binary newsgroup and download something, most of the time you get what you want other times you end up with child porn or bestiality and no one can defend that content. YouTube is also a good example, why should criminals film themselves doing crime and then publish it to all to see, only to then go and make more content. For those of you who disagree you only enable an environment that allows for paedophiles to commit crime

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Anonymous Coward

Not quite Will..

Brown went to the school for the Bloody (Kirkcaldy High) and Cameron went to the school for the Ridiculous (Eton).

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Dan

@Ridiculous!

Whilst we need more Police, and especially need more of them on the beat.....what we need are the parents of these kids to actually educate their children on morals and ethics.

My brother looks and sounds like a chav most of the time, (despite being brought up middle class,) but he is not a chav. Why ? Because my parents instilled morals and ethics in to him. He knows right from wrong. Ok, so he won't get out of chair when a woman enters the room, but he'll give up his seat for a pregnant or elderly woman.

Too many parents just don't care. They let their children run around and do what they want. And they either don't discipline them or their idea of disciplining them is beating them senseless. A smack or clip round the ear was a bloody good deterrent for me. It taught me about consequences. Something the chav masses seem to have forgotten about.

Its also something that the Politicians have forgotten about, and the Political Correctness Brigade. All the nice normal people that I know watched 18 movies, and played violent games under-age. And we all turned out fine. No happy slappers, or murderers amongst us. But our parents taught us right from wrong, and disciplined us when necessary. THAT is what Brown and the PC 'tards need to focus on. Getting parents to be parents, and not slacking off on parenting !!

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Anonymous Coward

@adam

"Don't worry I'm sure you will see be able to see your favourites like Cum Hungry Grannies etc"

ahhh groundless aqusations, the stronghold of the small minded. Just keep proving the point for us buddy.

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@Julian Cook

"For those of you who disagree you only enable an environment that allows for paedophiles to commit crime"

Excellent way to stifle the debate, thanks for that.

The problem as I see it is that the internet is a global phenomenon. Countries, as we can see, have different laws to one another (whether they be duly elected democracies, i.e. UK vs US gambling laws, OR unelecected dictatorships) and surely those countries have the right to choose what content the subjects that they represent* should see. Filtering at the national level seems to be the only workable solution to the "big" problems. As for what your children are able to see, well as the argument has always gone with the television - there's always the off switch, little Johnny will have to actually use a pen *gasp* to do his homework at the *gasp* library.

*deliberately didn't say "elected" here as democracy isn't the be-all-end-all of solutions imho.

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Anonymous Coward

Re Julian Cook

"For those of you who disagree you only enable an environment that allows for paedophiles to commit crime"

O look, sensationalism and lies "IF YOU DON'T SUPPORT FILTERING YOU SUPPORT PEDOPHILES" man, people like you make me sick. You have no real argument, you just use baseless propaganda to prop up your non-sensical arguments.

Dan is indeed correct, much like him me and my band of marry lads were tought the difference between right and wrong, truth and fiction. reality and fantasy. Something it seems long lost on modern parents and youths.

The notion that filtering would stop illegal activity is so mind numbingly stupid that it passes any level of common sense, and is a fine example of going lalalalalalallalalal I can't see it, it's not happening.

The internet infact provides an increadible way in its current unfiltered form to track down criminals.

And despite what the lies and sensationalism people like Julian try and spread the internet is not full of Peadophiles. It is just a space full of hundreds of millions of people. Treat it like you would any other giant space, with intelligence and caution.

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Silver badge

Pots, kettles and short-term memory loss

"Ofcom has been asked to develop a kite-mark scheme to certify net-filtering products, The Sun reports."

and where does the Sun get revenue from?

Adverts for chat lines, video messaging and other rather sleazy quick-buck ventures. Nothing new under the Sun then.

As for us now in a Stalinist state, it doesn't seem so long that we were in a fascist dictatorship.

If people are going to bleat about governmental control will they please settle on one side or the other, it's not as if the issues have changed much. Thank you.

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Or

...just don't buy them phones with video capability. That would work.

Internet is not for children!

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Teaching the Kids some tech skills

About time the government did something to get some decent IT skills among our children. At least this way installing filters on their web browsing will force the kids to learn useful skills such as SSH tunneling and anonymous proxies ;-)

Censoring the net using technology will never work!

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Ye ghods

Net filters to combat street violence. What has the UK come to!

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Smack your kids up!

Well, hell, why don't they just license people to be parents? Only let those who are obviously responsible enough to raise kids to have 'em?

Just last night, I turned the channel from a kid's show, where they played Candid Camera style pranks on kids. Wife and I had a discussion with 6 year old daughter on why we were turning off show. We've done this before and will continue to do this.

Daughter knows there's stuff out there we don't approve of but she also knows why we don't approve of it. I think too many folks don't take the time to try and make their kids know why some things are not suitable for them to view, until they are better able to understand them and put them in context. Doesn't mean you just outright ban things; we have classic violent cartoons that are hilarious but we also explain about cartoon violence, why it's funny and how to segment some things away from 'teh real world'. Just takes a hell of a lot of time and energy.

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One would have thought that...

if someone was stupid enough to do something illegal and film themselves in the process the law enforcements would be able to do something about that certain someone... Clearly it is not the case!..

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@ Julian Cook

Ah, of course, it's the 'net that started the whole pedophilia thing right?..

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Anonymous Coward

Why the UK?

The real question is why are there so many of these yobbish, loutish, feral kids running around in the UK in the first place? It's not something you find in any other West European country. What is it about the UK that produces this type of person?

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Height of Irony

THE SUN championing the cernsorware issues on page and acceptable smut on page 3. Don't get me started about casino's and bingo websites

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Anonymous Coward

@One would have thought that...

Only if a victim comes forward, else the CPS don't want to know. There's been a big discussion about this on PistonHeads and SELOC due to some retards trampling all over someones Lotus Elise and filming themselves.

As for filtering - dear god, what is it coming to, that the solution to violence is to deny the existance of it, instead of actually tackle the root causes. I saw the Krays film when I was 12, it didn't turn me in to a Gangland Boss or make me violent, because I'd been brought up properly by my parents.

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Anonymous Coward

Didn't Blair...

obliquely threaten some kind of Net censorship just before he jacked it in, a few weeks back? I can vaguely recall a rant of his against the Press (and the Independent in particular) and the threat of 'measures' to prevent criticism & conspiracy theories on the Net against those in positions of authority.

Maybe Murdoch had already told him what he intended getting Brown to do..

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Beware Greeks bearing silly gifts

This is another political Trojan horse. Are we so busy reading 1984 we forgot Animal Farm, and the donkey that was disappeared?

Here is how the old Moroccan rope trick is worked. Step One. Show audience Apple Pie. Step Two. Show audience Apple Pie in danger. Step Three. Show audience State Security Apparatus for saving Apple Pie. Ignore catcalls of "silly" (if your stagecraft is top notch, you may optionally encourage these for dramatic effect). Step Four. Wait for audience to cheer for Apple Pie saved. Step Five. Withdraw to the Dining Room for dinner, port, cigars, and self-congratulation for extending scope of State Security Apparatus. Your ass is now feeling better.

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