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The Great Australian Firewall will try blocking websites that host or sell video games not suitable for children under the age of 15. A spokesman for Senator for Victoria Stephen Conroy told The Age on Thursday that the government's internet censorship regime will extend to downloadable and web-based games that don't meet …

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Grenade

OK, Internet firewall, gimme some bricks!

Right, so we live in the stupidest country on Earth, with the stupidest government - but we already knew that.

So if we are banning anything that may damage the average 15-year-old male's delicate sensibilities, I guess that means we need to start bricking up newsagancies. You know, the ones with R-rated mags openly on display and sale?

There are also entire sections of our cities that will need to be demolished, though with Kings Cross in Sydnay this would actually be urban improvement. Go for it.

Funny that the UN also mentioned today that Australia is the largest producer / market for amphetamines and ecstasy. Obviously though, no 15-year olds are involved, they're just all perfect innocent little angels.

Grenande! - because the only thing that could improve this country is MORE nuclear testing.

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Big Brother

Australia!

Plans to be more of a dictatorship than China by 1984.

(Moron poly-tickers)

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FAIL

World of Warcraft

So, as WoW is unrated, IIRC, it will go on that list of games to be blocked? Looking forward to the march of tens of thousands, dressed in self-made WoW armour and weaponry, on Canberra.

What is it with this country that seems incapable of appointing ICT ministers with a clue (first Ralston, then Coonan, now Conroy - and Minchin the shadow ICT drone is a moron as well)

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Bronze badge
WTF?

WTF is going on down under

They're being more restrictive than Dita von Teese's 16" waist bustiere, one wonders if the good Ms. Teese would make it through the filters!

We need a Dita icon.

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Overreach

No SecondLife. No eBay.

Looks like our government is well carried away.

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FAIL

weak

i know this useless fertilizer sack acting as a politician was winning the excellence in stupidity awards, tugging at the 'think of the children' line to push his backwards orwellian agenda, but this one seems to be stupid even for him.

This should make it plain and clear that this project isnt just aimed at the blackest of black websites, but also as a tool for whatever might upset the senator and his cronies. Just because you cant classify something doesnt mean its illegal, and with more games being aimed at adults this oversight is going to only get worse. Hopefully this gets traction in the mainstream press around here so people know its stupid we cant classify the games and how totally stupid it is to let a senator be involved in controlling the internet.

Also, online games generally say that the experience and rating may change online, and seeing how people act in something like WoW, is the senator going to turn on that too? If anything that would be a good counter fud argument, alas WoW players might not be so useful as protesters as you'd have trouble peeling them away from their precious game haha

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Fair dinkum, Stevo is a twat

Stevo needs to shut the fuck up and let people decide for themselves, what is acceptable and what's not. Honestly, the energy these fuckwits spend on blowing hot air (and goats) could be better spent on actually improving the lives of the citizens rather than nannying them. I am a pom AND an Aussie, so I'm seeing more and more of Blighty's stupid creeping censorship permeate Aussie life every day it seems.

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Grenade

Those Aussies must love their children something fierce

It doesn't make much difference. After you add the couple-hundred milliseconds of latency that the firewall will cause; no MMO or FPS would be playable anyway.

The grenade is for Conroy and his ilk. What is this firewall nonsense anyhow? His retirement plan?

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Already illegal

One thing that only got a brief mention in the story is that the games that they've announced will be censored are already illegal in Australia. That's what "refused classification" means.

That leaves two arguments:

1) Why go to all this effort to censor when it's already illegal?

or

2) Why all the fuss? What need do you have to download illegal games? Or illegal anything for that matter.

Sometimes those two opposiing views get lost in the hysterical "they're banning games" response. They're already banned. The ban is not new. The ways it is enforced are expanding.

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Grenade

Hey, Conroy ...

Censor this!

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Is Australia the test-bed for a worldwide version of internet censorship?

Now, me, if I were in charge of some nebulous worldwide attempt to destroy 'net neutrality' - that is to say, remove the freedoms that the Internet has so widely spread and accustomed us all to - I would look for some English-speaking, fairly conservative country to test it out in first.

Well, England was the first test-bed of a non-governmental censorship body, but it seems that Australia is the first to actually implement the technology as such to control it more specifically.

Still, this will hit home where other threats to freedom won't - there are plenty of people who are agin child porn but WILL play the games they want to.

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Unhappy

Conroy again

"Senator for Victoria Stephen Conroy:"

Stephen Conroy is NOT the senator for Victoria. As 'Victorian' as his useless ideas make him seem, he is sadly the federal minister for miscommunication ( and a complete brainless tosser to boot ).

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Silver badge

Is this any real loss?

Does anyone over the age of 15 actually play computer games?

Yes, I grok the issue of censorship ... I just find that raising a stink about access to, or lack of access to, computer games to be far from the most important of societal censorship issues. Lord knows the early teen set already knows how to use proxies ... Let the (current) gubmint do their thang, it won't change the way my daughter uses the Internet (she's over 18, and is currently doing research for her next degree out of Melborn.

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Silver badge

Melbourne).

Damn this laptop's trackpad, anyway!

OK, it was me, not the hardware ... I "fat-thumbed" it :-)

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WTF?

Nuke Australia.

They are a full enemy of the internet, along with Iran and China and deserve the same treatment.

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FAIL

Epic Fail (again)

OK, so this would just drive more and more net users to P2P networks....not part of the nanny (oops) net filter system.

These retards just don't seem to get it.

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Stop

Conroy

This man is a technically illiterate scope creeping, bible bashing fucktard and he should be promptly escorted out of Parliament and given a dry slap for everyone's benefit.

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FAIL

I like kittens - Fluffy clouds are nice too

So our illustrious government has decided to protect Da Chilluns by making sure that nothing gets through to the Grate Aussie Interwebs except tellytubbies and puppies.

In breaking news, dancers in strip clubs will be required to wear greatcoats at all times, pubs will serve nothing but lemonade and chicken nuggets, and TABs (betting shops) will no longer offer the option to bet.

When a child pays my (frankly, bloddy outrageous!) broadband bill, THEN said child can dictate what I get to see on it.

Can we have an icon representing Kevin Rudd being slowly roasted over burning coals? Or a photograph would be better

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Thumb Up

Thanks for the reminder

Just payed my EFA membership

I encourage all other Aussies to do the same.

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Paris Hilton

And I thought...

that the British Government were pushing their "Big Brother" ideas a bit strongly...geez. Makes me almost glad I don't live in Oz, where men are men and the sheep are going to be even more worried now that they can't surf for their favourite babes-n-guns.

Paris...because this is probably the last time they'll be able to see her on the web once the digital iron curtain closes completely.

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Anonymous Coward

The Internet should be my opinion only!

We're waaayyyy past this level already. When they censored Wikileaks even though all the links listed on Wikileaks were themselves already on the list, we are already censoring criticism.

It won't be long before they're censoring 'hate' speech, and the ministers will ensure he gets to decide what is 'hate'.

Australia has really been a poster child here. It shows how fast you can go from well intentioned filtering to an internet moulded to someones personal opinions in such a short space of time.

I bet the Supreme 'Shah' of Iran is watching closely in jealously.

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FAIL

Amagad!

Proxy / VPN was that?

Every single Australian should get a proxy / alternative DNS service set up and boycott this system. Shame it out.

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Thumb Down

Better learn Chinese...

....the Green Dam is coming your way.

Best check your parlimantary expenses, that's how we got rid of little starlin wanabee over here

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This is what happens ...

... when you introduce these things, mission creep and it'll only get worse

The UK government would love this level of control.

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Thank you Australia...

...for making a Brit briefly feel like he doesn't live under the most oppressive regime in the 'free' world.

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Grenade

He's just a very naughty boy

Just one little wedge and they get their foot in the door. Then they start to show what they really intended in the first place - About time this issue just died a natural death, Australian Adults DO NOT need censoring, and kids should be controlled by their parents not the gubberrmint.

PS. Stephen Conroy is NOT *the* senator *for* Victoria, he is (apart from being a total wanker) just a senator from Victoria.

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FAIL

Thanks

I'm so glad that the government here can see that I am incapable of making desicions regarding what I should look at and that they steped in to help.

Ok, now that the sarcasm is over, how will this apply to a store like Steam? I'm not too sure on the details but if Steam offer the same games worldwide then some of them would fall into the 'unrated' catagory. Will they block the entire Steam network, how about Amazon or any other worldwide game retailer?

FAIL, in a big steaming heap, is the best desired outcome for the firewall.

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FAIL

Don't underestimate the kids

It's more likely that the adults will be blocked, while the kids will treat bypassing the firewall as a part of the game.

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Grenade

I really hope

that some freedom-fighting biker introduces this fucking bastard Conroy to the wrong end of a 12-gauge sometime soon. I'll vote for the bikers' Freedom Party if they do!

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Unhappy

Ah...here we go

Right, so now its only child porn sites and sites that host obscene material.

And now

Sites that host video games rated greater than 15.

What will be next?

Extremest websites?

Then

Far right and then far left websites?

Then

Websites that call for an end to censorship?

Then

Websites that oppose the current government?

Then

Websites that allow people to post their thoughts?

Probably take them about 10 years or so.

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Pint

Bothered?

Ohhh I live in Australia with a beautiful climate, loads of jobs, hot wiminz and a government subsidised year long BBQ on the beach with all the aforementioned bonuses in triplicate.

But I can't download games that are made to break the censorship guidelines but have very little content and I'll only play once before throwing away anyway.

Who cares if it’s the hole in the dyke regarding censorship laws? The rest of the world would swap crap games for hot “fostered up” wiminz at BBQ’s in a second

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WTF?

Scream if you want to go faster.

"This is confirmation that the scope of the mandatory censorship scheme will keep on creeping".

Creeping?

Bloody sprinting more like, this things only been up and running for a few months!

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Pint

Poor poor Australia

Soon it will be Hello Kitty for all.

So they will be banning all alcohol soon, in case under-age drinkers get hold of some?

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Silver badge
FAIL

Porn, gambling and now games...

A perfect lesson in how to slowly alienate the voters, demographic by demographic. What's next, beer?

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Anonymous Coward

lol

well never fear the Japanese have joined the crusade against game immorality no more porn games that include (3way, bondage, rape, gang rape, impregnation, coersion, hookers, school girls, student counsel members, mate play, train gropping, slave, forced, sexual violence, etc, etc) Interestingly all the above are still fine in porn films, go figure.

Cheers moralists, you guys build a better world. Banning "bad" games is just retarded and the Aussies are currently amongst the maddest around - they need to learn games are played by people of all ageas.

tshh

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WTF?

Ideas are more powerful than guns.

When will opposing political views be considered too dangerous for the public?

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Anonymous Coward

Censorship Sucks

Don't get why everybody thinks Australia is such a great place. Censorship on the internet is just plain wrong, and you expect it from certain countries, hope it never happens over here to this sort of extent!!

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Big Brother

The thin end of the wedge...

...just got a little thicker

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Big Brother

Far to far?

"The government's decision would mean even Australians over 15-years-old will be unable to access websites that sell downloadable or physical copies of video games as well as those that host web-based games, The Age reports"

So Amazon.com is out then! - What are these guys smoking?

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Joke

This is all inline with goverment policy

To encourage all austrialian's to take up the national game of Knifey Spoony. Only once all computer games are banned will people return to the tradition game :)

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Paris Hilton

Take heed

all Brits, as this is exactly what Gordo and Nu Labour are after. Nothing short of complete control over everything we see, followed by everything we say or do.

There is a BIG difference between protecting vulnerable young kiddies (who are generally out looking for this stuff anyway) from unsuitable content and curtailing an adult's right to view perfectly legal adult content (be it pr0n or 18+ games) whenever he or she so chooses. It won't be long before someone sues the government for breach of human rights, and as an added rarity, use of the 'breach of human rights' clause will actually be suitable.

Paris - cos it won't be long before she gets banned from the Ozzie Interwebs.

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Big Brother

In other worlds:

Oceanias Government announces:

There is no pr0n on the internet. There has never been pr0n on the internet. Sexcrime is punishable by death, everybody knows that.

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Big Brother

Seriously, what does Australia contribute to the world?

Foster's is about the only thing I can think of, apart from bad TV programmes nobody watches.

Unfortunately Foster's is very nice, but I will not buy things from oppressive tinpot dictatorships like Iran, North Korea or Australia.

I just hope the UK never becomes as bad as Australia is on the way to... If they do, I'm leaving.

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Coffee/keyboard

Surprised face?

I do believe this farce with the aussie firewall has worn out my surprised face long ago.

No-one should be surprised by this. Any efforts to censor the internet in the interests of protecting the people are really just a thinly veiled excuse to set up censorship so you can screw the people over. Always have been, always will be.

My only advice is for those poor sods down under to take heed of my chosen icon for this post. Interpret it any way you will.

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Big Brother

on the upside

it might stop little kids shouting down the headset on cod4

HELLO HELLO! ADD ME TO YOUR FRIENDS LIST HELLOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!

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Big Brother

All your minds are belong to us

Almost anything you like will offend or annoy someone, somewhere. In fact, I bet nobody can name three things that someone else will not object to ("two dandelions and a daisy" do not count - they are all flowers. And I know a few hayfever sufferers who would actually welcome a completely concrete planet!)

With that in mind, how long before it will be ilegal to think, do or say anything because there will always be at least one complainant (witness the "mass uproar" of 2 or 3 complaints over some tv ads, for example) who wants it banned?

Think of the children, think of the wimmin, think of the religious bigots, think of the ministers who want you to believe that they are so much better at deciding what is good for you than you are - I don't waste time watching skin flicks or playing online games but that doesn't mean I want them banned - whasn't it Machiavelli who said "I may not agree with you, but I will defend your right to say it"?

Freedom of speech and freedom of 'action' in the English-speaking world is disappearing rapidly, and we are almost powerless to prevent it. try organising a protest and watch how fst the "anti-terror" laws get invoked - if you don't support the Government, then you must be against it, which means you must agree with <insert Terrorist of the Week here> and therefore you are an enemy of the People.

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FAIL

OMFG

Just OMFG. Lost for any other words.

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Bronze badge

Online game = Get around the Great Firewall of Australia

Surely one of the most popular online games will be to get around the Great Firewall of Australia? After that, the world's your oyster.

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Ah, Australia!

Beautiful one day, [CENSORED] the next.

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Big Brother

@Jaap stoel

When will opposing political views be considered too dangerous for the public?

That was lat year, if you didn't get the update report to Miniluv for reconditioning.

BB

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