Thinking of the children
So how many makers of child abuse images, not merely copying* of images taken earlier and possibly elsewhere and by someone else, did the IWF facilitate in catching?
Oh right, that's not what they do. They merely shuffle the problem under the carpet, after /embiggening/ it sufficiently to scare everyone in compliance with the cencorship again.
I don't know if it's poor reporting or poor reporting but, does that list of 41 countries include the fabulous ".com", ".net", and ".org" countries?
A "url" includes paths and such and aren't restricted to hosts (and hosts might host (very funny, it's what they do) more than just that content, which is why the IWF deals in "urls" instead of "hosts" or "ip addresses". But as a side effect it does conveniently make the metric of number of urls meaningless for quantification purposes. It only says how long their blacklist is, not how widespread or prolific the problem is.
This "shift in hosting pattern" might mean a number of people offering content the IWF blocks (whatever it is) might have learned how to make more subdirectories or how to interleave blockable and non-blockable "urls".
"Our sense is therefore that the overall amount of content on the net is not increasing: it is merely being hosted differently."
And there you have it. It's not increasing, but also not decreasing. It's merely objecting to being shuffled under the carpet. Routing around censorship, and such.
"[Evidence collected by CEOP and some other bunch, who are they?] suggesting that the economics of child abuse make it less of a focus for organised crime than popular belief would have it."
This is a fairly curious thing for the CEOP to say, as the various "think of the children" pressure groups have put that rumour into the world themselves in the first place.
"Rather, sharing of images was often a form of "sick social networking", with abusers either passing on images as a form of one-upmanship, or possibly in the hope of inspiring others to reciprocate by providing images of their own activity."
That isn't surprising. Without saying abusing children is in any way or form acceptable**, if you overcome your nausea for a moment and recall where they're coming from: Sexual preferences are pretty much hardwired, and most of us in the west have learned to accept homosexuality as not merely something happening between consenting adults but also as something that is innate and not an affliction or a disease, much like heterosexuality, though with the latter being more prolific and better accepted for obvious reasons. Paedophilia would be similarly innate and not curable--though any resulting child abuse would still be entirely unacceptable.
These people are looking for an outlet for an urge that they can't let show in public, but they still have it. So, they find like-minded people, and, er, enjoy. It really isn't hard to understand what they're doing, as sick and unacceptable as everyone else finds it.
"She suggested that more research needs to be done in this area."
Catching up on overdue homework, eh? Or just fishing for more monies?
"Salomon [claimed] that the IWF provided a safety net: that while it was true the number of active URLs had fallen, there was no guarantee that this state of affairs would continue if pressure provided by the IWF was removed. In addition, she pointed out, the amount of child abuse material hosted in the UK was now almost zero."
That just means the IWF pushes the material hosting out of UK jurisdiction. Meaning it makes it harder for the police to take down the material as well as track down actual child abusers. Is it thus a blessing that they're effective at it?
Also the previously given url count as a metric critique.
"Other routes for accessing child abuse material were monitored and, where possible, disrupted by bodies such as the CEOP."
But not the IWF.
"The IWF report celebrates some 15 years of achievement in the area of child protection. Behind the figures lie a number of human success stories that often receive less publicity. In particular, yesterday, the IWF were proud to relate how reports of content featuring two British girls led to the rescue of two child victims in the UK."
Two in fifteen years? Or did you just forget to tally the things that really count? No wonder they're often overlooked.
* which the relevant law classifies the same, but I don't.
** As it is not.