NSW? NS*F*W more like!
See what I did there?
Red faces all round in the New South Wales Education Department, as news surfaced last week that a filter supposed to block porn was actually letting it through, and blocking perfectly good educational material instead. This unfortunate state of affairs came to light when a female school student from Greenfell, NSW, went …
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There's an important lesson to learn here, and it involves the dangers of false senses of security.
When ordinary people - parents, teachers, employers, etc - rely on these various nannying schemes, people - particularly children - are less safe as a result. Those who would normally take responsibility for keeping children safe (parents first and foremost) are instead leaving it up to those faceless strangers who run these filters, databases, etc. The result of this false sense of security is that the very people who are supposed to be protected are being less well protected than would otherwise be the case.
Who cares more about your children: you, as you're their parents, or those faceless strangers who are chasing targets and worrying about statistics, headlines and funding?
It's like the false sense of security fostered by such things as CRB checks. As has been pointed out many times before, people may naively think that those who pass such checks are safe, when in fact they might just not have been caught, yet. (There's a first time for everything, and that includes such nastinesses as kiddy fiddling, and getting caught for it.) As people discover (as they inevitably will) that CRB checks are no substitute for proper supervision, and other necessary safeguards, people will stop relying on vetting results.
But once people aren't relying on CRB checks and vetting, national net filters, etc, and are taking other necessary precautions instead, why bother with those discredited, untrusted and untrustworthy schemes at all? Why bother with vetting if the same precautions still need to be taken if there was no CRB in the first place? Why spend/waste public money on such redundant schemes?
1. Identify and close down these inevitably redundant schemes.
2. Save public money.
3. Cut taxes, invest saved money in other ways, or a combination of both.
4. Society and the economy benefit, better enabling parents, guardians, etc, to keep their children safe.
To me, a Lib Dem supporter, it increasingly looks like New Labour are getting it so wrong now that they're letting the Tories be right by default. "Do nothing" is starting to look really attractive!
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In this case her dad complains, because he is the proxy for her. Since she is a minor, she doesn't get the free choice she would have as an adult.
Since he is her dad, he gets to complain it is inappropriate for her to see that, even if she thinks otherwise. This is because she is a minor and he is her guiding adult.
It's the adult filtering that's troublesome
The censor is not the dad of adult web surfers. It is not for him to impose his views on other adults, he is not the proxy for that person, does not take responsibility for that persons choices and doesn't not have a basis to overrule them.
So the Aussies should make their school filter work better, and remove the filtering for adults.
Interesting you should ask. Some ISP's have finished the trials, one said that there was no slow down experienced by the opt-in testers at all. When further queried about the number of participants they said that 15 of their custmer base had opted in. And yes youdid read that right 15, not 1500, or even 150, but 15! The government is happy with the trial and the said they will write the report, yes them, NOT an independent testing lab called Ennex who did the actual testing. Most respected Ausrtalian scholars and statisticians have said that the results from such small samples are meaningless.
Oh yes, the government has also said that once they have written the report they will set the success criteria and declare the trial a complete success, mind you it was said a bit more diplomatically than that, but that's what it amounts to.
Find that hard to believe?
I don't believe it for one second...
I searched for "Swallow" in Google and the top hit was the RSPB article. I'm sure other countries would have similar results.
I also have Safe Searching on in the preferences (which i think is on by default). Either someone has switched those preferences off, or she used a different search engine, or she added some other words that skewed the results and got her the NSFW results...
> "..a picture of the blonde Ministress, suspiciously captioned: "Coming soon"..."
> Am I the only one who read that as 'blonde Mistress' ?
Nope, and being curious I clicked .... and got horrified. Since it is early, I got woken up way too rapidly. Yikes!
A friend of mine was working as a teacher in a high school in Sydney way back in the late 90s - the net filtering software they used back then was blocking access to the NSW Department of Education website because it deemed to mention 'sex education'. Glad to see things have moved on in the last decade.
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