pseudomonas: Bacterial conjugation (sex)
[personal profile] pseudomonas
What is it with politicians (or possibly civil servants) and the Internet? Hot on the heels of the craziness of the proposed surveillance of web, email, and social media, comes the perennial "let's make the Internet child-safe" proposal.

Yet another idea that neatly combines illiberal with unworkable. At least one might hope the "unworkable" element should hopefully do the job of making sure it doesn't get beyond a draft (though ISTR that didn't deter Australia from trying something similar), but still. *headdesk*

Should this draft be unfortunate enough not to be strangled at this stage, expect endless wrangling over who decides what porn is, shock as people realise that educational, political, and scientific materials have been included, confusion as the powers that be discover HTTPS decades after the rest of the Internet, and bewilderment as people point out that this has been tried lots of times and it Never Bloody Works.

ETA: apparently the proposal is a Lords Private Member's Bill, so a near-zero chance of actually getting anywhere. But still, I remain surprised at what some people think would be a good idea.

Date: 2012-04-05 05:13 pm (UTC)
tig_b: cartoon from nMC set (Default)
From: [personal profile] tig_b
This one maybe a single MP, but in one of the places I worked the private IT company implemented a black list of words. Using them resulted in an automatic flag on the computer abuse list.

We not only published figures broken down by 'age and sex', one group reported on health data, another on crime.
The list included:
STDs, etc.

Date: 2012-04-08 08:14 am (UTC)
sashajwolf: photo of Blake with text: "reality is a dangerous concept" (Default)
From: [personal profile] sashajwolf
[previous comment deleted because I belatedly noticed this was an open post, sorry]

All the oil in Iraq, etc, etc

Date: 2012-04-05 11:12 pm (UTC)
hairyears: (Default)
From: [personal profile] hairyears
When you are confronted with a costly and implausible policy that seems utterly irrational, ask yourself: "Who gains?"

Someone will profit from "Implementing" this. Or rather: working for years of lucrative consultancy reports and design studies and key-stage deliverables without ever delivering a product or a service that will actually work.

Starting the whole sorry process *knowing* that there cannot and will not ever be a working product makes it easier. All participants know it: both sides, rather than one side (and the officials brought onside by dubious means) will work on building-in the face-saving formulas and profitable get-out clauses and plausibly-unexpected events that mean the project has no 'failure' condition that will cut off the flow of money until the project's architects retire...

...Retiring, that is, to sinecures and non-executive directorships beyond all dreams of avarice, as viewed from the perspective of a Civil Service pension.

A final point, just in case I haven't demonstrated a sufficient depth of cynicism:

Our best hope here is that all parties in this massive fraud are utterly and irremediably incompetent, and that nothing they 'deliver' works in any way at all. Any conceivable working component of this project represents a danger to the public; and I worry about the inconceivable, the 'unknown unknowns' of unexpected spin-offs, with unforseeable uses and misuses of technologies that can *only* be misused.
Edited (Edited for spelling) Date: 2012-04-05 11:14 pm (UTC)


pseudomonas: (Default)

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