Australia’s Internet Blacklist Revealed
Recently, a bit of a stink was made over Australia’s secret website black list and threatened $11,000 fines for those linking to sites on the secret list. That list is secret no longer, and reveals some disturbing information.
Wikileaks posted the leaked list just as the site had done in the past with both Denmark’s and Thailand’s secret Internet blacklists, both of which revealed it wasn’t only child pornographers the governments were after, but also dissenters. Australia’s list proved to be no better and included a website for a dentist and for a mobile home park, among others.
It’s not advised to visit the websites posted at Wikileaks. Much of it, according to sources who have investigated, leads to deviant content illegal pretty much everywhere, including child pornography. The blacklist also contains a lot of legal material as well the Australian government found objectionable. In all the list contained 2370 websites, and if government plans go ahead for a nationally filtered Internet, the list is expected to expand to 10,000.
A Senator in the Australian legislature has threatened to send the Australian Federal Police after whomever leaked the blacklist, and said the person could face serious criminal charges. Critics have argued the list would have been leaked eventually because the government’s plan was to share the list with every ISP operating in the country for monitoring.
But Wikileaks parent Sunshine Press answered the Senator’s challenge with a challenge of their own:
"Under the Swedish Constitution’s Press Freedom Act, the right of a confidential press source to anonymity is protected, and criminal penalties apply to anyone acting to breach that right.
Wikileaks source documents are received in Sweden and published from Sweden so as to derive maximum benefit from this legal protection. Should the Senator or anyone else attempt to discover our source we will refer the matter to the Constitutional Police for prosecution, and, if necessary, ask that the Senator and anyone else involved be extradited to face justice for breaching fundamental rights."
Senator Conroy may wish to consider the position of the South African Competition Commission, which decided to cancel its own high profile leak investigation in January after being advised of the legal ramifications of interfering with Sunshine Press sources.
Just before this article was to be posted, it appears the entire Wikileaks site is offline. Conspiracy theorists, you think that’s a coincidence? Too much traffic or did Wikileaks cross some governmental boundary?