Conroy: "I'm Not Into Opting In On Child Porn"

Renai LeMay over at Delimiter was at a door stop interview with Senator Conroy this afternoon. And if you thought the change in Prime Minister might bring some common sense to the party regarding its plans for a mandatory internet filter, you'd be wrong. When asked about Kate Lundy's proposed "opt-in" amendments to the proposed legislation, Conroy responded by saying, "I'm not into opting in on child porn".

There were a few questions about the NBN and the Telstra structural separation, but it was Conroy's response to the filter question that is important here. Aside from pulling out the standard "child porn" response, the minister also claimed that they had "an election commitment" to deliver as a justification for the party's stance.

Aside from the fact that the proposed filter's current form is absolutely nothing like that one-liner election commitment that was thrown out a week before the election, the claim that an opt-in filter means you're opting in on child porn just goes to show that the minister is so blinded by his ignorance that the only defence he has for the plan is to paint opponents of the filter as child pornographers.

We're disappointed that the Labor party didn't take the opportunity to move Senator Conroy away from the communications portfolio in place of Senator Lundy with the new Prime Minister. But we're not going to sit back and watch the government argue that people who don't agree with them are child pornographers. We're going to step this thing up a gear. Stay tuned.

[Delimiter]

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Comments

    Angry. Very angry.

    This proves that Kevin Rudd had nothing to do with this filter. Obviously he couldn't stop it even if he wanted to. He never had a chance.

    Kudos to you Kevin.

    Nice work guys keep up the good work.

    Take him down Giz. You have my support.

    I'm not sure "election commitment" cuts it as an excuse when you've just booted out the elected Prime Minister.

      We elected the labor party, not the PM. So its still a valid excuse (even if we don't like it).

        We elected the Labor party because of the PM that was going to be running it. This is what people are just not understanding when they say 'Well you voted Labor and Julia is in the Labor party so why are you complaining".

        I elected the Labor party because Kevin Rudd sold himself in his advertisements and Kevin was going to be the PM if his party won. And he did step up to the plate and did a number of things that were quite respectable. Sure, the mining tax issue was quite a problem with a lot of people but we can't deny that he did try and make something better for this nation in several ways.

        On the other hand, I know nothing about Julia Gillard and her ideas for the future. All I know of this woman is that she is a ranga and has a passion for pushing knives into her colleague's backs.

        Will I vote for Labor next election if Julia is running the joint in her evil ways? Maybe not. And taking into consideration that she only told Ruddy that he would get a position after the next election.... to me that's just political lies so we can think she is a nice person.

      The "election commitment" was to protect children/families on the internet, it was not explicitly setup and create a filter. The filter's purpose is to save the precious children from some how 'accidentally' viewing child porn. How many people just accidentally find child porn? even porn itself isn't that easy to come by without looking for it. And while some kids will look for it, that's more of a family issue and a responsible parent should always be aware what their children are viewing on the internet or the people they speak to. So what about the actual crime; even if you can't view the content, children out there are getting abused. And that is a real issue.

      So, instead of stopping it from being viewed... actually stop the crime, instead of just ignoring it. Imagine taking all the funding they spent on the filter and they applied it to a task-force in the federal police and actually stop the abuse?

      /rant

        there is confusion when people say "protect children" and "child porn" in the same sentence.

        it is not about protecting children from SEEING child porn, it is about protecting children from being USED in child porn. the idea being, make viewing it illegal/impossible, people will stop making it, and thus the children who were involved will be saved from this terrible industry.

        however, as you can see: doing THAT, and protecting children from viewing stuff inappropriate for their age are two COMPLETELY different things! however the gov has born one from the promise of the other! capitalizing on such confusion!

        I fully support the original promise: an optional ISP level net nanny. I fully support stopping child porn. but the filter WON'T WORK, even if it does, it will slow down the net for the vast majority of people who are doing nothing wrong. and even if it didn't do that! there is the very uncertain future of such a filter and it's scope! i.e. it's possible future use for political censorship! not to mention all the legitimate yet just as counter productive MISTAKES that have already been demonstrated from the release of the test black list, and the consistent FAILURES of this gov to actually IMPLEMENT any of there other well meaning policies properly!

    This guy is an absolute clown.. You can tell from the look on his face that he just doen't give a crap.. I think he sees questions on the filter as an annoyance.. I hope he goes down in the next election.. Go to 3.30 for actual segment..

    BOOOOO Conroy.
    How can he possibly stay in his seat for so long?!

    Gizmodo, you just won 1.5 internets for choosing to stand up. Let's see what you can do.

    I feel personally offended that by not supporting his filter he thinks I engaged in child porn. The very notion of child porn makes me feel sick, but knowing that money which could go to saving children will be wasted on the filter makes me feel worse.

    The filter will not stop horrible people doing horrible things.

    Wow, just wow.

    does this ignorant idiot actually realise what a complete douche he sounds like when he uses the excuse of child porn as a reason to censor the internet. can one of his staff please explain to him that we (australians) intelligent enough to know child porn is not traded through http://. i can not express how much damage this man (and his party) are doing to australia and our future.

      for ppl who got no tech idea about Internet and viruses that come from blogs that actually sounds very good... thats why we still have d... like him in power...

    Disappointing indeed, oh well guess I won't be voting for labour

    he really does have no idea does he? like, I mean, really. it must be coming from somewhere else. that is a really immature response too.

    I also agree with what you say about the govs original promise. effectively, it was net-nanny at an isp level, completely opt in, just like the net nanny software, without the set up headaches because it was the ISP's responsibility. you know. A GOOD IDEA! clearly it has morphed into something completely different to the point that it isn't even the same thing anymore, so much so that the ORIGINAL idea (the net nanny) is now SEPARATE (an incidentally, still opt in). so this mandatory censorship has effectively grown out of nothing to become its own separate entity. kind of like how MTV became this nauseating 'entertainment' channel so much so that it isn't even a music channel any more and they released MTV classic to bring back what it was originally.

    so when he mentions the election promise. GET ANGRY. because it is the tool by which they think they will get away with implementing this completely new, completely separate, completely retarded policy.

    Pleeeeese Gizzy - step this up.

    Mother Truckin' Conroy - I can't believe this guy.

    To those who agree that the internet filter is bulltwang, do what I've done, write to your Federal Labour Members and tell them that they are not going to get your vote in the upcoming election (regardless if you were actually going to vote for them or not) because of Conroy and his unwanted legislation.

    Don't know who your member is:

    www.aph.gov.au/house/members/member_photo_state.asp

    Fight the power.

    Waoh did he look self satisfied when he said that didn't he, like it was particularly clever :P

    Let's just hope they bench it as far back as the ETS.

    Really hope Gizmodo does an election run-up on political players and parties for aussie geeks.

    Election promise?

    I voted labour and I didnt vote for a FILTER that won't stop CHILD PORN no matter how much they want it to. Peer 2 Peer ?
    This guy needs a good knock over the head.

    So anyone that doesn't agree with the FILTER is a PEDO ?

    Conroy you've got rocks in your head

    The major problem we have to deal with is that very few people outside of the IT industry and those of us with an interest in tech know anything about the filter, why it won't work, what the possible ramifications are with regards to free speech and what may happen down the track in regards to what amounts to "feature creep" when legitimate sites are blocked.

    Sure, GetUp! did the Censordyne thing which was good. But that was months ago. There are occasional pieces in papers, however it isn't enough. The Anon thing really didn't acheive much apart from mostly negative media coverage.

    We need something really big that will sway "normal" people. Something that makes them realise that the filter will have an effect on their basic freedoms. Tie it in with the data retention thing so people realise how scary this really is.

    Getting Conroy out isn't enough in my opinion. Sure Lundy may have introduced an opt in filter which wouldn't be so bad. What I am afraid of is that Conroy isn't the one who is actually pushing this. The push for the mandatory filter may be coming from higher up. The Australian Christian Lobby is pushing this and we know that they hold a lot of power. It is entirely possible that Conroy is just doing as he is told.

    So if you guys want to do something to help it needs to be BIG. Like, work together with everyone who opposes it. Get Google, iiNet and Internode, EFA, Netchoice, Reporters Without Borders and anyone with some political clout involved. Obviously though that's easier said than done.

    I think the clearest message may be a simple demonstration like the guys on Hungry Beast did. "Here's the filter and here's how long it takes a 16 year old to beat it".

    I admire your enthusiasm, and would LOVE to see an organised movement of web-savvy individuals take a stand on this issue and bring some genuine facts to the hyperbole-laden "arguments" of Conroy's Christian Crusade... (In fact I have seen that - getup.org.au - but I'd love to see another. Every bit helps.)

    But with both major parties supporting this sort of thing (Labor openly, and the Libs with their conspicuous silence), I fear it's a grim inevitability. I'm putting more of my energy into educating family and friends about how to sidestep the filter when it gets here. I for one plan on still being able to access sites like Wikileaks after the Fibre-optic Curtain falls, if only to keep an eye out for proof that the system has been abused.

    Err, you are a technology website. Who appointed tech geeks - myself included - moral officiators of government policy?

    If anything, tech sites should be discussing the engineering of filters.

      We already have discussed the tech. It won't work!

      Expertise. As everyday people we have the right to question policies that effect us. As experts, professionals and dedicated amateurs we have a responsibility.

      When my profession is used poorly, misguidedly or evilly I have a responsibility to take action.

      My question to you would be: who do you think should be allowed to question the Government? Anyone? It seems you take issue with the most informed people in the related area doing it, so who is left?

    Gillard needs to see that this is exactly the wrong direction that the party should be avoiding. Step it up Giz!

    *sigh* I guess it IS true. All our carefully prepared arguments can easily be ignored. This guy just doesn't get it.

    get broootal guys

    Well what do you expect?
    Guillard will enforce what the global government wants anyway.
    Total control via filtering what you watch on the prime time news and what you look at on the net.

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