June 11, 2008

Obligatory ISP blocking deal agreement post

I feel morally obligated to write about the ISP blocking deal agreement. However, I can't see what I'd write on my blog will do any good in the world, especially given the inflammatory nature of the topic. I'll leave it other people - people who have far bigger platforms and more social protection - to do at length the civil-libertarian counter-point that child pornography is a horrible horrible thing and anyone involved in it deserves the worst possible punishment, but we should not have vague and broad blocking due to a small number of evildoers ...

Value-add: Link for Official Press Release

Value-add2: Repost from a while back

Irene Graham - ISP "Voluntary" / Mandatory Filtering

"This page contains information about ISP-level filtering systems implemented, by various ISPs in various countries, to prevent accidental access to child sexual abuse material on web pages/sites. It has been researched and produced in the context of the Australian Federal Labor Government's 2008 "plan" to mandate that Australian ISPs block access to a vastly larger type and quantity of web pages."

By Seth Finkelstein | posted in censorware | on June 11, 2008 02:28 PM (Infothought permalink)
Seth Finkelstein's Infothought blog (Wikipedia, Google, censorware, and an inside view of net-politics) - Syndicate site (subscribe, RSS)

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The NYT article was actually wrong. The three providers have agreed to restrict or remove UseNet access but they didn't agree to block any Web sites:


Posted by: Bennett Haselton at June 12, 2008 03:16 PM

The rumor that 'they' were planning to shut down Usenet had been floating around at least a week in advance of the NY OAG announcement.

When I heard the rumors, I myself thought it was just typical 'net tin-foil-hattery.

Now, though, if you read the news coverage carefully you see the phrase "child-porn Newsgroups". That phrase comes straight out of the NY OAG press release. The typical geek who knows something about Usenet read that as referring to specific newsgroups, because it's difficult to believe that the NY OAG and the NCMEC's Perry Aftab would run a propaganda campaign casting all of Usenet as kiddie p0rn.

It's going to be a witch hunt.

Posted by: unsubstantiated at June 13, 2008 12:39 AM

Libertarians should still be careful to avoid risk of dehumanising any class of people, even acclaiming their pariah status as an aside. It's only six decades since the last such folly.

Even if as an individual one would keenly despatch those who pose the greatest personal threat, the state must not operate with similar sentiment as a victim or angry mob (despite being tempted to appeal to it), but as a paragon of saintly objectivity.

1. Pariah Xs are inhuman therefore they do not deserve human rights.
2. Pariah Xs do not therefore deserve justice.
3. If someone is suspected of being a pariah X then they may be held indefinitely without evidence or trial, until such time as either evidence is found, or enough disquieted libertarians dare risk brushing tar by speaking in their favour.
4. Because the crimes of pariah Xs are so heinous, the standards of evidence are much lower and consequently only the most tenuous inferences for motivation or inclination are required. Even such inferences that the mere thought of such evil may have occurred in the suspect's mind is sufficient to warrant the worst possible punishments.

Witches, Protestants, Jews, Communists, Gypsies, Terrorists, Paedophiles - human rights are too good for their kind.

The European Convention on Human Rights should only apply to upstanding citizens, not those swarthy, evil looking strangers we suspect as terrorists.

Lock 'em up for 90 days (at least 42) just in case we can find some dirt on 'em, and if we can't, well send 'em back to the godforsaken country they came from. And if you're in a country where the laws prevent that, well take the blighters to a Cuban holiday camp or via some other place where the truth may be washed out of their lungs, somewhere that isn't so full of bleedin' heart liberal nancies.

As Increase Mather put it in 1692, during the Salem witch trials, "it were better that ten suspected Witches should escape, than that one innocent Person should be Condemned."
From: http://www.law.ucla.edu/volokh/guilty.htm

If we cannot bring ourselves to say "Better that ten suspected paedophiles should escape, than that one innocent person should be condemned", we should at least refrain from compounding tacit approval as an aside, e.g. "And of course, I too have a sack of stones over my shoulder with which to join you in obliterating any pariah we discover, but...".

What is my point?

That demonstrating one's personal policy against pariahs does not increase one's qualification to pronounce upon what the state's policy should be (it plainly decreases it). Moreover it shouldn't be done as a pre-emptive defense against imaginary bigots among one's audience who it is presumed require such declarations. It doesn't matter if you'd kill someone who raped your daughter if you could get your hands on them, nor is stating it a badge of honour except to a mob. Humans are naturally human, and driven by emotions for personal/genetic survival rather than constrained by overriding laws designed for the totalitarian tending state to protect citizen against citizen, and more critically, citizen against state.

Human rights are most deserved by those suspected of the greatest evils, for it is among their number that a far more psychopathic state may commit its most heinous crimes - against humanity and uncountable innocents.

And even guilt remains simply a strong suspicion. Only a supernatural observer can establish guilt with the same degree of certainty as a mathematical proof. What if the Guildford Four had been executed? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Guildford_Four

Even proof of terrorism in a court of law must not permit the state to commit irremediable acts.

And at the other end of the spectrum, circumstantial evidence for thoughts of terrorism, or thoughts of behaviour becoming a pariah, cannot warrant someone for sectioning ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Involuntary_commitment ). Because thoughts cannot be proven (and one hopes one's mind is a domain that shall forever remain 100% free) one has to wait for that which can be proven, i.e. action or its incitement. Otherwise, you will end up with thought crime, and the flimsiest of pretexts upon which a state may dispose of its undesirables - for who can prove they didn't think evil thoughts? Who can watch Star Wars and claim not to have enjoyed the destruction of the Death Star by terrorists?

Here's some excellent Orwellian prose from A.Keen:
"The truth, of course, is that the theft of digital content is no more “natural” than holding up little old ladies on street-corners or crashing civilian airliners into tall buildings. And it’s the responsibility of thought-leaders like Arrington to use their privileged positions to educate the innocent about the evils of digital thievery."

Hmmm. Copyright infringement is terrorism by induction, and those with a large audience are responsible for 'thought-leading' the innocent along a path of righteousness, and by inference, can otherwise be considered thought-criminals leading the innocent astray into thievery and corruption.

"And of course, I too have a sack of stones over my shoulder with which to join you in obliterating any IP pirate or sympathiser we discover, but...".

We are all at the mercy of the state. It's vital then to recognise that the state can have no mercy within it (it isn't human). It is bound by law (from whose bonds it still seeks escape), and the law that binds it needs continuous repair for it is continually gnawed by vicious teeth. Whilst its bonds remain fast it will still seek its guardians' weak points and exploit them.

"Worried about terrorists who threaten your lives, paedophiles who threaten your children, IP pirates who threaten the livelihoods of your entertainers? Excellent. Come into my cell. It's much safer here. Join me in quieting those pesky, misguided libertarians who would offer succour to our foes."

Posted by: Crosbie Fitch at June 13, 2008 11:14 AM

Picked up from an alt.sewing archive:
(Text reflowed and recoded for html).

Subject: Any Other Verizon Users Here?
From: Sharon <Seeker@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Fri, 13 Jun 2008 15:39:15 GMT

Looks like we're going to lose our customary path to this group (see announcement message below). That is particularly grievous to me as I don't have time to become literate with new ways to get here, and you've all become so very important to me over the past 13 years. My local pals are only occasional quilters with no interest in taking it further. And your lives are all so important to me, even in times such as the past 10 months. I hop in here when we are home, which is only about 2/3 of the time any more. Perhaps I haven't explained it, but the week DFIL passed away, DBIL was diagnosed with T-cell lymphoma. On a trip to the Cancer Center in Houston TX he came down with an additional illness - spinal mengitis. We've been spending most of the time in Happy Valley PA assisting DSIL when not trying to clean out the accumulation/furniture in the home place acquired through at least 5 other family estates over the years so that we can sell our home here and move up there, once done.

Sorry for the long-winded nattering. Here, as promised for Verizon subscribers:

"Path: nwrdny02.gnilink.net!cycny02.gnilink.net!cyclone1.gnilink.net!spamkiller.gnilink.net!gnilink.net!trnddc01.POSTED!ff7b0b90!not-for-mail
From: Jeremy - VZ News Admin <newadmin@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Newsgroups: 0.verizon.announce
Subject: Important Newsgroup Change Announcement
Reply-To: newsadmin@xxxxxxxxxxx
Message-ID: <d1l354dr8ci7nf4ijmqrmb6r46qvbgdkqi@xxxxxxx>
X-Newsreader: Forte Free Agent 2.0/32.652
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset=ISO-8859-1
Content-Transfer-Encoding: 8bit
Lines: 73
Date: Fri, 13 Jun 2008 01:58:30 GMT
X-Complaints-To: abuse@xxxxxxxxxxx
X-Trace: trnddc01 1213322310 (Thu, 12 Jun 2008 21:58:30 EDT)
NNTP-Posting-Date: Thu, 12 Jun 2008 21:58:30 EDT
Xref: news.verizon.net 0.verizon.announce:1159
X-Received-Date: Thu, 12 Jun 2008  21:58:31 EDT (nwrdny02.gnilink.net)"


On 06/24/2008, Verizon will be modifying its Newsgroup offerings to only offer groups in the Big-8 Newsgroup hierarchies, which are listed below. Users will not be able to post or download from any other newsgroups."


More information on the Big 8 hierarchies is available at
www.big-8.org. "

The 0.verizon.* newsgroup hierarchy will also continue to be

In preparation for this change, you will need to modify your news client(s) and unsubscribe from all newsgroups other than the newsgroups listed above. Failure to do so may interfere with the functioning of the Verizon network or use of the network by other Verizon users which is a violation of our Acceptable Use Policy."

[Rest of Verizon message snipped]

Fer crying out loud: ALT.SEWING!

Posted by: reader at June 15, 2008 12:39 PM