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Australian government secret ACMA internet censorship blacklist, 6 Aug 2008

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March 18, 2009
Summary

This list contains 2395 webpages or site variations derived from the those secretly banned by the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) and used by a government approved censorship software maker in its "ACMA only" censorship mode. The last update to the ACMA list is August 6, 2008.

While Wikileaks is used to exposing secret government censorship in developing countries, we now find Australia acting like a democratic backwater. Apparently without irony, ACMA threatens fines of upto $11,000 a day for linking to sites on its secret, unreviewable, censorship blacklist -- a list the government hopes to expand into a giant national censorship machine.

History shows that secret censorship systems, whatever their original intent, are invariably corrupted into anti-democratic behavior.

This week saw Australia joining China and the United Arab Emirates as the only countries censoring Wikileaks. We were not notified by ACMA.

In December last year we released the secret Internet censorship list for Thailand. Of the sites censored in 2008, 1,203 sites were classified as "lese majeste" -- criticizing the Royal family. Like Australia, the Thai censorship system was originally pushed to be a mechanism to prevent the child pornography.

Research shows that while such blacklists are dangerous to "above ground" activities such as political discourse, they have little effect on the production of child pornography, and by diverting resources and attention from traditional policing actions, may even be counter-productive. For a fascinating insider's account, see My life in child porn.

In January 2009, the Thai system was used to censor Australian reportage about the imprisonment of Harry Nicolaides, an Australian writer, who wrote a novel containing a single paragraph deemed to be critical of the Thai Monarchy.

Most of the sites on the Australian list have no obvious connection to child pornography. Some have changed owners while others were clearly always about other subjects.

Australian democracy must not be permitted to sleep with this loaded gun.

If Australia's "Senator for Censorship", Steven Conroy, has his way, Australia will be the first Western country to have a mandatory Internet censorship regime.

When human rights activists push for transparent government and a life free from censorship, the retort from developing world governments will rightly be "haha... what about Australia?".

The full blacklist follows in hyperlink form. Note that entries 1.52 and 1.53 are somewhat unusual; while confirmed to be part of the ACMA blacklist in censorship software it is possible that these are contamination of some sort from another list. It is also possible that they are entries previously wrongly excluded from the ACMA because they were on another (non-ACMA) list. Regardless, the complete list is the one that is being used in by the censorship software maker, when placed into "adult - unfiltered" (ACMA) mode.
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Context
Australia
Government (bureaucracy)
Australian Communications and Media Authority
File size in bytes
62587
File type information
ASCII English text, with CRLF line terminators
Cryptographic identity
SHA256 8fcf3d7d799c3d55e5c49ed698838df3a58ca758f48c884dea9bbfaea9e5f3f2



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Contents

The ACMA blacklist as used by the censorship software maker

Aug 6 2008

July 30 2008

July 28 2008

July 17 2008

July 3 2008

June 26 2008

June 19 2008

June 13 2008

June 4 2008

may 29

may 22 - 2008 - Adjustment

MAY 22 - 2008

MAY 14 - 2008

MAY 6 - 2008

APRIL 30 - 2008

APRIL 24 - 2008

APRIL 16 - 2008

APRIL 9 - 2008

APRIL 3 - 2008

MAR 26 - 2008

MAR 20 - 2008

MAR 12 - 2008

MAR 05 - 2008

FEB 29 - 2008

FEB 20 - 2008

FEB 13 - 2008

FEB 6 - 2008

JAN 30 - 2008

JAN 24 - 2008

JAN 18 - 2008

JAN 9 - 2008 - B

JAN 9 - 2008 - A

JAN 4 - 2008

DEC 19 - 2007

DEC 14, 2007

DEC 6, 2007

Nov 21 2007

Nov 14 2007

Nov 8 2007

Nov 2 2007

Oct 25 2007

Oct 18 2007

suicide

Oct 10 2007

Oct 3 2007

Sep 28 2007

Sep 18 2007

SEP 15 2007

AUGust 27

August 23

August 16 - Added the ones that must have been in the standard adult list

August-14 - 2007

August-12 - 2007

August-01 - 2007

july 24 - 2007

July 12 - 2007

July 4 - 2007 - Update

June 27 - 2007 - Update

June 20 - 2007 - Update

June 01 - 2007 - Update

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