As somebody with a keen interest in free speech issues, I’m naturally predisposed to skepticism when it comes to government censorship. The system we have in Australia serves two purposes; it provides information to consumers (“MA15+ – extreme nudity and wisecracking animals”) and protects Australians from morally inappropriate material, such as spanking or violent video...

I had a spot on 7PM Project last week talking about Cybercrime, in particular the hack of the CIA by LulzSec. I got some comments afterwards about the abuse of the word hacker by the media. As a geek, I should know better. But I’m unrepentant. The educated nerd knows that a hacker is someone with...

There’s little sign that the global copyright war will let up any time soon. Wherever you go, the content industries are working hard to secure stronger “protections” for intellectual property and tougher penalties against those who infringe against these protections. Given the forces they can bring to bear – an army of lobbyists and an...

It was widely reported yesterday that Facebook have released some new security tools, including a reporting mechanism that allows kids to report an incident of bullying to a trusted adult. This initiative is parted of Facebook’s revamped Family Safety Center and came directly as a result of Facebook’s involvement with the White House Conference on...

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  • February 7, 2011

Late last year I testified before the Senate Environment and Communications committee inquiry into Protection of the privacy of Australians online. It was an interesting experience, and it’s also interesting to read oneself in Hansard afterwards (all the while resisting the urge to edit the document and rephrase things). Here’s an extract where I have...

(My piece over at the ABC today.) Before it came along, we were served by a revolving series of moral panics, changing censorship ministers and a patchwork of different state systems. Many books and films were banned that today would hardly warrant a mention – I wonder how many high schools would not allow “The...

The Wikileaks saga continues to captivate the public imagination. The drama around Assange and his arrest, the fascinating leaks, and the cyberpunk-style internet war that is raging in the background means this is the story that just keeps on giving. And it’s not just geeks that are soaking up the news – it’s everybody. This...

Recently I’ve spent a good deal of my time thinking, reading and talking about online privacy. As Facebook and the rest of the social media set become more of a fixture in our lives, the public’s concern about privacy issues have become increasingly pronounced. Every Facebook incident seems to get widespread media coverage. We’ve also...

Yesterday I spoke to the PM program on Radio National for a follow up on Google’s WiFi privacy debacle, and have spoken to a few other media outlets as well. No doubt there’s a lot of interest in the story because of Google’s household name and seemingly unstoppable rise towards digital dominance. The “don’t be evil” motto...

The biggest news for the filter in a while with Shadow Treasurer Joe Hockey choosing JJJ’s Hack program to announce that the Coalition will not back the Conroy Curtain whether or not they win government. Due to the makeup of the Senate (both before and in all probability after the election) this might mean the policy is...