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WHO'S IN CHARGE HERE?
Magpie is a former journalist, attempted historian [No, you can't ask how her thesis is going], and full-time corvid of the lesbian persuasion. She keeps herself in birdseed by writing those bad computer manuals that you toss out without bothering to read them. She also blogs too much when she's not on deadline, both here and at Pacific Views.

Magpie roosts in Portland, Oregon, where she annoys her housemates (as well as her cats Medea, Whiskers, and Jane Doe) by attempting to play Irish music on the fiddle and concertina.

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Thursday, March 9, 2006

Making the world safe for censorship.

US web-filtering companies such as SmartFilter are doing a great job of it, says Xeni Jardin in an op-ed piece today:

The [Open Net Initiative] found that SmartFilter has been used by government-controlled monopoly providers in Kuwait, Oman, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Tunisia and the United Arab Emirates. It has also been used by state-controlled providers in Iran, even though American companies are banned from selling technology products there. (Secure Computing denies selling products or updates to Iran, which is probably using pirated versions.)

According to OpenNet, filtering products from another American company, Websense, have also been used by a state-controlled service provider in Iran, ParsOnline. Yemen uses Websense products to filter content on its two government-owned service providers. Websense software, the initiative says, filters out "sex education and provocative clothing sites, gay- and lesbian-related materials, gambling sites, dating sites, drug-related sites, sites enabling anonymous Web surfing, proxy servers that circumvent filtering, and sites with content related to converting Muslims to other religions."

The initiative also found that Myanmar, arguably the most repressive regime in the world, uses censorware from the American company Fortinet. And Singapore's government-controlled Singnet server uses filtering technology from SurfControl, a company formed from the merger of several censorware companies that is now technically British but has its filtering operations headquarters in California.

The Open Net Initiative has much more about how governments are using internet filtering over here.

Via NY Times.

| | Posted by Magpie at 3:20 PM | Get permalink




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