[CentOS] The internet filter coming to the US — with barely any dissent

Sun Oct 3 09:46:55 UTC 2010
☼ francis mendoza <francis.s.mendoza at gmail.com>


The US Congress spent yesterday packing up and heading home for mid-term
re-election campaigns, having failed its most important job — passing the
annual budget. But even this deadlocked Congress is capable of doing what
the Australian Labor Party cannot — pass a mandatory ISP-based Internet
filter — and do so before the end of the year.

Speaker Nancy Pelosi will recall the current congress for a special
lame-duck session later this year before newly elected representatives are
sworn in, to pass last-minute reforms in case the Democrats lose power, as
widely predicted in the polls. Among those reforms include a low-profile
copyright proposal with bipartisan, almost unanimous support that just so
happens to include censoring whole websites included on a government-run

The *Combating Online Infringements and Counterfeits Act*(COICA) will
blacklist sites that are “dedicated to infringing activities” regardless of
where the site is hosted, with exceptions for commercially-oriented sites
but not political speech. Originally planned as two blacklists, one
controlled by the courts and one by the US Attorney General, the latter was
dropped from the bill yesterday after ISPs raised early complaints.

Aaron Swartz from Progressive Change and Australian Peter Eckersley from
Electronic Frontier Foundation began a petition
campaign<http://demandprogress.org/blacklist/> this
week to fight the bill at demandprogress.org<http://www.demandprogress.org/>,
garnering 100,000 signatures in two days.

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