Vietnam has no blogger love, and Australia follows

Thursday, December 27, 2007

While Vietnam has banned access to certain sites and information online, since the news in July that it would be drafting regulations on what could, and could not be posted on blogs, there hasn't been a lot of news on it since then - until now.

According to recent news stories, Vietnam officials are making another statement:

Deputy Information and Communications Minister Do Quy Doan this week told a conference on Vietnam's press law that "controlling weblogs is about developing them in accordance with the law, not forbidding them". Bloggers would also be held responsible for information they access, he reportedly said, adding: "Once we have obvious regulations, I think no one will be able to supervise weblogs better than the bloggers themselves."

So basically "regulation" means censorship - and as "free" as Vietnamese are in the sense of new economic opportunities - they're still under the rule of a communist government.

And in case you thought things like this only happened in communist countries, Australia is also getting some net censorship as well in the form of age verification - and outright bans - for the majority of online content.

Sites - big or small - will now have to get professionally assessed by a third party which will deem whether or not a site is rated MA15-plus, or R18-plus, and then if accessed will have to provide age verification tools for users.

At the same time the Australian Communications and Media Authority will have full force to take down sites and content which they deem as being offensive - and that means anything which is rated as X18-plus - and sites outside of Australia will be added to a non-approved inaccessible censored list.

So America - country that I love - while you've partially been built on the backs of slaves, the colonization of indigenous people, and forced those into camps for looking like me - at least you still give us the freedom to bash you while looking at copious amounts of naked people without retribution.