The inevitable has happened - the secret Australian blacklist of banned websites has been published on the internet.
The list contains some 2,395 sites about half of which do not contain child sexual abuse images. It includes online poker sites, fetish, satanic and Christian sites, Wikipedia pages, gay and straight pornography, a travel operator and even the website for a Queensland dentist.
The Australian government is trialling technology to filter the internet for all its citizens. The list would have been sent to all ISPs in the country - at which point it would definitely have leaked. It is just surprising it has happened so quickly.
University of Sydney associate technology professor Bjorn Landfeldt told the Sydney Morning Herald the leak was every parent's worst nightmare because curious children would now be looking for the list. But he told the paper, which has seen the document, "It seems to me as if just about anything can potentially get on the list."
The list has gone to Wikileaks which told the Herald it would publish the list shortly - it already hosts lists for several other countries. At the time of writing Wikileaks is unavailable, presumably because it is struggling with requests from
mucky-minded intellectually curious Aussies.
Wikileaks founder Julian Assange told the Herald that such secret censorship was inevitably corrupt. Thailand implemented a similar system apparently in order to counter child abuse images, but the list included over a thousand sites critical of the Thai royal family. ®