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Hong Kong Government Moves to Block "Indecent" Material on the Internet

By rusty in News
Fri Jun 02, 2000 at 08:04:09 PM EST
Tags: Freedom (all tags)
Freedom

The government of Hong Kong has released a consultation paper called the "Control of Obscene and Indecent Articles Ordinance" (COIAO) which proposes that the HK government take steps to prevent users from accessing "indecent" or "obscene" material on the internet. The government is accepting public comment on this ordinance until June 19th, and a petition is being circulated by a group called Free Net HK to stop the law. More information on the proposed ordinance is below.


Among other measures, say the proposal's opponents at Free Net HK, this ordinance proposes:
  • Requiring all Internet Service Providers (ISPs) to provide filtering tools to its customers.
  • Treating ISPs as publishers and leaving them liable for illegal content on their networks even if they play no direct role in the creation of the content and even if it is technically unfeasible to block the content.
  • Giving the Government a new power to direct ISPs to censor and block access to content hosted locally which has been rated as obscene
  • Giving the Government a new power to direct ISPs to censor and block access to content hosted overseas which has been rated as obscene
  • Requiring all ISPs to block access to obscene material hosted overseas.
The branch of the Hong Kong government responsible for the proposal appears to be the Panel on Information Tecnhnology and Broadcasting, part of the Legislative Council of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the People's Republic of China. The invitation for written comment on the ordinance is available as a PDF from the PITB's web site.

Until the 19th of June, comments on the proposal may be sent by mail to:

Clerk to the Panel on Information Technology and Broadcasting
Legislative Council Secretariat
3/F Citibank Tower
3 Garden Road
Central
Hong Kong
or by fax to 2121 0420, telephone to 2869 9246 or 2869 9214 or email to Sjyuen@legco.gov.hk, according to the invitation of submissions pdf linked above.

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Related Links
o Control of Obscene and Indecent Articles Ordinance
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o the Legislative Council
o invitation for written comment
o Sjyuen@leg co.gov.hk
o Also by rusty


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Hong Kong Government Moves to Block "Indecent" Material on the Internet | 8 comments (8 topical, editorial, 0 hidden)
Hopefully posting this story will g... (none / 0) (#4)
by agl on Fri Jun 02, 2000 at 03:49:33 PM EST

agl voted 1 on this story.

Hopefully posting this story will get lots of people to burn this paper, in public, somewhere very visible. Then (I hope) the govt will reconsider

Good write-up. And it's not US-Cen... (none / 0) (#3)
by Rasputin on Fri Jun 02, 2000 at 04:22:55 PM EST

Rasputin voted 1 on this story.

Good write-up. And it's not US-Centric ;)
Even if you win the rat race, you're still a rat.

This is ridiculous and should be se... (none / 0) (#5)
by Obiwan Kenobi on Fri Jun 02, 2000 at 05:43:28 PM EST

Obiwan Kenobi voted 1 on this story.

This is ridiculous and should be seen.
-----------
Obiwan
misterorange.com - The 3 R's: Reading, Writing, and Rock & Roll...

I'm scared. ... (none / 0) (#2)
by ishbak on Fri Jun 02, 2000 at 05:56:22 PM EST

ishbak voted 1 on this story.

I'm scared.

I jsut got back from Hong Kong, and... (4.00 / 1) (#1)
by fluffy grue on Fri Jun 02, 2000 at 06:02:24 PM EST

fluffy grue voted 1 on this story.

I jsut got back from Hong Kong, and was actually working on an article for K5 describing the tech culture there. I heard a little bit of buzz about this as my trip was coming to a close, which I found interesting due to the fact that in Hong Kong, you can literally find pornography everywhere. There are no social stigmas against pornography; pornographic movies are mixed in with regular movies, and nobody even gave a crap about my younger brother browsing or buying pornography (and he doesn't look 18, the legal age for buying porn there, though being Americans maybe the clerks didn't know any better). This sonuds like the Chinese government making an extra-big stink about soemthing which the residents of Hong Kong won't actually uphold even if it does come to pass as a law (in fact, this sounds like the calm before the storm of China trying to convert Hong Kong over to their government over the next 50 years).

I have a feeling that if the Chinese government tries to get their way, Hong Kong will revolt and become a fully-sovereign nation. They're doing just fine with China's current hands-off methodology (in fact, the Hong Kong government is one of the least-corrupt in the world), and the populace doesn't strike me as standing for what amount to drastic changes in social mores and oppression.
--
"Is not a quine" is not a quine.
I have a master's degree in science!

[ Hug Your Trikuare ]

Re: I jsut got back from Hong Kong, and... (none / 0) (#7)
by Alhazred on Mon Jun 05, 2000 at 09:16:43 AM EST

There won't be any revolt, who's kidding who? The PRC would hate to have to come down on HK, but if people there got out of hand the tanks would be on the streets the next day, no ifs and or buts.
That is not dead which may eternal lie And with strange aeons death itself may die.
[ Parent ]
Relevant and timely ... (none / 0) (#6)
by kefaa on Fri Jun 02, 2000 at 07:33:46 PM EST

kefaa voted 1 on this story.

Relevant and timely

another article (none / 0) (#8)
by Anonymous Hero on Tue Jun 06, 2000 at 03:01:59 AM EST

There's an article on this on Yahoo News (via NewsBytes) available here.

Hong Kong Government Moves to Block "Indecent" Material on the Internet | 8 comments (8 topical, 0 editorial, 0 hidden)
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