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Media Release

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Electronic Frontiers Australia Inc.

                    Media Release                  December 14th 1997

AUSTRALIA GOES IT ALONE ON NET CENSORSHIP

Electronic Frontiers Australia today slammed the decision of State
and Federal Attorneys-General to push ahead with unpopular Internet
censorship laws.

Despite widespread industry criticism, the Attorneys-General still
propose to make Australian service providers responsible for overseas
content and the actions of their customers. "This is the equivalent
of making Telstra and Optus responsible for the content of people's
telephone calls", said EFA Chairman Kimberley Heitman.

Last year EFA was leaked a copy of draft legislation, which led to a
national campaign by Internet users and civil libertarians, culminating
in a protest march on NSW Parliament.  That legislation was postponed at
the request of Senator Alston, the Minister for Communications, and it
is understood that Senator Alston's department is afraid that Internet
censorship laws may cause damage to Australia's fledgling information
technology industry.

"The United States and even Malaysia have given up trying to censor
the Internet", said Heitman.  "It does no good locking up Australian
ISPs when contentious material can be stored anywhere in the world.
Australia is behind the rest of the world in coming to terms with the
Internet, and attempts to censor it will make Australia an international
laughing-stock."

ENDS

      --------------------------------------------------------------
      Electronic Frontiers Australia Inc  --  http://www.efa.org.au/
      representing Internet users concerned with on-line freedoms
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      Media Contacts

      Kimberley Heitman
      Phone: 08 9458 2790
      Email: [email protected]

      Danny Yee
      Phone (home): 02 9955 9898
      Phone (work): 02 9351 5159
      Email: [email protected]
      --------------------------------------------------------------

BACKGROUND

Australian Financial Review story
	http://www.afr.com.au/content/971213/inform/inform6.html

Last years censorship proposals - the leaked draft and responses
	http://www.efa.org.au/Publish/Welcome.html#prim





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Copyright © 1997 Electronic Frontiers Australia Inc.