Electronic Frontiers Australia (EFA)
is urging the government to rethink its Internet censorship legislation,
claiming that Australian e-commerce businesses will be at a disadvantage if
the legislation goes ahead.
The claims have come about after recent announcements by the Canadian
Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) that it will not
be regulating the Internet because it “might put the industry at a
competitive disadvantage in the global marketplace.”
EFA executive director Darce Cassidy, said that, like the Canadian government,
“the Australian government must accept global standards, before Australian
businesses lose competitive advantage in the global information economy to
those in more enlightened countries.”
Cassidy said the legislation before parliament was not only out of step
Western democracies, but would create an Internet censorship regime more
authoritarian than those of Singapore and Malaysia.
The Canadians have recognised that the Internet is not
broadcasting and have taken into account the textual nature of most
Internet content and its selection and customisation by users, said Cassidy.
“The Australian government, in contrast, insists on pretending the Internet
is like television,” he added.