Freedom of Information applications

Matthew X profrv at
Tue Apr 13 00:46:10 PDT 1999

I'm just sending away today for my federal police file and saw this...
Govt 'trying to prevent scrutiny of Net censorship laws'
July 24 2002
The Federal Government is moving to prevent scrutiny of its Internet 
censorship laws which have been a dismal failure, according to the 
Australian Democrats.
In a media release, Australian Democrats IT spokesperson, Senator Brian 
Greig, said these changes would enable any government department to block 
legitimate public access to records simply by saying the records contained 
offensive material.
"Currently, the Broadcast Services Act allows the Australian Broadcasting 
Authority (ABA) to order websites to be banned under a very broad 
definition, but so far, its excesses have been monitored and curtailed by 
online civil liberties organisations such as Electronic Frontiers 
Australia," Senator Greig said.
"To date, this has been done through the legitimate use of the FOI Act. 
However, the Government's proposed changes to the FOI laws mean the ABA 
will be able to hide behind the Act in all its decisions and be protected 
from genuine public scrutiny".
"This knee jerk reaction from the Government is a direct response to 
probing questions from the Australian Democrats and the Electronic 
Frontiers Australia into the workings of the ABA," Senator Greig said.
"Back in 1999 changes to the Broadcasting Services Act forcing the ABA to 
apply unworkable censorship laws to Internet were criticised by the 
Australian Democrats.
"The application of those unworkable laws was so embarrassing to the 
Government, it now sees the need to introduce these changes to the FOI 

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