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F & F


FCC sets deadline and rules for CIPA Compliance
posted by scubacuda on Thursday July 24, @04:19PM
from the dept.
News David Burt writes "Libraries will have until July 1, 2004 to purchase and install filters in order to comply with CIPA, the FCC has just ruled. No policy standards for disabling the filtering software were set by the ruling. The ruling is available at http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/ FCC-03-188A1.pdf N2H2 filed ex parte comments with the FCC two weeks ago asking that the FCC not set any standards for filtering software to comply with CIPA, such as the ability to be unblocked or a level of effectiveness. We feel these are decisions best left to the free market and the libraries themselves to decide. So we are pleased by the ruling. Our comments are at http://gullfoss2.fcc.gov/prod/ecfs/retrieve.cgi?na tive_or_pdf=pdf&id_document=6514285271"

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  • David Burt
  • http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs _public/attachmatch/ FCC-03-188A1.pdf
  • http://gullfoss2.fcc.gov/prod/ ecfs/retrieve.cgi?na tive_or_pdf=pdf&id_document=65 14285271
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    FCC sets deadline and rules for CIPA Compliance | Login/Create an Account | Top | 6 comments | Search Discussion
    The Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not responsible for them in any way.
    Backer sought for censorware research (Score:2)
    by Seth Finkelstein (sethfNO@SPAMsethf.com) on Thursday July 24, @10:46PM (#889)
    User #31 Info | http://sethf.com/
    Trying again, hoping for some support ...

    I can say now that I have decrypted the N2H2 blacklist.
    See my DMCA testimony [tinyurl.com]

    But my censorware [sethf.com] investigations cannot continue without some sort of organizational backing and protection.

    I am NOT a Harvard/Berkman Fellow backed by the ACLU. I cannot do further work without institutional support.

    Re:Backer sought for censorware research (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday July 24, @11:36PM (#890)
    Being a "Harvard/Berkman Fellow backed by the ACLU" apparently isn't much help either if the Supreme Court doesn't even mention your "research" and the ACLU doesn't take your case to the appeallate level.
    Re:Backer sought for censorware research (Score:1)
    by zerodeux on Friday July 25, @10:13AM (#892)
    User #731 Info | http://zerodeux.net/
    I just read that DMCA testimony with Seth involved, it was very interesting.

    David Burt states here that the FCC did not requested constraints on censorware selection, and that 'free market and librarians' should do it. Hopefully some librarians are opposed to this censorship, wouldn't they be interested in installing something like a Squid proxy ? This is the best 'filter' suiting their needs (100% Internet access), and it is free (as in beer and as in speech). Beat this :).

    You can also play the censorware favorite game : retroactive fitting. Someone complains that a baaaad site is accessible ? Add a rule to your proxy immediately, and the complaint falls appart.

    I had a peek at the FCC document : It doesn't seem to define what's a 'filter', how it should work or what it should do. Maybe there's some room for being proactive here.

    As Seth said, spam filters are not problematic, because someone makes choices for himself. Censorware is, because an authority makes choices for subordinates. You still have some limit in between : you can choose to install CyberPatrol on your family computer, and you have the most important choice, leaving some of your trust (and freedom) to a private company - or not.

    The problem does not look the same for the CIPA. This is about the state - ie. people representation in a democracy - enforcing laws on people. A private company cannot represent people. N2H2 is not a technology provider, it's a service provider. Unless they really give the control to their clients, and that's the whole point of Seth on the 1201 exemption I gather, N2H2 _is_ operating the censorship, not dedicated citizens like teachers or librarians.

    The only argument that Burt has to protect the disclosure of its database is 'intellectual property'. From the business point of view, he might be right. That's very disputable, they could sell the technology and the blacklists separately.

    However on the social side it just doesn't fit : the whole point, is that a database regulating citizen rights _must_ belong to citizens. The DMCA already transformed the RIAA in some sort of music milice, we don't really want N2H2 to select our information, that's even much larger than a cultural problem. (BTW, I'm European, the 'we' is there because the same liberticide reactions are coming slowly but surely in the EU).

    That leads me to the 'proactive' thing : is there some censorware which let the blacklist be administered collectively ? Or maybe only editable by authorized personnel, but publicly readable ? If some Bayesian filter attached to an Apache or Squid proxy had a simple multi-user interface to read/edit filtering rules, wouldn't it be suitable to a lot of people ?

    It would have a very good argument of 'effectiveness' facing all centralized commercial approaches : N2H2 could never reach the speed and fitting quality of millions of citizens defining locally their idea of censorhip better than a handful of 'experts' operating in a dark room. Okay, the main point is freedom and transparency, but let's give some food to the marketing people.
    "Open Source Censorware" references (Score:2)
    by Seth Finkelstein (sethfNO@SPAMsethf.com) on Friday July 25, @09:11PM (#894)
    User #31 Info | http://sethf.com/

    I've started a page on Open Censorware issues
    http://sethf.com/ anticensorware/legal/open.php [tinyurl.com]

    See also my blog [sethf.com] entries:

    Libraries and opening censorware blacklists [tinyurl.com]

    "CIPA-compliant" library censorware [tinyurl.com]

    "CIPA-compliant" library censorware, again [tinyurl.com]

    Re:Backer sought for censorware research (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Friday July 25, @10:17AM (#893)
    Trying again, hoping for some support ...

    Those of us w/no money will just sit at the sidelines with big foam fingers that say "Seth F is #1"

    Re:Backer sought for censorware research (Score:1)
    by Seth Finkelstein (sethfNO@SPAMsethf.com) on Friday July 25, @09:18PM (#895)
    User #31 Info | http://sethf.com/
    Those of us w/no money will just sit at the sidelines with big foam fingers that say "Seth F is #1"
    Thanks. I appreciate the sentiment. But, as I say, though I love my EFF Pioneer Award [sethf.com], I can neither eat it nor sleep in it.

    I've got to have something besides the prospect of getting sued.

    Humanity has the stars in its future, and that future is too important to be lost under the burden of juvenile folly and ignorant superstition. - Isaac Asimov

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