Oz child advocates oppose filtering

US educators frustrated with school filters will be interested in this news from Oz: "Support for the Government's plan to censor the Internet has hit rock bottom, with even some children's welfare groups now saying that that the mandatory filters, aimed squarely at protecting kids, are ineffective and a waste of money," The Age reports. The plan – "to block 'illegal' content for all Australian internet users and 'inappropriate' adult content on an opt-in basis" – has also received "harsh opposition" from Australian consumers, online rights groups, the Greens, the Opposition, and the Internet industry. The Age cites the view of Holly Doel-Mackaway of Save the Children, "the largest independent children's rights agency in the world," that educating kids and parents is "the way to empower young people to be safe internet users." Filtering's flawed, she told the paper, because it doesn't get to the problem at its source and can't help but block useful online resources. "Live trials" of the filtering are scheduled to start by the holidays, The Age adds.

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