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Re: KidCode: Next steps

From: Terje Norderhaug <Norderhaug.CHI@xerox.com>
Date: Mon, 19 Jun 1995 16:46:58 -0800
Message-Id: <ac0bbe75090210049add@[]>
To: Darren New <dnew@sgf.fv.com>
Cc: Nathaniel Borenstein <nsb@nsb.fv.com>, Wes Morgan <morgan@engr.uky.edu>, rating@junction.net, www-talk@www10.w3.org, m.koster@nexor.co.uk
At 7:26 AM 6/19/95, Darren New wrote:
>> In other words, you provide the legislators with some technology that
>> they can decide to enforce instead of censorship. Suddenly, an
>> interim quick solution might became the legislated standard. Thus it
>> is somewhat contrasting when you write:
>Folks:  Reality check.  THERE IS ALREADY CENSORSHIP ON THE WEB.  In the

No need to shout, it doesn't change the argument. KidCode provide a technology
that we suddenly may find the legislators to embrace. Thus we risk to get
legislated "the QUICKEST way to get a 75% solution in place." [Borenstein].

>All KidCode does is allow you to say "this material is suitable for
>children" or "this material is suitable for adults". The ability for a
>browser to automatically recognise this is not going to make people want
>to censor the net *more* than it is.

It gives puritanian legislators a pretty good chance to require censoring,
though. It makes it rather easy to require filtering as information passes
state borders. It makes it easier to enforce specific criteria upon others.
I call it an invitation.

>Now, if you can actually explain what it means to "enforce" KidCode, then
>feel free to follow up.

To enforce KidCode means that there is a legal ruling saying that
a KidCode convention should be followed for any on-line document.

>If you actually have some constructive criticism, please make it and
>include me in the CC.  :-)

The comments are meant to be constructive. Feel free to use your creativity
to add constructive comments on mine, and we might get a step forward here.:-)

>> The quickest way to get a solution in place should not necesarrily be
>> the way that is legislated. This is not the moment to provide legislators
>> with some simple quick solution they can embrace.
>What legislation?

Your choice. US or any other.

>What's a quick simple solution they can embrace?


>"Dirty pictures should be marked as dirty pictures"? Why are you so
>against giving people the opportunity of explicitly marking whether
>something is suitable for children?

Because this might vary between cultures, subcultures, and individuals.
It would be a more ellegant solution to make it possible to adapt
the rating dependent on the preferences of these, rather than by some
local legislation or tradition where the content may be located.

>Do you go into your local newstand
>and protest that Playboy and Hustler are on the top shelf, out of reach
>of the 12-year-olds?

Well, several places in the world, Playboy isn't on the top of the shelves.
Some places it is not available, other places you might find that even
more "elaborate" material are freely accessible on the frontmost shelves
for everybody. Some parents might also be more liberal - or restrictive.

Consider this a protest of that playboy are out of the reach of 12 years old :-)

>> That is, if you limit the net to the US. However, smart content providers
>> might just move the content to a more liberal country, and it is basically
>> outside US jurisdiction.
>Until you retrieve it in the USA.  How would you like UUNet or PSI to cut
>their foreign links after getting a summons from the FBI for delivering
>porn over the wires?

Do you think that will stop content providers to locate outside the
legislation of their market? There are exiting times to come...

>You don't honestly think that just because the pictures are on a computer
>outside the USA and come in over international phone lines that's going
>to stop a country that invades foreign countries and kidnaps their heads
>of state with our army for telling others to break our laws?

No. Some of those in charge would use whatever mean they have available to
control others. Do you want to be their helping hand?

>> May be censorship of content providers has already lost, given the global
>> nature of this medium. However, voluntarly restrictions can't hurt, just
>> as long as they don't become legislation. What would you do to avoid that
>> it does?
>I would ask you to explain what it means to enforce KidCode.  So far,
>everyone who has worried about KidCode somehow becoming law hasn't
>actually said anything coherent about what the law would say.  Please
>state an example of what "legislation" about KidCode might say.

I am not a legislator. I believe that you, with your attention to detail,
might be a more appropriate person to write a proposed legislation.
Just remember to add a backdoor, in case it actually gets implemented :-)

-- Terje <Norderhaug.CHI@xerox.com>
Received on Friday, 23 June 1995 05:04:12 UTC

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