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OpenNet finds Australia’s Internet regulation restrictive

05 June, 2007
By Allison Orr

The Open Net Initiative  has released its Regional Overview for Australia and New Zealand and has found that Australia maintains some of the most restrictive Internet politics of any Western nation.  This is in contrast to New Zealand whose Internet regulation is far less restrictive.

Referring to the lack of free speech protection in the Australian constitution, the report says that the Australian government regulates offensive content, giving government entities the power to issue take-down notices for content hosted within Australia.  The Australian government also promotes and finances an opt-in filtering program, which allows users to accept filtering software to block content hosted outside Australia.

According to the report  “Australia maintains a stricter regime of Internet censorship and regulation than New Zealand and much of the Western world, though not at the level of the more repressive governments that ONI has studied."

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