This is a current work in progress… please consult the Department of Housing (WA) website for all office locations.
Assange was speaking as part of a panel that was supposed to focus on the legal and ethical issues around diplomatic asylum, but instead veered off for a lengthy discussion about U.S. President Barack Obama’s speech at the U.N. this week, which he called “fine words” that needed to be followed up with “fine deeds.”
“It is time for Obama to do the right thing and join the forces of change, not in fine words, but in fine deeds,” he said.
Watch the speech below:
I had my first Law lecture this morning, prior I was in the Murdoch Bookshop stacking up on some tomes I will be needing on this endeavour (and a couple more I just wanted to get). I got home enthused to start reading this new type of littérateur that I will be battling over the next few years, and heeding the advice of my lecturer: That it takes a little bit of a learning curve to get use to legal writing, I decided to start on one of the law books that wasnt part of my required reading material, but was something that I felt more palatable for someone with my background in web–Internet and E-Commerce Law, Business and Policy.
Imediatly I scanned the contents for a topic that I could relate to; Chapter 6 – Domain names and trade marks. Reading the section on WHOIS was where I started. Everyone who works web knows WHOIS, so reading this very legal run-down of something that we as webbys take for granted is… refreshing in a sense. Then I got all academic on the shit and I saw the real problem–well from my pedantic web paradigm anyway. I went to look up one of the references in the United States-Australia Free Trade Agreement, Art 17.3.2 and clicking on that link you see why Im pissed off. Numbered paragraphs that should be ordered lists!, no text anchors!, emphasis where it should be italic!. These things matter if this were a published print document; all hell would break loose if this were printed like this. But on the web, do the document custodians care? Are they even aware that HTML markup can be used to present the information in a more accessible manner?.
I am yet to look into W3C giudelines for web content; due however to the differing nature of legal style requirements in jurisdictions arount the world, I doubt an international standard could be reached specifically relating to Acts. Surely tho, the same W3C guidelines for ordered lists on other web content would apply to the layout of a legal document?. Emphasis and Italic however I see it as a breach, an Act must be written in italics by legal style convention (law?), not emphasised when read or interpreted by a text reader. What this neglect in the article of the USAFTA linked is a clear neglect the legal community have for the web community, or at least HTML.
UPDATE: When going over some online sesources provided for the unit, I came accross the below image. Please feel free to comment.
Australian Policy Online released on Monday a document containing many statistics regarding Australian’s attitudes toward online privacy. Some key findings were:
- 85% of online Australians believe data breach notification should be mandatory for business
- Australians nominated identity theft (86%) and loss of financial data (83%) as their areas of greatest privacy concern.
- The financial sector is most trusted on privacy (42%), followed by government and the eCommerce sectors
- Social media is the least trusted industry on privacy (1%). In fact, 61% of respondents nominated the social media industry as having the worst privacy practices
- Overall, women feel more secure than men online, and younger people (18-29 years old) feel more secure than older people (50+ years old)
I have yet to read the full text, so I will reserve any summation and/or analysis until I have.
The full PDF is available to download from the following URL:
I was surfing thru the datasets on data.gov.au and thought id import the KML from the Department of Broadband Communications and the Digital Economy‘s CyberSaftey Outreach centres.
View KML – CyberSaftey Outreach Centres in a larger map
There are around 800 datasets available, in various formats, so theres something for every interest.
I was approached a few weeks ago by the Equal Opportunity Commission to build a Joomla powered Intranet–at first I had apprehensions: Joomla is not the greatest of CMS software for this application, and all government departments are running MOSS2010, so It would be simple logic to go with SharePoint for the intranet too?
Adding to the complexity of this project it was also suggested that the Joomla run on a WAMP stack–but with the server being SBS2003 I decided to put it together thru IIS instead of go and install Apache on a system that didnt require it.
The system installed without a hitch–its not the first time I have put together a J! on IIS, but its the first time I did so for an intranet. Hopefully this makes business run a bit smother down there at EOC.
In a follow-up to my post from earlier re: Political Trolls, last night the ABC’s Four Corners aired this piece on the climate change debate called “The Climate Wars”. I think the following quote from Liberal Senator Cory Bernardi really sums up the current political climate over new media:
I’ve always sought to build a movement, not an empire. I want as many, you know, like-minded groups out there advocating for what they think is important – not what Cory Bernardi thinks is important.
If they’ve got a good idea about a blog or you know an activism initiative that they want to pursue, if I’ve got the money and the resources to help them, I will do that.
Now, I don’t necessarily have to agree with everything they do or everything they say. I just want people to get out there and have a go.
The entire article is below (thanks to the Australian Broadcasting Corporation)
So basically yes, the fascist dogs are manipulating the media to their own agenda, and its up to us to do something about it… then this morning the ABC aired a programme about Phone Phreaking and the early days of hacking–maybe the ABC is trying to manipulate me to go after these shites!. (BTW: the Sydney Morning Herald is a sharepoint driven site so dont even bother going after Andrew “Im a fuckwit” Bolt.
After all, it was those inflammatory remarks from right-wing retards which caused me to disable my Facebook.
READERS NOTE:This was originally on my Murdoch blog but it for some reason did not import when I migrated the content over..
The way New Media has changed the political landscape is one for much debate, politicians, public servants academics, journalists and the general public each have their own roles and expectations with what they want to achieve and how technology will change the way governments are run.
On one side we have the politicians, who are embracing Web 2.0 technology–in particular social media, to get in touch with their constituents and financial backers. If we look at the 2008 US presidential election we see that Obama raised more campaign contributions than any candidate before him–and this was largley to do with how he used Web 2.0 to reach a much broader audience.
Interest groups too are taking on social media as a way of lobbying support for their cause, Electronic Frontiers Australia (EFA) have not only a Facebook presence, they also have a wiki where members of the public can contribute ideas on issues that the lobby group is focused upon: Internet Censorship, 18+ Games Legislation, etc.
Other groups–for example Anonymous, use various forms of new media to reach their target audience. Altho Anonymous’ actions differ greatly to that of EFA, even if there end goals are largely the same. Early this year members of Anonymous sent a clear message to the Australian Federal government, and began what they call “Operation Titstorm”, which involved Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks on government websites. Below is a short video that many of you may have already seen, its a warning message from Anonymous to the Federal Government.
One of the main targets in this attack is Senator Stephen Conroy, the minister for the Internet and Digital Economy. Below we have an interview of Conroy from the ABC television show Hungry Beast.
Anonymous’ actions, the DDoS attacks on government websites have be criticized by EFA as being counterproductive. The EFA, being a legitimate lobby-group, fear that the actions of Anonymous will alienate the general public from their cause. This could be for many reasons, one being how Anonymous is portrayed in the mainstream media–as a ill-formed group of sexual deviants, as this clip from the ABC show QandA:
The above clip also demonstrates a clear lack of knowledge about new-media by both politicians and members of the old media. If governments are to effectively deal with issues arising from new-media, a far better understanding of how new media (and user created content) work. The discussion in is dominated by the issue of child pornography, which is NOT what Operation Titstorm–AND the proposed internet cleanfeed are about. Having debate hijacked by the issue of child-abuse means the real issue of politicaly imposed censorship is being pushed to the side.
Its not just EFA and Anonymous groups of alleged “hackers” that are weighing into this debate, Journalist sans Frontiers (Anglais: Reporters without Borders) have been critical of the federal governments plans since they were first proposed–now there opposition is gaining momentum, with the ABC reporting that Australia has been placed on an “Enemy of the Internet” watchlist. Having JSF behind the anit-cleanfeed movment gives more validity, as they are a legitimate lobby group that wont resort to militant counter-productive tactics as well as exposing the issue to the world’s journalists and media-content creators. Internet giants Google and Yahoo have also recently voiced their opposition to the proposed filter, and this is in the wake of Google’s decision to pull out from China due to censorship issues.
The more that the issue of cleanfeed gets discussed in an inteligent manner in the mainstream media, the less likely the government are to enact such draconian legislation against the publics will.
Most dont like to admit it, but we all have our political opinions. Its when a general election comes around that we tend to more vocal of said opinions, and a federal election is slowly approaching. People have expressed their view on politicians in numerous and sometimes hilarious ways, from the political cartoons that satire those in power, to having a one on one discussion with a friend or collegue. The advent of New Media had broadened our outlets of dissent (or compliance?).
Social Networking Sites are one such avenue. Using the example of Facebook; we can make a politicaly charged status update, join “groups” of people with similar convictions, engage in legitimate discussion, or even troll. As voters there is little restriction on what we can and can not say, as we are mearly exercising our opinion. Governments however, have restrictions imposed on what they can say to the media.
An example of restrictions on government announcments I would like to cite is “Caretaker Mode”. I wont divulge into detail, but basically means Ministers and their respective departments can NOT introduce or announce any new policy once the election has been called. There are also restrictions on political/campaign advertising, tho these are less stringent.
But where does the line get drawn?. Joe Citizen, of no political persuasion is entitled to voice his concerns regarding current political and social issues, and this is important to democracy so those on the campaign trail can hear the voices of their constituents, or would be voters. However there are citizens who have a political agenda, and who are Members of registered political parties. These party faithful have the same rights to express their opinions as those of the laity. In the old-media paradigm the party faithful are easily spotted: The double breasted suits of clean shaven conservatives are easy to differentiate from the Bearded, Che Guavara shit wearing Socialist Alliance–even without the visual aids, the language used by these groups is un-mistakable. We, the undecided Joe Citizen*, can tell what lies are told by whom.
New Media presents us with some new issues. The ability to remain anonymous over the tubez is one such problem, without an identity how do we identify the lies we are told?. Another issue, which is related to the former is that of Trolling. A user has the ability to pretend to be someone else, and enter into an online political discourse of those whos views are dissimilar to that of their own and disrupt the dialog by inserting false, misleading or even defamatory comments with the intent to create political divisions between other users.
One only needs to look at the comments on the Facebook posts of Triple J’s radio programme Hack, to see the evidence of YLNP trolling. A traditionally left, youth orientated public broadcaster, would not be expected as an online hangout for Australia’s young conservatives, but the comments testify otherwise.
Not only are the posts misleading but they are often irrelevant and hinder any legitimate political discourse–not to mention the impact they could have on first time voters. If this trolling were limited to one or two disruptive individuals, it would have little to no effect on the discussion. However, it is obvious this is not the case, clearly this trolling is organised politicaly. On researching the profiles of the trollers it reveals that most of the white noise, political red-herrings and neo-con retoric comes from the mouths/keyboards of party faithful.
As more people take up social media, one can only expect the more politically motivated trolling will occur. It follows then that the more trolls there are, the less REAL discussion there is on relevant political and social issues. Adapting or creating legislation to curb this trend may seem like a necessity, tho this action may indeed backfire, as how do we determine those that are political trolling, and who are just politically challenged.
I think its time we looked back at Voltare:
I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.
Voltaire, (Attributed); originated in “The Friends of Voltaire”, 1906, by S. G. Tallentyre (Evelyn Beatrice Hall)
French author, humanist, rationalist, & satirist (1694 – 1778)
but I think its time we modify it to this day and age:
I may not agree with your words but I will still listen and let you have your say, that does NOT mean I wont ridicule you for being an idiot.
It is important people have a voice–especialy a political one, so legislation is not the appropriate modus operandum. Better action would be to have the logical, moral and intellectual upper-hand, and let these idiots make their cries from the dress-circle because the rest of the audience are here for a show.
And it helps to “block” your profile from known trolls so they can not see your fluid, rational and well thought out argument…
* Im trying to be impartial, tho I can not hide the fact I am on the left of the political spectrum.