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Government welcomes community, industry and bipartisan support for internet regulation proposals.



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Media Release

 

SENATOR THE HON RICHARD ALSTON

Minister for Communications, Information Technology and the Arts

Deputy Leader of the Government in the Senate

 

 

GOVERNMENT WELCOMES COMMUNITY, INDUSTRY AND BIPARTISAN SUPPORT FOR INTERNET REGULATION PROPOSA LS

 

 

‘The Government warmly welcomes the extensive community, industry and political support for its proposed internet content regulation regime,’ the Minister for Communications, Information Technology and the Arts, Senator Richard Alston, said today.

 

‘W e particularly welcome the statements in the Senate of in-principle support from the Australian Labor Party, the Australian Democrats and the Australian Greens for these proposals.

 

‘The Government’s Broadcasting Services Amendment (Online Services) Bill 1999 meets the Australian community’s legitimate concern to control the publication of illegal and offensive material online, but without placing onerous or unjustifiable burdens on the internet industry and thus inhibiting the development of the online economy.

 

‘The protection of the nation’s children is one of the highest priorities for any government, and for any Parliament. The strong support for the principles underpinning the Government’s Bill is therefore great news for Australian parents, teachers and children.’

 

The Bill, expected to be debated in the Senate next month, will create a complaints-based regime administered by the Australian Broadcasting Authority to remove illegal or highly offensive material from Australian sites, and to establish an industry code of practice to facilitate the blocking of this material on overseas sites.

 

‘The Government is encouraged by the support for these proposals from the internet industry, which has adopted a responsible approach to the proposals. Particularly welcoming in this regard is the statement of support from the Australian Computer Society,’ Senator Alston said.

 

‘As newspaper reports have also demonstrated, the proposals enjoy wide support among Australian citizens including younger Australians. It is interesting to note that even the “wired generation” recognises the importance of protecting their younger siblings from this material online.

 

‘However, the actions of Labor frontbencher Senator Kate Lundy are disappointing to say the least. Despite Labor’s public support for the proposals Senator Lundy is continuing to run a “behind the scenes” political campaign of inflammatory and incorrect statements about the proposals. Australian parents can be thankful that Senator Lundy’ s views are not those of the rest of her party.’

 

 

Media Contact:  Terry O’Connor, Minister’s office 0419 636 879 

Website www.richardalston.dcita.gov.au

 

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26 April 1999

 

 

 

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