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Censorship in Germany - The Rundown

Over at Spreeblick there is a good summary in english of where the current debate over censorship in germany is headed and what childpornography has to do with it.

Since there is a current and hot debate over a new law that’s about to be passed in Germany and a highly successful online petition against that law, I thought it might be a good idea to do a summary in english for non-german bloggers and journalists.

If you live in germany I encourage you to sign the petition (some fundamental german language skills are required to do so) - it has already helped to garner almost 80.000 signees and provided the german press with a reason to report about it instead of just printing the talking points of the clueless politicians - it actually feels like it is making a difference.
This is about the freedom of speech not a call to support child pornography - there are better ways to combat this then activating ineffective filters and monitoring the whole internet population and - worst of all - give the BKA (german CIA or equivalent to former Staatssicherheit (Stasi) in east germany) the power to censor and block all websites without public oversight (if the law passes it would be a crime to posses and distribute the list of blocked internet site).

More information in english as said in the Spreeblick article.

Update: Over 100.000 people have signed the petition by now creating a media storm and shifting the debate. As some commenters pointed out - even if you are not a german citizen you still can sign the petition - still some german language skills might be required to get through the petition signup form.
Please sign and help the german internet community get a respected voice.

Commenter M.A. has the following help to offer for non german speakers:

Hey everyone, you may knowing, that there is an online petition going on in Germany against this law. I just want to point out (or try to with my bad English) that EVERYONE in the whole world is allowed to support this petition, because german constitution grands everyone to write petitions to the german parliament (or any other public institution of germany). This right has the totality of a human right in germany (some might say, because we are a nation of complainers ;-)) - Even childern, foreigner ... may. Everyone means everyone. If you can read German, in this thread of the discussion site of the online-petition, you can read exactly the laws that grand you these rights: https://epetitionen.bundestag.de/index.php?topic=1564.0 (starts with a discussion to fill out the registration correctly - later that foreigners are allowed to sign the petition also) So - why should foreigners sign a petition - THIS petetion - in germany:
1.) Even if you are a visitor in Germany, you have the right (again granted by german constitution) to get information by every (legal) public source you like - without censoring. Of course child porn illegal. But the mechanisms to block this content can easily exended to every content - and there are no general control mechanisms - the BKA (german FBI) decides by itself which sites should be blocked - the perfect mechanism for censoring.
2.) If you are in germany, and let’s say, go to an internet cáfe or use the connection of your hotel - and you reach a blocked website with bad luck, your IP is stored by the BKA. And the BKA has then officially thinks you are searching for cild porn - and because you are using internet not from home - there is the danger that it is not possible to find you the very next day. It might be not nice, if the police awaits you in the lobby of your hotel - only because some spambot or cyber-worm “helps” you to find illegal sites.
3.) The lists of blocked sites are secret. If you are not using a german provider, you will never know if YOUR homepage, blog, commercial website, ect. is blocked.
4.) This is an infrastructure for censoring - and we all know, if its installed, it will be used and extended. Do anyone in the world wants to have the germany Nation to be uninformed, wrong informed, censored? - AGAIN. History shows - we can do this quite effective and with uncontrolable consequences. sign the e-petition to show, that even foreigners don’t want Germany to be censored again.

1.) make an account on the petition portal of the german parliament: https://epetitionen.bundestag.de/index.php?action=register email (repeat email), password (repeat password) And then your name and adress: Frau/Mann = Mrs./Mr. Name = sirname Vorname = first name organisation = institution, company… (optional) Titel = academic title if any (optional) Straße und Hausnummer = street and house number Postleitzahl = postual code/zip code Wohnort = place of residence/city Land = country Bundesland = federal state of germany/foreign countries - choose the last one (AUSLAND) if you are not living in germany Telefonnummer = telefon-number (optional) then activate option “Ich bin einverstanden” - which says, you are ok with the privacy-policy of the portal. At last prove, not to be a bot with: “Visuelle Verifizierung” - type in the letters you see in the picture on the bottom of the site, Then push “Registrien”-Button. Your username is generated automatically: “NutzerXXX” - XXX is a number.
2.) sign in with the username and your password.
3.) Sign the e-petition: You find the right one at: https://epetitionen.bundestag.de/index.php?action=petition;sa=details;petition=3860 click on: “Petition mitzeichnen” - sign petition Its in the field “Anzahl Mitzeichnungen” (number of signings) - the forth blue box. Congratulations: You have signed a e-petition to the german parliament - against censoring the internet. greetings, M.A.


rP32: Freeling 09

rP32FreelingAufnahmePhoto.jpgWenn Ihr das lest, habt Ihr den harten Winter überstanden, wir auch. Wir starten wieder die Podcastsaison, welche viel zulange Winter schlief. Mit ein paar Freeknews (freekulturnews) heizt der Laubsägendrucker durchs Botanik Bücheregal, gefolgt von den protojektupdates mit Skinheadmusik, Kutiman und einem Fefitest. Labor, Schulgarten und Raum-E werden näher beleuchtet.

Alles weitere auf der Offiziellen Radio Prototypen Webseite.