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The Julie Group shares a professional interest in the area of digital and emerging technology and law. As professionals there is a rich and deep appreciation for the differences of opinion that can appear in this space. You must never assume that opinion, where it is introduced is universally shared and endorsed by all our volunteers. Nor are they necessarily the very best snapshot of a given issue.

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Thursday, August 2, 2007

A Curious Conundrum

There I was, minding my own business - well, complaining about Adware - when the verdict from the Chris Langham trial popped onto the TV. Though I missed the bulk of the news report, I did pick up one of the legal type guys saying something that can be summed up like this:

"These sort of images (child pornography) don't just pop onto your screen. You have to go looking for it".

Now, it's clear that in this case, Langham did indeed "go looking for it", though only he can truly know if the motive was "research" or not.

However. The above statement seemed to come across as a more general, sweeping, non-Chris Langham specific statement.

This is sort of dangerous.

Already, we've had a web browser that fires up illegal porn without the permission of the person using it. There are currently plans in the UK to make certain kinds of extreme porn - rape, for example - illegal. But here's a hijack from a few days ago involving supposedly normal blogs immediately redirecting the end-user to rape porn.

Bam, just like that. Have some potentially illegal porn, on the house. Quick, free, easy and totally without warning.

I have little faith in UK law at the best of times, especially where cases of a technological nature are concerned. To put out the message that you "have to go looking for it" is spurious at best, and not a mindset the public at large should be fooled into believing.

I never liked TV anyway.


Fima Fimovich said...

Again and again we have the same problem: government and big corporations controlled press.
They try to ignore everything out their agenda. This is Operation Ore
they are trying to rehabilitate in
Chris Langham trial
They are ignoring basic facts about spyware. Julia Amero case disappeared
from news completely. They are trying to silent this. I think we need to do something to fight this monster.
I did not get answer from you.
First they ignored me after 2004
then everybody else.
When few rich people own world media, everything is possible

Fima Fimovich said...

Langham: a victim of gross injustice

Becky said...

A few months ago a LiveJournal user named d1rtyf1lthy set up a "prank", urging people to take a dating quiz and paste the results in their blogs. The result, an intriguing but ultimately meaningless graph, was hotlinked to an external site.

After approximately 60,000 people had taken the quiz, d1rtyf1lthy swapped the innocuous graph for the infamously disgusting, mildly pornographic picture known as "Goatse". Everyone who had pasted the hotlinked graph in their own blog now displayed a picture of "Goatse" instead.

There are reports that two teachers in California, who had recommended the "dating quiz" to their students as part of a computer project, were fired as a result of this.