UK Prime Minister Wants Government Control Over Internet Content
by Stephen Lendman
Theresa May opposes online freedom, the last frontier of free and open expression, a platform for activism, the only reliable independent, commercial-free source of news, information and analysis.
She and other Tory hardliners wants it regulated, a scheme to impose government control over content, allowing what it considers acceptable, prohibiting what it wants suppressed – the way all police states operate, waging war on freedom.
May’s Tory Manifesto wants Britain to become “the global leader in the regulation of the use of personal data and the Internet.”
“Some people say that it is not for government to regulate when it comes to technology and the internet. We disagree,” it says.
Tories want government control over what people write, post and share online, the end of UK online freedom if enacted into law.
Britain’s new Investigatory Powers Act requires Internet companies to maintain records on customers’ browsing histories, along with ministerial power to breach online privacy, including encrypted content – on the phony pretext of assuring no “safe space for terrorists to be able to communicate online.”
They even wants online adult content sites harder to access, exceptions requiring ministerial permission.
“We will put a responsibility on industry not to direct users – even unintentionally – to hate speech, pornography, or other sources of harm,” the Manifesto states.
“In harnessing the digital revolution, we must take steps to protect the vulnerable and give people confidence to use the internet without fear of abuse, criminality or exposure to horrific content.”
“Our starting point is that online rules should reflect those that govern our lives offline.”
“It should be as unacceptable to bully online as it is in the playground, as difficult to groom a young child on the internet as it is in a community, as hard for children to access violent and degrading pornography online as it is in the high street, and as difficult to commit a crime digitally as it is physically.”
“We will introduce a sanctions regime to ensure compliance, giving regulators the ability to fine or prosecute those companies that fail in their legal duties, and to order the removal of content where it clearly breaches UK law.”
The Tory scheme isn’t about “protect(ing) the security of people and ensur(ing) the fairness of the rules by which people and businesses (must) abide.”
It’s a blatant police state attempt to control online content, prohibiting what Tories want suppressed, government acting as gatekeeper.
May’s notion of “forward together” is a giant step backward.
Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at email@example.com.
His new book as editor and contributor is titled “Flashpoint in Ukraine: How the US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III.”
Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com.
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