Förderverein Informationstechnik und Gesellschaft

(german version)

Rabe Logo

An assault on our freedom - Help to stop Büssow!

FITUG e.V. calls netizens to participate in campaigns

FITUG is calling all netizens and NGO's to help defending against Büssow's assault on our freedom. Pushed by the Büssow as the head of administration of the region of Düsseldorf three courts out of four have decided to maintain the immediate execution of the order requiring ISP's to block of foreign content. Information that is legal and widely available in the originating country are supposed to be invisible in Germany. This reminds a very bad experience in Germany's not so glorious past when germans were not allowed to listen to foreign radio like BBC. All our attempts to enter into a constructive dialog have so far been ignored. As a consequence, we call all our supporters and all Civil Liberty Organizations to help us with actions, to act themselves and coordinate efforts with all relevant groups.


FITUG has already expressed it's strong opposition against the blocking order of Büssow in an earlier verbose statement (german). Already in 1997 we were against plans of the so-called Medienrat to filter content from outside german borders. In 1997 a study on blocking from Köhntopp et al. convinced the Medienrat to abandon those blocking plans. Now, we are facing the same attempt again. But this time, we face an adversary that is resistant to any kind of advice or suggestion.

The intent was to clear the legal question before executing anything. But despite this previously agreed intent, despite the unclear technical situation, despite the unclear legal situation, despite the threads to data protection, despite the deep impact on our human right to receive information from sources worldwide, Büssow decided to order immediate execution of the blocking order. This shows clearly that Büssow is not interested in solving an issue.

The ISP's concerned started court-action against the blocking order and the order of immediate execution. Three out of four decisions confirmed the immediate execution. In a rough analysis, the VG Düsseldorf, VG Arnsberg and the VG Gelsenkirchen decided that blocking two hate-speech sites (out of more than 3000) in an inefficient manner was of higher value than our freedom to receive information from other cultures. The action is directed not against hate-speech sites, but against all netizens inside. The citizens rights to receive information were not taken into account by the court decisions. Finally, the sanctioning and execution of administrative orders, including the costs for those, is privatized without adequate saveguards for human rights. The opinions in those decisions do not contain sufficient explanations about the infringement on hour human rights.

Now nearly every ISP in the circonscription of Düsseldorf is obliged to block two hate-speech Web-sites. The ISP's don't really know how to deal with this. In the court hearing, the experts said, that theoretically, it should be possible. The DNS-manipulations and proxy solutions were already examined and abandoned years ago.

We all know that this opposition is NOT the defense of some hate-speech sites. We defend ourselves against the establishement of a system to control our minds.

The cause of holocaust memorials is ill-served and abused when crying loud for censorship against the citizens inside germany. The verbal support to those actions by the national union is simply intolerable.

Our Call

The further procedure has to be accompanied by sufficient political preasure and media coverage. FITUG calls on all it's supporters and on all civil liberty organizations to help with concerted political actions. FITUG itself will now start actions and will try to coordinate them nationally and internationally. Offers to help can be sent to: mailto:


FITUG first statement (german)

Collection of Materials and actions at


The court decisions (all german):

VG Düsseldorf

VG Arnsberg

VG Gelsenkirchen

VG Minden

Study on blocking from 1997 - Kristian Köhntopp

Felipe Rodriguez (Burn the village to roast the pig)

Statements of FITUG against border-controls on the net (german) [short] [long]

Büssow's pages:


FITUG creates connections to the virtual world of new media and data networks. From our statues: "The association's purpose is the fostering of the integration of new media with society, public education about technologies, risks, and dangers of these media, and the fostering of human rights and consumer interests with respect to computer networks." FITUG is a member of the Global Internet Liberty Campaign (GILC) and of European Digital Rights (EDRi)

Förderverein Informationstechnologie und Gesellschaft (FITUG) im Januar 2003