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U.S.A.: Zwangs-Rating durch die Hintertuer?

Dem EPIC-ALERT v. 4.11 vom 23.07.1997 sind unangenehme 
Entwicklungen zu entnehmen:

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[2] Search Engine Rating Scheme Touted at White House

Leading industry groups suggested on July 16 that they may exclude
material from widely used search engines unless the authors agree to
attach subjective rating labels to all web pages and other online
information. Less than three weeks after the Supreme Court struck down
the Communications Decency Act, a far more sweeping proposal to
restrict information available on the Internet -- "filtering,"
"blocking" and rating online content -- was touted at a White House
summit meeting.

Announcing the Administration's "Strategy for a Family Friendly
Internet," President Clinton described the private sector initiative
that will presumably preclude the need for new content-control

     For ["family-friendly"] controls to work to their full
     potential, we also need to encourage every Internet site,
     whether or not it has material harmful for young people, to
     label its own content as the Vice President described just a few
     moments ago. To help to speed the labeling process along, several
     Internet search engines -- the Yellow Pages of cyberspace, if you
     will -- will begin to ask that all Web sites label content when
     applying for a spot in their directories.

     I want to thank Yahoo, Excite and Lycos for this important
     commitment. You're helping greatly to assure that self-
     labeling will become the standard practice. And that must
     be our objective.

While such an approach might seem preferable to CDA-type legislation
at first glance, it raises the specter of an Internet where only the
equivalent of "PG" rated content could be found through the search
engines users have come to depend on.  EPIC is encouraging users to
contact the search services and oppose such rating requirements as
fundamentally at odds with free speech principles.

More information on filtering/blocking/rating, and contact information
for the major search engines, is available at:


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Hoffentlich hat da nach dem Fall des CDA niemand zu frueh gejubelt...

"Family-friendly Internet" - So gut wie ein Selbstwiderspruch.

Axel H. Horns