Eurovision Song-fest fever has subsided and I need to get over Blue’s so so showing. My playful poll asking readers to vote for the least worst song of their choice was a dismal flop. Ironically, hits to Perking the Pansies went through the roof and I had my best day ever. I suspect few of the newcomers will return but I may have picked up some new pansy fans along the way.
I’m constantly amazed at the power of the internet as a means of communication. This is liberating for most but subversive to some. I’ve read that the Turkish Government plans to compel all internet users to access the web through state controlled portals. The Government claims this will protect children from inappropriate sites. Others declare this is an attack on personal freedom because their internet usage can be monitored. Paranoia is fuelled by the Government’s reluctance to open up the list of banned sites to independent scrutiny.
No one would disagree that children should be protected. However, I have always thought this to be the job of parents. Relatively few Turkish children have direct and unrestricted access to computers. They are just beyond the reach of most. A more effective and less draconian strategy would be to offer parental control software free of charge or provide simple advice about how this can be managed through search engine restrictions.
A genuine attempt by the State to protect the young or insidious censorship, China-style? The proof of the pudding, as they say…