From: David Lau (MKT-US)
Sent: Tuesday, March 30, 2010 1:52:12 AM
Subject: NEWSBANK: U.S. concerned by Australian Internet filter plan
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By Rod McGuirk
The concerns of
"Our main message of course is that we remain committed to advancing the free flow of information which we view as vital to economic prosperity and preserving open societies globally," a U.S. State Department spokesman Michael Tran told The Associated Press by telephone from
Tran declined to say when or at what level the U.S. State Department raised its concerns with
"We don't discuss the details of specific diplomatic exchanges, but I can say that in the context of that ongoing relationship, we have raised our concerns on this matter with Australian officials," he added.
Internet giants Google and Yahoo have condemned the proposal as a heavy-handed measure that could restrict access to legal information.
The plan needs the support of Parliament to become law later this year.
Australian Communications Minister Stephen Conroy says the filter would block access to sites that include child pornography, sexual violence and detailed instructions in crime or drug use. The list of banned sites could be constantly updated based on public complaints. If adopted into law, the screening system would make
Conroy declined to comment on the
"The Australian and
Some critics of