Strange Bedfellows

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From the Telegraph, which in turn credits the Mail, so we shall see how things come to pass...

David Cameron, an avid iPad user,1 has pushed for tighter than expected curbs on internet pornography... The new measures will mean that in future anyone buying a new computer or signing up with a new internet service provider (ISP) will be asked, when they log on for the first time, whether they have children. If the answer is ‘yes’, the parent will be taken through the process of installing anti-pornography filters, as well as a series of questions on how stringent they wish the restrictions to be... The options include allowing parents to impose timed access limits on explicit material, or preventing children from viewing social networking sites such as Facebook during particular hours of the day.

I wonder what Facebook, Inc. thinks of its guest appearance in a porn censorship story. Pornography-as-threat is the expected default for politician and mass media alike; Zuckerberg-is-sleazy is one with some traction, but not exactly on the same level. In a world where you’ll never see headline questions like ‘Is there enough porn on the Internet?’ or ‘Why isn’t the government doing more to help the British porn industry?’ it seems doubtful that No. 10 bothered to add that detail as a way to emphasise a general concern for helping parents and to downplay motives of intrusive censoriousness. So why risk aggravating a very rich and influential company?

  1. Desperation for a suitable photo caption, or a quiet dig at his technological credentials...?

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