My father who was born during the Franco regime in 1934 always tells me that I should be careful with what I say and do since there is always someone listening..
I am trying to not live a paranoid life, but ideas such as EWS (European early warning system) "for paedophiles and sex offenders" will be the closest to a thought police since it extends the Directive 2006/24/EC (data retention directive) to search engines such as Google, Yahoo and MSN etc. in order to tackle online child pornography and sex offending rapidly and effectively by calling member states to coordinate a European early warning system involving their public authorities based on the existing system for food and safety (RASFF). And the world will be a safer place, really?!?
Imagine that the guy in the picture is not inspecting vegetables anymore, but he is looking at every move you do on the Net and he will file an alert with the nearest police station in case he suspects a "crime". This contradicts the principle that our legal system is built on top of "innocent until proven guilty in a court of law!" and today it is for "paedophiles and sex offenders", but where will it be tomorrow..?
The EWS declaration awaiting adoption currently has 324 signatures in the European Parliament as of the 20th of May claims to ensure that the "Internet continues to afford a high level of virtual democracy" so it sounds harmless, doesn't it?
Well, how about our freedom of speech, is this not one of the ground principles in a democratic society? Should we allow ourselves to live in a society where computer systems are tracking our every move in order for a crime less society? There have been countless sci-fi movies made that clearly shows that such a system would be abused and you do not have to go far in our history to find a society where everyone is a suspect and that is not part of a democratic society!
This is about to happen due to the rules of written declaration that goes outside the normal work flow of the European Parliament, it is there to enlighten questions from small groups that would not be heard otherwise. The initiators of written declaration 29 also known as the EWS declaration was initiated by Tiziano Motti from Italy and Anna Záborská from Slovakia. There are 736 MEP's in the Parliament and a declaration needs 369 signatures to be adopted so we are dangerously close (45 signatures) for this proposal to be dumped on commissioner Cecilia Malmström's table since she is responsible for freedom, security and justice. She has recently presented a proposal to censor Internet to protect child porn victims that would potentially limit our fundamental right to free speech why she got the nickname Censilia (feel free to Google it). Her latest proposal to revoke RIPE blocks of suspected child porn sites is referred to as carpet bombing the Net even got implications outside the jurisdiction of EU on mare suspicion rather then presenting the case in a proper court of law. Adding the EWS proposal to her crusade against "suspected child porn sites" will not be a pretty sight so we need to write to our MEP's and explain the dangers with the EWS proposal and Malmström's agenda.
The next step will be to change what is presived as child porn, In Sweden there will be a law from the 1st of July where you commit a crime if you view a child porn picture and this may sound like a normal evolution of law. However, child porn in Sweden is from the 1st of July anyone in a sexually challenging position below the age of 18 or anyone older that have changed their appearance so it looks like they are below the age of 18 and after the 1st of January 2011 (change in constitution law) also a drawing such as Hentai where the Tanner scale is used to make a estimation of the age why it will be very hard to prove what content is legal.
They seem to have forgotten kids who take sexually challenging pictures of each other and post on the Net via forums, chats IM etc. with other kids that are exploring their sexuality and in US such acts lead to kids being put in jail due to misuse of child porn laws.
The only viable solution is state certified porn sites like we have for alcohol with Systembolaget in Sweden and blocking everything else with DRM systems. Then we have something worse then cable TV Internet, namely government and companies controlling what can be published with a iron fist.
This can not co-exist with a democratic society where we claim to have free speech!