Post Tagged with: "website blocking"

Filibusters Waste Time by Marni Soukup https://flic.kr/p/8RJW4C CC BY 2.0

Bill S-210 Study Without Witnesses?: Why a Conservative Filibuster May Lead to New Internet Age Verification Requirements and Website Blocking Legislation

When I first wrote about the arrival of Bill S-210 in the House of Commons back in December, I dubbed it the most dangerous Canadian bill you’ve never heard of and warned that “Senate private members bills rarely become law, but this bill is suddenly on the radar screen in a big way.” Nearly six months later, the bill is closer than ever to becoming law as the Conservatives improbably appear to be doubling down on support and seeking to limit witness testimony through filibuster tactics that could result in a full House vote without any amendments. For those new to the bill, the government has called it “fundamentally flawed” since it contemplates measures that raise privacy concerns through mandated age verification technologies, website blocking, and extends far beyond pornography sites to include search and social media. While the government has opposed it (save for a small number of Liberal MPs), the bill received full backing from Conservative, NDP, and Bloc MPs to send to the Standing Committee on Public Safety for further review. Now that it is there, the Conservative MPs have used filibuster tactics to block all witness testimony on the bill.

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May 16, 2024 7 comments News
Show me Common Sense by Adam Fagen https://flic.kr/p/24pgGRY CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

Conservatives Double Down on Support for Mandated Internet Age Verification and Website Blocking: Why Can’t Canada Get Common Sense Digital Policy?

Digital policy has been the source of seemingly never-ending frustration for years in Canada. The government chose to prioritize two flawed bills on online streaming and online news, both of which sparked considerable opposition, lengthy delays, and ultimately delivered few actual benefits (Bill C-11 faces at least another year of hearings at the CRTC, Bill C-18 is a disaster that has left many media companies worse off). Its 2021 consultation on online harms was so badly received that it was quickly shelved and has required nearly three years to recover. The policies it should have prioritized such as stronger privacy and competition rules were largely left to languish with Bill C-27 still in committee and now subject to mounting opposition over the decision fold AI regulation with minimal consultation into the bill.

Given that track record, it is hard to be optimistic as the online harms rules get set to take centre stage.

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February 22, 2024 11 comments News
Face Scan by Anarchimedia https://flic.kr/p/2g32LZh CC BY 2.0

The Law Bytes Podcast, Episode 190: Debating Bill S-210 – Senator Julie Miville-Dechêne Defends Her Internet Age Verification Bill

I’ve described Bill S-210, the Protecting Young Persons from Exposure to Pornography Act, as the most dangerous Internet bill you’ve never heard of as it contemplates measures that raise privacy concerns, website blocking, and extend far beyond pornography sites to include search and social media. The bill started in the Senate and having passed there is now in the House of Commons, where MPs voted in favour of it at second reading and sent it to committee for further study. Senator Julie Mivelle-Dechêne is the chief architect and lead defender of the bill. A former Radio-Canada broadcaster who was appointed to the Senate by Justin Trudeau in 2018, she joins the Law Bytes podcast to debate her bill as she provides her rationale for it and defends against the criticism and concerns it has sparked.

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January 29, 2024 6 comments Podcasts
2017 Freedom of Expression Awards by Elina Kansikas for Index on Censorship https://flic.kr/p/Uvmaie (CC BY-SA 2.0)

The Most Dangerous Canadian Internet Bill You’ve Never Heard Of Is a Step Closer to Becoming Law

After years of battles over Bills C-11 and C-18, few Canadians will have the appetite for yet another troubling Internet bill. But given a bill that envisions government-backed censorship, mandates age verification to use search engines or social media sites, and creates a framework for court-ordered website blocking, there is a need to pay attention. Bill S-210, or the Protecting Young Persons from Exposure to Pornography Act, was passed by the Senate in April after Senators were reluctant to reject a bill framed as protecting children from online harm. The same scenario appears to be playing out in the House of Commons, where yesterday a majority of the House voted for the bill at second reading, sending it to the Public Safety committee for review. The bill, which is the brainchild of Senator Julie Miville-Dechêne, is not a government bill. In fact, government ministers voted against it. Instead, the bill is backed by the Conservatives, Bloc and NDP with a smattering of votes from backbench Liberal MPs. Canadians can be forgiven for being confused that after months of championing Internet freedoms, raising fears of censorship, and expressing concern about CRTC overregulation of the Internet, Conservative MPs were quick to call out those who opposed the bill (the House sponsor is Conservative MP Karen Vecchio). 

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December 14, 2023 116 comments News
Age Verification Station by Nock Forager (CC BY-NC 2.0) https://flic.kr/p/4H67D7

Age Verification Requirements for Twitter or Website Blocking for Reddit?: My Appearance on Bill S-210 at the Senate Standing Committee on Legal and Constitutional Affairs

Bill C-11, the government’s online streaming bill, is rightly garnering increasing attention, but there is a private member’s Senate bill that should also be on the radar screen. Bill S-210, a follow-up to S-203, is a bill that purports to restrict underage access to sexually explicit material. Sponsored by Senator Miville-Dechêne, a former CBC journalist appointed to the Senate in 2018, the bill would require age verification requirements for sites (likely backed by face recognition technologies) and mandated website blocking for sites that fail to comply with the verification requirements.

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February 10, 2022 4 comments News