Pirate Parties around the world are protesting against a recent Net censorship proposal by EU Justice Commissioner Franco Frattini. Frattini has recently been urging ministers at the European Union to consider censoring certain search keywords in a bid to curb terrorism.
Commissioner Frattini’s plans are based upon the ‘hidden knowledge’ method. In a nutshell, he hopes that by banning certain words from being searched on the internet, within the EU, it will reduce the ability of would-be terrorists to carry out attacks. Suggested keywords to be filtered include “bomb”, “kill”, “genocide”, and “terrorism” whilst any attempt to get around these restrictions, by using a proxy, for instance, will be met by criminal action.
This proposal has come under fire however, by Pirate Parties all around the world. The Chairman of the Austrian Pirate Party, Florian Hufsky,Â stated “it’s a tyrannical attempt to curtail useful knowledge from the general public on par with policies of China, Saudi Arabia and North Korea. Thus, whilst ineffective as a measure, it is a strong deviation from the principles of the open society.”
With the various Pirate Parties aiming for the European Parliament in 2009, there is not a voice that can easily be discounted, and with the incumbents making these gargantuan faux-pas, it may seem that they are in with a shot of success