Letter: Cleaning up the Net
Monday 15 February 1999
The material in question is almost exclusively pictures of children being sexually abused or raped on screen. Unlike the vagaries of the Obscene Publications Act, there is not much room for doubt that possession and publication of such pictures is an offence under UK child protection legislation.
The UK ISPs, which have consistently upheld rights to free speech on the Net, will only remove material that they agree is potentially illegal. (Like many other organisations, including newspapers, they do have to make some judgement of material that has not been to court.)
The police, too, would quickly tell us if the reports that we pass to them refer to material that would not be actionable in the UK. Indeed, there are no doubt cases which have been successfully prosecuted which originated with information forwarded by the IWF.
Finally, it is ironic that Mr Docherty's accusation of lack of accountability appeared the day after the DTI and Home Office published the results of an extensive review of the performance of the IWF. This thorough investigation into our efficiency and effectiveness was conducted by independent management (KPMG)and legal consultants (Denton Hall). Readers can see it at www.dti.gov.uk/iwfreview - another example of the Internet encouraging open government.
Internet Watch Foundation
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Al Pacino on suffering from depression: 'It can last and it's terrifying'
- 2 Half of young women unable to ‘locate vagina’ and 65% find it difficult to say the word
- 3 Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb
- 4 A teacher speaks out: 'I'm effectively being forced out of a career that I wanted to love'
- 5 Mexican woman becomes world’s 'oldest person' at 127
Jessica Chastain demands Scarlett Johansson-fronted Marvel superhero movie
Downton Abbey series 5 start date revealed: ITV drama to return in late September
Nicki Minaj suffers wardrobe malfunction during MTV VMAs performance with Ariana Grande and Jessie J
New Netflix releases: Films and TV shows coming in September 2014
Best movies on Netflix UK and US: 32 films that will end your endless scrolling
Rotherham child sex abuse scandal: Labour Home Office to be probed over what Tony Blair's government knew - and when
What do immigrants really think of Britain? Polish immigrant's Reddit post goes viral
Ashya King: Parents of five-year-old boy refused permission to visit him in hospital and denied bail at Spanish court
With Douglas Carswell joining Ukip, my party has taken another giant step forward
When elitism grips the top of British society to this extent, there is only one answer: abolish private schools
Ashya King: 'Cruel NHS has not given us the treatment we need', says father of five-year-old with brain tumour who fled to Spain