The world is watching, Australia’s government says, with a public interest argument
Posted November 04, 2018 16:30:11 Australia’s new government says it is not interested in trying to “make the world a better place” by trying to control the flow of information in the internet age.
The Communications Minister, Mitch Fifield, has said he is not “interested” in making the world better, saying the country has always been open and transparent.
He has told the ABC that there will be a “transparency” commission, which he described as a “public interest forum”.
However, he said the commission would not be able to have “a full view of the world”.
“We want to be transparent and we want to have the same approach to government that we would have to any other organisation,” he said.
“So that’s what we’re setting up the commission to do.”
He did not explain what the commission will look at.
The issue of the internet has come up several times since Mr Fifield became prime minister last year.
On Friday, he announced an investigation into how the government regulates social media sites such as Twitter and Facebook, as well as internet service providers (ISPs).
In May, the ABC revealed that Mr Fifrey had instructed his staff to look into a proposal to have ISPs take down all of the social media content on their websites.
Mr Fifey said at the time that he did not want to do this because it could “give the impression that the government is censoring social media”.
He also said it was “important to recognise that the internet is not a censorship device”.
“It’s not something that the majority of the Australian people are opposed to and it’s not a thing that we don’t want to censor,” he told ABC radio in May.
“It should be free and open to the public.”
The Communications and Communications Privacy Commission has already warned of the risks of “trolling” in a recent report.
The report said that there was “significant risk” that “users may be encouraged to engage in abusive behaviour” on social media.
“There is no doubt that the introduction of new types of social media would have an impact on the internet ecosystem,” the report said.
However, it said the Government’s approach “should not be seen as undermining the role of the commission”.