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IWF Climbdown Over Wikipedia Censorship

In what must be a deeply humiliating announcement, the IWF has announced that it has withdrawn its objection to a Wikipedia page that contained an image of a naked girl.  This story is confirmed by The Guardian.

If it is trying a damage limitation exercise then it is too late.  The IWF’s reputation has been damaged and its methodology, transparency and accountability publicly challenged.  As I said in the previous post:

The IWF has been damaged by this incident.  Noble intentions can’t save you from the consequences of making poor decisions.  There is a discussion to be had and there are questions to be answered.

That damage still remains.  The questions still remain to be answered.  That the IWF has recognised that it got this one wrong is a good thing.  A pity it has taken a backlash from the internet community as a whole to achieve that.

As an organisation involved purely with the internet the IWF could and should have forseen the consequences of their heavy handed approach.  That they didn’t is a scathing indictment of them and their awareness of internet issues.

The report on the Channel 4 website quotes the IWF as stating

“However, the IWF Board has today (9 December 2008) considered these findings and the contextual issues involved in this specific case and, in light of the length of time the image has existed and its wide availability, the decision has been taken to remove this webpage from our list.”

So you’ve finally bothered to realise that there’s a context to the image?  Like it’s been around for 32 years and not once been deemed illegal?

FAIL  FAIL  FAIL  FAIL  FAIL  FAIL  FAIL  FAIL  FAIL  FAIL  FAIL  FAIL  FAIL  FAIL  FAIL  FAIL

Why the hell didn’t you think of this when first considering the issue?  It’s not rocket science.  I’ll say it again:

As an organisation involved purely with the internet the IWF could and should have forseen the consequences of their heavy handed approach.  That they didn’t is a scathing indictment of them and their awareness of internet issues.

This announcement must also be humiliating for those who have supported the IWF in this issue.

The damage is done and there may be repercussions for UK internet users in the form of government operated censorship of the internet.  So this country may become like China as well as Zimbabwe.

Published inblogInternet