Feeds

Draconian new electoral laws for South Australia?

Say what you want - but we know where you live

Maximizing your infrastructure through virtualization

South Australians were this week up in arms at the propsect of a $5000 fine for posting anonymous comment online in respect of an upcoming state election.

Posters were quick to condemn this as unprecedented state censorship.

The new Australian law came into force on January 6, and makes it an offence for anyone to comment online about state elections (including one shortly to be held in March) unless they also publish their real name and postcode. Failure to do so - even posting under a pseudonym - is now an offence.

Media organisations will be required to keep posters' details on file for six months and face "fines of $5000 if they do not hand over this information to the Electoral Commissioner."

It is likely that the law will also affect anyone posting comment on newspaper websites, and could as easily apply to election comment made on social networking sites such as Facebook or Twitter.

South Australian Attorney-General Michael Atkinson claimed, that that the new law was not an attack on free speech. He said: "There is no impinging on freedom of speech, people are free to say what they wish as themselves, not as somebody else."

In response, the The Right to Know Coalition, which brings together Australia's major media outlets has called the new laws "draconian". Their spokeswoman Creina Chapman said: "This is one of the most troubling erosions of the right to free speech in Australia for many years."

She also pointed out that newspaper blogs were moderated and publishers and broadcasters took responsibility for the material they published. ®

Top three mobile application threats

More from The Register

next story
Arrr: Freetard-bothering Digital Economy Act tied up, thrown in the hold
Ministry of Fun confirms: Yes, we're busy doing nothing
Help yourself to anyone's photos FOR FREE, suggests UK.gov
Copyright law reforms will keep m'learned friends busy
Apple smacked with privacy sueball over Location Services
Class action launched on behalf of 100 million iPhone owners
US judge: YES, cops or feds so can slurp an ENTIRE Gmail account
Crooks don't have folders labelled 'drug records', opines NY beak
ONE EMAIL costs mining company $300 MEEELION
Environmental activist walks free after hoax sent share price over a cliff
UK government officially adopts Open Document Format
Microsoft insurgency fails, earns snarky remark from UK digital services head
You! Pirate! Stop pirating, or we shall admonish you politely. Repeatedly, if necessary
And we shall go about telling people you smell. No, not really
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Seven Steps to Software Security
Seven practical steps you can begin to take today to secure your applications and prevent the damages a successful cyber-attack can cause.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.