Another one here, 30k signatures and rising!
The change.org petition seems to be focussing entired on pornography, whereas the epetitions one does at least mention “other content”, even if it’s only briefly. As Cory mentions the issue is also about the thousands of legitimate sites that will be affected so making the petitions purely about not being able to access porn trivialises them. How about creating a petition that covers some of the other reasons why it’s such a bad idea?
There’s already one with more than a handful of signatures on the official gov website. Petitions are flimsy enough as it is, probably best to keep the efforts focused.
I fully support stopping this absolutely ridiculous legislation, and I hope these petitions are successful, and will be signing and spreading them to friends and loved ones. I do take issue with the language of the epetitions petition though. I was right there until the “Bad parenting is the problem” line. To my mind this language lends support and strengthens the idea that there is a legitimate and pressing problem that this legislation is trying to solve. It actually legitimizes it, and encourages the reader to select from, what now, become two sides of a debate, with the “problem” as a given, accepted by both sides. Should parents sloppily censor and eradicate all boobies and “internet forums” from their innocent children’s delicate eyes, or should the state? The language of the petition recovers sharply for me with language about what positive things for children we should be putting our energy time and money toward. I can see that the authors most likely didn’t intend their thesis to be that parent’s should ruthlessly censor their children’s free access to knowledge, rather than the state, but I would prefer my petitions to be more carefully worded so as not to start the wrong debate.
I don’t know how flimsy they are. They are said to be flimsy, particularly by politicians who don’t want this kind of semi-direct democracy, but I sign lots of them and most appear to be successful. I would say 50-75% of them, including Avaaz.org, send me updates saying we have been successful. Sometimes there are failure messages. There is a tendency to want to send reports of effectiveness, but I don’t interrogate the practice too closely, as it’s easy, it appears it works, and it makes me feel good. At it’s worst, it’s many times more effective than complaining in the pub, and a million times more effective than doing nothing. I encourage people to join avaaz.org or 38degrees.org.uk in particular, and generally sign petitions you agree with. Your point about focus not withstanding.
I also regularly sign 38 degrees petitions which can be effective. My point
about them being flimsy relates to the fact that it’s a PR technique, and
if the target doesn’t care about the backlash then they’re incredibly easy
to ignore. If I thought they didn’t work at all then I wouldn’t bother
Horribly, at an otherwise sublime dinner party this weekend, I discovered that 90% of people have absolutely no idea their communications are being tracked and stored.
At least 50% of that 90 find the subject quite distasteful for adult conversation thankyouverymuch and the rest quickly discovered they could ignore the issue by capitulating to the process or outright denying it was even possible.
The one other person there who agreed it was not only possible but actually happening and didn’t think it was a good idea was already very familiar with the talking points and adequately (for my tastes) pissed off.
If Tony Blair was able to railroad Iraq whilst millions protested, if he was able to ignore the very specific Parliamentary questions that were specially designed to get him into hot water and then not not get into hot water; I think Cameron will pretty much laugh off anything other than…
Y’know I really can’t think of single thing.
Criminal charges? An evil clown that appears at all his functions and laughs a little too loud and long at his jokes?
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