back to article Irate Aussies go after US website

The owner of a US website accused of breaking Australian law by the Australian Human Rights Commission has told them to rack right off. Encyclopaedia Dramatica is a tasteless collection of articles along the lines of Sickipedia or Something Awful. ED is refusing to bow to demands from the AHRC that it remove an article about …


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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I see

    It seems America thinks other countries should obey it's laws (e.g. DMCA) but doesn't like it when the roles are reversed.

    How arrogant.

    1. theSensibleGeek

      America doesn't expect anything

      @AC: "It seems America thinks other countries should obey it's laws (e.g. DMCA) but doesn't like it when the roles are reversed.

      How arrogant."

      It's not so much "America" that thinks the whole world should follow the DMCA - it's the RIAA and MPAA, to name a couple, which are comprised of record companies and movie studios, which are owned to a significant degree by foreign interests to begin with.

      The average American finds the DMCA annoying as hell. Before you try to brand "America" as one unit (not that I'm surprised) you might want to get a clue first. Willful ignorance is far worse (and more dangerous) than arrogance.

    2. orangehead911

      Slightly different perhaps...

      Yeah, I totally see how your remark makes sens. DMCA designed to protect property rights is totally the same as free speech...

  2. The Original Ash

    I don't quite understand this

    A US citizen which runs a US website hosted within the US is charged with breaches of Australian law because Australian citizens have chosen to download information from that website? The bits only ENTERED Australia because an Australian citizen requested that them!

    There's something wrong with all of this.

    1. lglethal Silver badge

      just like the KFC ad... know the one that was made in Australia, for an Australian audience, but which was forced to be taken down because it offended USAian sesnibilities because of a USAins racial stereotype which doesnt exist in Australia.

      True this is incredibly daft by an Australian government agency (no surprise there) but the US has a long histroy of trying to force its rules down everyone else's throats - so its about type someone else started pushing back!

      1. Oninoshiko


        Well, there are two things. first, KFC is a US company. ED is not an Australian entity.

        Second, YUM! Brands (the owner of the KFC franchise rights, A spin-off of PepsiCo) Is quite likely very responsive to percived outrage, particularly from minority groups in the US. I am not familure with this case, but where they forced to stop it by law, or by consumer perssure (In the US)? Again, these would be two VERY different things.

        Mines the one with "Public Relations for Dummies" in the pocket.

        1. Tim Bates


          Pressure more than law AFAIK.

          The ad had an Australian cricketer walk into a crowd of black spectators who were quite clearly supports of the West Indies cricket team. This apparently is made racist because he says something about KFC being able to make anyone a fan (or something to that effect).

          Had they used white New Zealanders in the ad, everything would have been fine - I suspect the black W.Indies spectators were chosen simply because there was a game against them around the same time.

    2. orangehead911


      It just goes to show exactly how intelligent the Australian government is. Don't you think?

      I can't wait for the Great Australian Firewall to become operational!

  3. P Zero


    Oh how you fail me and your fellow countrymen.

    Mine's the one with spoons hidden in secret pockets.

  4. url
    Thumb Up

    glad i'm not an aussie

    "Encyclopaedia Dramatica is a tasteless collection of articles along the lines of Sickipedia or Something Awful."

    thats 3 of my most used bookmarks right there.

  5. Anonymous Coward


    The australian government interweb types now rule the content of the worlds internet do they? Unless of course i have missed the bleeding obvious these loons are telling someone in a foreign country what they can and cannot write and post in the internet.

    So when china and iran et al come knocking and telling the western world that whatever they report or post on the web is unlawful in china/iran/australia they will hopefully told to get f***ed

    Is this not similar to one of the american states trying to shut down global internet casinos because they could be accessed in that state?

    Its one thing the aussies censoring their own internet, its another thing them trying to censor the world!

  6. lukewarmdog


    "articles which can be read and downloaded in Australia are considered to have been published in Australia."

    Really? Are they considered to have been written by Australians too? Are they owed royalties for everything an Australian has seen?

    1. Dave Bell

      Nothing New

      That's the legal principle that lets people sue under English law for on-internet libel, isn't it?

  7. Flugal

    Makes a change

    I recall it's usually the USA that's under the impression other countries should abide by US law. Is Australia staking a claim to be "world's most hated nation"?

    ...and that drivel about being regarded as made in Australia if it can be accessed there...time to update the way they assess internet stuff.

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    Three words

    Fuck the Filter!

    We all oppose it. It's stupid. Our leaders are showing us that they are further and further away from sensibility and it's a race to the bottom.

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    From the 9msn interview

    "Q: Do you think police will be able to catch those responsible for the vandalism of the tribute pages?

    A: Doubtful. The IT muscle of Australia leaves a lot to be desired. This is a country that took $80 million to develop a filtering proxy, something which has already been done more effectively ( for free. Literally, squid did regex-based filtering, and not list-based filtering a decade ago. In addition, it can speed up web traffic instead of slow it down like the Australian filter. ISPs that push more traffic than the entirety of Australia's internet usage have already implemented squid at cost in the hundred thousand range (which includes all hardware and development costs).

    The conspiracy theorist in me thinks this whole deal is an engineered campaign of feigned outrage to push a very expensive public works project that is largely against public interests. However, applying Hanlon's razor makes me think this is just people new to the Internet just beginning to discover Internet users.

    People should remember that reacting like this after putting something public on the Internet is akin to running down to the local homeless shelters and methadone clinics and inviting all comers to your grandma's memorial service. You can't then go and act shocked while finding a junkie passed out with some needles and used condoms in the bathroom. "

    Absofuckinglutely brilliant!

    1. ian 22

      This does raise several questions...

      1. As the government could have blocked the web site yet chose not to, are they in fact accomplices to the crime?

      2. As Australia has chosen the Iranian style of internet access, what can we expect to follow? Burkas (of Aussie wool, of course)?

      3. Are Aussies such twits that the government must protect them from the likes of us?

      Brilliant, just brilliant <shakes head>.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    Sucks to live in Oz

    Silly me. I thought Australia had freedom of speech and of the press. Apparently not. Sucks to live in Australia.

    1. Anonymous Coward

      No Aussie Rights

      We have neither freedom of speech nor freedom of the press (which is arguable in the US anyway) and truth may not be a defence in libel cases.

      I'm not sure if the libel laws have improved but the reason for many of our financial scandals not coming to light in the 80's was that scumbags could sue you for damage regardless of truthful exposures being in the public interest.

  11. Edward Clarke

    If you read the aborigine article ---

    From the aboriginal article header:

    "This article was written entirely by Australian aborigines who are satirizing racists in Australia in the same way that Sacha Baron Cohen, a jew, uses the character Borat to satirize anti-semitism. So this article is completely 100% not racist at all. "

  12. Barrie Shepherd

    Australia the Guardian of the world

    Australia seems to be hijacking the term Aboriginal for itself. Technically it refers to any countries original indigenous people.

    Evans (of ED) is apparently an ex-pat Aussie living in the US. In an article at he is quoted as saying "My counsel has advised me that I can never under any circumstances visit my family in Sydney again, nor otherwise make any appearances on Australian soil,"

    What happened to satire, parody, and good old belly laughs at oneself?

    1. Anonymous Coward

      Effectively in Exile?

      So he's now effectively exiled from what was his home country? And for exercising free speech, too.

      It really shows which way the West is going when westerners start finding themselves effectively exiled due to exercising free speech. I remember when it used to be so-called Soviet dissidents, and the like, who'd find themselves in exile. And now it's Aussies.

      I was going to claim Australian citizenship, on ancestral grounds. The way Australia is going has dissuaded me.

      1. Steve Roper

        Exiled from the Australian Soviet Socialist Republic

        Maybe he should convince his family to get out of this police-state pighole - at least with him living in the USA he'd be able to sponsor them living there. USA might be a police state in its own right, but at least they have a First Amendment in their Constitution.

        Was talking to a mate yesterday, reckons because his wife is Filipino that he might be able to get me a residency visa in the Philippines when things get too bad here. Sounds pretty good to me!

  13. OffBeatMammal

    seeing that Aus has outsourced everything else....

    ... that they used to make to China they now need to stake a claim on what little of the Interwebs the Government will allow them to see to maintain a foreign trade balance

    Much as I love the country... this is just another dumb move

  14. Anonymous Coward

    Oz doesn't let the truth get in the way

    Having returned back to Blighty a short while ago, I guess if you're an Aussie it hurts to have all the anti-Abbo stuff confirmed in the media. I guess all the "let's kill the Abbo's to take their land" stuff is a lie as well -- funny but not.

    Why, just a few months ago it finally leaked this to be true, so if you want to continue LAMAO, look no further than Oz...

    No point dissing the US or OZ las leaders of the world, they both learned from their parent the UK

  15. Anonymous Coward

    Quite simple

    If you don't like it, don't read it.

  16. Anonymous Coward

    I read the Aboriginal article and...

    I read the Aboriginal article and I say what's the big frikken deal?!

    People are entitled to write and say WHATEVER the F*** they want! Don't like it? Move along with the rest of the flock like a good little sheep.

    We all know why Abos drink anyway. The University of NSW wrote an article on it a few years back. Genetic susceptibility!

    Censorship is the devil! Conroy should have been an abortion.

    BTW...YouTube Joe Rogan DMT! It should be in our drinking water!

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "The site was...

    "... blacklisted by the Australian Communications and Media Authority during the trial of the country's censoring firewall."

    You mean, the one that would only ever block child porn, we swear, what else would we want to block with it, of course it's only for child pornography?

  18. Ru

    Re: Oz doesn't let the truth get in the way

    "No point dissing the US or OZ las[sic] leaders of the world, they both learned from their parent the UK"

    Not an uncommon excuse for ignorance, incompetence or corruption anywhere in the former empire/commonwealth, really. It woz them imperialist royalist warmongering brits what made us do all this.

    If Her Maj told your all to collectively boil your heads, would you do that too?

  19. Kevin 6


    just read the article in question and almost pissed my self it was so funny :D

    now on the other hand when does AT&T sue the Australian Human Rights Commission for jacking their logo?

  20. Chris Hatfield

    Way to piss of 4chan!!!

    There is much lulz to be had from all this drama.

  21. RW

    Ozzies are just too sensitive and too PC

    Onine, I once used the phrase "not worth a piece of coon shit", meaning the turds raccoons leave at the bottom of a tree. (They appear to defecate as they climb.)

    Got an angry message from an Ozzie, where "coon" is apparently a pejorative term for Abos.

    Interestingly, "coon" also used to be slang for "black person" in the US, but it's day is past and the word is now back to meaning raccoon and nothing else.

    But don't let Harriet Harpie-person hear, or she'll add it to her lame equalilty legislation.

    1. Anonymous Coward

      but what about Jig

      Jig used to be used in the U.S. for black person but I haven't heard it for years. But I do know someone who received a written reprimand for using it. The fact that he was referring to a setup jig to repair of a piece of equipment didn't matter.

      Mines the one with the politicly correct dictionary in it.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Thumb Down

      Coon is not offensive

      As an Aussie, I take offense at someone taking offense at use of the word coon when clearly it was not intended as a slur.

      Coon cheese is still a popular brand of cheese in Australia and the name is entirely unrelated to race. Why must uptight PC folk try to find offense in everything - what do they get out of it?

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Coon Cheese

      Coon Cheese is available in Australia: (cf. Steven K. Amos sketch about the same).

      While it's amusing to see someone censoring the US for a change, I can't say this is a good move on the part of the Oz government.

      For one thing they've made themselves look utterly ridiculous by insisting that articles which can be read in Oz are considered to have been published in Oz. This is like saying photons originating from the sun actually originate from Australian airspace and would lead to some interestingly convoluted mathematics when trying to work out fairly fundamental physical principles, such as the speed of light. Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.

      I suspect the only reason they've kicked up a stink about this is because the bloke who's the major stakeholder is an ex-pat: Perhaps they believe that this means they'll have some influence over his beliefs and/or actions. Clearly they are mistaken.

      Mind you that's hardly surprising, is it? I think if I lived abroad and Her Majesty's Jumped-Up and Uppity Government commanded me - on pain of being arrested as soon as I touched British soil - that I must do something they wanted I'd tell them to shove it as far up their arse as it would feasibly go, take pictures of me so telling them, publish those pictures on the Internet, send copied to all major British tabloid rags, and then sell T-shirts with those pictures on. In the UK.

      People who are ex-pats are usually ex-pats for a reason, and one of those reasons could well be that they can't stand the fucking place and are counting the days until they leave. And with laws like that, who could blame them?

  22. Anonymous Coward
    Big Brother

    More proof that political correctness....

    can become almost as bad as genuine dictatorship.

    Oh Well... R.I.P. Australian Freedom Born 1780 Deceased 2010

    1. Solomon Grundy

      There are some problems with your post

      I'm pretty sure that most of the (White) people in Australia in 1790 were exported criminals who had already lost their "freedom".

      Feel free to correct me if I'm wrong.

  23. Anonymous Coward
    IT Angle

    No Jokes! The Insecure Expose Themselves Oncemore

    As usual, my right wing religious countrymen making me more ashamed to be australian, the only reason why theyre so upset about this, is because satire, created as a joke, pokes too much at the deeply laid insecurities they have about thier own latent racist attitudes.

    Family first Australia? Maybe it should be Family Last, breeding should not be encouraged on this already overpopulated planet(More importantly, the fat, greasy, bloated waste of society shouldn't be allowed to expand any further than it already has).

  24. Maksim Rukov

    Dear Rest-of-the-World...

    ... I apologise on behalf of Australia for us acting like technophobes and wowsers.

    We ask that you please tolerate our silly behaviour for some more years as the old tech-illiterate prudes die off and are replaced by net-savvy youngsters to whom something like Encyclopedia Dramatica is eye-rollingly blase.

    We really want Australia to grow up. Your patience and understanding in the meantime is appreciated!

  25. David 141

    Ozzies, sensitive?

    That's a joke right?

    They're conservative, reactionary and nationalistic/xenophobic.

  26. Anonymous Coward

    Not even a real complaint

    The ironic part of this is that the guys from /b/ were the ones to complain the page was offensive.

  27. Anonymous Coward

    Silly Oz

    You should let people's thoughts from other countries flow into your country via the internet.

    You can learn stuff that way.

  28. Neon

    Education, ethics and tolerance

    Tolerance is the freedom of a different opinion. Excusing any insult with the freedom of speech is getting kind of pointless. Is the denial of the holocaust part of the freedom of speech? How come, only US American people think they can publish anything, and always claim their civil rights if other strongly disagree? I remember some paedophiles claiming freedom of speech to publish disturbing graphic materials on the internet. In an educated world we come to educated views and decisions. Not insulting any minorities is the result of such processes.

    Neon, London (Europe)

    1. David Beck

      Neon is a bit confused

      Freedom of speech is not tolerance. Tolerance is what you need if you do not have freedom of speech.

      "Holocaust denial" is not a crime in the US, only in Europe. Opinion like this is offensive but protected by the first amendment. Nor is it a crime in the UK but subject to civil action which without a constitutional protection would likely prevail.

  29. asiaseen

    Oz has a long history

    (well, long for Australia) of censorship of virtually everything. In the days of Lady Chatterley's Lover they even banned the book of the trial.

  30. Anonymous Coward

    @david beck

    ""Holocaust denial" is not a crime in the US, only in Europe. Opinion like this is offensive but protected by the first amendment. Nor is it a crime in the UK but subject to civil action which without a constitutional protection would likely prevail."

    Slightly wrong. The last, well known case to involve holocaust denial was Lipstadt V Irving. Which was brought by Irving against Lipstadt.

    As far as I know Irving has never been sued in the UK for his holocaust denial. He has however chucked a few lawsuits around himself when he's been outed as being less than honest.

    Indeed when germany wanted to extradite someone from the UK for this crime, the UK magistrates refused. No evidence whatsoever to support your assertion that a civil action would prevail, quite the opposite.

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