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Oxfam says firewall blocking access to PinkNews was accidental and allows access to site

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  1. Navin Vasudev 27 Aug 2013, 6:01pm

    What is Oxfam’s position regarding LGBTI in countries where their rights are threatened. I ask this because my experience with Oxfam in Zambia was unfortunate. Also, I don’t think each of the Oxfam’s have a similar voice on this issue.

  2. I fully believe that this was unintentional on the part of Oxfam.

    But it does highlight the fact that content blocking software is designed to meet the needs of international (esp. American) buyers, and often has an “LGBT” category which may be set to “block” by default unless the customer remembers to switch it off.

    In this case, the software was particularly confusing as the name of its LGBT category was “sexuality”, which could easily lead to IT officers thinking it was a category about sex.

    This is one reason why the universal use of content blockers by ISPs is a threat to basic freedoms. The government is making a mistake imposing this software on all of us.

  3. Lets face it-once the “porn blocker” envisaged by David Cameron and Co is in place- this is what will happen to all websites bearing the word “gay”-even sites like Stonewall and LBGT support groups for young gays.

    In fact I wouldn’t be surprised that Pink News website looses millions of hits.

  4. Paul Brownsey 27 Aug 2013, 8:57pm

    The spokesperson said, “Our policy is to protect staff by preventing access to sexually explicit sites…”

    Nasty doublespeak. How does it *protect* a member of staff to stop her or him accessing a sexually explicit site? What does it protect or or him from?

    This is typical of the deceitful use of “I’m protecting you” to mean “I’m banning you because I dislike it.”

  5. Last year, in response to an enquiry, Oxfam Australia informed me that they did not have a publicly stated policy against the persecution of LGBTI people.

    Since hearing this, I have redirected my charity spending elsewhere – in particular to the American Jewish World Service.

  6. Horses**t. If you believe this, you believe anything. “Oxfam works directly with communities and seeks to influence the powerful, to ensure that poor people can improve their lives and livelihoods and have a say in decisions that affect them.” Influence the powerful? No, to pander after the powerful. To ensure the areas they operate in are still affected so it keeps the big bosses all in a high paid job. Ask yourself, do you really this that’s Oxfam’s true goal? The user above, “atalanta”, needs to wake up and smell the coffee. Oxfam can kiss my pink ring like the rest of these so-called “charities”

    1. Paul Brownsey 28 Aug 2013, 5:08pm

      Do you have a shred of evidence for your serious allegations? You give no hint of any evidence here. How do you know what you claim to be Oxfam’s “true goal”?

  7. I found some people’s reactions to the block quite knee-jerky and over the top. It’s obvious it was a matter of automated filtering that has been addressed by myself and others on previous occassions and not deliberate censorship.

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