The report, released last week by the Legal and Constitutional Affairs References Committee, says the defence of artistic merit is not enough to allow some controversial works of art to be exhibited, particularly when it comes to those
that depict children.
Chairman Tasmanian and nutter senator Guy Barnett said the current classification system was broken and flawed and the recommendation was striving for uniformity across all media platforms. Visual arts should not be exempt from
our criminal laws and our anti-pornography laws, he said.
Art Gallery of SA director Nick Mitzevich responded saying a one size fits all approach to classification might be damaging to the industry. Most of the visual arts industry censors itself and understands the moral compass of the
industry, he said. I think there's little evidence to support such a draconian approach - a one size fits all. It seems it's bureaucracy out of control.
National Association of Visual Arts executive director Tamara Winikoff hoped the Federal Government would wait until the Australian Law Reform Commission's concurrent inquiry into the classification was handed down in January before entertaining
the idea of a ratings system. She warned against putting visual arts into the same category as other media. Between all sorts of cultural productions there are similarities, but the way the work is seen and understood is really very different,
she said: You can't just lump apples and oranges together.
Australia's censorship system is fundamentally flawed, it fails to protect children from pornography and it does not prevent the legal availability of graphic depictions of actual sex in some places, according to a Senate committee report.
It wants an overhaul of the classification system and more censorial rules introduced to pander to supposed community concerns about the sexualisation of society and objectification of women.
A truly national scheme would ensure explicit material that is banned in some states is not available in other parts of the country, most notably in the ACT and parts of the Northern Territory, it said.
It found that concerns about sexual violence were being ignored by the system, as was the general rule that an R18+ classification meant simulation, yes - the real thing, no . Instead, numerous films showing graphic sex had been
rated R18+ and sold in some jurisdictions.
It raised concerns about restricted adult magazines being displayed in shops next to comics and DVDs for children.
It says that rules should be uniformly restrictive for all media, including mobile devices, while references to context should be removed given the committee's finding they were helping to push explicit material into lower classifications.
Self-regulation of complaints about ads would be retained, subject to an appeal right to the Classification Review Board, although industry groups opposed that call.
The Classification Board has delicately suggested to the commission that if the availability of X18+ material was made uniform across the country, police and customs could concentrate on stopping the really nasty stuff refused any classification
An entirely sensible thing to do, but despite the stupidity of an often-flouted rule that prefers violence to sex, and which makes it criminal to sell films of people doing what people do, who wants to be seen as promoting porn? Civil
libertarians, yes. Anyone else?
The Australian Sex Party has called on the federal government to abandon the punishing bans on X rated films and restricted magazines (pornography) that the Howard government forced on Aboriginal populations in the NT, as
part of the Intervention.
Party Convenor, Fiona Patten, said that there was a huge personal freedom issue inherent in the right to watch adult entertainment that went way beyond a moral debate over sex. The federal government continues to maintain
that Aborigines rape little children because they cannot contain their urges when they watch sexual media , she said. That is the underlying assumption in banning porn as part of the Intervention. It was made without any research being
conducted into sexual assault and availability of pornography in Aboriginal communities, it was made against the express wishes of the authors of the Little Children Report and it was part of a racial slur that Aborigines could not only not hold
their grog, but they couldn't hold their porn either. There was no evidence of this ever produced and there isn't any .
She said that the Little Children Report clearly stated that the laws on adult media needed to be policed and upheld as they were in other parts of the state like Darwin, rather introducing racist bans on adult media. The
Little Children Report identified R rated Pay TV porn as the problem in the NT, by virtue of the fact that it was available 24 hours a day . John Howard then banned X rated DVDs instead and even failed to investigate claims that pay TV
stations offered package deals with sporting channels in the NT that included free adult channels.
The bans on porn should be repealed immediately and the gross and insulting signs that are up in Aboriginal communities in the NT that allege that they watch porn and then rape children should be torn down , she said.
She encouraged Aboriginal communities to pull the signs down themselves. When racism is covered with a layer of sexual innuendo like this, it causes racism to be more deeply ingrained than it otherwise would be. It is a disgraceful situation
that Jenny Macklin has seen fit to back John Howard's overtly racist attack by not repealing these laws when she first became Minister .
A programme on a local Zurich radio airs what it calls acoustic porn, hoping to inspire people to sex.
The night programme on 104.1 or 88.2 MHz in Zurich features erotically-tinged music and sounds at midnight for five hours.
Producer Oliver Scotoni said: With me, there are no pictures, but only selected acoustics which inspire the audience, he said. These acoustics include porn movies soundtrack from the 70s, which according to Scotoni have more value than
cheap music in today's sex movies.
Other sounds include disco classics such as Love to love you by Donna Summer or erotically-named reggae, such as Play with Your Pussy or Doctor Dick.
Perth sex shops can continue to sell X-rated DVDs illegally without fear of prosecution.
WA Police has admitted that enforcing the State's movie classification laws on adult pornography is a non-core police activity and a low priority .
The police will investigate the sale of X-rated DVDs only if there is evidence of tangible links to organised crime.
In October last year, Attorney-General Christian Porter confirmed that it was an offence to sell X-rated DVDs under Section 81 of WA's Classification (Publications, Films and Computer Games) Enforcement Act 1996. Offenders faced a $10,000 fine.
A spokeswoman for Police Commissioner Karl O'Callaghan said police had to prioritise resources to areas of greatest demand and need:
WA Police maintains the view that the Classifications Branch of the Federal Attorney-General's Department is the most appropriate agency to investigate breaches of classification and copyright due to its considerable
knowledge and experience, she said.
Referrals from the Classifications Branch are examined for organised crime involvement. Where there is no link identified, these matters are recorded on WAPol's database and filed for intelligence purposes only. The
majority of other State jurisdictions adopt the same position and maintain that X-Rated adult pornography is essentially a non-core police activity and of low priority for police law enforcement.
Sex shops started selling X-rated DVDs early last year when they decided that the State's 14-year-old movie classification laws contravened their constitutional right to trade interstate. X-rated DVDs can be sold legally in Canberra and the
Northern Territory and were previously available to WA customers by mail order.
The new .XXX domain is set to be more expensive than others due to more onerous and restrictive terms & conditions and their enforcement. It has been noted that these high prices may have to be paid by those not wanting anything to do with
XXX material, but just wanting to prevent someone setting up a similar website name but with a .xxx suffix.
Prices are even higher during a so called 'sunrise' period when .xxx domains are up for grabs for companies with existing claims on a url. Eg it is a time when Melon Farmers could grab melonfarmers.xxx before it is thrown open to the public.
Prices to reserve a url with .xxx are reported to be $300 to $650 during this process.
But before paying big money to reserve a .xxx suffiix it must be noted that it is not yet clear how claims on names will be handled after this sunrise period.
Thai Immigration police arrested a British man at his shop for selling sex toys which are bizarrely banned in Thailand.
An undercover agent ordered an item from the shop's website and had arranged for pick up at his Boutique Sexy shop on Pattaya 3rd Road.
The officers arrested their victim and seized various sex toys found at the shop. These sex toys are made in a factory located in nearby Naklua. The police raided the premises and arrested eight employees.
The police took all the evidence to Pattaya Police Station for further examination.
Pattaya's miserable police have been continuing their campaign against the sale of sex toys.
A second shop selling items commonly used as sexual stimulants has been raided by Police and shut down. The Pattaya House of Condoms is located on the second floor of the Central Center Pattaya, known to many as Big C North Pattaya.
Following the recent raid of an adult shop in Central Pattaya and its storehouse in Naklua, this time it was the Child and Women Protection Unit who conducted the raid. Inside a selection of dildos, sexual stimulants and condoms were seized by
Police, along with the shop assistant.
Back at the Police Station it was discovered that the owner of the shop was currently out on Police Bail pending court proceedings following a previous raid.
Sex shops might seem to be an unlikely place for violent crimes to take place but police ludicrously insist that patrons of these establishments contribute to sexual crimes.
Police have continued to clamp down on the distribution and sale of sex toys and illegal sex-enhancing drugs. The misleadingly named Consumer Protection Police Division (CPPD) has now raided a large warehouse storing sex products worth
about 20 million baht.
Police Colonel Phrutthiphong said most pornographic products and sex toys available in the market were not produced in Thailand. Products such as artificial male and female genitalia, sex dolls, artificial tongues and artificial fingers, were
imported from China.
He said the pornographic products arrived in Thailand through border provinces in the North and Northeast. The products were firstly sent to storage sites and then sold on to retailers.
In Bangkok, the products are sold illegally on Patpong Road, Soi Nana and Khlong Thom. However, distributors can sell more of such products through websites, Pol Col Phrutthiphong said. He said his team would soon expand their operations to
tackle pornographic businesses on the internet.
Two Swedish men and three Filipinos have been sentenced to long jail terms for running a live porn webcam operation that catered to foreigners from a southern Phillipines city.
According to reports, the length of sentences was unprecedented in the Philippines. A court found the two Swedish nationals, Bo Stefan Sederholm and Emil Andreas Solemo guilty of trafficking charges and sentenced them to life in prison. They were
also fined $46,000 each. The three Filipinos were each given 20-year jail sentences and fined about $23,000 each.
The Swedes were first arrested when police raided a commercial building in the town of Kauswagan, Mindanao, in April 2009.
Justo Yap, National Bureau of Investigation regional director said 18 women, aged 19 to 24, some of whom were naked and sending live feeds to clients abroad, were found after a raid on the premises. The performers were reportedly paid $350 a
month. [Which is a well above average wage in the Philippines].
Law enforcement agencies said providing sexually explicit material over the Internet is a growing industry in the Philippines where the perception is low risk and high returns. All Internet sex is classified as pornography and therefore illegal
in the Philippines.
The judge in the case stressed the need to protect Filipino women and said in his ruling, Disrespect for Filipino women and violations of our laws deserve the strongest condemnations from this court. It will not shirk from its duty to impose
the most severe of penalties against anybody, be he a foreign national or a citizen of this country, who tramples upon the dignity of a woman by taking advantage of her vulnerability.
Update: Philippines: where trafficking means getting the bus to work
Two Swedish IT-experts jailed for life in the Philippines for running a cybersex den say they are living a nightmare among hardened criminals and maintain that they have done nothing wrong.
Emil Andreas Solemo and Bo Stefan Sederholm were convicted of supposed human trafficking after being found running an operation in which 17 naked women in an office building performed in front of cameras for overseas internet clients.
The Philippines government hailed the verdict as a landmark victory in the battle against human trafficking because the Swedes were the first to be handed life sentences for what has in recent years become a booming cybersex industry.
But both men appear bewildered why they should be jailed for Internet pornography when prostitution is rampant across the Philippines.
We don't see ourselves as human traffickers at all, Solemo said in an exclusive interview with AFP: The women were not forced to do it. It was nothing like that at all . He said he and Sederholm were IT consultants who had been
hired to set up the computer systems at the cybersex shop where the women worked in Cagayan de Oro.
The Swedes also pointed out that the women working in the cybersex operation were all adults - prosecutors never alleged that minors were involved - and said the case against them smacked of hypocrisy. Some say it's (cybersex) demeaning and
horrible, but you can go to any city in the Philippines and see girls who are dancing on poles in skimpy clothes. It's absurd...there are places there that openly sell girls, Solemo said: What we have undertaken here would not have been
considered as trafficking anywhere in the West. In the United States or elsewhere it is not illegal to undress before computer cameras if you are of legal age.
Sederholm said they believed they had become scapegoats to make authorities look good to the United States, which put the Philippines on a blacklist of countries deemed as not doing enough to combat human trafficking.
Beverly Musli, the head of a local women's rights group that helped prosecutors gather evidence in the case, also said the Swedes deserved to be in jail. It's still trafficking because the victims were recruited from all over the Philippines
and transported to the south, said Musli, who is a lawyer.
The orchestra bars in South Mumbai are facing a unique problem, which the bar owners claim; is affecting their already-depressed business.
They complain that a particular police officer often visits their bars and tries to lecture the patrons against visiting the bar.
Sources say that this particular police officer regularly visits the bars at night. He then snatches the mike from the singer and randomly picks up a patron for a conversation . The cop quizzes them on other personal details including
martial status and how much he loves his family and children. After knowing these facts, the cop then starts giving lectures on family and responsibilities. He then further questions them about the logic behind having vices like drinking alcohol
and visiting the orchestra bars and throwing away money on the bargirls.
The sources added that the said moral cop seems to be non-corrupt and does not in anyway try to extort money from these orchestra bars, unlike many of his colleagues.
This moral policing has resulted in patrons decreasing steadily, causing a loss to the business. The bar owners are planning to take up the matter with the higher authorities in the police department.
Orchestra bars became popular after the Maharashtra government banned the dance bars. The state government added that these dance bars were encouraging prostitution and thereby supposedly destroying scores of families. The government allowed
orchestra bars to perform after the ban but with lots of limitations.
However, sources claim that soliciting occurs under the guise of orchestra bars too.
Following approval from ICANN, a US quango, the new pornography-only suffix has been added to the Domain Name System.
The first registered addresses, porn.xxx, sex.xxx and xxx.xxx are being used to promote sales of .xxx domain names.
A trade organisation, the Free Speech Coalition, said that it will make it easier for governments to block access to pornography websites and has called on pornographers to boycott .xxx. Saudi Arabia and India have already said they want to block
all the new addresses.
The first tranche of addresses, which will allow brands to buy their trademarks, will reportedly go on sale in November.
Once other high-value keywords have been auctioned off, .xxx addresses are expected to cost around $70, seven times as much as a typical .com address.
The South Korean government has put its plan to establish the legal grounds to punish the operators of bars and clubs that are a cover for male prostitution on hold.
Cabinet members suspended a vote on the bill for the law revision proposed by the Ministry of Health and Welfare, asking for a more thorough review and examination.
The suspension came after President Lee Myung-bak put the brakes on the move said the revised law could legally acknowledge host bars where young males entertain female customers, often sexually, and therefore more profound measures
to prevent such illegal practices were necessary.
Under the current law the authorities cannot arrest such male workers and their employers as only females are defined as jeopdaebu, a Korean term referring to those who serve drinks and sell sex at bars or clubs. The proposed bill was to
include males in the definition to fix the loophole.
The health ministry now plans to discuss the issue with the Ministry of Justice and the Ministry of Gender, Equality and Family, as well as the National Police Agency.
It may surprise you to know that Japan, home to hentai, tentacle porn and bukakke, has had strict laws censoring its pornographic films for decades. In spite of easy access to uncensored images, thanks to the Internet, usage of the ubiquitous
mosaic to blur images of genitals still persists. Japan is the 5th largest producer of pornography in the world. In 2010, the revenue from the Japanese pornography industry was almost equal to the revenue from the video game industry, no mean
feat for a country that consumes video games at a fantastic rate.
So why is it, then, that Japanese pornography is censored? Surely, all the people paying hard cash for pornography want to see the sexy bits that are covered by mosaic censoring? And if some part of the sexual act is objectionable, why not censor
the whole screen instead of a tiny patch? Why is filmed Japanese pornography censored today, and what brought about the practice of censorship in the first place?