The Government should immediately confirm whether or not it intends to introduce a radical new internet filter blocking overseas commercial sites that don't charge GST, as reported by Choice magazine.
"I honestly hope that this is a hoax, because it is hard to believe that a proposal as off-the-wall as this one could seriously be under consideration. Treasury should shut this down or come clean," Greens Communications spokesperson and Co-Deputy Leader Senator Scott Ludlam said today.
"Why does this government always resort to the laziest, most counterproductive response any time the internet imposes on their inflexible view of the way the world should be?"
"The report from Choice magazine suggests that access to overseas websites - that are under no obligation to comply with Australian law anyway - will be blocked under the same obscure provision of the Telecommunications Act as that used by ASIC in 2014. This humiliating misadventure blocked not just the poorly-defined targets, but hundreds of thousands of sites by accident.
"This hardly constitutes net filter scope-creep; this is more like a scope-avalanche. Estimates hearings in October will certainly be interesting if Treasury have not shot this idea down by then."
"For the moderately tech-literate, the restrictions will be once again trivially easy to bypass. The Turnbull government's VPN subscription stimulus package rolls on into year 2, it seems.