Dear Swinog crew, I was asked by EDRi (European Digital Rights) to write a contribution for the EDRi-gram. The contribution is about the recent happenings on internet censorship in Switzerland. My draft is below, if you have any comments, please send them to me or the list by sonday afternoon (I'll have to submit it on sonday since I'm in vacation next week).
Regards, Felix INTERNET CENSORSHIP MARCHING FORWARD IN SWITZERLAND (contribution by Felix Rauch, SIUG) In Switzerland, beeing one of the oldest democracies, internet censorship is gaining ground. Two recent events support this trend. In last december examining magistrate of the canton Vaud, Françoise Dessaux, sent a disposal  to many Swiss internet service providers (ISPs), asking to block access to the websites [2, 3, 4] and to modify DNS servers so that "the name of the domain swiss-corruption.com points to an empty page". A press release  published by the Swiss Internet User Group (SIUG ) and Swiss Network operators Group (Swinog ) doubt that the blocking of foreign internet content is a legally valid procedure. The two groups also point out that internet blocking measures are easily bypassed and that article 16 of the Swiss constitution guarantees to every person "the right to receive information freely, to gather it from generally accessible sources, and to disseminate it." Most Swiss providers did at first not obey to the disposal and appealed against it. The examining magistrate then ordered many responsible persons of the ISPs to the court. Guido Honegger of Swiss ISP green  still refuses to block the websites and is now facing an ascertainment against his person because of disobedience. He wants to increase predicatbility of legal decisions and plans to fight the order in court. Other ISPs like e.g. Init7  are redirecting traffic to the incriminated sites to protest pages . Despite all the legal fights, the site are only with new addresses [11, 12]. Internet censorship to creep in with new law The Swiss federal office of justice  published a proposal for a revision of the federal law on lotteries and betting. In article 50 of the proposal, providers could be fined up to one year in prison or a penalty of up to 1 Million Swiss francs (approx. EUR 660'000) for "providing access to not allowed games according to this law". SIUG is concerned that this proposal is only a first trial for much wider censorship laws and will therefore submit a detailed answer against this censorship article. Links, references and further reading:  Disposal by the canton Vaud (unofficial copy, french) http://www.nrg4u.com:80/abuse/canton-de-vaud.pdf  http://www.appel-au-peuple.org/  http://de.geocities.com/justicecontrol/  http://www.swiss-corruption.com/  Press release by SIUG and Swinog (in german): http://www.siug.ch/presse/Presse.20021213.txt  Swiss Internet User Group (SIUG) homepage: http://www.siug.ch/  Swiss Network Operators Group (Swinog) homepage: http://www.swinog.ch/  http://www.green.ch/  http://www.init7.ch/  http://vaud.init7.ch/  http://www.c9c.net/swiss-corruption/info  http://www.freejustice.de/  http://www.ofj.admin.ch/ [x] Heise News: Schweizer Richter verlangt Website-Sperrung von Providern http://www.heise.de/newsticker/data/hob-12.12.02-000/ -- Felix Rauch, research assistant at laboratory for computersystems, ETH Zuerich http://www.nice.ch/~felix/ Member of Swiss Internet User Group: www.siug.ch This article contains my personal view only! Use of my addresses for marketing purposes is hereby strictly prohibited according to swiss privacy laws. ---------------------------------------------- [EMAIL PROTECTED] Maillist-Archive: http://www.mail-archive.com/swinog%40swinog.ch/