The UK Gov have launched a new web site
that lets citizens report suspicious activities on the Internet, all in the name of stopping the boogeyman of the moment, "terrorism
" (actually 'terrorist', 'extremist' and 'hate' material online). Under Section 3
of the Terrorism Act 2006
(amendments to Terrorism Act 2000?) it's an offense to, amongst other things, "indirectly encourage the commission or preparation of acts of terrorism
". This then begs the question, how do games like Modern Warfare, Rainbow Six, and a million other 'US vs Evil terrorist' games fit into that? Not only are they indirectly 'promoting' terrorism, but it's something that's positively profitable! Then there's the web sites... oh no and the communities, forums harbouring brainwashed acolytes ready to risk it all... online, PvP. All those subversive gamers talking about weapons and blowing things up, that can't be good.
OK, I'm being facetious for the sake of making a point about how open ended, far reaching and broad spectrum this all is. For instance, I was watching Myth Busters clips the other day, the episode when the guys experimented with thermite (off-topic: interesting that Google spell checker doesn't know that word.. yeah right! .Ed),
they actually show, or at least 'tell', viewers how the stuff is made - aluminium and iron oxides. Under the broad sweeping criteria afforded this new initiative for reporting 'terrorist' material online, that video, and all the related videos that crop up as a results of it, are illegal. And so too, believe it or not, would
be web site related to games like Modern Warfare; remember all that hoo haa about the airport 'terrorist' scene? You guessed it, because it indirectly promotes and/or glorifies acts of terrorism it's technically illegal to have clips of it online. Thank god for the First Amendment.. oh wait, we don't have that in the UK.
It would seem 'they' are
coming for your internetz! (more on this to come).