Filtering Would Never Work

from the why-don't-people-understand dept

It seems that many family groups are still angry about the courts overturning the rule that libraries need to use filters. They say that it’s going to expose children to all sorts of “bad” things. What they never seem willing to admit is that the filters simply don’t work. They don’t help anything – and mostly make things worse. They treat adults as if they’re children, and tend to block out plenty of legitimate sites that have no reason being blocked – while letting in many more sites that are questionable for children to be looking at. While a superficial look at the idea of using filters to “protect children” sounds nice, anyone who looks at the issue in more detail would realize that it’s a bad solution.

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Comments on “Filtering Would Never Work”

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Anonymous Coward says:

Filters help but are not the ultimate solution

Most parents do not want their children looking at pornography. Filters help block alot of the questionable material. It is unfortunate that it blocks some legitimate materials such art and medical information. The filters are put up so perverts don’t leave pictures of bestiality and pedophilia on computers. The library is a place of learning it is not a sex club. Until a better alternative is found filters should be used. I agree that it’s possible to get around the filters but that doesn’t mean that nothing should be done at all simply because filter technology is the completely flawless. Do you use a firewall? Is it without flaw? Should firewalls be also not be used? They’re not perfect after all.

Mike (profile) says:

Re: Filters help but are not the ultimate solution

The problems, as I see it are twofold:

(1) The filters block so much legitimate information that a child might specifically go to the library to see, that it’s extremely problematic. Many of these filters block things like Planned Parenthood. What if the child is in a situation where knowing what Planned Parenthood has to say would be very useful – and they certainly don’t want to look it up at home? Yes, firewalls aren’t without flaws, but the benefits outweight the costs. I believe the costs outweigh the benefits in library filtering.

(2) The law was going to force this on all libraries, despite the libraries own wishes. I would think this sort of thing is a decision that each community should be able to make on its own, based on its own standards.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Filters help but are not the ultimate solution

> The filters block so much legitimate information that a child might specifically go to the library to see…

I don’t think the filters would negatively effect most elementary and jr high students. I think the filters would more likely effect highschool students and beyond. Young children aren’t necessarily looking for porn but porn finds its way to them ( It’s the older children and the adults that concern me the most. Planned Parenthood is offensive to some but it shouldn’t be filtered. It is not Hustler. Any filtering software should be able to unblock/block sites as needed. The problem is the few freaks that are going to get off leaving smut on computers or showing to children.

>… think this sort of thing is a decision that each community should be able to make…

Every town should not be ruled like an independant country. I’d hope that we don’t have communities that feel adults have the right to masturbate in a library or show porn to children. The people that wish to do these things need to take it back home or another non-public area.

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