Second Life Banned in Australia? Not So Fast…

As GamePolitics reported last week, the Australian government is moving to block online access to games containing content which would exceed the country’s MA-15+ rating. The proposed filtering scheme would affect online retailers selling such games as well as games played online such as MMOs.

In last week’s coverage we noted speculation that such a ban could affect games like World of Warcraft and Second Life. At least one site is now reporting that Second Life has, indeed, been banned. The Inquisitr, invoking Nazi (!) imagery, writes:

It was confirmed by Australian Minister for Censorship that online games such as Second Life is banned in the country. There was confirmation from Censorship Minister Stephen “Goebbels” Conroy…

It is surprising because this policy has always been known to everyone. When Conroy was asked, he didn’t give direct answer. The more Australian government confirms the issue, the more totalitarian the policy is becoming if compared to China.

But Wagner James Au, who tracks SL happenings on New World Notes, writes that rumors of SL’s Australian demise are greatly exaggerated:

Over the last 24 hours I’ve been peppered with links… which seem to suggest the Australian government is imminently planning to block access to Second Life from that country…  I’m far from an expert on Australian jurisprudence, but near as I can tell, any relation with this news to Second Life is highly tenuous and conjectural at best…


Nothing in the [Inquisitr] editorial actually confirms [a ban], and the very second sentence compares the government administrator involved to Joseph Goebbels, which is such a ham-fisted violation of Godwin’s Law*, the only thing it really confirms is the author’s own penchant for dubious hyperbole…


It’s likely there are several layers of parliamentary, bureaucratic, and technical implementation before any of this impacts Australian access to Second Life (if it ever does.)…

* Godwin’s Law: As a Usenet discussion grows longer, the probability of a comparison involving Nazis or Hitler approaches 1.

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  1. 0
    Neo_DrKefka says:

    Most people forget, he only has been at Fox News for a couple of months but guess where he was before then? CNN with his own show, and all he talked about how George W Bush was ruining America. So it was okay to do that but when he doesn’t like what he sees with Obama, well he is just a Conservative troll huh?

  2. 0
    nighstalker160 says:

    Yes, I have watched Glenn Beck, and while I certainly can’t fault the man’s passion, he does go over the top quite a bit. He runs to the extreme ends of his arguments and loves to make the "oh my God if we give an inch it’ll be the downfall of civilization!" argument (aka, the slippery slope).

  3. 0
    ZAR says:

    I’ve actually *read* Godwin’s book and must conclude that these days his name is mostly abused by people who want to ridicule anyone comparing current developments to those of Nazi Germany in the 1930s and 1940s.

    Not that I consider his "law" to be more than an observation – it just fits too well into his philosophy and political beliefs (Ayn Rand anyone?).

    But most people who use "Godwin’s law" as an "argument" just don’t give a damn.



  4. 0
    Kalerender says:

    Sorry, that’s a tad bit extreme there. I know of no-one in my circle of acquaintances (and as a teacher I see a lot of people across the full socio-economic spread.. as spread as you can get in this town) who have thought that this censorship is a good idea.

    The only people I’ve heard supporting it (via media or reports) are extremely narrow minded religious based groups; the type that likes to shove their view down everyones throat, the ones who can’t let other people live something different without becoming incensed that they might actually be happy.

    Now, Stephen Conroy, yeah he would fit the Godwin rule quite aptly, frankly he’s going a long way to pissing off a lot of people.

  5. 0
    DarkSaber says:

    You can’t really Godwin discussion for a story that’s already been Godwin’d and called out on it in the actual story.


    I LIKE the fence. I get 2 groups to laugh at then.

  6. 0
    PHX Corp says:

    Well Austrailian people are Screwed up like those darn Nazis(Godwined it before everyone got on here)

    Watching JT on GP is just like watching an episode of Jerry springer only as funny as the fights

  7. 0
    Valdearg says:

    As someone who immerses himself inside the crazy bubble of your conservative "Leaders", (It’s a wonder I haven’t lost my mind, yet) I can, with 100% certainty, tell you that Beck would do exactly what SirDarkat Describes. In fact, thats exactly what Rush "Fat Drugged up Moron" Limbaugh would do, exactly what Sean "Let’s Ignore Logic" Hannity would do, exactly what Glen "Let’s incite Violence" Beck would do, and exactly what Bill "I swear I’m fair and balanced!" O’reilly would do..

    In fact, "YOU ARE UNAMERICAN!!!" is the de-facto talking point for most Conservatives, when debating anything upon which they don’t actually have any logical arguments.. Hell, who am I kidding, they don’t really have any logical arguments, anyways..

  8. 0
    chadachada321 says:

    Lou Dobbs is a pretty good example of someone that ignores facts and can’t admit when he’s wrong…

    I think all major media heads currently on TV are stupid, conservative or liberal.

    -If an apple a day keeps the doctor away….what happens when a doctor eats an apple?-

  9. 0
    Neo_DrKefka says:

    Have you ever watched Glen Beck? Or do you just watch what other people say about him or web sites that watch fox news to tell you what its about so you dont have too?

  10. 0
    sirdarkat says:

     The reason for Godwin’s Law is that people who can’t debate will degrade to the point that if they can’t win the debate with logic then they just call their opponent a Nazi.  It’s like debating Glen Beck; it doesn’t matter if your logic is superior or if you bring up valid points once he gets flustered he will call you a Nazi (or UnAmerican etc) this is because he can’t admit he is wrong or let alone that you have valid counter points.

    So the internet Community has Godwin’s Law basically its a way to point out that someone sucks at debating because they can’t come up with any thing other than the Nazis.  (which frankly you can always use Stalin if you want another monster government organization or China or Korea its not like there’s a shortage of psycho evil people in the world)

  11. 0
    Magic says:

    Can someone explain to me why Godwin’s Law is necessarily a bad thing? As I see it, the Nazi’s were obviously extreme in their ideology, so it’s easy to compare a viewpoint you disagree with to them, so it’s bound to happen in any discussion anyway, surely?

  12. 0
    PHX Corp says:

    I’ll wait until the next German article to godwin it

    Watching JT on GP is just like watching an episode of Jerry springer only as funny as the fights

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