I've been trying to stay out of this today, following yesterday's clear
demonstration that some people are prepared to sacrifice the neutrality
and uncensored nature of Commons in favour of not offending some people.
However, I see yet again calls for the application of "common sense" and
adherhance to cultural norms without recognition that these are not
What a "common sense" judgement tells me about the suitability of an image
for any particular audience is entirely based on my knowledge and,
posisbly more importantly, lack of knowledge about that audience. Few
people on this list who are not Danish would have predicted that cartoons
published in a national newspaper would lead to rioting on the streets of
Copenhagen. It is surely common sense that satirical cartoons are going to
be uncontroversial in a liberal western democracy?
How many people here can be confident that we can identify every image
that will be inapropriate to view in every school or office around the
safe for work? In the United Kingdom almost certianly so. In Azerbijan,
possibly not (in 2009 people were arrested on the accusation of voting for
Armenia in that year's Eurovision Song Contest
In the absence of this required knowledge, we will have to choose one of
the following options:
1. Choose not to censor or filter anything
2. Choose to censor and filter for the sensibilities of some people and
not for others.
It will not surprise those of you who read this list yesterday to learn
that I firmly hold one the belief that only one of these is acceptable for
a project that claims to be neutral and uncensored.
The essential things in life are seen not with the eyes,
but with the heart
Antoine de Saint Exupery