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[January 06, 2014]
Reply: Letter: Protecting our children from the internet
(Guardian (UK) Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) Of course censorship is worrying, as is its possible outsourcing to private companies. However, Laurie Penny's hermetic view of "freedom of speech" (Comment, 3 January) ignores the "creep" of pornography which, through its casual, ubiquitous proliferation on the internet, acts to normalise it to such an extent that images of bondage, battery and rape are hardly seen for the horror they are. For the hypothetical young person hoping to find information on the web about sexual issues, Ms Penny just got it wrong. Informative, responsible and reliable information on the web? Worse than no information is biased, corrupt or exploitative information published on a web unmonitored and unfiltered and posted by any pervert with a computer. Libraries, however, are run by informed and responsible decision-making people trained to provide information that is not only reliable but unbiased, critically constructed and intelligently presented. Her comment about libraries having "no social or moral framework" is irresponsible as well as disheartening.
Lucie Payne Sutton, Surrey (c) 2014 Guardian Newspapers Limited.
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