26 June 2007

What's my blog rated?

> Mingle2: "What's my blog rated?"

Online Dating

This rating was determined based on the presence of the following words: gay (5x) lesbian (4x) dick (1x) On the one hand, an amusing exercise. On the other hand, quite disappointing and homophobic. It reinforces heteronormativity by suggesting that "gay" and "lesbian" are "adult" words, somehow sinister and dirty. And it marginalises gay and lesbian youth: the corollary of "gay" and "lesbian" being adult concepts is the implication that young people are or should be "heterosexual" - it suggests that homosexuality is somehow incompatible with being a young person. Nothing new though. This type of discrimination is prevalent in filtering software used by businesses. I have several friends who have had emails and website intercepted or blocked because of the presence of terms like gay and lesbian.


Graeme Edgeler said...

And after this post, you're up to NC-17...

Anonymous said...

Dean, I found something similarly disappointing in the Powerhouse Museum in Sydney. They've got an imitation Turing Test machine, where you type text chat and the machine responds. I was typing some facts about Alan Turing, one of them being 'Alan Turing was homosexual'. I was told that my text contained unacceptable content. I tried the same sentence with 'hetero' subbed for 'homo', and it went through with no problems. Very disappointing, especially in Sydney of all places.

Anonymous said...

I just rated smh.com and it was restricted too:
* death (4x)
* murder (3x)
* kill (2x)
* sexy (1x)

David Farrar ranting blog is a mild PG-13 with:
* shit (1x)

Course Outline

Lord Justice Lawton in Maxwell v Department of Trade and Industry [1974] 2 All ER 122 said:

"From time to time ... lawyers and judges have tried to define what constitutes fairness. Like defining an elephant, it is not easy to do, although fairness in practice has the elephantine quality of being easy to recognise. As a result of these efforts a word in common usage has acquired the trappings of legalism: 'acting fairly' has become 'acting in accordance with the rules of natural justice', and on occasion has been dressed up with Latin tags. This phrase in my opinion serves no useful purpose and in recent years it has encouraged lawyers to try to put those who hold inquiries into legal straitjackets.... For the purposes of my judgment I intend to ask myself this simple question: did the [decision-maker] act fairly towards the plaintiff?"

This course examines the elephantine concept of fairness in the law, along with other contemporary legal issues.

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