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ACU vice-chancellor urges tighter control on Internet

New Internet censorship legislation to be introduced by the NSW Government is just one step in the right direction says Professor Peter Sheehan, vice-chancellor of the Australian Catholic University.

He told The Catholic Weekly that although the new legislation is certainly worthwhile, a genuine industry code of practice is needed.

"It is (difficult) to protect minors from being exposed to Internet material which is offensive," he said. "Exposure to Internet material is so hard to control (but) I believe that children have to be protected, and that society must find a solution."

Under the new laws, online material will be covered by the classification system, which applies to films, computer games and publications.

"The use of penalties throws the onus of responsibility on to individuals and corporations who supply or make available the objectional material and that is a reasonable thing to do," he added. "(But) I worry about any set of regulations that implicitly at least takes away the initiative from parents to confront the problem responsibly at a parent-management level."

Catholic Weekly