From: "Anders Sandberg" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
> It just hit me that it is very likely that those 200 FAS pages right now
> are cached on Google. So you just need to know what you are looking for,
> and then you can get it.
I sent a note to Google.com asking if they have any plans to censor their
Meanwhile, reports of site scrubbing continue...
Agencies censor sites deemed useful to terrorists
WASHINGTON (AP) - Federal agencies are scrutinizing their Web sites and
striking any information they believe terrorists might use to plot attacks
against the nation. The move is quickly reversing strides the government has
made over the last decade toward providing public information online. The
review of the government's Web sites is wide in scope. It is unclear whether a
specific guideline has been passed down about which types of information
should be removed.
There also is no uniform process for the review, according to some agency
officials. Some federal agencies are not commenting on whether they are
removing information from their Web sites, while others give vague
descriptions of their deletions.
The Nuclear Regulatory Commission shut down its Web site Wednesday.
NRC spokesman William Beecher said the agency plans to remove the coordinates
of the nation's 103 commercial nuclear power reactors, among other
When Internet surfers try to visit the NRC Web site, they find a note that
says, "In support of our mission to protect public health and safety, we are
performing a review of all material on our site. We appreciate your patience
and understanding during these difficult times."
Beecher said most of the information being taken down has been there for
"In most cases it is common information, nothing top secret was on the Web
site to begin with," Beecher said. "We just don't want to provide anything
that a terrorist might find helpful."
Federal agencies have been reviewing their sites in the wake of the terrorist
attacks on Sept. 11. Bush spokeswoman Anne Womack said the White House has not
requested that they do so - the reviews are voluntary.
The Environmental Protection Agency has taken down a Web site with information
about emergency plans and chemicals at 15,000 sites nationwide.
Also this week, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention removed a vague
report about security at chemical plants from its Web site.
The U.S. Office of Pipeline Safety is also restricting to industry and
government officials its mapping software and pipeline data.
Bush administration officials speculate that all of the data could be useful
There is some evidence that terrorists who crashed planes into the World Trade
Center and Pentagon used the Internet to accomplish their mission, Attorney
General John Ashcroft has said.
Ashcroft also told Congress that one person in federal custody had downloaded
information about crop-dusting planes, which could be used for biological or
Some watchdog groups and first amendment attorneys worry the Web site
restructuring will separate people needlessly from public information.
"In many ways, it is ridiculous, because this information is public, and the
Internet is a public domain," said Landry Bolville, a first amendment attorney
in Washington. "Any piece of information could be used by a terrorist, and it
seems like a lot of what is being altered is not directly dangerous. You
haven't made life harder for the terrorist; you've just made it harder for
--- --- --- --- ---
Useless hypotheses, etc.:
consciousness, phlogiston, philosophy, vitalism, mind, free will, qualia,
analog computing, cultural relativism, GAC, Cyc, Eliza, cryonics, individual
uniqueness, ego, human values, scientific relinquishment
We move into a better future in proportion as science displaces superstition.
This archive was generated by hypermail 2b30 : Sat May 11 2002 - 17:44:13 MDT