The underlying assumption behind Google's decision to NOT filter certain types of objectionable content is that if a particular person is offended by the content, the person can decide on his or her own to not view the content.
Louis Gray can decide that he doesn't want to view pictures of people sleeping.
I can decide that I don't want to view any positive comments about the Depeche Mode song "Pleasure, Little Treasure."
But what of the filtering companies, who allow you to ensure that content entering your home is "family-friendly"? Here is part of what True Vine says about its service:
Since 1999, we have provided a Christian Internet Filter to families, making their internet experience safer and more enjoyable. True Vine Online is proud to offer our Internet filter and filtering service that allows you and your family to check email, browse your favorite sites, and view that funny new clip without having to worry about inappropriate material. Our filter software works with your current provider or you may order our own high speed DSL, which includes our award winning software for fully protected surfing.
You want your kids and family to enjoy all the advantages of today’s high-speed internet, and have information readily available. But what you may not realize is that they are logging into a battlefield every time they sign on. With pornography, lewd material and sites that hack your computer bombarding from all sides, it can be hard to sift through the trash. Luckily, True Vine Online is here to help.
Don’t let the trash of the internet undermine your family’s values. Get an Internet Filter from True Vine Online and start surfing safely!
More telling is the company's...um, justification (sorry, inside joke) regarding the benefits of a Christian Internet filter.
Why a Christian Filter is a better idea.
We filter from a Christian perspective.
Christian families need to use a Christian Internet Filter. Secular filters often try to be "politically correct" and may tend to block conservative Christian sites. Our Christian Internet filter is designed and programmed with Christian families in mind.
The world has become overly liberal and doesn't get offended very easily. We get very offended and do our best to filter Internet adult sites before they enter your home.
So, whether you choose the True Vine filter, the Anti-Fascist Filter, or whatever, the filter is actually installed in the home, not farther upstream.
Before you advocate that Google implement the True Vine filter to keep all that porn out of your house, consider what would happen if Google implemented some secular filter instead - perhaps a Mozilla filter that would prevent Brendan Eich from making objectionable political contributions.
So perhaps it's better that these decisions be made at the home, rather than upstream.
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