Trafficking child abuse images on the net: Groening & weez wanted for questioning
Friday December 12th 2008, 8:43 am

(image: art by evil child abuse depicter Matt Groening,
hosted on my machinegunkeyboard.com website)

In what could be a pair of the most stupidly outrageous abuses of police and judicial powers in Australia, a man has been convicted in NSW of possessing child pornography for having some pornographic Simpsons cartoon spoofs on his PC and a 60-year-old man from Maroochydore, Queensland, Chris Illingworth, has been charged by Queensland Police for reposting on LiveLeak a viral video of a baby being swung by the arms in circles by an adult male.

The video has since been deleted by Illingworth from LiveLeak, but Australian WIN news has this vision:

The original video has been reposted on break.com.

The baby is obviously not hurt nor distressed about the rambunctious roughhousing, as the video ends with the baby laughing and smiling.

Queensland Police are not only unapologetic about charging Illingworth but have now issued the following threat to net users:

Police defend baby swinging video charge

Asher Moses
December 11, 2008 – 11:36AM

Queensland Police say it is a crime for anyone to even watch a viral video of a man swinging a baby around a room.

The baby-swinging video was originally reported as ‘illegal content’ to British based self-styled anti-child pornography campaigners, which relayed information to Interpol.

Coincidentally, the ‘Internet Watch Foundation’ (IWF) humilatingly backflipped yesterday on a block applied to Wikipedia due to Wikimedia’s refusal to remove an image of the cover of The Scorpions’ 1976 album Virgin Killer, which features a nude prepubescent girl. The block prevented UK users from editing Wikipedia. IWF gave reasons for the climbdown that the image had been in the public domain for more than 30 years but had never been ruled to be ‘illegal’ in any jurisdiction. Funnily enough, those reasons existed before IWF blocked UK users from Wikipedia.

Down here in New South Wales last February, one Alan John McEwan was convicted in Parramatta Local Court of possessing child pornography and using his computer to access child pornography after police discovered his computer contained pornographic spoofs of Simpsons cartoons. A magistrate ruled that these satirical cartoons were “depictions of persons within the meaning of the definitions in the laws,” thus meriting a conviction under child abuse/pornography laws. The case was appealed to the NSW Supreme Court in which Justice Michael Adams refused on 8 December 2008 to overturn the magistrate’s ruling.

Consequently, I’d like to take this opportunity to turn myself in to police for republishing an image of child abuse. ‘Real person’ Homer Simpson is depicted above violently assaulting his son, ‘real person’ Bart Simpson, in a way which could not be described as ‘playful roughhousing.’ Bart does not appear to be smiling, rather appears highly distressed, if not near death, as Homer angrily crushes the boy’s windpipe.

This depiction of wanton child abuse was committed by Matt Groening, who has a 21-year history of depictions of this evil nature. This image has been republished by me on my web hosting facilities, which should make me guilty of use of computing facilities to retransmit images of child abuse.

Furthermore, let me draw your attention to this scary bit of child endangerment, captured on video:

I’d like to invite any and all self-styled child protection advocates to report these obvious violations of law to the NSW Police and/or Australian Federal Police. Make sure they don’t take your report with their ‘invisible typewriter.’

On the other hand, people with some commonsense may wish to make a donation to Electronic Frontiers Australia, who are offering legal aid to defend Chris Illingworth, or to the NSW Council on Civil Liberties.

-weez


12 Comments so far
Leave a comment

Great article, weez.

Comment by Terry Wright 12.12.08 @ 6:44 pm

Thanks Terry, and thanks for posting links to this and the previous mgk post on Geoff Holland’s op-ed bit on newmatilda.

Holland writes:

The consequences of this decision, particularly the expanded range of the types of materials that will fall within the scope of child pornography laws, are numerous.

The most obvious is the effect that this decision will have on the life of Alan McEwan. Aside from the restrictions placed on the types of employment and voluntary activities that he can participate in and even on his contact with children, he is now a convicted child sex offender, and will carry that label for the rest of his life.

While the Helen Lovejoys out there will argue that McEwan got what he deserved for looking at any images where “children” are sexualised — whether they be cartoons or not — there are potentially wider repercussions from this case for the battle against child pornography as a whole.

Research in criminology suggests that the criminal law is effective only as a device to reinforce existing community values, and that the legitimacy of a law is threatened when criminal prohibitions and sanctions on specific forms of conduct are not aligned with community norms, or lack common support. This is particularly so where the community views either the prohibition unreasonable or the penalties as disproportionate to the offence, or otherwise unreasonable.

If respect for child pornography laws is lost, their legitimacy is diminished and the fight against child abuse becomes that much more difficult. The absurdity of this decision risks trivialising the very real problem of child abuse.

The images at the centre of this case, and others like them, are freely available and widely distributed over the internet. The scope of the law needs clarifying, whether by the parliament or by the courts, before more are caught in its trap.

Comment by weez 12.13.08 @ 6:16 am

oh- and a great big ‘hello’ to the fine folks at the Queensland Police Service, who visited mgk yesterday.

12th December 2008 09:08:40
proxy3.police.qld.gov.au (164.112.249.13)

I have donuts and a pot of coffee ready, pop on in, mates. :?

Comment by weez 12.13.08 @ 6:21 am

oops. I eated all the donuts. :lol:

Comment by weez 12.13.08 @ 1:50 pm

Good on you Weez!

Let us know if the Cartoon Thought-Police Stormtroopers pay you a visit.

I just hope you don’t end up in front of the same magistrate with a distorted sense of reality that poor Mr. McEwan had to suffer.

Comment by dg 12.14.08 @ 12:48 pm

thanks, dg. I don’t expect to hear from the police, simply because they’d have to arrest everyone at Channel Ten along with me. As Geoff Holland said, the laws are overbroad and undefined.

This is a can o’ worms that the US Supreme Court has opened several times, only to decide not to decide or specifically class such smutty spoofs as satire.

‘Child abuse’ is about abuse of children. Bart Simpson isn’t a child. He’s not even a physical being one could possibly abuse. Bart Simpson certainly wasn’t harmed by the porntoons, although Fox’s copyright lawyers may like to have a word with the creator of them.

The judges in this matter are not punishing the man for what he has done per se, but for what his acts MAY cause other people to do. This is known as ‘prior restraint‘ and is unconstitutional in the USA.

Comment by weez 12.14.08 @ 6:12 pm

Let’s face it, all parents are child abusers. The mother showing her breasts and touching the genitals of her children. (‘Just cleaning’, she says, but can we really be sure?). Fathers bathing or dressing (any excuse will do) their children. What if they’re peeking and do we really know what’s in their mind? The perverse curiosity of children for each other genitals. The production of pornographic material by minors, eg drawing of genitals, bums. Let’s stop the rot at the source and jail the whole goddamn population.

Comment by melchior 12.17.08 @ 12:24 pm

Absofuckinglutely.

We can save buckets of dough on building prisons, though. We just put 24/7/365 CCTV in all homes with children, all monitored from Stephen Conroy’s loungeroom. Ankle bracelets on the dogs, too. You just never know what Poochie’s up to.

Comment by weez 12.18.08 @ 4:52 pm

hmmmm crime rate must be down.

Is Absofuckinglutely a word?

Comment by #4 12.20.08 @ 5:55 am

Yes, you’d think that the cops would have something else to do, wouldn’t you? :D

‘Absofuckinglutely’ IS absofuckinglutely a word. :lol:

Comment by weez 12.20.08 @ 6:18 am

Ok. Child Abuse… among cartoons? What the hell? Are you guys tryin to ban everything in entertainment… I can understandthe Real Child Abuse part, but cartoons? Get a freakin’ life. goddam!

Comment by Colby 03.31.10 @ 3:28 pm

Yeah, I know, it’s completely over-the-top-stupid. There’s people doing jail time over here right now for having porny Simpsons spoofs on their computers. It’s called MORAL PANIC and has no place in a liberal democracy.

Comment by weez 03.31.10 @ 3:36 pm



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