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Crime

UK Plans Private Police Force 252

An anonymous reader writes "'Private companies could take responsibility for investigating crimes, patrolling neighborhoods and even detaining suspects under a radical privatization plan,' The Guardian reports. 'The contract is the largest on police privatization so far, with a potential value of £1.5bn over seven years, rising to a possible £3.5bn depending on how many other forces get involved.' A worrying development in a country with an ever-increasing culture of surveillance and intrusive policing."
Censorship

Porn Ban Being Considered In South Africa 240

krou writes "Deputy Minister of Home Affairs Malusi Gigaba has gone to South Africa's Law Reform Commission to see whether the law can be changed to allow a complete ban of digitally distributed pornography. Gigaba has also been in discussion with The Justice Alliance of South Africa, 'a coalition of corporations, individuals, and churches committed to upholding and fighting for justice and the highest moral standards in South African society,' which has written its own draft bill regarding the issue, which covers the banning of pornography on television, mobile phones, and the Web. Using a car analogy, Mr. Gigaba said, 'Cars are already provided with brakes and seatbelts.... There is no reason why the Internet should be provided without the necessary restrictive mechanisms built into it.' Related documents and the JASA's proposed bill can be found online, one of which has the wonderful title 'A reasonable and justifiable limitation on Freedom of Expression and Right to Privacy.'"
Government

Database of All UK Children Launched 296

An anonymous reader writes "'A controversial database which holds the details of every child in England has now become available for childcare professionals to access. The government says it will enable more co-ordinated services for children and ensure none slips through the net. 390,000 people will have access to the database, but will have gone through stringent security training.'"
The Media

Edit-Approval System Proposed For English-Language Wikipedia 439

An anonymous reader writes "A group of powerful Wikipedia insiders are pushing for FlaggedRevisions which will require a 'trusted user' to approve of edits before they go live on the online encyclopedia. There is also opposition but with support of founder Jimbo Wales it is likely to go through. The German version has tried the system, leading to three-week delays between edit and publication. The English wiki with its higher number of anonymous editors per trusted user is expected to suffer longer queues if FlaggedRevisions is implemented on all articles. This comes just a few days after Britannica announced that readers will be allowed to suggest edits and have them reviewed within 20 minutes. Will we see the day when Britannica can be edited almost instantly while editing Wikipedia requires fighting bureaucracy, patience and the right contacts?" Note that, according to the quote from Jimmy Wales in the linked article, this system would only be used "on a subset of articles, the boundaries of which can be adjusted over time to manage the backlog."

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