Monday, March 08, 2010

Content Blocked...

The other day Fr. Andy and I went to my favorite computer store Micro Center. It is an incredible place with aisles and aisles of hardware, a geek's paradise. Now you know why I love to go and browse the aisles.
While Fr. Andy was making his purchases I went over to one of the new computers and decided to see how our Campus Ministry website looked on a big screen. When I typed in the address and hit return to my surprise a message came up telling me that it was blocked because of religious content. I was able to get to the main university website with no problem but when I clicked on the ministry website from the menus on the university homepage it was blocked again.

Then I began to experiment and found to my chagrin that every church site was blocked. The Catholic bishops were blocked the Vatican website was blocked. Anything with words like Catholic, or ministry, or church or synagogue or mosque all blocked as offensive. They were equal opportunity blockers.

When I asked one of the sales people on the floor they were as surprised as me but could offer no explanation, but he said maybe the store didn't want to offend anyone by having access to religious sites. They didn't seem to care that they offended me.

I understand the need to filter adult or violent web content. Sadly I don't think filters are really that effective in doing so but I agree that there is a need to protect children from some of the junk that is on the internet. I was and am really surprised that some filtering software now is set to block religious content as dangerous or offensive.

There seems to be a new secular day dawning. For years I've heard people say that we should not be allowed to express values to others especially if they are based on our religious faith. I guess blocking us from the web is just the next step in the secular world's passion to filter God our of our public discourse. Too bad too bad indeed.

1 comment:

Micro Center said...

Hello Sir,

My name is Albert and I am with the Corporate offices of Micro Center. I would like to discuss your store visit and your blog post.
Please contact me at at your convenience.
Thank you very much,