Irene Graham has published a comprehensive research paper about the false and misleading statistics associated with the prevalence of child pornography on the Internet which appeared in Australian media reports and articles during 2008. That includes Bernadette McMenamin’s comments in The Australian back in January:

‘Child pornography is one of the fastest growing online businesses generating approximately $US3 billion ($3.43 billion) each year. It is estimated that 100,000 commercial websites offer child pornography and more than 20,000 images of child pornography are posted on the internet every week.’

Irene writes:

‘This ‘$US3 billion’ figure has no credibility and even if it was factual as at January 2008, (when it appeared in an opinion article by Bernadette McMenamin, CEO of Child Wise/ ECPAT in Australia, with citing a source), then it could be regarded as ‘good news’ because it would mean (based on previously promulgated ‘statistics’) that there had been no increase at all in the five years to 2008, therefore ‘child pornography’ could not be one of the fastest growing online businesses.’

The origin of that particular statistic is traced here.

Elsewhere on the web, Syd Walker writes about Clive Hamilton’s recent Crikey article. It’s nearly a novel (Syd tells me he may write a condensed version soon), but worth the read: Clive Hamilton & I: Getting Personal about Sex, Lies, Hate & Censorship.

And GetUp’s Save The Net campaign which launched only this afternoon has nearly met it’s goal of 15,000 signees.