On July 6th, 2011, the Italian internet will become subject to arbitrary censorship driven by the private business, shareholding, and investor interests of the Italian-European media giant Mediaset. Mediaset has been lobbying for the program and will exercise significant influence and control over it, the Italian newspaper L’Espresso reports. The “Authority”, as it is known, which will operate under Agcom, will be able to erase websites for any cause. The movement is supported by Berlusconi’s center-right regime and will have the go-ahead from the government. The director of this project will be installed with the ability to shut down any web address without any sort of process, and by his or her will alone.
The internet in Italy has long been subject to one form of censorship or another, but this new form of censorship will not allow any formal system of checks between powers, instead enabling a single director to choose which sites may and may not be allowed on the internet. Google has been acting with citizen activists in the past months to protest Italian censorship, but the response from Berlusconi has been clear-- rather than appealing to the public, censorship, from here on out, will be even tighter and more closely controlled by both corporate and government interests.