The Internet is dangerous

I am in Jordan for a WIPO workshop. One of the interesting aspects of being in the Middle East is the presence of a more controlled Internet, and although Jordan’s Internet filtering is light when compared to some of its neighbours, I have encountered some interesting architectural features that seem to imply that users should be wary of the Internet.

When trying to connect to the wireless at my hotel, this message popped up:

“The Internet is a worldwide network of computers that contains millions of pages of information. Users are cautioned that many of these pages include offensive and inappropriate material. In general, it is difficult to avoid at least some contact with this material while using the Internet. Even innocuous search requests may lead to sites with highly offensive content. Additionally, having an email address on the internet may lead to receipt of unsolicited e-mail containing offensive content. A user accessing the internet does so at his/her own risk. Hotel X and its affiliates are not responsible for material viewed or downloaded by users from the internet.”

This is of course a limitation of potential liability, but the fact that a hotel has to tell its guests that they may be offended if they use the Internet was mildly shocking.

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