Opponents of the plan claim the scope of the material that could be filtered out is too wide and that the restrictions could be applied to media organisations reporting details of criminal activity. "Our main message of course is that we remain committed to advancing the free flow of information which we view as vital to economic prosperity and preserving open societies globally," Michael Tran, a US State Department spokesman, said.
"We don't discuss the details of specific diplomatic exchanges, but I can say that in the context of that ongoing relationship, we have raised our concerns on this matter with Australian officials," he said. The Australian government has refused to comment on the matter. The proposed filter would make Australia one of the strictest internet regulators among the world's democracies, with some critics claiming it will put the country in the same league as China.