Wikipedia Censorship Sparks Free Speech Debate

The by a U.K. Internet watchdog is raising tough questions over how far online censorship should go -- and the decisions made in the coming days could prove crucial to how we balance free speech with content regulation in the future.

"Indecent" Decision

The -- a nonprofit, nongovernment-affiliated organization -- added for the Scorpions' 1976 album "Virgin Killer" onto its blacklist Friday. The IWF's concern comes over the image on the album's original cover, which shows a young girl completely nude. (A cracked glass effect obscures a direct view of her genital area.) Someone had reported the image as inappropriate through the IWF's online submission tool, , and its internal assessment found the photo to be "a potentially illegal indecent image of a child under the age of 18."

The IWF's blacklist is used by the vast majority of British Internet service providers to for their subscribers. As a result of the ban, affected U.K. Internet users are unable to view the page or access Wikipedia's article editing function.

Ethical Quandary

Here's where things get tricky: The image, by all accounts, has never been flagged as illegal. The FBI did reportedly this past May, but no resulting decision has been announced. If you read over the you can see where this image might fall outside of its lines.