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Child Online Protection Act Appeal Rejected

timothy posted more than 5 years ago | from the hi-professor-bollinger dept.

The Courts 251

TarrVetus writes "The Associated Press reports that a federal appeals court in Philadelphia has ruled that the Child Online Protection Act will not be revived, upholding a 2007 decision that the unimplemented 1998 law is unconstitutional. The law, which made it a crime for websites to allow children access to 'harmful' material, was declared a violation of the First Amendment because of existing elective filtering technologies and parental controls that are less restrictive to free speech than the 'ineffective' and 'overly broad' ban."

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251 comments

The System (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26549703)

It works

Re:The System (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26549761)

For child porn masturbators.

Re:The System (4, Informative)

SBacks (1286786) | more than 5 years ago | (#26549817)

To be clear, this has nothing to do with child porn. This is a law intended to prevent children from accessing porn.

Re:The System (2, Informative)

Ethanol-fueled (1125189) | more than 5 years ago | (#26550113)

A law intended to prevent children from masturbating to child porn, that is.

Re:The System (0)

Jawn98685 (687784) | more than 5 years ago | (#26550215)

To be clear, this has nothing to do with child porn. This is a law intended to prevent children from accessing porn.

...or anything else that some authority deems "harmful", like pictures of naked female breasts. No shit, those controversial MySpace photos would have landed those pornographer/nursing mothers in the pokey under COPA. Can we please stop wasting the courts' time now and stop the political pandering, by our elected representatives, to a noisy few, uptight, religious nut-jobs?

Re:The System (5, Funny)

kohaku (797652) | more than 5 years ago | (#26550607)

that some authority deems "harmful", like pictures of naked female breasts.

I hope you're joking. Have you seen the state of the world today? It's a shambles! The economy is collapsing, and I think we all know the reason. Every single one of our children sees naked female breasts from the very day they're born. This has to stop, and it has to stop now: the children are our future, and if we don't protect them from the naked horrors of pornography, who will?

Re:The System (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26551255)

I even saw me a vagingle when I wuz born!

Slashdot Killer App: +1, Informative (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26550393)

Slashdot is DEAD.

Use Google News [google.com] .

Yours In Communism,
K. Trout

Re:The System (4, Insightful)

Joe Snipe (224958) | more than 5 years ago | (#26550869)

To be clear, this has nothing to do with child porn. This is a law intended to distract the public from real issues and generate new revenue streams for politicians and their allies

there, fixed that for you.

Re:The System (1)

samriel (1456543) | more than 5 years ago | (#26551237)

That's a good point. I tip my porno to you, good sir.

Re:The System (2, Funny)

hort_wort (1401963) | more than 5 years ago | (#26550901)

I'm glad you pointed this out -- I've been starting to wonder about the /. crowd after the debates over the last few weeks.

"Child porn is wrong, think of the children!!" But shouldn't it be "Child porn is wrong, DON'T think of the children!!"? Why are there so many articles about it?

Re:The System (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26549867)

> "If this law had gone into effect, it would have resulted into dumbing down of the Internet," said Chris Hansen, a lawyer for the American Civil Liberties Union.
Whoa whoa whoa, since when has Chris Hansen become is a pro-pedo lawyer?

Re:The System (0)

repvik (96666) | more than 5 years ago | (#26550011)

This has nothing to do with CP...

Re:The System (2, Funny)

nsayer (86181) | more than 5 years ago | (#26550489)

Whoosh.

For those who also do not feel the gust of air from the joke flying over your head, let me google it for you [letmegoogl...foryou.com] .

Re:The (judicial) System (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26549911)

More precisely, the court system works. As much as people complain about American democracy, the part that most people agree on is that the court system works. But ironically, the judicial system is arguably the least democratic part of our government. In cases like this, it is just one judge or a handful of judges making the decision.

The law in question was legislative, and most people think the legislative system is broken. It may be time for open source to provide the solution [metagovernment.org] .

Re:The (judicial) System (2, Informative)

Hatta (162192) | more than 5 years ago | (#26550953)

If the courts worked, we wouldn't have decisions like Wickard v. Filburn [wikipedia.org] , Hiibel v. 6th [wikipedia.org] , Herring v. US [scotuswiki.com] , etc. It seems like every other month the SCOTUS is shitting on the constitution in one way or another.

Re:The System (2, Insightful)

philspear (1142299) | more than 5 years ago | (#26549983)

I'd be more apt to believe that if the judge had struck it down on the principle that parents need to protect their kids rather than the world needs to make itself kid-friendly in all ways. An extended investigation to it and then turning it down because it would be poorly implemented and ineffective on top of all that is a win I guess, but it's not the resounding "this is flawed and stupid on a fundamental level, cannot be made to work, and shall never come to pass in any form" I would have hoped for. As it is, the "other side" will simply go back to work, maybe making exceptions, but will bring it back in a few years.

Re:The System (1)

philspear (1142299) | more than 5 years ago | (#26550031)

Edit: it is nice of course that the judge acknowledged it was a stupid idea to "chip away at the first amendment." And I realize of course the type of ban I am wanting, the judge saying nothing of the type will ever be passed in any form, is not within the judge's powers.

Basically I'm whining about it not being perfect, which is itself a fundamentally flawed idea that will never come to pass.

Re:The System (1)

Hatta (162192) | more than 5 years ago | (#26550819)

Even a broken clock is right twice a day.

What happens when you don't toe the line. (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26549741)

In other news all Philadelphia residents have been put on the Sex Offender list.

Re:What happens when you don't toe the line. (1)

IndustrialComplex (975015) | more than 5 years ago | (#26549941)

In other news all Philadelphia residents have been put on the Sex Offender list.

In other news, Philadelphians began referring to themselves as, Spartacus.

11 years later and still squirming/ (5, Informative)

guruevi (827432) | more than 5 years ago | (#26549789)

This law is 11 years old and it's still squirming through the courts. For all those that say that free speech is protected by the constitution and that certain branches will do away with unconstitutional laws: here is an example of how long you can potentially have laws affecting you while you're fighting it in court.

Of course this law is unimplemented but several other laws like DMCA and Patriot Act ARE implemented and unconstitutional. It takes longer than a 2 term presidency to do away with a dead law, how long do you think it would take to repeal a law that has been in use?

Re:11 years later and still squirming/ (5, Insightful)

betterunixthanunix (980855) | more than 5 years ago | (#26550139)

Yes, these things take a while to sort themselves out. There is simply no other way to protect the rights of the citizens while maintaining a meaningful and functional government. Subtle violations of your rights take longer, because there is more disagreement over whether or not your rights were violated at all -- you might think that the DMCA is a violation of your rights, but there are plenty of people out there who feel that it is not and that in fact, the DMCA protects the rights of the citizens (copyrights precede free speech in the constitution), including you.

Seriously, why do people think the system is deficient just because problems are not solved instantly?

Re:11 years later and still squirming/ (1)

CannonballHead (842625) | more than 5 years ago | (#26550319)

Seriously, why do people think the system is deficient just because problems are not solved instantly?

If people (which they seem to do quite often) think that what they think is the ultimate right/correct way to think, then disagreements are just stupid, and thus the problems should be easily solved (e.g.,"sudden outbreak of common sense" as though it's obvious to everyone what the correct answer to the problem is).

It's a good thing the courts don't decide things based on a slashdot-esque tagging system, hehe. :) Not to say courts are perfect, but.

Re:11 years later and still squirming/ (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26550707)

the DMCA protects the rights of the citizens (copyrights precede free speech in the constitution)

Um, what? Free speech is in the First Amendment, which amends the constitution, thereby modifying or restricting anything in it (except as modified by later amendments). Now what this means as far as copyrights is up for the courts to decide.

Re:11 years later and still squirming/ (3, Insightful)

theaveng (1243528) | more than 5 years ago | (#26550965)

Tell someone who has spent eleven years in jail, due to a law that was eventually declared unconstitutional, that they are being "impatient".

For example, those persons who were jailed by the D.C. Anti-gun Ownershipship Law which was eventually declared unconstitutional. They lost a big chunk of their lives to imprisonment, for a law that should have never existed.

Re:11 years later and still squirming/ (0, Flamebait)

Obfuscant (592200) | more than 5 years ago | (#26551055)

Tell someone who has spent eleven years in jail,

Which part of "unimplemented" is confusing?

Re:11 years later and still squirming/ (2, Informative)

Dun Malg (230075) | more than 5 years ago | (#26551139)

(copyrights precede free speech in the constitution)

Physically preceding in the text doesn't determine precedence in law, Einstein.

Re:11 years later and still squirming/ (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26551257)

There is simply no other way to protect the rights of the citizens while maintaining a meaningful and functional government.

Sure there is. Require every law to explicitly cite the part of the constitution that permits the government to do that. While we're hacking at the constitution, you could even have the supreme court review immediately after the President signs it, much like their "porn day" that they used to do to decide whether movies were obscene or not after the fact until congress changed the law to allow individual courts to make the decision after the fact. Or make it so that anyone voting yes for a law found to be unconstitutional is immediately put on impeachment trial by the remainder of congress (just think how much power Ron Paul would wield!) for violating the supreme law of the land.

As for the DMCA, half the the law is specifically about "access control" which has nothing to do with copyright. Throughout time, no artist has ever had the right to demand that people gaze upon their jesus christ covered in piss and see only the glory of his genius. Well, they could, but they had absolutely no recourse until the DMCA came along and decided that copyright holders should have the right to decide how their customers see their work.

Re:11 years later and still squirming/ (3, Insightful)

Talderas (1212466) | more than 5 years ago | (#26551425)

Don't worry, they'll just keep using the power of the Federal government to regulate interstate trade as their reasoning for it. That is what started all the expansion of government in the first place. Though of course, I'm curious as to how any welfare systems regulate interstate trade, as well as where in the constitution the federal government has the authority to establish them.

This leads me into a side tangent. I can't stand how people think that the federal government should implement the will of the majority upon the minority. Your only choices are to suck it up and hope that when the minority get power, they can revert the former majority's will, or move to another country. Likewise, I don't understand people's distaste for the state to allow the majority to put it's will over the minority. That's the beauty of being a union of "autonomous" states. They're supposed to be given so much more power than the Federal government, and thanks to the open borders with states, if the majority are doing what you don't like, and you can't change it, just move to another state. You don't have quite that flexibility when it's done at the Federal level.

Re:11 years later and still squirming/ (1)

TubeSteak (669689) | more than 5 years ago | (#26550195)

This law is 11 years old and it's still squirming through the courts.

AFAIK, the right to a speedy trial does not apply in civil actions.

It would be nice if it did though.
At least for Constitutional claims.

Re:11 years later and still squirming/ (1)

Hatta (162192) | more than 5 years ago | (#26551073)

This is why there should be only one body of law. Civil cases are being used as an end run around our constitutional rights. If I am being victimized by the government, I don't care if they're bringing civil or criminal action against me. I deserve all my rights, no matter what venue I'm in.

Re:11 years later and still squirming/ (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26550801)

This just in - the system is imperfect. Details at 11.

What about small animals (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26549875)

I am zealous in my defense of small animals and I think the law and the International Community should join me in stopping the evil degradation of rodents, mice, and squirrels and some birds. Only God in his Power can crapulate the interest between cute anumals with the frowning smell? of CHEESER!!!!! Jesus!!!! Fuck!

Re:What about small animals (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26550303)

Keith Moon? Is that you?

No more intro pages for porn sites? (1)

panoptical2 (1344319) | more than 5 years ago | (#26549885)

Most porn sites nowadays have intro pages that ask the user to confirm if he/she is over 18. Would eliminating this law mean that those sites are no longer required to have these intro pages?

(Also, do not confuse this law with COPPA, which is the Child Online Privacy Protection Act, which is enforced [and is constitutional] to prevent children under 13 from posting their personal information online.)

Re:No more intro pages for porn sites? (4, Informative)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | more than 5 years ago | (#26549979)

Most porn sites nowadays have intro pages that ask the user to confirm if he/she is over 18. Would eliminating this law mean that those sites are no longer required to have these intro pages?

They never were required to have them, at least not by any federal statute. Porn sites did this of their own (or their lawyers') volition.

Re:No more intro pages for porn sites? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26550667)

But wasn't the possibility of COPA passing one of the main reasons that they started doing this (to protect against future liability). As COPA has gotten struck down (again and again), I've noticed most sites going from "Enter your Date of Birth" to "Are you over 18?"

Re:No more intro pages for porn sites? (1)

MBGMorden (803437) | more than 5 years ago | (#26550993)

At least the majority of them got smart about it though and made it a "yes" or "no" type page. For a long time there a bunch of them had it setup so that you had to put in your exact birth date using 3 drop down lists, so that it could then calculate if you were older than 18.

I guess they thought that 12 year olds could do the math behind that . . .

Either way, even as a completely legal adult, it was incredibly aggravating. Normally I just threw in whatever random responses I knew would put it over 18 and then moved forward.

Re:No more intro pages for porn sites? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26551369)

Pervert

Re:No more intro pages for porn sites? (1)

Kandenshi (832555) | more than 5 years ago | (#26551555)

It's truly astonishing how many people viewing porn were born on January 1st, with the year being whatever a few presses of the "page down" button got you.
Asking people to put in their birth date for viewing porn is not likely to really catch anyone. If it did, they could always just hit back in their browser and plug in a new date.

Adult entertainment? (0, Flamebait)

spiffydudex (1458363) | more than 5 years ago | (#26549923)

I would rather keep kids away from online porn. It's called adult entertainment for a reason, its for adults.

Re:Adult entertainment? (4, Insightful)

pixelpusher220 (529617) | more than 5 years ago | (#26550073)

if only the *parents* out there shared a similar view...

Now, most parents do indeed want to keep kids away from it, yet they willingly turn over the keys (computer) and let kids drive the Indy 500 (internet). They just can't be bothered to actually administer and moderate what their kids are doing.

Yes yes people are busy, but if you're that busy, why did you have kids in the first place? I don't want my access to whatever material I see as reasonable restricted simply because someone else refuses to take their own responsibility.

Re:Adult entertainment? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26550249)

Yes, you are completely correct. If I don't have the time to sit and watch my kid browse the internet while reading everything he reads, I'm obviously way too lazy to have kids. I can only assume that your parents followed you around every minute of your life. Otherwise, why would they have kids if they're that busy? You must be a very valuable person.

Re:Adult entertainment? (5, Insightful)

pixelpusher220 (529617) | more than 5 years ago | (#26550437)

And yours didn't question you reading Playboy at 9 years old?

My parents restricted the hours I watched TV and kept tabs on what I watched. They took an interest in what I did and with whom I did it. Reading was things that they provided or I asked for (and they approved before I got).

Is that really so hard to comprehend? It's called childhood, your parents are responsible for you (and liable to a pretty wide degree).

Indeed many things can happen outside of a parents view, but the stuff that's inside their OWN HOUSE, they have to own up to responsibility for.

Re:Adult entertainment? (1)

theaveng (1243528) | more than 5 years ago | (#26551127)

I got my first modem in 1987, and it wasn't too long after that when I downloaded some naked photos. My mom probably would have freaked-out but I don't see how I was harmed in any way.

I don't really see why kids need to be filtered. We tell them about the disgusting habit of taking a ____, or how to properly clean their ____, so surely we can share with them reproduction. We need to teach them eventually, and now is as good a time as any.

Re:Adult entertainment? (1)

Incubusion (1450505) | more than 5 years ago | (#26550917)

Even ignoring that that's part of what you accept as your role when you have a child, there are a hundred internet censorship programs out there that work pretty effectively. It's not that difficult to install them, hell to even just install them for one user. And setting up different user profiles on a computer, with passwords, is one of the easiest things to do. When it comes to TV, just tell them when their bed time is or when they can't watch TV. Sure, they might anyways, though thousands of kids watch 'inappropriate TV' and come out just fine. But, more importantly than any of that, the parents need to teach their kids the concept of a moral compass. More important than blocking what they see is teaching them how to UNDERSTAND what they see, teaching them right from wrong. If a kid knows right from wrong, it's safe to assume he'll turn out fine even if he runs across hundreds of horrible sites advocating nasty things like racism or religious extremism. Encourage open discourse. Finally, know your own damn kid. Know if he's impressionable and needs some extra help understanding things or just blocking things that would be far beyond him just yet, or know when he's responsible enough to handle himself and let him deal with more mature things. Many parents have done it for years, decades, perhaps even centuries. Why do we have such difficulty with it?

Re:Adult entertainment? (1)

betterunixthanunix (980855) | more than 5 years ago | (#26550323)

"Now, most parents do indeed want to keep kids away from it, yet they willingly turn over the keys (computer) and let kids drive the Indy 500 (internet). They just can't be bothered to actually administer and moderate what their kids are doing."

How do you monitor what your children do online? That is the equivalent of trying to keep track of everyone that your children associate with, everywhere that they go with their friends, everything that they say, etc. It is just not possible to do that, and it never was.

Re:Adult entertainment? (4, Interesting)

powerlord (28156) | more than 5 years ago | (#26550881)

How do you monitor what your children do online? That is the equivalent of trying to keep track of everyone that your children associate with, everywhere that they go with their friends, everything that they say, etc. It is just not possible to do that, and it never was.

I'd imagine Its sort of like monitoring what they watch.

- Set them up on a restricted account (on whatever OS you use), so that they CAN'T change things/install things without your approval. That might mean that you need a different
computer for YOUR use, vs. the "whole families use".
- Add a password, don't tell them what it is. If they want to use the computer, then an "adult" needs to be monitoring their usage. Yes, you might sometimes just unlock it and let them play on site X, but if they want to get on-line, you have to know they are there. Check in from time to time at random and see how its coming. Maybe spend some time playing their games with them, or just watching.
- Install "parental control" software (yes, its not 100% effective, but its at least a step up).

Talk to your children and let them know about the "dangers" to both themselves and their computer of going to random web sites, "accepting digital candy/files from strangers", etc.

Realize that at the point they can bypass all of your "controls" to look at pornography, they are doing the equivalent of you sneaking into your fathers drawer of Playboys (albeit quite a bit more graphic)

Alternatively, perhaps one idea is to make a drawer of playboys something that they can "sneak into" so they have less initial dive to get at the hard-core stuff?

At a certain point they will be old enough that it just won't matter, part of that is their age, and part of that is how you raise them (and who their school friends are).

Re:Adult entertainment? (1)

theaveng (1243528) | more than 5 years ago | (#26551189)

The problem with your suggestion is that it requires parents to WORK at filtering their child's content, and most parents have been trained by the government school system that working is not necessary. You can be lazy, just "skirt" the minimum requirements, and still get a diploma.

They continue that habit as 20-something parents.

Re:Adult entertainment? (1)

the_one(2) (1117139) | more than 5 years ago | (#26551503)

I wonder how long it would take for a determined kid to glean the password=) (I'm assuming the parents won't be anal regarding computer security)

Re:Adult entertainment? (1)

Tubal-Cain (1289912) | more than 5 years ago | (#26551033)

Logs on the default gateway. Maybe have a whitelist of sites.

Re:Adult entertainment? (4, Informative)

Jeff Hornby (211519) | more than 5 years ago | (#26551197)

How do you monitor what your children do online? That is the equivalent of trying to keep track of everyone that your children associate with, everywhere that they go with their friends, everything that they say, etc. It is just not possible to do that, and it never was.

You could try raising them properly, instilling proper values, ensuring there are open lines of communication; you know, try parenting. As for specifically how to stop them from surfing porn on the internet, take the computer out of their room and put it in the living room (or whatever room you habitually hang out in). And make sure the screen is facing out into the room. That way if the little bugger is surfing porn, you can enjoy it too ;)

Re:Adult entertainment? (1)

427_ci_505 (1009677) | more than 5 years ago | (#26551283)

^Logs on the router is typically a good way to go, if you don't tell them what the router password is. Maybe Wireshark and a hub would work? You could leave their computer clean, but still snoop on them...

Or you could state some expectations and show a bit of trust in the relationship.

Re:Adult entertainment? (1)

theaveng (1243528) | more than 5 years ago | (#26551333)

Filtering software.

Got any recommendations for good Open source (read: free) filtering software that parents can install on their kids PCs or laptops?

Re:Adult entertainment? (1)

Cowmonaut (989226) | more than 5 years ago | (#26551459)

You put the computer in a public room of the house, not in their bedroom. That will stop most instances of the problem.

You can also follow the easy step by step directions available from Microsoft to setup user accounts so your kids are limited in what they view.

Better yet you can look into content filtering (just like you looked into what to feed your toddler/infant) and do something simple like OpenDNS or Content Watch or Net Nanny and not have to worry about it 99% of the time.

In short: Be A Parent. Get Involved. Do what you did when you first had your kid and were freaking out that you didn't know anything about raising a kid. Your job isn't done until they are moved out, and even then your kids need you (even if they never talk to you and generally don't visit on the holidays).

There is a very real problem of people not being responsible anymore. Just two generations ago this kind of apathy would of been outrageous. Now its the status quo.

Re:Adult entertainment? (4, Interesting)

Volante3192 (953645) | more than 5 years ago | (#26550175)

The trick lies in blocking adult entertainment from children while making sure it's delivery is unhindered to the adults who are legally allowed to view it.

Furthermore, you have to be sure to seperate adult entertainment from sites talking about, say, breast cancer, that kids may need for research projects in high school.

So, while I'd wager many share your view, many of us here have to come to the realization that a comprehensive solution is too unwieldly to even imagine.

This is where parental supervision comes into play, and often where the kick falls short.

Re:Adult entertainment? (5, Insightful)

corsec67 (627446) | more than 5 years ago | (#26550279)

The trick lies in blocking adult entertainment from children...

Why?

If it is covered by free speech, I don't see how you can say "you must be *this* old to use free speech". Is porn harmful to people under 18? Even if they are legally allowed to have sex?

Why not violent material?

This is where parental supervision comes into play, and often where the kick falls short.

Absolutely, that is where this kind of oversight belongs.

Re:Adult entertainment? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26550821)

It is illegal for people under the age of 18 to have sex in California, even if their partner is underaged as well.

Re:Adult entertainment? (1)

sjames (1099) | more than 5 years ago | (#26551135)

If it is covered by free speech, I don't see how you can say "you must be *this* old to use free speech". Is porn harmful to people under 18? Even if they are legally allowed to have sex?

Many parents believe it to be. That's why it's a matter for parental control. So long as it remains strictly a matter for parents to decide, it doesn't really matter if it turns out not to be harmful. Certainly, for younger kids it opens a lot of questions they are not prepared to understand the answers to.

Why not violent material?

That's a very good question! I don't know the answer.

Re:Adult entertainment? (1)

corsec67 (627446) | more than 5 years ago | (#26551267)

Certainly, for younger kids it opens a lot of questions they are not prepared to understand the answers to.

Are you sure they aren't prepared to understand that?

Is exposing kids to things they "are not prepared to understand the answers to" harmful? We are going to have to censor calculus websites now?

This is one of those things where repeating it often enough makes it true. Show me a study that shows that exposing kids to nudity or porn is harmful.

It's hard for parents to do this (1)

gsgriffin (1195771) | more than 5 years ago | (#26550937)

I, for one, would love some help in blocking stuff for my son. I put on controls and try my best to keep him from being dragged into that stuff at a young age, but it is disturbing how much comes through even the tools we have.

I would love it if the porn sites simply said that their money comes from adults and they have no business luring children into it (like smoking companies) and voluntarily made more protection for our kids to help make my parenting that much easier. I know this is wishful thinking, but at some point, freedom of speech is taking to a point of hurting our society and not helping.

We are not actually able to say anything we want whenever we want. Example, try going into a theater and yelling, "Fire!" over and over. You might go to jail and if someone is hurt, you'll be sued and rightly so. You abused your freedom of speech to hurt someone. There is no doubt that porn hurts people.

Re:It's hard for parents to do this (1)

Skye16 (685048) | more than 5 years ago | (#26551159)

There... isn't?

That's funny. I completely doubt that porn harms anyone. I'd like to see enough evidence that proves your stance that porn harms anyone other than monastery's enrollment rate.

Re:It's hard for parents to do this (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26551433)

Sorry, but I want my right to yell "Fire!" in a theater.

All rights come with a resposibility attached, and my right to free speech comes with a resposibility as well.

Yes, if direct harm comes from my free speech, yes, I'm resposible for that, but that don't limit what I can say and what I can't, just makes me responsible of my actions.

Re:Adult entertainment? (4, Insightful)

theaveng (1243528) | more than 5 years ago | (#26551289)

>>>seperate adult entertainment from sites talking about, say, breast cancer, that kids may need for research projects in high school.

If they are that old, there's no reason to censor it. They are their peers are already discussing sex - possibly even practicing it (oral is popular these days). Remove the filters so these young adults can gain access to accurate information ("yes you CAN get pregnant the first time"), instead of being fed bunk through the in-school rumor mill.

Re:Adult entertainment? (4, Insightful)

betterunixthanunix (980855) | more than 5 years ago | (#26550245)

Two things: first, this is a parental issue, not a government issue. Parents should be instructing their children to close any browser window that has pornography in it; second, and this is somewhat based on the first, is that teenagers going through puberty are not going to be harmed by viewing pornography (it is debatable whether or not prepubescent children would be). It is a matter of maturity, and again, only the parents can really judge whether or not their kid is mature enough to view "mature content." If a 15 year old is looking at pornography that they downloaded over the Internet, what is the problem? This material is only of interest to sexually mature people, and teenagers generally fall into that category.

Re:Adult entertainment? (1)

BlueParrot (965239) | more than 5 years ago | (#26550545)

only the parents can really judge whether or not their kid is mature enough to view "mature content."

Are you joking? Parents are HORRIBLE at judging when their kids are mature. If it was down to parents a whole lot of kids should not even know sex exists until they are 30. Now start to consider what happens to gay children born in a religious families, parents that refuse to have their kid vaccinated... etc... Yes, governments are bad at this, but there's A LOT of crap parents around as well (have a guess who it was that pressured government into creating all these laws in the first place ).

Are YOU joking? (1)

Jane Q. Public (1010737) | more than 5 years ago | (#26550945)

If you think parents are horrible, try government. They don't know how to tie their own shoelaces without hiring a consulting firm for $1,000,000 to study the idea first. If you are looking to government to be a watchdog for your children, then, well, all I can say is that you are clueless.

Re:Adult entertainment? (1)

story645 (1278106) | more than 5 years ago | (#26551133)

only the parents can really judge whether or not their kid is mature enough to view "mature content."

Parents are HORRIBLE at judging when their kids are mature.

Bad parents, which is the type you're ranting about. The good ones are pretty good judges of their kid's emotional health and tend to be on base with what their kid(s) should be exposed to (and what they are). There's also a major difference between not wanting a kid to do something and pretending it doesn't exist, and good parents tend to be the type that knows the line: they may believe in abstinence, but they'll make sure their kid has the knowledge he or she needs to navigate his or her environment. I know plenty of religious families, and the kids learn about sex when they're ready for it (or even before they really understand it-which is incredibly funny but also hits home that a kid maybe old enough to have sex but not ready for it).

Re:Adult entertainment? (1)

Shikaku (1129753) | more than 5 years ago | (#26551167)

Pendant point, but sex is instinctual. If a girl and a boy were left on an island and they learned to survive but were not taught anything about sex they will eventually "figure out" how to have sex so to speak if they were attracted to each other; clumsily I might add.

Re:Adult entertainment? (0, Troll)

gsgriffin (1195771) | more than 5 years ago | (#26550983)

Please, do your research before making an assumption about the effects of porn on anyone (kids or adults) and then stating it as a fact for everyone to read.

There are effects and you can find them in lots of research on the net if you took the time to look. Just look up the percentage of convicted rapist that are addicted to porn. You might be surprised what you find among a lot of social issues we deal with in America and its relationship to porn.

Re:Adult entertainment? (3, Insightful)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 5 years ago | (#26551081)

There's an old adage in science and statistics which seems to fit with your claim. Correlation does not imply causation. The only way that one could determine whether porn makes rapists more likely would be to provide a meaningful, methodologically sound definition of "pornography addiction" and statistics on the number of people overall that could be classified in such a way. Otherwise, you might as well say "Milk creates rapists, because most rapists drink milk".

Re:Adult entertainment? (1)

MBGMorden (803437) | more than 5 years ago | (#26551221)

There are effects and you can find them in lots of research on the net if you took the time to look. Just look up the percentage of convicted rapist that are addicted to porn.

That a convicted rapist is addicted to porn says nothing as to whether or not the porn caused that person to become a rapist.

There are 3 possibilities here:

a) Porn makes one more likely to become a rapist.
b) Being a rapist makes one more likely to watch porn.
c) The two have no real correlation and it's coincidence.

You're automatically assuming that your statistic implies option A, but I'd personally be far quicker to assume option B, and they're not the same thing.

Re:Adult entertainment? (1)

Tassach (137772) | more than 5 years ago | (#26551301)

Porn "addiction" (like gambling "addiction") isn't an addiction. It's a COMPULSIVE BEHAVIOR.

A real addictive substance causes actual measurable, physiological changes in the body - chemical dependency - and the addict suffers from withdrawal symptoms.

Compulsive behavior, on the other hand, is a purely mental issue: there are no physiological effects and no withdrawal sickness. ANYTHING can become a compulsive behavior if your brain is wired up that way. The object of the compulsion has no causative effect. A person prone to compulsive behavior is going to latch onto anything they find pleasurable -- regardless of whether it is sex, food, shopping, exercise, gambling, religion -- and pursue that one thing to the exclusion of everything else in life.

12 step programs basically don't cure the underlying compulsive tendencies, they just redirect a self-destructive compulsion to something else that is more socially acceptable and less harmful.

Re:Adult entertainment? (1)

SCHecklerX (229973) | more than 5 years ago | (#26550307)

Then maybe those "adults" with children should raise and monitor them themselves. Your kid is not my problem, put your own damned net filters on, or cut the cable, but leave MY Internet alone.

Re:Adult entertainment? (4, Insightful)

Weaselmancer (533834) | more than 5 years ago | (#26550709)

I would rather you did it as well. I would rather we not leave it up to the government.

It's your job to be a parent to your children, not the government's.

too many negatives (2, Insightful)

olddotter (638430) | more than 5 years ago | (#26549959)

How many times did you have to read this summary before you understood the current state of the law?

Re:too many negatives (1)

dragonsomnolent (978815) | more than 5 years ago | (#26549991)

At least 8, I agree poorly worded summary.

Re:too many negatives (1)

fred fleenblat (463628) | more than 5 years ago | (#26550297)

On top of that, it's opposite day!

Re:too many negatives (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26550415)

Once because I am not a moran.

Re:too many negatives (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26550467)

Once because I am not a moran.

but you may be a moron.

Protect kids from "harmful material" (3, Insightful)

internerdj (1319281) | more than 5 years ago | (#26550051)

I'll believe the government can do that when they can prove they can keep:
1) My social security number
2) My finacial information
3) Any other personal identifiable information
safe (well you know what) just in their own systems much less the internet as a whole. If it isn't technically feasible to protect me from people that are actively looking to ruin my entire life, then they don't have a shot at keeping my kids "safe" from whatever might possibly someday have a potentially negative effect on them in some way.

dear mr. rudd... (1)

JackSpratts (660957) | more than 5 years ago | (#26550055)

take that aussies!

Excuse me, but we're forgetting something... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26550105)

Where's the verbal fellating of our Dear Leader, Lord Barry Soetoro the Merciful, anywhere in the article text, the summary, or the comments? I'm reporting all of you immediately to the newly-formed Ministry of Verbal Fellatio of Our Dear Leader.

Think Of The Children! (5, Interesting)

Kenyai (1422451) | more than 5 years ago | (#26550379)

I'm glad this happened.

Allow me to be blatantly honest. I think kids should have the right to explore their sexuality in a safe manner online. I know I did.

Why is "adult entertainment" so exclusive anyway? You know, they could have extremely tame erotic websites to cater to kids who are interested. Probably like softcore Playboy pics or something.

Re:Think Of The Children! (3, Insightful)

caffeinemessiah (918089) | more than 5 years ago | (#26550559)

You know, they could have extremely tame erotic websites to cater to kids who are interested. Probably like softcore Playboy pics or something.

This is the funniest thing I think I've ever read on Slashdot. You, sir, seem to live in some reality where a controversial but possibly reasonable argument about pornography and children will be taken seriously. Anyway, let's assume that such a proposal does make it to the general public. In the "real" world, "tame erotic websites" will have the same connotation as marijuana being a "gateway drug": (a) that it's addictive and harmful (b) it leads to "harder" stuff (in both weed and porn contexts) and (c) it will ruin the children, even though adults enjoy it responsibly everyday.

A very intelligent person (4, Insightful)

Jane Q. Public (1010737) | more than 5 years ago | (#26551065)

a physics professor, in fact, who happens to be a friend of mine, puts it this way:

"They correlate marijuana use with other drugs, and say '70% of hard drug users started with marijuana.' But they are missing something: they ALL started on milk!"

Re:A very intelligent person (5, Funny)

blueg3 (192743) | more than 5 years ago | (#26551553)

Since I started watching the Cookie Monster on Sesame Street when I was 3, I've gained 160 pounds.

Re:Think Of The Children! (1)

Urza9814 (883915) | more than 5 years ago | (#26550637)

Yup, I did the same thing. But I did it mostly by P2P rather than websites. I'd like to see them try to block that...

Re:Think Of The Children! (3, Insightful)

j79zlr (930600) | more than 5 years ago | (#26550653)

I'm glad this happened.

Allow me to be blatantly honest. I think kids should have the right to explore their sexuality in a safe manner online. I know I did.

Why is "adult entertainment" so exclusive anyway? You know, they could have extremely tame erotic websites to cater to kids who are interested. Probably like softcore Playboy pics or something.

MTV?

But you know who else is thinking of the children. (1)

GMonkeyLouie (1372035) | more than 5 years ago | (#26550777)

Gotta tell you, a lot of porn sites have chat nowadays, or at least the most fun ones do, and I don't want my kids being on those sites talking with a bunch of degenerates.

Softcore porn for kids is (I can't believe I'm saying this) probably not that bad of an idea, considering that almost everyone has gotten their chafed little hands on a Victoria's Secret catalog somewhere along the way, but the nature of internet porn is that every site attempts to link you deeper into dirtier and more proprietary material to get you to look at their ads and pay for their content. Slippery slope for all with sleds.

Now, chatrooms for kids to talk to each other? Fine. Maybe this would mean a large-scale endorsement of OLPC, for all the wrong reasons?

Re:Think Of The Children! (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26550885)

Ok, I'll bite... but only as AC.

I've been thinking a lot about this and I believe it's ok to separate sexualizing children by force (sex abuse, inappropriate hazing, adult on child sex) from children sexualizing themselves out of curiosity (porn, masturbation, child on child sex). The two scenarios have completely different outcomes.

I've seen many examples in my adult friendships where children who did not get to regulate their own sexual stimuli, grow up to be adults who feel out of control with regards to their sexuality.

It might follow that children who get to regulate their own access to sexual stimuli, grow up to understand that this aspect of their personality and behavior is under their own control.

I don't think that child targeted porn is a good idea (mainly for the reason that a child's mind is no match for targeted marketing). Nevertheless, the idea that children have access to porn, under the condition that they choose on their own to seek it out, doesn't offend me.

Re:Think Of The Children! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26550907)

Uh, it's there. Google Images. Type in a search of your choice:
blondes
miley
bikini

Incidentally, the button just below this input text field says "Quote Parent". In this particular forum, that's probably a really good idea.

Right On Brother (1)

tobiah (308208) | more than 5 years ago | (#26551041)

Better to learn from other people's mistakes (or experiences). I'm pretty sure the Planned Ignorance crowd is motivated by a desire to propogate their genetic line at all costs, rather than any real concern for their immediate offsprings.

the system works (1, Funny)

circletimessquare (444983) | more than 5 years ago | (#26550395)

it is very easy, vey lazy, and very dumb to ape the usual cynical comments about our government (speaking as an american). but one of the bedrock principles of our government is checks and balances: if one branch gets out of line, another branch puts it back in its place. here, the legislative branch passed a law which abrogates freedom of expression. the judicial branch comes in, and squashes it. so celebrate, goddamn it, the system works

it is not useful for anyone to find that the system failed when it passed this law in the first place. people are weak, they make dumb mistakes. obviously, this law was an idiotic mistake. and it won't be the last idiotic law that is passed. but laws bet blocked, and overturned. please make note of that. there is a filter in place

of course, the diehards will find SOME way to complain about something. their first stop, of course, will be to list the familiar abuses of the bush administration... the bush administration that is now dead. the usual talking points and familiar executive branch excesses are history. move on, please find something new to whine and bitch and moan about

the biggest check of all, the biggest filter of all, the american people, just closed the chapter on that administration. of course i don't expect some of you to actually cheer when something good happens. for some of you, you seem congenitally incapable of doing that

whining and bitching and moaning. if that's all you can do, you've failed, not your government

so celebrate

Re:the system works (1)

HasselhoffThePaladin (1191269) | more than 5 years ago | (#26550941)

That's right. It's a celebration, bitches.

/rickjames

Re:the system works (1)

sanosuke001 (640243) | more than 5 years ago | (#26550969)

In my opinion, taking 11 years is failing. Until the Judicial Branch is forced to look over every piece of legislation, they aren't doing their jobs. They should have to sign off on everything just as the President does.

They have a 2/3's majority to overturn a veto, have a 3/4 or 4/5's for a Judicial Appeal or something. (The Judiciary would then have to go through a full-blown case where before they just had to agree simple majority to pass it)

Picking and choosing based on items brought to them is negligent at best.

Re:the system works (1)

frank_adrian314159 (469671) | more than 5 years ago | (#26550971)

the usual talking points and familiar executive branch excesses are history.

Some of those excesses were actually war crimes and some of us are not going to stop talking about them until (at least) investigations are held. Unless you think (a) that waterboarding is not torture (and if so, tell me what's changed since WWII to convince you otherwise) or (b) that the Executive Branch can order people to torture with impunity.

Yes, I know, you're probably one of those centrists who want to live in the "fluffy bunny let's all get along" world of post-partisan politics (or perhaps an authoritarian conservative who wants to brush all of this stuff under the carpet). But if it means letting war criminals off the hook, I'm not buying it. The best thing America has is the ability of its citizens to make a stink about truly stinky stuff - even stinky stuff that is in the past to make sure it doesn't happen again. So don't you ever tell us not to bitch and moan about the truly heinous. I will support our President when he does good things, and I will complain when he does bad things (or not enough good things).

Re:the system works (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26551003)

Yes, the system does work.

No, that does not mean there aren't still things that can and should be complained about, including things coming from the new administration.

No, complaining about those things does not imply any of the failings that you have chosen to project onto the complainers.

Yes, you are projecting those failures because you know that they are really your own.

No, the false confidence you're now putting into your sad attempt to dismiss these inescapable facts isn't fooling anyone, not even yourself.

Re:the system works ??? (1)

Jane Q. Public (1010737) | more than 5 years ago | (#26551477)

You point out one instance of the system working -- just barely -- and say that it is proof that the system works.

Sometimes.

I agree with the above posters, and will go further: (1) 11 years constitutes an effective failure. (2) The Executive branch has (almost quite literally) gotten away with murder during this past administration, with very little help coming from either the Legislative or Judicial. (3) In order for individuals to challenge the constitutionality of a law, they must show that (a) they were personally affected by the law, and (b) actual, rather than theoretical, harm. This is a disastrous flaw in the system, which has contributed to the excessive amount of time it has often taken to repeal unconstitutional laws. And finally (4) if you think all unconstitutional laws and regulations created by the Legislative and Executive were "mistakes", then you are very much mistaken.
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