January 15, 2011

Will the UK Block All Internet Porn? Covenant Eyes


Government Censorship Debate

Some fear what might be censored next on the Internet. Charlie White of Mashable.com writes,

It’s a slippery slope the British government will be navigating here. Who will decide precisely what porn is? Will ISPs be required to install bare-skin-detecting software, and if so, who will pay for that? Will instructional videos such as breast-feeding demonstrations be considered porn? And how will British residents feel about adding their names to a list of people who specifically asked for access to pornography?

Katherine Mangu-Ward of Reason Magazine agrees: “Since we’re already slip-sliding down the famous slope, it’s worth pointing out that various kinds of religious and political speech are the next stops on the way down.”

However, Cris Clapp Logan, Director of Communications and Congressional Relations at Enough is Enough, has a very different take on the censorship issue. “In the physical world, we have always had clear measures in place to protect children from accessing adult pornography.” In the U.S., for example, Logan says patrons need to be 18 years old to purchase an adult movie or magazine. “These protections are in place,” Logan comments, “because of the overwhelming body of research that attests to the fact that young children do not have the cognitive skills to cope with these images and which shows that exposure to pornography can have a detrimental effect on a child’s mental, emotional, and physical health.”

Logan reasons: Why should the Internet be any different? “Unfortunately, these protections have not extended into the online world, and any child with unrestricted Internet access is just one click away from hard-core, fetish-filled pornography.” She believes this hardly amounts to censorship: “They are not seeking to censor or prevent adults from accessing pornography, but they are requiring adults to ‘opt-in’ into the online world of pornography in the same way they have always been required to opt-in to the pornography offline.”


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