That argument can be dismissed quickly. First, it is not technically feasible. Close down a web site here and it will pop up over there, or even outside the country. The web sites may become harder to find but they will still exist. Second, the age-old problem of defining pornography. For example, the University of California at Riverside's photographic museum put nude photos by famous photographers on its web site to publicize an exhibit. Pornography? In the eyes of some, yes. In the eyes of others, art. Third, the government cannot ban pornography on the Internet because, according to the First Amendment, it cannot ban pornography, period.
So, the anti-pornography forces turned to regulation. They supported the CDA, which threatened criminal prosecution of anyone who conveyed to minors or made available to minors any "indecent" or "patently offensive" material on the Internet. Thus, adult web site operators would be forced to obtain verification of legal age before permitting entry. How were they to do this? The government assumed that they would install software that required a credit card number for entry, assuming that only someone of legal age would have a credit card.
The fallacy in that supposition is apparent immediately. Children can steal their parents' credit card numbers, or if children really are that technically proficient, then bypassing such a requirement would be no problem. (Curious that the anti-pornography forces put so much faith in this software when they have so little faith in the blocking software.) The government assumed that parents would discover their credit card is being used improperly when their bill arrives. However, there are many free adult sites on the Internet. They could take the credit card number to allow entry, and then never charge it. Talk about a false sense of security for the parents.
Such a system also would slow the growth of the Internet. We all agree that t...
Cybersex Ban. (2000, January 01). In LotsofEssays.com. Retrieved 22:32, November 28, 2014, from http://www.collegetermpapers.com/viewpaper/1303771113.html