UK Govt Admits Porn Ban Will Be Ineffective in Stopping Teens

CYBERSPACE—The new “age verification” system, blocking porn sites in the United Kingdom for users unable or unwilling to upload personal documents proving they are 18 years old, will now take effect on July 15, as AVN.com reported. But with less than three months to go, the British Board of Film Classification, which is charged with implementing the porn ban, now says it will be largely ineffective in preventing teens from accessing online porn.

“Determined teenagers will find ways to access pornography,” a spokesperson for the BBFC told The Telegraph newspaper. But the new system will, nonetheless, mean that young kids will no longer “stumble across” porn sites when they go online.

Teens, or anyone, will still be able to access porn freely via social media sites that allow posting of explicit adult content, such as Twitter, Reddit, and the image-sharing site Imgur, as The Independent newspaper reported

The upcoming law, which will take effect in July after nearly two years of delays, “does not apply in a case where it is reasonable for the age-verification regulator to assume that pornographic material makes up less than one-third of the content of the material made available on or via the internet site,” the text of the legislation says. That means massive social media platforms can post all the porn they want, as long as two thirds of their content is something else, without being required to set up an age verification gateway.

Many of the top social media sites, including Facebook and its subsidiary, Instagram, already ban porn and even non-porn nudity in most cases. Tumblr, the blogging platform that had been perhaps the most porn-friendly of all the major social media sites, expelled porn from its platform starting last December

The BBFC has also acknowledged that its enforcement of the new age-verification law will focus mainly on the most popular porn sites, if those sites refuse to put age verification in place or find ways for their users to skirt the new law. With an estimated five million porn sites online, the task of blocking them all just isn’t feasible, according to The Telegraph. 

Teens will also be able to download pirated porn clips from torrent sites, which won’t bother complying with the law, because they are “semi-criminal operations that flout the law because they don’t give a hoot,” online rights advocate Jim Killock told the paper.

Photo via Wikimedia Commons 

https://avn.com/business/articles/legal/uk-govt-admits-porn-ban-will-be-ineffective-in-stopping-teens-830714.html

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