Internet PoliticsStar

Protecting Children on the Internet
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Even the best combination of parental discretion software and safety guidelines leaves loopholes that individual parents simply cannot close. Unfortunately, the next logical step, enforcing existing laws and creating news regulations for the Internet, is fraught with political difficulty. While many agree that children need protection on the Internet, the nature of this protection is hotly contested. Explosive issues are involved in the debate over Internet regulations, with arguments often framed as child safety versus censorship.

At this time, no effective online safety guards have been established in the United States. The first attempt at protecting children online, the Communications Decency Act, failed. However, the U.S. Senate is now considering two bills that would be very helpful.

  • Senate Bill 1482 by Senator Dan Coats makes it illegal to allow children to have access to commercial pornography.

  • Senate Bill 1619 by Senator John McCain has a bill before the Senate that requires all schools and libraries  that receive federally subsidized Internet access to utilize filtering technology on their computers.

Also, as our report on International Internet Politics illustrates, other approaches are available.

Communications Decency Act

International Internet Politics

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