[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

Re: Child Porn as Thoughtcrime

I'll try to respond to some of Tim's questions. Keep in mind it's late; 
I'm about to go to sleep; I don't have my references here. I welcome 


On Tue, 10 Sep 1996, Timothy C. May wrote:

> Q: Is a drawing of a child engaging in a sexual act an illegal item?

Under the original Hatch bill, yes. Certainly under the revised one. Of 
course, Hatch's proposal goes even farther. There's no "sex act" requirement.
Judy Krug from the ALA testified about this, opposing Bruce Taylor.

> Q: Is an image of Raquel Welch morphed to make her look like a 15-year-old
> illegal?

Even under the original Hatch bill, yes.

> Q: Is writing a story about a child having sex illegal?

Probably not.

> Q: Is a collage of images of little girls (or boys, one presumes) in
> swimsuits, with apparent salacious intent, illegal?

Under the Knox decision, yes. (Dancing girls in leotards are verboten.)

> Q: Is accessing a Web site having nude or sexually-related images of
> children who are of legal sexual age in the site's country--but not in the
> accessor's country--illegal?

If you're in the U.S. and are accessing photos from Sweden, yes. But child
porn laws have been harmonized, so this may be an unlikely scenario. There
is also a treaty I talk about in my August Internet Underground cover story: 

 Not so, says Bruce Taylor, the chief architect of the CDA and a
 professional cyber-scaremonger. The former Federal porn-prosecutor
 believes that "not all censorship is bad."

 "Foreign countries have an obligation to restrict obscenity and child
 pornography on the Internet by the treaty of 1911," says Taylor. "It's
 an agreement between the states to cooperate and to use international
 laws to prosecute obscenity." And to Taylor, books and copies of
 Penthouse magazine can be obscene.

> Q: Is it legal to have photographs of one's own children in a nude state?
> (E.g., playing in a backyard pool, at the beach, etc.) Does it become
> illegal to let others see these photographs? How about putting them on a
> Web site?

You can be harassed by police for it -- reference the Cambridge case
linked to from http://joc.mit.edu/. I think, though I don't have cites,
that other parents have been prosecuted for this. 

> Q: Is a crime committed if a teenaged girls takes a photograph of _herself_
> and shows it to others? To adults? Or if she writes a salacious story about
> herself or her friends? Or if she just invents it all?

Not sure. Perhaps others can help?

> (And as to the obscenity laws, which part of "Congress shall make no law"
> did the readers of the First Amendment miss? I realize this is a
> longstanding topic of discussion, with various famous cases (Miller,
> Hustler, etc.), but it remains a mystery to me.)

Ah. "Obscenity" isn't speech!

// [email protected] // I do not represent the EFF // [email protected] //