How do you determine what "local" standards are in determining whether or not something is obscene? This is certainly not a new question, but it looks like it may get a lot more focus as the Justice Department is getting ready to launch a bunch of obscenity cases against a variety of porn purveyors. The main problem is that question of local standards. In an age when TV and the internet the local community a lot more inclusive, it's a lot more difficult to come up with an agreed upon level. In fact, the article describes one case where investigators purposely ordered a porn video from Hollywood (where it was produced and sold) from Pittsburgh, so they could file the charges there, under Pittsburgh community standards. It's also interesting that those planning these lawsuits refer to stopping the pornography that "invades" homes - when it seems that much of it is viewed by choice.
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