Federal Judge Dumps Pennsylvania ISP Porn Blocking Law

from the too-much-collateral-damage dept

We’ve written before about a Pennsylvania law that required ISPs to block anyone from accessing child porn. There were obvious problems with this law. It’s good that Pennsylvania wants to stop child porn, but putting the burden on the ISPs is the wrong way to go. ISPs, of course, are just the pipe. They shouldn’t have to worry about what their users are, or are not, accessing. It was also problematic that Pennsylvania was using a ban-list that no one was allowed to review to make sure it was fair. The biggest problem, however, was that ISPs blocking sites ended up blocking other, perfectly legitimate sites that were simply hosted on shared servers. Now, a federal judge has decided that’s simply too big a cost and has said the law needs to go. What still doesn’t make sense, is that if Pennsylvania was able to identify all of these child porn sites, why were they wasting time getting ISPs to block them, rather than going after those who were actually responsible for running and hosting the sites, and get them taken down that way?


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