Lessig: Porn Free


Like anyone with children (especially teenagers), I worry about my kids and pornography. Yes, we do the standard things: install net filters, keep the computer out in the open, and have regular, age-appropriate discussions with our children about the dangers. As an aside, I do believe there are real dangers for kids and adults alike. Porn is as addictive as any drug and destroys healthy relationships. I caution my kids to avoid it as they would drugs.

The problem is that filters, the supposed technology solution, are mostly ineffective. There is no filter that Consumer Reports gives a better than "fair" rating. They block things they shouldn't and don't block things they should. The whole problem is worse than Spam because its more than simply annoying.

Now, no less a legal figure than Stanford Law Professor Larry Lessig has an article in Wired magazine that calls for mandatory HTML tags that would identify porn. This is not a new idea, but the ACLU and others have always screamed at any attempt to limit porn as an attack on the very foundations of our collective freedoms. If Lessig thinks it would pass constitutional muster, then Congress ought to take notice and give it a try. This would certainly be a better use of their time than the INDUCE act.