Pornblocking – why it would have killed me


11:00 am - December 21st 2010

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contribution by Charlie Owen

The Conservative MP Claire Perry, representing the good constituency of Devizes, Wiltshire, recently suggested the introduction of a Great Porn Filter. Minister Ed Vaizey now says he is seriously considering a voluntary version.

This stalwart piece of software would patrol the borders of our great nation, letting in only the most virtuous, the most pure, the most clean of web traffic.

With the filter in place Britain might rid itself of the terrible addicition to pornography that has brought it to its knees (so to speak) and which has led to all the problems that we now face: student debt, benefit cuts and snow over our noble runways.

Ahem.

I’m not going to go into why the “research” supporting Claire Perry’s little crusade is rubbish. Foxsoup did a far better job than I could. Just imagine the scenario.

“Hello there, this is Denise, how can I help you?”
“Erm, hello. I’d, er.. like some [mumble] please.”
“Some what, sir?”
“Some [mumble] ass.”
“Could you say that just a bit louder, sir?” [puts call on speakerphone for entire call centre to hear]
“I JUST WANT SOME HOT ASIAN ASS, ALRIGHT? IS THAT TOO MUCH TO ASK? I JUST WANT SOME PORN! IT’S BEEN 16 HOURS SINCE MY LAST WANK!”
“Just adding that to your account, sir”

But there’s a very deadly side to this, as there is to all right-wing authoritarian plans.

If we start blocking erotic materials “for the children” then what else gets caught up in that censoring dragnet? A lot of things, for certain – sexual health advice. Images of healthy bodies that a worried teen might need to look at (“is my penis meant to look like that?”, “Are my breasts meant to be different sizes?”).

Oh, what about abortion advice? Why would nice children ever want to access that information? Better block it! It’s not like teenagers are going to get pregnant!

I remember being a 15 year old boy (we’ll come to that later). I remember how confusing sexuality was. I remember how difficult it was in those pre-web days to get access to porn.

We don’t appreciate it now, but once it was hard to get porn. It wasn’t just a case of sitting down with a laptop and opening your browser bookmarks. Oh no. In those days you had to go into a newsagent. And browse the top shelf. And pick up a magazine. And walk up to the counter. And turn bright red. And experience the leer of the owner as he put it in a discreet paper bag. And walk out, shamed.

Now imagine that if you’re a gay teenager.

It isn’t easy being gay in a straight world. As much as we like to think that we’re all groovy with gays, that we’ve got some gay friends, it’s still not easy to be an out non-straight adult. It’s positively dangerous to be a queer teenager. Can you imagine how utterly terrifying it must be to access gay porn in the real world when you’re discovering that you’re not normal, that what you are can get you beaten to death?

And then there is another group. I give this one special mention, despite its rarity, because I belonged to that group. A group of kids who hated themselves, who were positively terrified of their own bodies, who are desperate to find out why their own flesh has betrayed them.

Transgender teens.

Yes, they exist. I hated what I was for nearly all my teenage years, wanting to rip the skin from my body, sobbing myself to sleep at night because I couldn’t understand what I was. But then came along the internet. Oh, the internet. It fucking saved me.

It gave 18 year old me a view of the world that made me realise that I wasn’t alone, that I could do something about the pain that made me want to die.

Claire Perry doesn’t want that. In her world, young people don’t have a sexuality, or erotic tastes. They’re good girls and boys, appropriately attracted to the opposite sex, waiting to marry before they can get any of that nasty, sticky behaviour over with.

And I doubt she even knows that trans people exist, let alone that there are trans teenagers out there who rely on the internet for vital support. She wouldn’t notice as the sites they use to gain crucial advice from are blocked, due to having never-quite-defined “adult materials”, as support channels are closed down for “endangering youth”.

She wouldn’t notice as sites all over the net are blocked for containing mention of sex, genitals, puberty and sexuality, when what they are doing is educating a badly unrepresented and unsupported section of society.

Would she notice another young person slitting their wrists in utter desperation?


Due to her short attention span, Charlie tweets as @sonniesedge far more than she blogs at unaverage.co.uk

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Reader comments


This is a “right wing” authoritarian plan, is it??

Either way, as you say, it’s a dumb idea.

Good article apart from this: “But there’s a very deadly side to this, as there is to all right-wing authoritarian plans”

The right have no monopoly on authoritarianism and it is just as damaging whichever wing does it.

3. Thinking of the children

Won’t someone please think about the children!!!

All true.

I have been writing off and on about this for ten years, from when I made these exact points about the first Aussie Porn firewall proposal. However where have LGBT groups been on these new proposals? I haven’t heard anything.

Truth is they’re technically impractical and the industry will hate them, as in Oz. But the point still needs making about how the sideswipe to LGBT youth happens and must not be dismissed.

I’m looking forward to the first story about an MP who ‘opts-in’.

Great article. As regards to the right-wing thing, I’m sure this proposal will find a strong supporter in Harriet Harman.

Yeah because there’s no down sides to porn – because, y’know it’s an industry that is well known for it’s high levels of respect for women and gay men – and furthermore it’s well known that the main function of Internet pornography is to give comfort and succor to (understandably) troubled adolescents, which of course they could never receive from message boards or chat forums.

Porn’s great maaan, chill out.

Its just authoritarianism, really, like the ID Card nonsense, no wing is safe from it.

Interesting article, Charlie. (Except, yeah, the sentence Falco’s scratching his/her head over. All authoritarianism is potentially lethal; t’aint just the mighty righties.) Paul, meanwhile, has taken the oddly Milibandian approach of aligning “I think this should be accessible” with “I unequivocally endorse this”.

Just had a quick skim of the debate, and the only Labour MP who spoke seemed broadly sympathetic to the idea too, as did all the other Conservative backbenchers who spoke. In fact the most obvious attempt I found to limit the terms of this thing at all came from Peter Bottomley:

“The debate is concentrating on the issue that matters most, which is extreme pornography. We are not concerned about nudity or ordinary sex. Most of us have a naked body…”

11. the a&e charge nurse

[7] you object to porn, fine – I’m sure there are many like minded souls?

But this post is about whether extending the sensitivities of porn objectors to others …….. in the form of censorship.

For those who prefer greater regulation I think a good starting point would be to detail the anticipated benefits – personally I do not think the gratuitous insults you have offered so far is a very convincing starting point?

(Of course, I imagine “ordinary sex” to a Tory means cis- and preferably hetero-sex. But at least he’s trying.)

Left or right, the only possible sensible response to such authoritarians is “Fuck Off”.

We’re not running the world so that prissy little puritans can make us conform to their desires. We’re running it so that all the rest of us can maximise the joys and pleasures of life up to the point that doing so harms another or their ability to enjoy such pleasures.

If some people wish to be photographed or filmed having odd body parts being inserted into uncomfortable orifices and others wish to see such then it’s damn all to do with politicians what consenting adults get up to.

@7

Way to misread the point.

How reliable are these types of filters? Utterly useless, that’s what. Most LGBT books are classified as “adult” by Amazon for example, just by default. Don’t you see how dangerous that is? Legitimate LGBT material is at high risk of being opt-in under such a system, as is other health related items.

Not to mention all the other issues, for example how I don’t particularly think it’s the role of government to get involved in how I choose to get off in the privacy of my bedroom. How parents who don’t want their children viewing porn should monitor their children’s internet use, not rely on ISPs to do it for them. How it’d set a worrying precedent where the government decides what we can and cannot watch.

I for one find the idea incredibly worrying.

It’s a stupid idea but so is the idea that pornography is vital for people who are trying to learn about sex and sexuality. If anything I suspect pornography gives a very distorted and unreal impression.

7 Paul Sagar

You miss the point. The issue isn’t access to porn, but the fact that any Internet filter set to block pornography is going to catch a whole lot of things that are not pornography – like sexual health advice websites as outlined by the OP, or the message boards and chat forums to which you refer.

Anyone who has used the Internet in an office with a web filter should know who indiscriminate and unreliable they are. The technology simply does not exist, and likely never will, to block pornography alone.

Robespierre also appreciated the personal political advantages of promoting the goal of a virtuous society. It implied, naturally, that any critics were opposed to virtue and could therefore be put on the next tumbrel going to the guillotine, besides which les tricoteuses would be sitting to watch the ensuing spectacle.

The late Senator Joe McCarthy and Mrs Mary Whitehouse relied on a similar demagogic method to gain populist ascendancy and plaudits.

The other predictable outcome is continuing hassle about whether a particular website qualifies for the porn filter or not. As with some movies, which strive for over 18 only certificates, some websites will seek the porn tag to attract readers and viewers.

Parents – and schools – need to protect their children’s web access by using the regular browser filter tools.

The fact is that teens can go now into many good highstreet bookstores in Britain and often buy shelf copies of John Cleland: Fanny Hill, DH Lawrence: Lady Chatterley’s Lover, James Joyce: Ulysses, Anaïs Nin: Delta of Venus or Pauline Reage: The Story of O. The curious thing is that some adults are so abysmally ignorant about literature that they don’t understand this.

Japan has a long historic tradition of easily accessible shunga – erotic woodcut art – such as: The dream of the fisherman’s wife:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Dream_of_the_Fisherman's_Wife

And Japan has a famously low crime rate.

Paul Sagar:

Yeah because there’s no down sides to porn – because, y’know it’s an industry that is well known for it’s high levels of respect for women and gay men – and furthermore it’s well known that the main function of Internet pornography is to give comfort and succor to (understandably) troubled adolescents, which of course they could never receive from message boards or chat forums.

If the proposals are ever implemented, there will be plenty of jobs for people to sort out the ‘good’ porn from the ‘bad’; stuff, as well as in trying to ensure that ‘breast cancer’ sites are allowed but ‘breast fetish’ sites get blocked, and so on. In the past, this was easy – it was called ‘Her Majesty’s Customs and Excise’ – but it’s a bit more difficult when it comes to the internet.

Moreover, given the liberalisation in sexually explicit ‘R18′ films, it’s going to be difficult to start blocking sites that would be otherwise legal under British law regarding videos or ‘obscene’ publications. (Oh, and there’s also the small matter that is the mess of Labour’s ‘Extreme Pornography’ legislation as well.)

And all that’s before Ed Vaizey has to explain why the ‘Big Society’ nonsense (where the parents take responsibility to ensure their kids don’t access Bad Things) is suddenly ditched in favour of government intervention/regulation.

I reckon they’re just stupid enough to go for it – it beats talking about the cuts.

PS: There’s also the suggestion that ‘porn’ should have it’s own .xxx domain name – but sexual conservatives are worried that putting ‘porn’ in that box simply highlights its availability even more, rather than removing it altogether.

Obviously such a filtering system wouldn’t really work very well at a technical level, but in as far as it could, why not make it opt-out rather than opt-in?

As far as I know you have to be over 18 to get a broadband service so every account holder would be able to choose for themselves what kind of material was available on that connection. While imperfect, this would be easier and more reliable for parents than setting up parental controls on their childrens’ computers, while at the same time not inconveniencing or unnecessarily embarrassing anyone else.

Robespierre also appreciated the personal political advantages of promoting the goal of a virtuous society.

Is there a Revolutionary equivalent of Godwin’s law? Besides, Revolutionary France was awash with pornography – and seditious pornography at that. One important element in discrediting the Ancien Regime was the scurrilous rumours and pamphlets that circulated about Marie Antoinette – she was a lesbian, she was Lafayette’s lover, she was incestuously abusing her son, and so on and so on. The sans-culottes used pornography in highly political ways.

There’s another point besides the Aussie one (it won’t work) as to why this should/could be going nowhere. If it does disproportionally effect LGBT it runs bang into equalities legislation.

Instead of us grown up’s debating this,why don’t we ask the kids? It’s their future we’re discussing.

Genuinely not a fan of porn. It’s as titalating as a root canal procedure but hey if people get turned on by plastic people faking it with ‘o’ faces, all the power to you.

Anyhow, porn makes £££’s, this will never pass.

Thin end of the wedge. This is censorship of the net by commercial organisations at the behest of the government. It’ll start with protecting kids from porn and progress to protecting the citizens of the country to whatever the government of the day doesn’t want you to see. How soon would it be before Wikileaks was filtered out?

All of this is being based on the flimsiest of pretexts, that some parents are too lazy or too ignorant to put ‘net nanny’ style software on their computers – Have they wheeled Pudsey the bear out in support of this yet? The (conservative) proposal is sentimental claptrap masquerading as argument.

@24…They never fake it in the ones I watch, and they ain’t plastic either. Sometimes I can even see the caesarean scares on some of the ladies. Maybe it just the porn I watch.

I agree with everything except the attack on Claire Perry at the end – there’s no mention of her wanting to close down sites that address health issues that need to depict naked people and I don’t think putting thoughts into her head is the most sensible of ways to attack this proposal. I’m not exactly the world’s biggest Tory fan but lets’ not lump her in with the misguided lying examples such as Dorries.

I think the best way to stop this from happening is to tell her of this amazing thing called the parent filter that most browsers have so your kids don’t stumble across sites that you don’t want them to. You can turn it off when you want to get turned on and vice versa.

@Lizzie B

I’ll give Perry a pass if she’s truly ignorant of the impact of her proposals, and I suspect she is.

But regarding existing filters – aka ‘censorware’ – see my linked post for pinknews. These are an unregulated version of Perry’s big idea.

@ Paul Canning Yeah, I just read her sources so misguided is probably true. I just hate labelling people that, even if religious and po-faced and wanting to ban ‘healthy’ things, may not have the intention of harming LGBT teenagers. The proof of that will be if she responds to this with an ‘oh, I hadn’t thought of that, good point’ and makes sure that educational sites are not included in her proposal (which should be shouted down anyway). It just struck me as a lot of inferring without a huge amount of proof.

@ Lizzie B….your so bloody right, that I want to kiss and cuddle you, but in a non-porngraphic way.

Oh yawn.

my point at 7 was simply supposed to be drawing attention to the blithely unconcerned nature of this article vis-a-vis the moral difficulties that do surround porn as an issue.

I am *not* saying that this crackpot banning proposal is right. Certainly, it isn’t, for several dozen reasons.

What I am saying is that a bit more sensitivity to unpleasant and often highly morally complex nature of pornography is required.

Did nobody else see the irony of somebody who has experienced great personal difficulty – and possibly even trauma – glibly resorting to the use of language like “Hot asian ass”?

Or do we all now think it’s a-OK if LibCon runs articles which, for example, many femminist readers of this website might be deeply uncomfortable with?

Porn is a complicated issue. This article trades on essentially ignoring that, and reducing the entire debate down to authoritarians vs. (understandably) desperate minority groups of teenagers looking for support and help…when the debate, in its entirety, is considerably more difficult and far-ranging in its implications than this (very well written, it has to be said) article accounts for.

@31

“Or do we all now think it’s a-OK if LibCon runs articles which, for example, many femminist readers of this website might be deeply uncomfortable with?”

I see your point inasmuch as there is some potential for offence/discomfort. But nobody has been offended or discomforted yet, and I’m not sure what the article writer should be obliged to do if they were. Surely your take on the porn debate is one, this is another. Offering up your side to it is one thing, but I don’t think you can suggest that your view of the debate “trumps” this one to the point that anyone should feel it shouldn’t be on here.

Too many shoulds. You get my drift.

But Paul, the article isn’t about the rights and wrongs of porn. It was about the other stuff that would get caught in the same filter. It even says so here:

“If we start blocking erotic materials “for the children” then what else gets caught up in that censoring dragnet?”

34. Margin4error

3 – When it comes to pornographic material on the web, thinking of the children is a very bad idea and can land you in a lot of trouble.

;)

It may be that the reference to “right-wing authoritarianism” is to the somewhat confusing technical term used by Bob Altemeyer in “The Authoritarians” ( see http://home.cc.umanitoba.ca/~altemey/ ) . Certainly, the authoritarianism demonstrated by the last Labour gov’t falls within Dr. Bob’s definition of “right-wing authoritarianism”.

@Paul Sagar

“a bit more sensitivity to unpleasant and often highly morally complex nature of pornography is required”

Why? How often do you ever read of the experience of being a transgender teen?

I can relate to this as 35 years ago porn was the only way to see/read anything positive about gay men or to learn about gay sex.

I don’t see why when LGBT are talking about our lives we have to genuflex because in talking “many femminist readers of this website might be deeply uncomfortable.”

I don’t see a lot of traffic in the other direction during discussion of issues like this or, say, prostitution.

@PaulSagar – I noted the sarcasm, hence my post, which points out out that even working out what to ‘do’ about porn is highly complicated, both technologically (as in any kind of filter), let alone legally or culturally – and that’s before one considers the latest sexually conservative front group involved in the debate this time round. (To be honest I’ve come across too many anti-porn feminist articles that fail to acknowledge this basic point, let alone anti-feminist comments assuming ‘it’s all groovy’ – and that’s just on this site.)

The brownshirts once again prove that they are not for freedom.

Tory freedom is only freedom for rich people to pay low taxes. As soon as you get into social issues, the brownshirts show that they do not trust the people. And where will this end? Will brown shirt tory MPS decide that it would be better for the UK to have other sites cut off to the public.

Oh , how I remember the troy trolls on here last year screaming “police state” We had David Davis making a complete tit of himself and resigning his ultra safe seat only to waste a shed load of taxpayers money having himself re-elected on the Henry V ticket.

Don’t forget that the Tory party is the CofE at work. I wouldn’t be surprised if there weren’t some religious insanity behind this; i.e., what she’s really trying to do is “save souls”, but she knows this won’t fly, so like all dishonest fruitcakes who “do god”, she has to say she’s “thinking of the children”. Remember, this is the same Nasty Party that banned “video nasties”, which were just the 1980s equivalent of the hysteria against horror comics in the 1950s.
Politicos never learn.

@39…they aint going to ban Evil Dead again…I love that film.

41. the a&e charge nurse

[31] “Or do we all now think it’s a-OK if LibCon runs articles which, for example, many femminist readers of this website might be deeply uncomfortable with” – oh, what an idiotic strawman.

This piece is about censorship – how does discussing censorship fall foul of the feminists?

No feminist has complained about the tone the OP – if there is a complaint then make an argument for it rather than trying to shut down debate before it has even started.

Dan Sabbagh at Guardian Tech on why the ideas aren’t big or clever:

What it is not obvious that going down a Chinese-government style route of blocking access to certain webservers is really attractive. It is an idea that has also been canvassed by the film and music businesses hoping to deal with the problems of piracy. Filtering out pornographic websites would certainly provide legitimacy to that suggestion, and then you have to ask what else should be banned next? The WikiLeaks website, of course, and perhaps any other website that is involved in leaking/releasing previously confidential information. A nice trinity of national security, piracy and porn.

42

Yup,, the global elites don’t like the truth coming out. They have so much in common with the Chinese govt. No wonder they love moving their business’s there. They can rely on the MSM to do their control of the sheeple, so something must be done about the internet.

What better excuse than porn. They always hide behind the children. The same children by the way they are quite happy to fill up with chemicals and shit food.

Perry tweeted this yesterday:

“100% of negative or abusive commentary about opt in system for internet porn is from the chaps. Women 100% positive (so far)”

Ladies, start your engines.

Its a non-starter. The story originated a month ago from brown-nosing nonentity Claire Perry whose sole contributions to politics have been as a government mouthpiece. While the Tories may think they’ll be able to exploit a moral panic to divert attention from the steaming great mess they are making as they did with the video nasties scare, the practicalities alone are insurmountable. Australia has already made a laughing stock of itself with its attempt so why would Britain succeed, it is impossible to differentiate between erotica, educational material and porn. There are far more revolting things all over the internet – pictures of George Osborne for instance

my point at 7 was simply supposed to be drawing attention to the blithely unconcerned nature of this article vis-a-vis the moral difficulties that do surround porn as an issue.

Are none. Rapists should go to jail. Pictures of adults who’re engaging in consenting acts have no associated moral issues attached, and anyone who says otherwise is a puritan bigot.

What I am saying is that a bit more sensitivity to unpleasant and often highly morally complex nature of pornography is required.

Is not. See above.

Did nobody else see the irony of somebody who has experienced great personal difficulty – and possibly even trauma – glibly resorting to the use of language like “Hot asian ass”?

“You’re a victim, you’re not allowed to say nasty words, they might make my tiny mind explode”. You horrible, patronising specimen.

Or do we all now think it’s a-OK if LibCon runs articles which, for example, many femminist readers of this website might be deeply uncomfortable with?

Should be compulsory. Anyone offended by Charlie’s piece isn’t offended on the grounds that they’re a feminist – they’re just a vile bigot who should seek help.

Perry tweeted this yesterday:

“100% of negative or abusive commentary about opt in system for internet porn is from the chaps. Women 100% positive (so far)”

Sample size?

But seriously, we thought this was about what the kids were getting access to? Is Mumsnet about to intervene in Perry’s favour, or is this yet another recycling of the idea that All Women Don’t Like Porn? Maybe Vaizey – being a bloke an’ all – is just going to string Perry along until she goes away and he can go back to surfing for smut. Conservative (or radical) views on sex are do not neatly divide along gender lines.

@7 While the original point of this article was to illustrate that blanket bans have horrible consequences to minority groups, I do agree that porn is a deeply divisive issue!

However, what is porn? Porn is vastly more than wank mags aimed at hetro males. It encompasses art, literature, photography, poetry and more. For anyone to reduce it down to Razzle is simplistic, and I admit that I did that for this article. Look at the longer version on my website for more.

Is porn damaging to women? There are definite arguments to support that. Porn that exists in the underworld, as a place of last resort – that *is* damaging to women. To take a broader feminist viewpoint, all hetro-male porn objectifies women. Personally, even as a feminist, I disagree with that.

Porn is part of healthy human sexuality. The porn industry, like the sex industry, is reviled almost purely due to the puritanism that runs though anglo-western society. A porn/sex industry that supports women, that gives them control – that is something to aspire to.

@47

Never mind sample size – how does she know? Can you tell whether I’m Christine or Christopher? Nor can she

@39 I did feel that a lot of religious moralising behind this. This isn’t about “protecting children”. This is about pursuing a puritan agenda and/or seeking control over one of the most free mediums we have.

Censorship’s not a Left or Right issue: its only days since this site ran an article in support of Mumsnet’s campaign against Lads Mags.

This about squeemishness about sex being dresssed up as concern for children.

I have a slightly more fundamental problem with this proposal, which is that if something is legal, why the hell is it the government’s business to limit its supply? Seems somewhat logically justifiable…

53. the a&e charge nurse

[52] see [51]

‘I have a slightly more fundamental problem with this proposal, which is that if something is legal, why the hell is it the government’s business to limit its supply? Seems somewhat logically justifiable…’

Its only legal because it can’t currently be policed. The relaxation of pornography in this country – such as R18 DVDs – is all down to the internet.

I totally agree with the points made by #31. The porn industry has succeeded in creating the perception of porn as a flippant topic, something ‘all’ men (and hey, even women too!) use – anyone who doesn’t like it is a prude or just plain weird, right?
I don’t like the reference to ‘Hot Asian Ass’ any more than I suppose the OP would like being referred to in demeaning terms based upon sexuality and gender. Plus I’m a feminist. But I guess not many other feminists are going to risk sticking their head over the parapet for risk of being described as a ‘puritan bigot’ and similar #46. The discussion about net censorship is different from discussing the morality of porn. Agreed. But then saying whether access to pornography and access to sex education is a ‘good thing’ are also two separate issues. The article seems to suggest that porn is a right of passage and a means of exploring sexuality. I really don’t think pornography teaches us much about sex except how to debase women.

This is a really interesting post, thanks for this and merry festivitus to you X

@Hereward:

I don’t know whether you’re a regular at LibCon, but I suggest you have a read through the ‘Feminism’ part of the site – not so much the odd woman taking a risk of being attacked, as a cavalry charge against most aspects of the sex industry (see Sian Norris as one recent example). Besides, ‘I really don’t think pornography teaches us much about sex except how to debase women’ is a tricky argument if you’re a gay male.

@johnb – calling them horrible bigots is far too simplistic. Charlie and Paul and others are right to say there are issues with porn that do divide feminists.

But I’m afraid that’s no reason to say we shouldn’t publish stuff here that might give the impression there is more than one view on this. I re-tweeted Claire Perry’s article tweet last night and plenty of women messaged us back to say they were ambivalent or not really pro-porn but still found the measures silly and counterproductive.

Charlie comes at the issue from a diff perspective, and frankly that side cannot be wished away or kept out of the view just because some might not like it. This website was never about preaching to the (left wing) converted.

Excellent piece.

I’d make three points:

1- The transition from Harman Hectoring to Ed Vaizey’s agenda has been seamless. Frightening.

2 – One real problem with barking up wrong trees (whether Vetting and Barring nonsense, focus on stranger abuse rather than family and friends, ‘extreme porn’, draconian crimes that may or may not reflect real concerns, or regulating the internet) is that it means that the right trees get ignored.

3 – Hopefully one area which can be properly cross-partisan.

M

@redpesto Agreed, my area of expertise isn’t the issues surrounding gay pornography, so I can’t comment on this. I’ll amend my statement to ‘porn aimed at heterosexual men debases women’.
Posts like #46 didn’t make me feel very comfortable posting on this thread as an anti-porn feminist.

Hereward:

@redpesto Agreed, my area of expertise isn’t the issues surrounding gay pornography, so I can’t comment on this. I’ll amend my statement to ‘porn aimed at heterosexual men debases women’.
Posts like #46 didn’t make me feel very comfortable posting on this thread as an anti-porn feminist.

So going back to the original post, how do you propose an internet ‘firewall’ can work if sexism is the criteria (which, given the involvement of Christian front groups and the ‘think of the children!’ rhetoric, may not be the priority in the first place)? Presumably ‘non-sexist porn’ for straight men (or women) would get through, or is the OP right to claim that all sorts of material will get caught up in any online ‘pornblocking’ (cf Australia)?

so you’re gonna be opting in?

@ I didn’t propose an internet firewall. I don’t think it would work in practical terms anyway. I was commenting on the way porn vs sexual education was being discussed.

Hereward:

@ I didn’t propose an internet firewall. I don’t think it would work in practical terms anyway. I was commenting on the way porn vs sexual education was being discussed.

Fair enough – and it’s interesting to note that you don’t think a firewall wouldn’t work. FWIW better sex education might address the fact that ‘porn is not real life’, while more feminist women involved in making/critiquing porn might shift the dominant representations, not least because that strategy is how feminists have challenged sexism in other areas of culture and creativity.

@51 – Shatterface

‘its only days since this site ran an article in support of Mumsnet’s campaign against Lads Mags.’

The article was about placing magazines with sexual content on the cover on a higher shelf than the gaze of an average six year old. The campaign isn’t ‘against’ ‘Lad’s Mags’. But you know this already.

It’s worth noting that all UK ISPs already operate mandatory censorship with no opt-out: a completely unaccountable and secretive NGO, the Internet Watch Foundation, produces a list of sites to be banned (it does not notify the sites, and there is no right of appeal). In 2008 it blacklisted a Wikipedia article for including a copy of the front cover of a 1976 Scorpions album. The album and image remain freely available for purchase and seem never to have been prosecuted, but this didn’t stop UK ISPs from implementing the ban, in most cases using an error message that gave no indication to customers that the page they were trying to view had been censored, but instead gave the impression that some kind of network error had occurred or that the page did not exist.

So, even with the IWF’s limited remit (which is to block criminally obscene material if hosted in the UK, or child porn regardless of which country it’s hosted in), serious errors can occur.

And obviously, operating a blacklist millions of times larger, as some are proposing, would be a formidable challenge for ISPs. Some other, equally unreliable and infeasible blocking mechanism, might have to be found instead.

@redpesto definitely agree better sex education is key. The taboo about talking about sex means children/teenagers will naturally seek other sources of information. Children’s first understanding of what sex is doesn’t just come from the internet, but also from TV and movies where it’s often in the form of sexual violence (it makes better drama apparently). If we don’t discuss, write about, dramatise and celebrate loving sex then where else do children get their information from? There are very few cultural references to what real sex within a loving relationship is – the balance needs to be redressed somehow. Working in schools I see first hand that whilst steps are being made (who’d have though primary kids would learn about the clitoris?), there needs to be more sex education, aimed not just at the biological side, but also the relationship side and not just from a heterosexual perspective.

Of course, the most compelling reason for opposing this ridiculous notion is that it *can not* and *will not* work to reduce youngsters’ access to porn. All the much-vaunted technologies that allow political activists to tweet in Iran, or talk about Tianaman square in China, or (soon) Wikileaks in the USA are *easy to use*, *impossible to block effectively*, and *impossible to legislate against*

If a fifteen-year-old wants to look at internet porn, there is literally no way that you can stop them if you’re relying on technical measures. A scheme like this will probably /increase/ youngsters’ access to porn in the long run; as the parents begin to believe that the internet is a safe benign place, they’ll be happier leaving the youngster on the internet all by themselves for longer periods of time. And the youngsters will use that time to learn how to bypass the various technical measures, and then to masturbate furiously.

Talk about self-defeating.

The OP’s point is also good, in that it illustrates what the world would be like for not a small number of people in this kind of censored world if the censorship were even close to workable; fortunately, it’s not, so it’s the kind of nightmare scenario we won’t need to come up against.

But don’t be complacent about this bill. *France* passed something quite similar last Wednesday, and the list of blacklisted sites is published by their interior ministry. No elected scrutiny, almost certainly no transparency, and just as ineffective – perhaps more so – as the UK’s current cleanfeed initiative.

*sigh*

@35

There’s nothing confusing about it, this part of the wikipedia entry for Right-wing authoritarianism explains it simply.

“There have been a number of other attempts to identify “left-wing authoritarians” in the United States and Canada. These would be people who submit to leftist authorities, are highly conventional to liberal viewpoints, and are aggressive to people who oppose left-wing ideology. These attempts have failed because measures of authoritarianism always correlate at least slightly with the right. There are certainly extremists across the political spectrum, but most psychologists now believe that authoritarianism is a predominantly right-wing phenomenon”

There are many tangled threads in here: the need for (virtual and real) safe spaces in which people can explore their sexual and gender identity without fear of ridicule or violence; the rights or wrongs of pornography; the rights or wrongs of internet censorship; and the technical difficulties of internet censorship.

Nobody can deny that at least some pornography is degrading to women and is produced through the exploitation of vulnerable individuals. There’s nothing sex-negative or puritanical about such a view and feminist unease over pornography is totally justified.

But arguably this is beside the point and the reason why pornography is being picked as a front on which to argue for greater internet restrictions.

Charlie’s original point is that LBGT material is often incorrectly flagged as adult material and that access to information can literally be a matter of life and death for young gay, bisexual and non-cisgendered individuals.

One only needs to look at the suicide figures for LGBT youth to see quite how badly we need more safe spaces.

Homophobia and transphobia are still rampant in society and seemingly acceptable to senior Tory MPs. Just in the last few weeks, we’ve had George Osborne putting down a gay MP Chris Bryant by calling him “a pantomime dame” and David Cameron thinking it hilarious to suggest at PMQs that Jack Dromey should come in wearing a dress because he was selected from an all-women shortlist.

There should also be no doubt that this will be merely another step towards broader censorship of the internet and that the mechanisms put in place to restrict access to adult material will be used to block other material that governments find embarrassing or threatening.

http://ourpornourselves.org/
How’s that for useful feminist commentary?

let us be very clear, that this is not “self-regulation” in any real sense. These proposals to do not involve going to the whole community of people involved in providing and distributing online content and asking them to reach a consensus and come up with a plan. Rather they involve cutting a deal with a small coterie of huge corporations who happen to control a particular gateway. The equivalent would be asking printers to regulate the content of newspapers, and nobody in their right mind would describe such a system as self regulation.

If alternatively, access to internet content was to be regulated by law – something that many would rightly find far more problematic – such a decision would at least least be taken by a sovereign and accountable parliamen

What is, however, utterly illegitimate is for a small group of ministers and executives to decide over coffee how our access to online content is to be managed.

@55 As myself and others have previously commented, porn is a deeply divisive issue and one that strikes to the core of many people. Take a look at #47 and the original post for a hint of my views on porn in general, but to suffice to say that I am deeply against exploitative porn, very much for non-corporate porn and very pro-sex worker. However, I recognise that many feel that all porn is exploitative by its very nature.

Please don’t let #46 put you off from the discussion. It’s horrible and quite unhelpful hen people get shouted down on a subject.

I ask you to remember that my views are formed by an atypical teenage life. I was raised as a female-orientated boy. I was exposed to typical male porn, but didn’t find it particularly edifying, later learning that I prefer written queer porn.

I disagree that porn has nothing to do with explorations of sexuality. Many men and women, cis and trans, intially discovered their sexual tastes through porn. However, I agree that the typical hetro male porn is destructive. It objectifies women and creates a distorted view of sex. More porn needs to be produced that is, I hesitate to say, realistic. Sex needs to be talked about openly with childen. It should not be shameful or shame-inducing. Sex is part of life and should not be placed on the top shelf, as it were.

In the end I doubt the both of us can fully reconcile our views on pornography, but I hope we can agree that state censorship is dangerous and highly likely to censor non-porn support services by accident or design?

I’d like to know, will this get tagged as porn and be filtered out?

Juliette Greco : Déshabillez-Moi
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XyqIs8xPCd0

If not, why not, as I’m sure it could influence some impressionable young folk?

More porn needs to be produced that is, I hesitate to say, realistic…

If anything could destroy the market for pornography…

@74 Yes, I have strong reservations about censorship and what else may get censored alongside it. A change in attitude is what I think would be more helpful (and helpful pointers for adults wanting to set up filters to protect children maybe). Sex is indeed a part of life and something to be celebrated and enjoyed and should certainly not be a taboo. Anti-porn certainly doesn’t equate with being prudish or anti-sex, though I feel that’s the way it’s often perceived/portrayed.

Anybody who attends Liverpool Community College in Bankfield Road, you’re recommended to try to browse through the European Commission on Human Rights’ web site. Specifically the search function.

I remember trying to do that myself last year, on an Access to HE course. Blocked!

Reason? Porn, apparently.

Yes, I can totally see a Great Firewall of Britain working.

Seriously, if they banned porn on the internet, there would only be one site left, and it would be called “bringbacktheporn.com”

@70

” These attempts have failed because measures of authoritarianism always correlate at least slightly with the right. There are certainly extremists across the political spectrum, but most psychologists now believe that authoritarianism is a predominantly right-wing phenomenon”

In other words, liberal left academics don’t wish their views to be associated with authoritarianism. Well knock me down with a feather, clearly no bias in catagorisation and definition is possible here.

@80 Yes, given that liberalism is the opposite of authoritarianism it should come as no surprise that the liberal left are generally keen to distance themselves from authoritiarians.

Now if you just said “the left” you might have had a point. Alas however…

This could be the end for Scunthorpe.

@81 My point was a little more nuanced than that, (in so far as I do nuance at all).

Being liberal left they will tend to want people to view authoritarianism as as far from them in the spectrum of views as possible. Given that they identify with the left this means they will insist that authoritarianism is soley of the right, thereby avoiding any contamination of their own views.

Given the above, they not only have to dissociate themselves from authoritarianism, (entirely reasonably if they are liberal), but insist that the whole of the left is free of it as well, (including the mad the bad and the dictators).

@83 I somehow doubt that “liberal left academics” are likely to omit Mao and Stalin from their list of authoritarian dictators. The main problem is that not many people use the auth-lib divide and instead reduce all politics down to the left-right divide. With “left” being interpreted as liberal and “right” as authoritarian.

Although, if the tea party movement in the US is anything to go by, then the “liberal right” wants government regulation out of their wages and into their bedrooms. (well, mainly into the bedrooms of lgbt’s anyway)

So Claire Perry advocates porn filtering to stop children accessing porn (I agree it won’t work) and you conclude that this will stop gay and trans teens accessing information and therefore that Perry is homophobic and transignorant. I daresay that if Harriet Harman made a similar suggesting you wouldn’t be drawing that conclusion. So I can only conclude that you’re really just assuming that the whole trans-ignorant line is an a priori assumption (is it cos she’s a Tory?) and nothing to do with her stance on porn (on which the divide crosses left/right boundaries – put most feminist up against libertarians, for instance).

“Can you imagine how utterly terrifying it must be to access gay porn in the real world when you’re discovering that you’re not normal, that what you are can get you beaten to death?”

Claire Perry wants to stop all teens getting access to porn. You may disagree with her, I suspect you do. But you made out earlier that your concern was about porn being confused with access to legitimate information. Do you want teens to be able to access porn? Yes or no? Or just gay teens, because it’s not fair that it used to be hard for them while it was easy, or not quite as difficult, for straight teens in the pre-net age.

If you want gay and trans teens to have access to information, I doubt anyone would disagree with you. If you want teens to have access to porn, say so – though you’re going to come up against a wall of opposition. Don’t try to dress this up as a gay/trans issue.

@85 Except it is, there are no real “intelligent” filters that only filter out porn. So it’s actually a case of “letting everyone, including unsupervised teens, to access porn” or “blocking porn and a hell of a lot more things that get judged by the filter as being ‘porn’”. Wanna guess where sites discussing sex and sexuality are going to fall in that remit?
As another little quiz, can you recall the reasons behind Section 28? And how those reasons might be relevant to this case?

Thank you Charlie for posting this. It is time we acknowledged that ‘porn’ is not just about wanking, though wanking is great. I know lots of people who make websites that provide vital information about sex/uality that teenagers read. Are they ‘porn’ ? I don’t care, but the ISP locking censors will.

‘Think of the children’… yes. and it is often ‘pornographers’ who are thinking of children and young people and the resources that they need to help them not feel so alone and confused.

You are inspiring.

P.s. hello feminists? where are you when it comes to this issue? do you care?

@85 Oh, my goodness, you’ve got me wrong. I couldn’t care less if it was left or right, Tory, Labour or LibDem who proposed a porn filter – I would still be against it. (FYI, I’m not affiliated with any party – I don’t trust any of them).

For clarity, I want everyone to have access to all legal information out there, with no censorship. If teens are gay, straight or trans they should be able to access porn if they want it. Previous generations got it on paper, on painted plaster walls, on clay tablets – why not this electronic generation?

Censorship is wrong. Preventing access to information is wrong. Sex is fun, sexuality should be explored and people should stop imposing their hang ups on others.

@80 – In other words, liberal left academics don’t wish their views to be associated with authoritarianism.

No, that’s in your words, I don’t have a clue what political leanings the people involved in the study have, what always makes me laugh is how any can say the likes of Stalin and Mao were authoritarian left wingers, I’ve even seen people try to say the same about the Nazis.

Talk about trying to smear the left. Stalin and Mao were never left wing. They used the discourse of Marx but never implemented it. Marxists believe in an unltimate goal of NO GOVERNMENT and neither Stalin or Mao even attempted this. as for the Nazis being Socialists which is a favourite line of attack for some of the lunatics on the right, here’s a good article for any idiot who actually believes that.

http://www.huppi.com/kangaroo/L-hitler.htm

Chavez is (was) a leftwinger?

http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE6BL4UK20101222

Sorry to feed that silly argument anyway.

This article is excellent and significant.

I remember when I was a confused, naive 15 year old and my very first boyfriend, an adult man who was utterly obsessed with pornogrpahy, held a knife to me and raped me after viewing pornography. He did to me EXACTLY what he had been looking in his porn mags all that afternoon, ie. he anally raped me after viewing anal porn. Yes teenagers of all sexual orientations need access to information about their sexuality, but I don’t think that even the most mainstream of pornography (let alone the more violent genres) is a healthy place to be getting it. There must be other ways. Our kids deserve better than the distorted views of sexuality that porn offers.

Ironically (or maybe not) I ended up in ‘the sex industry’ as a teenager, partially as a result of that rape and previous childhood sexual abuse. Pornography played a significant part in all of my abuse, from age 5 to my teenage years in the sex industry. We should not forget that pornography is not only just pictures or a product that we can choose to consume or not, but often involves the sexual explitation and abuse of real people in an industry that is an ethical cess pit at the very best.

We should ask ourselves what is more ‘authoritarian’? Trying to address the major ethical problems surrounding this massive, uncontrolled and ever expanding ‘industry’? Or expecting others to suffer or be some kind of ‘collateral damage’ so that we can get questionable ‘sexual health information’ or have our cheap bit of fun?

Stick to the topic please… don’t really care for discussions about whether Hitler was left or right-wing. This is not the thread to discuss that

@92: “Pornography played a significant part in all of my abuse, from age 5 to my teenage years in the sex industry. We should not forget that pornography is not only just pictures or a product that we can choose to consume or not, but often involves the sexual exploitation and abuse of real people in an industry that is an ethical cess pit at the very best.”

Sorry to read about your sad personal experiences which you attribute to the effect of pornography on your first boyfriend but there’s an important practical issue here about defining the boundaries of what constitutes “bad” porn liable to affect those with disturbed and psychopathic personalities and what doesn’t.

What criteria should we apply? I’ve posted examples @17 of books which can now be readily bought off the shelves in many good bookstores – as well as from online retailers – which were all at one time banned in Britain because each was regarded as “obscene” by the authorities. But perceptions and assessments change with time and complete texts of some of those books can now be found on the internet. The failed prosecution in 1960 of Penguin Books for publishing DH Lawrence’s Lady Chatterley’s Lover was a watershed – and btw we might note that a Conservative government was in power at that time up to autumn 1964. Should the coalition government legislate now to reverse the acquital of Penguin Books in 1960?

Also, it’s not clear why a special distinction should be made over pornography on the internet and on DVD or pornographic literature. It’s up to parents and schools to use the regular filters in web browsers to limit internet access to what each regards as acceptable reading for their charges.

If it comes to protecting the innocent young from corruption, on the mounting evidence from many countries, there is a compelling case for proscribing the Catholic Church.

A recent TV news programme: “A Channel 4 News investigation reveals that more than half of the Catholic priests convicted for child abuse and sentenced to more than a year in prison, in England and Wales since 2001, remain in the priesthood – with some still receiving financial support from the Church and living in church houses.”
http://www.channel4.com/news/articles/uk/catholic+church+abuse+paedophile+priests+remain+in+catholic+church/3767477.html

Bob B, I’m really not sure what DH Lawrence or other banned literature from recent history has to do with the pornography that we’re talking about. Pornography is not merely words on a page. It’s the recording of real people doing real things, receiving real harm, injury, abuse and disease to their bodies, being coerced into sexual exploitation because of real life factors like social and economic disadvantage, prior sexual assault and abuse, sexual and racial discrimination, homelessness, mental health and addiction problems, trafficking, pimping, coercion, violence, force …

Pornography also has very real and proven effects on the people who use it and the people who come into contact with them. For example, police and other authorities who deal with sexual criminals have found that almost all rapists, pedophiles, serial killers and other sexual predators use pornography regularly before, during and after their crimes and inflict pornography on their victims as a means of manipulating and forcing them into sexual acts. That was my experience and I presume that would also include Catholic priests who sexually assault children.

The very real impact of my experiences with pornography, sexual assault and the sex industry include chronic depression, a severe anxiety disorder, an incurable infectious disease and trust, intimacy and relationship problems that I’m not sure I’ll ever resolve. I don’t think you can get all that from reading Lady Chatterley’s Lover. Although I have to admit, James Joyce’s Ulysses would be enough to drive anyone to insanity.

Josie @95:

You will perhaps not be surprised to know that I regard your post as demonstrably silly nonsense.

All the books I mentioned @17 were at one time banned in Britain as obscene, presumably because some in authority were absolutlely connvinced that any readers would be quickly depraved and corrupted. Not only can all the books be easily bought now in good highstreet bookstores but the texts of all except one can be found on the internet.

We need to know whether these books would come within the scope of the proposed porn filter for the internet and, importantly, as to who or what would be making the critical decisions. How we laughed at press reports of the Lady Chatterley trial in 1960 when the chief prosecutor, Mervyn Griffith-Jones, asked if it were the kind of book “you would wish your wife or servants to read”.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lady_Chatterley‘s_Lover

“Pornography also has very real and proven effects on the people who use it and the people who come into contact with them. For example, police and other authorities who deal with sexual criminals have found that almost all rapists, pedophiles, serial killers and other sexual predators use pornography regularly before, during and after their crimes and inflict pornography on their victims as a means of manipulating and forcing them into sexual acts. ”

It’s curious then that Japan has famously low crime rates, compared with other affluent countries, but has a long historic tradition of erotic art (shunga) – which can be extremely explicit – and Japan is widely rated as currently having the largest global porn industry after America. Try googling on: Japan porn

I suspect sex criminals differentially exhibit many signs of deviance from behavioural norms, including unusually high consumption of alcohol and regular pain-killer drugs besides the banned drugs. How can we tell on a scientific basis which of these are the critical factors, in addition to their genetic traits or upbringing, of course? Can you cite the studies here, please?

Btw it was famously pointed out years ago that the annual number of children killed on the roads as the result of traffic fatalities is many times greater than the numbers of children killed by sex perverts.

News update: “Council calls for tougher dog laws after woman is killed by mastiff”
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/8224331/Council-calls-for-tougher-dog-laws-after-woman-is-killed-by-mastiff.html

The only way to be really sure of minimising fatalities from canine attacks is to introduce mandatory dog licences on as strict a basis as gun control licences. Statutory restrictions on the weight and height of dogs kept as domestic pets would be a promising start.

Dog controls would be sure to create jobs.

I’m talking about the ethical problems surrounding the production and consumption of a largely uncontrolled sex industry, not censorship (I personally don’t think that a filter would work or is anywhere near enough to address those problems). I do understand that many children are involved in traffic accidents. Many children are also preyed upon, groomed and mentally, physically and sexually abused and assaulted by predators who are influenced by porn, have their criminal ideas reinforced by porn and who use porn as a part of their crimes. These children very often grow up to be exploited in the sex industry themselves as a result. I’m not only talking about serial sex killers, but paedophiles, rapists, fathers, uncles, brothers, and grandfathers who commit incest and sexual assault on their children, wives, girlfriends, siblings and acquaintances. Most people are sexually assaulted by men that they know, and in ‘safe’ places like their homes. One of the men who sexually abused me when I was a child was a family friend who was considered a great guy by everyone who thought they knew him.

The links below include information on the pervasive use of pornography amongst these criminals and the direct use of it in their crimes. There is also information that contradicts the perception that Japan is a comparable safe haven for women because of the wide availability of sexually explicit material acting as a deterrent to rapists and sexual offenders. This is after all a country where women must travel in separate train carriages to avoid sexual assault as they go about their daily lives. The apparently low rape rates seem to owe more to authoritarian and misogynist attitudes towards women that prevent them from reporting the crime and getting convictions – the same attitudes that are celebrated and reinforced in pornography.

This is before we even get into the ethical problems surrounding the production of pornography itself. Which gets back to my simple point – one group of people should not have to suffer sexual abuse, assault, exploitation, injury and trauma so that other people can feel validated, ‘educated’, entertained or sexually stimulated. I also think that if the only place that marginalised people feel that they can find validation, education and representation is in pornography then we have a lack that needs to be addressed in the arenas of sex education, public education, media representation etc. It’s not a justification for pornography. I think that we deserve better than that.

https://www.againstpornography.org/socialsciencestudies.html

https://www.againstpornography.org/debunkmythofcatharsis.html

http://www.japantoday.com/category/lifestyle/view/victims-are-finally-learning-to-speak-out-against-japan%E2%80%99s-outdated-rape-laws

99. Evil baby-killing Tory conspiracy

“With the filter in place Britain might rid itself of the terrible addicition to pornography that has brought it to its knees (so to speak) and which has led to all the problems that we now face: student debt, benefit cuts and snow over our noble runways.”

Well, nothing like starting out with an obvious straw-man to make yourself look like a reasonable person, I suppose.

“Just imagine the scenario.

“Hello there, this is Denise, how can I help you?”
“Erm, hello. I’d, er.. like some [mumble] please.”
“Some what, sir?”
“Some [mumble] ass.”
“Could you say that just a bit louder, sir?” [puts call on speakerphone for entire call centre to hear]
“I JUST WANT SOME HOT ASIAN ASS, ALRIGHT? IS THAT TOO MUCH TO ASK? I JUST WANT SOME PORN! IT’S BEEN 16 HOURS SINCE MY LAST WANK!”
“Just adding that to your account, sir” “

Maybe I’m just being a bit dense here, but if you’re that embarassed about asking for it, couldn’t you just not look at porn on the internet? Humanity’s survived for tens of thousands of years without internet porn, so I shouldn’t think it’ll be *too* difficult.

“If we start blocking erotic materials “for the children” then what else gets caught up in that censoring dragnet? A lot of things, for certain – sexual health advice. Images of healthy bodies that a worried teen might need to look at (“is my penis meant to look like that?”, “Are my breasts meant to be different sizes?”).”

I agree that that could be a problem, but that’s surely an issue with the implementation of the porn filter, rather than with the general principle of having one. Anyway, the government will probably be able to find a way of solving it — by, e.g., allowing recognised sites which contain relatively explicit images in the context of providing sexual health advice through the filter.

“Now imagine that if you’re a gay teenager… Transgender teens.”

All very well, but you haven’t explained why looking at porn is the best way of supporting them and teaching them about who they are.

The rest of the article is pretty much a reversion of the straw-man you began with.


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  36. Martin L Poulter

    Pornblocking – why it would have killed me | Liberal Conspiracy http://t.co/fG4Xi2n via @libcon

  37. NomadOfNorad

    RT @sunny_hundal: 'Why porn-blocking would have killed me' http://bit.ly/engCdM – top response by @SonniesEdge to @claire4devizes

  38. mamie moore

    Pornblocking – why it would have killed me | Liberal Conspiracy: But then saying whether access to pornography a… http://bit.ly/f0UcHo

  39. Broadsnark

    "Pornblocking – why it would have killed me | Liberal Conspiracy" http://j.mp/eKuTyz

  40. Elly

    RT @Broadsnark: "Pornblocking – why it would have killed me | Liberal Conspiracy" http://j.mp/eKuTyz

  41. JM Rooker

    RT @Broadsnark: "Pornblocking – why it would have killed me | Liberal Conspiracy" http://j.mp/eKuTyz

  42. Lew Rockwell

    RT @Broadsnark: "Pornblocking – why it would have killed me | Liberal Conspiracy" http://j.mp/eKuTyz

  43. Paula Daunt

    Pornblocking – why it would have killed me | Liberal Conspiracy http://t.co/YE31Kxl #porn

  44. Elly

    http://liberalconspiracy.org/2010/12/21/pornblocking-why-it-would-have-killed-me/ By @sonniesedge READ THIS! #trans #porn #proporn

  45. Rachel

    RT @quietriot_girl: http://liberalconspiracy.org/2010/12/21/pornblocking-why-it-would-have-killed-me/ By @sonniesedge READ THIS! #trans …

  46. Spir.Sotiropoulou

    Pornblocking – why it would have killed me | Liberal Conspiracy http://t.co/XapogrK via @libcon

  47. scase

    now this is a new one. lack of access to pornography kills apparantly. not access to information and support and a… http://fb.me/Q4CAS6k7

  48. Jiz Lee

    Article on porn censorship reflects my views of queer/feminist pornography as educational and empowering, esp for LGBTQ. http://j.mp/fAZzDe

  49. Jiz Lee

    Should note that while I agree on the "porn as sex ed" front, I'm curious about "HOT ASIAN ASS" use of objectification. http://j.mp/fAZzDe

  50. sidekickbooks

    Couple of interesting articles on the proposed porn blackade: http://tinyurl.com/3x76t82 and http://tinyurl.com/28hjqjc

  51. sidekickbooks

    Couple of interesting articles on the proposed porn blockade: http://tinyurl.com/3x76t82 and http://tinyurl.com/28hjqjc K x

  52. mayaberger

    RT @SidekickBooks interesting articles on the proposed Internet porn block: http://tinyurl.com/3x76t82 and http://tinyurl.com/28hjqjc

  53. Elaine O'Neill

    For those on 3 network, @SonniesEdge's fab post on risks of pornblocking is still accessible on Lib Con at http://t.co/Pe2ybDXU

  54. Jay Moss

    For those on 3 network, @SonniesEdge's fab post on risks of pornblocking is still accessible on Lib Con at http://t.co/Pe2ybDXU

  55. Natasha Yar-Routh

    .@sonniesedge Just read your piece at Liberal Conspiracy, bloddy brilliant. Thank you for that, go read this http://t.co/pS51UZQX

  56. Stevie Alan

    I would love the writer of the article to read this http://t.co/8WNEFVid by @SonniesEdge

  57. Tim Dobson

    Kind of glad to have met @SonniesEdge so I can say I met the person who wrote this awesome @libcon article: http://t.co/0acR167B :)





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