Who could possibly be against age verification for adult websites? No sane person would think that it’s acceptable for kids to be able to freely access these sites without procedures in place to help deter/restrict them from access.
We are all too aware of how easy it is to get pornography and the like on the internet. Indeed, I’m sure we have all ended up on a porn site from an innocent search on Google. An innocent enough search made from a child who’s a fan of My Little Pony could easily and quickly end up on My Little Pony hentai.
How? How do you set in place a system that is only accessible by adults? The classic “click ‘yes’ if you’re over 18” system is a joke, and wouldn’t stop anyone, even if they ended up there by mistake, as curiosity is a tempting vice, stay up todate.
Some websites require you to create an account before being able to view any material, and generally you have to enter in a credit/debit card in order to confirm your age and complete the account. This system is fantastic in preventing kids from viewing the material, as they have to do no less than steal someone’s credit card, or do credit fraud in order to gain access. But it’s terrible for the sites themselves, as websites don’t have the best credibility when it comes to keeping your cards safe, and so receive much less traffic/business. So this system would systematically and slowly ruin business’. It would potentially see a lot of adults have their kids putting their parents credit card details into unsafe websites late at night, simply for the chance to see some genitalia.
Perhaps, if you needed a code to get onto a porn site, and that code was redeemed from a reliable third party such as Paypal, Google, or even your bank. This way, your credit card details are always safe, you have verified your age by being the legitimate owner of a credit card, and the only way to gain access to someone else’s code is to break into their Paypal or bank account. In which case, you’d have more problems than your kid watching porn, as it would mean your banks security is lacking, that, or your kid is a computer hacking prodigy.
The obvious problem this idea is that the entire internet community would be on bored. That’s seemingly impossible. It would also require you to get this randomly generated code from your paypal account every day (I watch a lot of porn).
Age verification Who is Responsible
The question is then, who’s responsible? Should the government be responsible for restricting access to minors online? Well, as I’m sure you’re aware, it can very hard to police and impose rules on the internet, as is evident by all the piracy and illegal file sharing that is common place. Also, different countries have different classification on what is and isn’t pornography making a political nightmare. This would also give the victims someone to blame, and would be rampant for lawsuits.
Should the parents be responsible? Well, again, this is hard. Parents find it hard to restrict their kids from just about anything, as for a child ‘yes’ means ‘no’. Of course they can impose website restrictions into their web browser to prevent the access to those sites. This is a great fix, that is, until the kids are computer fluent and are able to ‘out-do’ their parents on the computer. Besides, how are the parents going to impose these restrictions on their kids smart phones that have the same access to websites as any computer.
Should the websites be responsible? Individual websites restricting access is a monumental task, but probably the most full-proof. But it would be impossible to enforce such a rule on millions, possibly billions of websites hosted right around the world. Especially when there is no real governing world wide body for the internet.
Should the Search Engines be responsible? Well, this is interesting. If you could make the Google algorithm complex enough to filter out any and all pornographic material from the search results, and have a separate search engine just for porn that requires you to make an account linked to an 18+ bank account, then this would pretty much fix the problem. Without a search engine how do you find porn? Sure, if you know the address for the site you just type it in, and there are unimaginative address’ such as sex.com that anyone could guess, but you can’t stop someone actively looking for pornography online, you can only stop those who innocently come upon it.
With no porn on Google (or Yandex, or whatever the main search engine is in the country) a lot of kids wouldn’t even know it exists online. And with all the porn consolidated onto another search engine (Google.xxx?), it would be easier for adults to get their rocks off.
In conclusion, you either need to be very aware of how much porn is online and proactively attempt to put in place as many road blocks as possible, or the world needs to come together to prevent the possibility that kids will come across it.
Clearly though, the first step is talking about it. For something of this scale everyone needs to be on board, and for that you need societies and programs such as Association of Sites Advocating Child Protection to get the issue out there and people interested and talking about children safety online.
Recently the Association of Sites Advocating Child Protection and ICM Registry presented a special age verification workshop, entitled, “Current State of Age Verification: What You Need to Know,” as part of its efforts to inform the industry of the outside forces affecting it.” -xbiz.com
“According to ASACP Executive Director Tim Henning, his goal was to impart the most factual information possible through this workshop, intended to address an audience that had limited exposure to the topic.”
He explains that the issue of online child protection is gaining popularity among governments.
“A growing number of lawmakers feel the role of the parent and existing filtering technologies are inadequate safeguards for protecting youth from viewing sexually explicit content,” Henning told XBIZ, noting that “There are growing calls for mandatory age verification for adult entertainment websites worldwide, and these calls are now most strongly being felt in the U.K.”
“The U.K. is one of the largest markets in the world for the consumption of adult entertainment websites and a testing ground that is being closely studied by others,” Henning added. “Much more attention needs to be paid to these issues, and awareness is the key to understanding how this could impact adult businesses and consumers.”