Scholar Says Court Ruling That Dropped Regulations Could Mean Increase in Child Porn Production and Distribution is Likely

A federal court ruling earlier this month scrapped important regulations on the pornography industry, a move anti-porn advocates say will likely increase the production and distribution child porn.

Gail Dines, author of Pornland: How Pornography Has Hijacked Our Sexuality, together with University of Massachusetts-Boston professor David L. Levy, explained in a Thursday essay in The Conversation that an August 3 court decision effectively dismantled U.S. Code Title 18 Section 2257. This section required producers of pornography to maintain strict records regarding the ages of the porn actors in their films and to allow government inspectors to review those records at any time.

Although producing and distributing child porn is still against the law, without record keeping requirements the statute it is essentially powerless, Dines and Levy argued, as such requirements are “the only way to verify and track performers’ ages and serves as a major incentive for businesses across the complex supply chain to monitor content.”

The recent ruling thus allows porn producers to use an age verification form produced by the Free Speech Coalition, the lobbying arm of the adult film industry which lauded the court’s decision. It is unclear whether the Department of Justice will appeal the ruling and if they do not it will stand.

Dines and Levy believe Section 2257 is now in serious jeopardy, based on conversations they have had with legal experts.

“A lot of the lawyers that I’ve spoken to did say it’s pretty much a rabbit hole of law. So it might be better for us to think of another way to try and prevent children from being used in pornography,” Dines said in Friday phone interview with The Christian Post.

When asked what might be done at the congressional level to address this she replied that it is too early to say but said that what is needed is to assemble a team of high-powered lawyers to figure out a way forward. Dines is particularly concerned that what are known as “secondary producers,” which includes internet porn distributors, are off the hook with this ruling.

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SOURCE: Christian Post, Brandon Showalter

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