Wednesday, 6 February 2008

Online Child Protection and free speech

The Center for Democracy & Technology (CDT) has released a report from a joint project they conducted with the Progress & Freedom Foundation (PFF). The project tracks more than 30 pieces of federal legislation that seek to protect children online, some of which pose serious threats to free speech. The reports summarize and categorize child online safety bills introduced in the 110th Congress, analyze free speech implications of key bills, and provide recommendations to Congress on how it can promote child online safety without impinging on First Amendment rights. Here's the Bill Tracking Report [38 page PDF] which is nicely organized - it has the legislation indexed by popular name, topic, Senate Bill and House Bill numbers, and federal agency/department. For each bill you can see the text in html or pdf and then concise information about the bill as well as the analysis by both the CDT. You can also download the CDT Analysis [PDF] and the PFF Analysis [PDF] of the legislation. In their summary the CDT states that " Many of the child protection proposals now pending in Congress... would not be effective child protection measures and would raise very serious policy and constitutional problems."

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