The state of Louisiana now requires residents to verify their age by submitting an ID to access pornography websites.
“Louisiana law now requires us to put in place a process for verifying the age of users who connect to our site from Louisiana,” is the message greeting visitors to Pornhub, the world’s largest purveyor of adult content.
This has gone into effect thanks to the implementation of new legislation, Act 440 that requires publishers, “relative to material harmful to minors,” must “provide for liability for the publishing or distribution of material harmful to minors on the internet provide for reasonable age verification,” according to The Blaze.
“Pornography contributes to the hyper sexualization of teens and prepubescent children and may lead to low self-esteem, body image disorders, an increase in problematic sexual activity at younger ages, and increased desire among adolescents to engage in risky sexual behavior,” the law that has now gone into effect reads.
So far, PornHub is the only website that requires Louisiana users to verify their age using the state’s digital driver’s license platform, LA Wallet.
The law has been cheered by conservatives who object to the detrimental impact of pornography on society, yet when we consider exactly why pornography is so detrimental it seems that ensuring only adults can access a website like PornHub hardly curbs the most pressing concerns about the platform.
PornHub has been accused multiple times by abuse and sex trafficking survivors of willingly profiting from criminal content, including child sexual abuse material.
It is certainly vital that any decent society do whatever it can to protect children from pornography; this kind of content is all to easy to access online and certainly incredibly unhealthy for children to consume.
But what is being done to prevent users from uploading videos of children or adult assault victims?
We have also seen in the case of OnlyFans, which requires users verify their age, that it is all too easy for minors to skirt around such requirements. One shocking report on OnlyFans in the United Kingdom found that minors were not only accessing the website, but uploading their own homemade pornography to the platform as well, for money.
As far as combating the detrimental impact of pornography goes, it seems like requiring ID is just a drop in the bucket.
Pornography must be recognized for the toxic social ill and tool of gross exploitation that it is, and eradicated completely before we can ever hope to meaningfully protect children from its harmful impact.
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