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UK law could soon ban ‘non-conventional porn’ online

Do you partake in pornography that is considered “non-conventional?” Who knows right? That’s a pretty vague term, but it’s the exact wording of the currently under-debate, Digital Economy Bill, which is being pushed through parliament. If enacted, it could force ISPs to put blocks in place for any sites that host porn that is considered outside of the norm.

The Digital Economy Bill has a lot of people worried. Alongside much more dull legislation like guaranteeing a minimum download rate for British internet users, the bill also seeks to force age verification on websites, purportedly using credit card checks. Although this has the potential to cause all sorts of issues, a recent addition is far worse, as it would see sites hosting “non-conventional” pornography blocked, regardless of age checks of legal status.

As is typical with this sort of sweeping legislation, the wording of the bill is incredibly vague. While it does suggest sites that offer “non-conventional” pornography will be subject to blocks, it doesn’t classify what that actually is. Presumably it will include some of the acts made illegal to film in the UK two years ago: female ejaculation, fisting and face-sitting, but beyond that is anyone’s guess.

pornprotest

When the facesitting ban was brought in, many protested against it outside of parliament. Source: The Telegraph

It is likely to have a line, but where it’s drawn, nobody knows. The inclusion of fisting would mean the inclusion of the much decried ‘four finger rule’ which designates how many digits can be used during insertion pornography.

We also have no idea how the BBFC – the agency tasked with upholding the law – would know what sites are hosting what. It can’t go around watching all the porn there is, so presumably would rely on reports from citizens, which are unlikely to be common. Questions also remain about how it would react to large scale sites like Twitter, which has copious amounts of easily accessible porn on it.

Blocking Twitter seems unlikely, but technically it would need to under the law.

Of course as we’ve seen with blocks of pirate sites, the ones implemented against porn sites are likely to be largely ineffective at preventing access. A VPN or proxy would be enough to circumvent them.

While it may feel like a fruitless enterprise, if you’d like to let your MP know about why you want them to stand against such a bill, you can do so at the WriteToThem site.

Discuss on our Facebook page, HERE.

KitGuru Says: It’s unbelievable that 1: the government would believe blocks would be effective, but 2: that it feels the need to mandate the types of consensual, legal pornography that people have access too. It’s arbitrary moral policing at its worst.

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