Two more U.S. states are working on ideas to separate children from pornography.
Arkansas and Utah, a pair of the more politically conservative states in the nation, are following Louisiana in trying to find effective biometric gates to free travel around the internet.
In Arkansas, not only would adults have to verify their age, businesses that do not implement systems to make this policy mandatory would be held liable for damages experienced by children who saw nudity and other censored material online, according to the Arkansas Times.
Ostensibly, the point of the bill is to prevent children under 18 years old from viewing pornography online.
It has been reported that the proposed law would mandate verification when 33.33 percent or more of a site’s content is judged to be harmful to minors.
However, the language of the bill is vague. It targets business “that knowingly and intentionally publishes or distributes material that may be harmful to minors on the internet from a website that contains a substantial portion of material that may be harmful to minors.”
At least one other politician in Arkansas wants to create a national definition of pornography and ban anything that meets the definition.
An adult could use a government-issued digital or physical ID card to see what they are allowed to view. A commercial app maker would be required to “not retain” personally identifying information after access is granted.
In Utah, lawmakers are considering restrictions on social media use by children under 18 years old. Everyone wanting to enjoy social media would have to verify their age. If under age, the consent of a parent or guardian would be required. Social media subscribers would be forbidden from code in a way to cause “a minor to have an addiction” to the platform.
How a business does this is, at this point, penciled in. However, the bill would allow that information gathered for verification can be held for that purpose and no others.
The age of age verification, as Fergal Parkinson, director of TMT Analysis, has said, could create two winners. Preventing children from the confusion of viewing adult materials is one, but the other is protection of a business’ reputation.