Shelley Osterloh ReportingUtah congressman Jim Matheson has introduced legislation that he believes will help combat the threat to children from the explosion of Internet Pornography sites.
Despite the efforts of vigilant parents and filter software, research shows that children have easy access to pornography online. And experts say many internet pornography businesses use strategies to specifically target children to the sites.
So, today, flanked by local law officers, Utah congressman Jim Matheson announced he is sponsoring legislation that he believes will help curb childhood exposure to porn. He says, just like someone has to show ID to buy a pornographic magazine, those who buy porn online should show ID.
Utah Congressman Jim Matheson: "My legislation mandates that age verification software would be used by every pornographic site. This is software that is one the shelves today, it's used right now for internet tobacco sales and we ought to have it used for the sale of any pornographic material, because I don't think kids under should be exposed to this material."
The bill also imposes a 25% excise tax on online pornography sales. Money collected from those taxes will go to a trust fund for the Department of Justice Cyber Tipline and the Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force.
Senator Blanch Lincoln has introduced the same bill in the Senate. Matheson says every state in the country has laws preventing the sale of pornography to minors, but most Internet sites allow children to view hard core porn for free without any form of age verification. He hopes with legislation will stop that.