This is from the .kdis domains
THE DOT COM CONUNDRUM
Challenging Issues Regarding Children
and the Internet
It is illegal to sell alcohol to minors in all 50 US States.
It is, however, legal to sell alcohol and advertise it to adults.
But there is no way to tell how old the person visiting a website is.
The alcohol and advertising industries have expressed their desire to avoid
advertising their product to children.
¨ The World Health Organization’s
European Charter on Alcohol has also addressed the issue responsibility in advertising
Because children are the only constituency, the advertising
of alcoholic products, promotion by and for the alcohol industry, links to alcohol
industry sites or promotional material will be strictly prohibited on .kids websites.
¨ The sale of tobacco products to
children is strictly prohibited. But it is legal for adults to purchase cigarettes
and so it is a very difficult issue on an anonymous Internet.
Sale to minors via the Internet is also illegal. Recently, Congressman Meehan
of Massachusetts became aware of the lack of age restrictions at various sites, which
offered cigarettes for sale.
¨ Meehan has introduced
HR 2914 to prohibit the sale of tobacco to minors on the Internet.
are the only constituency, the advertising of tobacco products, promotion by and
for the tobacco industry, links to tobacco industry sites or promotional material,
and obviously the sale of tobacco products will be strictly prohibited on .kids websites.
¨ By law, the availability of
pornography offline is limited to adults.
¨ The Internet
has made that same adult oriented material much more easily available to minors online.
Not only is it available but also it is at times unavoidable.
A study by the Safe American Foundation reported that 91% of teenagers said they
unintentionally accessed web sites featuring pornographic, hate-based or violent
material while conducting research for school or just surfing the Web.**
laws regarding the distribution of pornography to minors in the will apply to all
sites in the .kids network.
Because children are the only constituency, all pornography
will be strictly prohibited on .kids websites.
Hate and Bigotry
The first amendment does not protect threats, and that includes racial epithets
and racial animus.
According to Christopher Wolf of the Anti-Defamation
League, “Where the activities of hate groups once were limited by geographical boundaries,
the Internet allows even the smallest fringe group to spread hate and freely recruit
members online by tapping into the worldwide audience that the Web provides. Technology
also offers such groups the ability to post messages in chat rooms and communicate
like never before.”
Unfortunately, the anonymity of the
Internet makes the current medium nearly impossible to police criminal hate.
All current law and the strictest of existing policy regarding hate related
communication will be enforced on .kids sites. Further, .kids will work with
groups like the Anti-defamation league to develop a clear cut component of overall
policy prohibiting the publication of hate related communication and material.
The Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act of 1998 states
that it, “…is unlawful for an operator of a website or online service directed to
children, or any operator that has actual knowledge that it is collecting personal
information from a child, to collect personal information from a child…” without,
“…verifiable parental consent for the collection, use, or disclosure of personal
information from children.” Among other things.
Because children are the only
constituency assumed on .KIDS sites, any and ALL requests for personal information
will be required to comply with the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act of 1998
(Figure 1.1) ** "In Brief: Look What We Have Here." (October
11, 1999). Time