Internet

Child Pornography a Growing Global Problem

Child pornography on the Internet is a growing problem for countries around the world, new research suggests.

The Internet Service Providers Association of Ireland reported that consumers served by its members have expressed that they are fed up with the availability of child pornography online. The group said complaints from consumers about illegal child pornography found on the Internet had increased dramatically during the last 30 months.

According to the ISPAI study, the average number of reports received by the organization hotline grew consistently each month on a year-over-year basis, from 154 per month in December 2003 to 195 per month for December of last year.

The group said 4,469 reports, or 87.6 percent of the total, cited specific URLs where child porn was available online. Many Internet users are finding child pornography accidentally online, the report noted. Some users also complained about the easy availability of adult porn on the Internet.

“The majority of pornographic images of children used are most definitely illegal,” ISPAI said.

International Problem

Adding to the report’s conclusions, earlier this month police around the globe, under the order of a court in Seville, Spain, conducted dozens of arrests of alleged child porn distributors in 17 countries.

The sting was organized by Eurojust, the European body for judicial organizations. The group ordered dozens of simultaneous property searches in Europe, South America, Israel and the United States.

Internet pornography of all varieties is also a problem in the emerging market of China.

China’s Internet media and content providers are pledging to protect cyberspace from pornography and other “unhealthy content” through self-regulation and legal measures.

According to Li Jiaming of the Internet Society of China, 68.2 percent of the 127,010 complaints the organization received in 2005 concerned pornography.

Li said since the center was established on June 10, 2004, it has received at least 240,000 complaints about Internet porn from the public.

With 111 million Internet users, China is the world’s second largest Internet market only after the United States.

China Makes Arrests

The Chinese government kicked off a massive campaign in 2004 to wipe out pornography from the rapidly growing Internet, jailing 11 people in 2005 for running an obscene Web site, www.99bbs.com, or the 99 Sex Forum. Site operators were accused of posting pornographic pictures, videos and salacious stories, and even opening chat rooms providing information on prostitution throughout the country.

In November 2004, the Web site had nearly 76,000 registered users and had earned some 220,000 yuan, or US$26,000.

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