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The Child Online Protection Act, now a decade old, appears to be permanently, completely, and otherwise absolutely dead now that the Supreme Court has rejected Bush Administration pleas to consider reviving the law one more time. According to the Associated Press, the rejection was made without comment by the justices.
Read more [arstechnica.com].
Are you currently checking for minor status in your community? Do you use some kind of faxed/mailed permission? This might simplify things greatly.
Things to do tomorrow:
1. Come up with some kind of evil plan.
Exactly what did they think this law was going to do, eh? This is one of those well-meaning things that takes money and time for the honest business people and doesn't do anything to stop the bad actors. Gotta believe Facebook, MySpace, etc., are happy about this, but so should news web sites and, really, even people with message boards.
I hope that under the new administration, a more understanding and tolerant social responsibility is born in the US. It's not rocket science, but business just ignores it because business is not a person it is a entity and so often it steams ahead without feeling.
I work in mobile and the industry has attempted to draw up some worthwhile standards that protect people, especially youth, but still make the mobile web a way to easily communicate commercial information to those who want and need it.
And, as the link you provided makes clear, there are so many exceptions provided by the countries which signed on to this convention, it's nearly impossible to judge it.
What's needed, first and foremost, are practical standards. Then we can debate enforcement.
In true government fashion, they share the same words. Children's Online Protection Act and Children's Online Privacy Protection Act. They were even passed in the same year.