Dressing for Decency — A modified version of the Communications Decency Act of 1995, popularly known as the Exon Amendment and S.314, recently passed the Senate Commerce Committee and is attached to the telecommunications reform bill scheduled to go before the Senate as early as this week – despite Committee phone banks being so overwhelmed with calls that outside help had to be brought in. Previously covered in TidBITS-263 and TidBITS-266, this bill proposes to prohibit online distribution of materials deemed "obscene," "filthy," or "indecent." Though the bill has been revised to free some carriers from criminal liability, many groups feel new restrictions placed on the creators of online content are even more onerous than before, infringing on First Amendment rights and setting dangerous legislative precedents in electronic media. For current information and online initiatives (including an Internet petition drive that gathered over 100,000 signatures) regarding this proposed legislation, check out: [GD]
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