TPW 22: The Pitfalls of Age Verification

by on July 27, 2007 · 16 comments

TLF contributors Adam Thierer and Braden Cox traveled to North Carolina this week to testify in opposition to age verification and parental consent regulations for social networking sites. The North Carolina legislation would require parents to provide proof that they were adults in order to approve their children’s use of social networking sites.

In this week’s podcast, we discuss the many flaws in such proposals. Age verification technologies are far from reliable, and the definition of a “social networking site” is far from clear. More fundamentally, it’s not clear how this proposal would protect children at all. There’s no way to prevent a child molester from registering as an adult and then creating accounts for their fictitious children. Braden and Adam make the case that parental involvement, not more government regulation, is the best way to protect children.

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