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Wednesday, March 25, 2009

‘Sexting’ laws face new test

The phenomenon of ‘sexting’ – predominantly young people sending risqué picture messages of themselves to friends – has resulted in a number of people being arrested on the grounds that they are creating and distributing child porn, even though the pictures are of themselves. Now the American Civil Liberties Union is helping three teenage girls respond by taking legal action against a District Attorney in Pennsylvania. George P Skumanick Jr was contacted after the local school became aware of photos featuring the three girls; he threatened to charge them with producing child porn unless their parents agreed to place them on a six-month probation and sent them to a five-week education program.

The ACLU says the prosecutor violated the girls' First Amendment rights, arguing that the photos aren’t child pornography, and also violated the parents’ Fourteenth Amendment rights concerning the upbringing of their children. The best line comes at the end of the story: when lawyers for the parents asked for a copy of the photos, the District Attorney is said to have refused on the grounds that he would be committing a crime by sharing child porn. [Source: Wired.com]

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1 comments on article "‘Sexting’ laws face new test"

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Mark

3/30/2009 4:10 PM

There's some in-depth commentary about this on Slashdot today: news.slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=09/03/30/1249237

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