UK Bans a Laundry List of Sexual Acts from Online Movies – Implications for Miami Cybercrime Defense

December 3, 2014 by David S. Seltzer

As any respectable federal cybercrime attorney can tell you, the line between what’s legal and illegal with respect to viewing online materials can be blurrier than many people realize.

In fact, both leading ethicists and attorneys frequently (and often hotly) debate where to draw the line between what people should be permitted to watch (with appropriate warnings) and what should be banned from the airways (and/or from the Internet). They also argue over when watchers (and intermediaries) should be punished for participating in the pornography production/viewing process.

In light of that, let’s a look at a peculiar government action that has stirred a vocal public debate over free speech. The UK’s Department of Culture, Media & Sports, (DCMS) just introduced new and stringent restrictions on what types of sexual acts can be included in online videos. Under the aegis of banning materials as “harmful to minors,” the DCMS banned the inclusion of 10 different sexual acts, including strangulation, aggressive whipping, and other acts to make the rules for online pornography identical to the rules currently in place that the UK has for hard copy DVD movies.

DCMS said the legislation "provides the same level of protection to the online world that exists on the high street in relation to the sale of physical DVDs… In a converging media world, these provisions must be coherent, and the BBFC classification regime is a tried and tested system of what content is regarded as harmful for minors.”

However, the DCMS move is not without its critics.

For instance, per the Independent (a UK newspaper), erotic film producer, Erika Lust, said “with this legislation, the UK is in danger of flinging itself back to an age where porn is simply the boring, unrealistic, male fantasy of bimbos eagerly pleasing men as if it’s their duty, where women are submissive and lack ownership of their sexuality. Women in the industry will now fear the loss of their livelihoods as well as their sexual independence.”

The point of bringing up this kerfuffle in the UK is that both the law and social mores regarding what constitutes cybercriminal activity can be rather grey. If you’ve found yourself on the wrong side of that law, you may need the assistance of an experienced Miami cybercrime lawyer to protect your freedom and ensure your rights. Call the team here at Seltzer, PA at 1-888-THE-DEFENSE (1-888-843-3333) right now. We are available 24/7 for a free and confidential consultation.