Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Privacy Communications Crime Encryption Networking Security The Internet Your Rights Online

FBI Hunt For Child Porn Thwarted By Tor 714

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the cost-of-anonymous-communication dept.
v3rgEz writes "Documents released by the FBI provide an unusual inside look at how the agency is struggling to penetrate 'darknet' Onion sites routed through Tor, the online privacy tool funded in part by government grants to help global activists. In this case, agents were unable to pursue specific leads about an easily available child pornography site, while files withheld indicate that the FBI has ongoing investigations tied to the Silk Road marketplace, a popular, anonymous Tor site for buying and selling drugs and other illegal materials." Sounds similar to the problems that plagued freenet.
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

FBI Hunt For Child Porn Thwarted By Tor

Comments Filter:
  • It doesn't matter (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Arch_Android (1989386) on Monday June 11, 2012 @10:21PM (#40291343)
    Nothing is important enough that it takes priority over liberty and freedom of speech. Nothing.
  • Make up your minds (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Black Sabbath (118110) on Monday June 11, 2012 @10:24PM (#40291377) Homepage

    Freedom of speech, or government monitoring of all communications.
    Decide which one you want and accept the consequences of your decision.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 11, 2012 @10:25PM (#40291381)
    Because innocence kids were raped to make it you sick fuck. You've got to be fucking trolling.
  • by gman003 (1693318) on Monday June 11, 2012 @10:26PM (#40291393)

    Isn't it kind of the POINT of a darknet that nobody can trace who's who? Sounds to me like the system is working as designed.

    Yes, it will be used to break laws. But that's when you break out the actual investigative skills instead of relying on tech work and unrestricted wiretaps.

  • by phantomfive (622387) on Monday June 11, 2012 @10:27PM (#40291409) Journal
    Problem is, it doesn't stop governments who want to monitor all communications, because they can detect and block the protocol. So it helps bad guys (unless you think child-porn sellers are not bad) and doesn't help the good guys.

    I like TOR, and I think it should stay around, I'll fight to make sure it stays legal, but I am disappointed that it hasn't lived up to its original promise and potential.
  • by ShanghaiBill (739463) on Monday June 11, 2012 @10:28PM (#40291413)

    Nothing is important enough that it takes priority over liberty and freedom of speech. Nothing.

    Nothing? Not shouting fire in a crowded theater? How about if someone rapes your daughter, films the act, and puts it on a billboard across the street from her school?

    Freedom is important, but it is not an absolute.

  • by Jeremiah Cornelius (137) on Monday June 11, 2012 @10:30PM (#40291423) Homepage Journal

    Seed "dark sites" with child porn.

    Then, stop it "for the children".

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 11, 2012 @10:30PM (#40291431)

    FBI: "There are secret anonymous corners of the internet, where people are trading illegally downloaded movies!"
    Public: "So what?"
    FBI: "That isn't all. They're ALSO buying and selling.... MARIJUANA!"
    Public: "We don't care."
    FBI: ".....AND CHILD PORNOGRAPHY"
    Public: "Nooooooooooooo! Here's $50 million in extra funding and new broad new powers for your agency."
    FBI: "We promise only to use them for your own good."

  • by w.hamra1987 (1193987) on Monday June 11, 2012 @10:34PM (#40291459) Homepage

    the same argument could have been made about many other services, including the internet itself.... some people still believe the web is just a porn service, and refuse to use it, well... their problem. everything can be used for good and bad, but i get your point, tor DOES seem to be attracting more illicit usage than what it was initially intended for, what it actually needs, is more legal users to out-shadow the bad ones, most people don't even bother with tor, leaving mostly the criminals to use it.

  • by dgatwood (11270) on Monday June 11, 2012 @10:34PM (#40291469) Journal

    If they believe that they need to crack the encryption, that just means they're going after the wrong people. Instead of wasting time going after the darknet sites and/or their customers, they should be focusing 100% of their efforts on trying to identify A. the kids and/or B. the locations where the videos were shot. This approach has several advantages:

    • It doesn't require any access to the actual transactions.
    • It doesn't require weakening the security model of the Internet to do it.
    • By jailing the people who make the porn, you actually protect children by getting them out of abusive situations.

    In contrast, by going after other people in the chain, you *might* occasionally get an actual child abuser, but usually you just ruin the lives of people who did something stupid and probably would not have actually harmed anyone's child. It's a bit like the difference between jailing people who are using guns to kill people and jailing everyone who carries a gun in the wrong part of town because a few of them might kill people....

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 11, 2012 @10:41PM (#40291531)

    Unfortunately technology is forcing us to decide -- a repressive police state that enforces your views of censorship, or a society that allows free speech. What little middle ground there ever was is rapidly vanishing.

    Child porn, hate speech, etc are awful -- but we've seen what's first up against the wall when the censors get their way -- criticism of the law itself.

  • by cheekyjohnson (1873388) on Monday June 11, 2012 @10:41PM (#40291535)

    Because it's Pure Evil, and I don't like it. Not to mention that it might encourage the creation of more (and we need to arrest people based on maybes and blame them for the actions of others even if they didn't pay them a single cent). Oh, and it's far easier to catch people who look at pictures than it is to stop those who are doing the molesting.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 11, 2012 @10:42PM (#40291541)

    Also because, when you look at porn, don't you like to always find new stuff? There will always be new kids being exploited.

  • by betterunixthanunix (980855) on Monday June 11, 2012 @10:42PM (#40291543)
    Tor has two equally important goals that have motivated its design:
    1. Anonymous communication
    2. Defeating censorship

    Both of these goals make it impossible for Tor as a system to prevent people from sharing child sex abuse images. Anything that could be done to prevent such sharing could just as easily be used by the Chinese to prevent dissidents from disseminating their information. Anything that could be done to track down people who share child sex abuse images could be used by China to track down dissidents and persecute them.

    That is the trade-off: protecting free speech and dissidents who live under repressive governments necessarily thwarts the FBI's attempt to track down people who share child sex abuse imagery. This is a matter of priorities -- do we want to protect dissidents, or do we want to prevent child abuse images from being shared?

  • by cheekyjohnson (1873388) on Monday June 11, 2012 @10:46PM (#40291579)

    Not shouting fire in a crowded theater?

    I find it somewhat unlikely that people would get up, scream, and trample over everyone else to get out of the building because someone screamed something that they don't know to be true. And even if they did, I'd say they should be the ones paying for any damage they did to other people.

    How about if someone rapes your daughter, films the act, and puts it on a billboard across the street from her school?

    Prosecute the rapist.

    Freedom is important, but it is not an absolute.

    That depends on where your priorities lie. In some cases, and to some people, it might be.

  • by nbsr (2343058) on Monday June 11, 2012 @10:49PM (#40291605)

    What if someone kills your daugther? Should we pass a bill to bring her back to life? Or maybe we just put the murderer in jail.

    If I had to choose, I would much more prefer to have CP pictures floating around than having a wide-spread surveillance network looking into *all* aspects of my life.

    This is a fine act of improving quality of our lifes. On one hand being killed or raped makes the victim's life pitiful (or gone), on the other - eliminating this danger is impossible and makes everybody's life poor (no one has managed to solve this problem, not even China or NK).

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 11, 2012 @10:49PM (#40291607)

    I agree with OP. Assuming you didn't compensate the producer of the images, you in no way contributed to the market of child pornography. In saying this, I in no way condone the production of this material or in any way suggest that I like the stuff (I do not).

    The problem I have is that mere possession of images should never be illegal in my opinion. The reason I say this is because it is extremely easy to accidentally download this material. I don't think people's lives should be ruined because they clicked on a bad link accidentally. The mere accusation can pretty much ruin your life, and there certainly have been cases where this has happened.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 11, 2012 @10:52PM (#40291613)

    This guy has a point.

    It's legal to share videos of someone torturing, killing, raping the corpse of someone else and feeding it to vultures.

    As long as no one in there is a minor.

  • by betterunixthanunix (980855) on Monday June 11, 2012 @10:53PM (#40291625)
    On the other hand, Tor's ability to protect dissidents who live under repressive governments, it's ability to enable free speech in those countries (e.g. discussing the Tienanmen Square incident, criticizing the Ayatollah, etc.) should, in my opinion, take priority over the quest to arrest people who download and share child sex abuse images. We may be revolted by such imagery, but:
    1. There are plenty of other ways the images can be shared. I have even heard from one security researcher that producers of child abuse imagery often choose to send an encrypted DVD through the postal system, since it is considered to be a more secure way to transmit gigabytes of data. Tor is a relatively low-bandwidth network, and so the scale of such activity on Tor is inherently limited.
    2. Anything that can be done to catch people who share child abuse images on Tor could be used by a repressive government to persecute dissidents. I doubt that the FBI will really be able to keep any hypothetical Tor-breaking technique out of Chinese hands, and I have no doubt whatsoever that the Chinese government would hesitate to use its intelligence capabilities to obtain such techniques. The fact that the FBI is unable to break Tor is a hopeful sign for the people who use Tor to protect themselves from persecution over political statements, religion, or human rights work.

    So while freedom may not be absolute, we are not really talking about an edge case where free speech does not apply. We are talking about an important technology that enables free speech in places where there are few protections, which happens to see some use among child abusers (and the free speech issues relating to sharing child abuse imagery are not really settled -- not all the people who possess or share such imagery are producing it, and it is even less likely that someone who uses Tor to download such images has in any way paid for or encouraged its production).

  • by houstonbofh (602064) on Monday June 11, 2012 @10:55PM (#40291635)
    It is the only situation where possession of evidence is criminal in itself. You will not be prosecuted for having a movie of a robbery. Nor of an assassination. And both required people to be harmed. Yet a manga cartoon somehow harms society more than a video of an assassination? According to a strict interpretation of the law, in the US, possession of a manga cartoon is worse than several violent crimes.
  • by houstonbofh (602064) on Monday June 11, 2012 @10:58PM (#40291645)
    So if you look at crime scene photos, are you going to become an axe murderer? And since possession of crime scene photos is legal, is murder less bad than child abuse? (Last question is rhetorical. Because to me, yes, murder is less bad than child abuse.)
  • by gman003 (1693318) on Monday June 11, 2012 @11:00PM (#40291663)

    Let's assume that the criminal group you're going after is shipping physical objects. Tracing information obviously will require heavy tech skills, but old-fashioned investigative work works well in the physical world.

    Place an order on their site for the product, the drugs or whatever. Odds are they ship through an existing service, FedEx or something - it's simply implausible that they do the actual delivery themselves. With a simple warrant/subpeona, you can get the shipping info, find where it was shipped from.

    Once you know where it's being shipped from, it's stakeout time. Repeat the buys a few more times, while recording everyone who ships a package from that location. You should be able to narrow it down rather quickly by process of elimination.

    Now, the actual stuff you bought probably can't be used as evidence - it's probably entrapment, but IANAL so I can't be sure. But if they're shipping the stuff you bought, they're also shipping stuff to the actual customers.Catch the courier (who's most likely not a high-level guy, just a small-time crook doing the grunt job), and get him to roll over on the guys he works for. From there, it's literally the same routine as taking down any criminal enterprise.

    Is it a lot more work than just serving up a subpeona and instantly getting every detail on the site operator? Yeah. But it's doable with as little tech skills as "being able to *use* Tor".

  • by pegasustonans (589396) on Monday June 11, 2012 @11:02PM (#40291683)

    So the "problem" is actually a case of "working as designed".

    Exactly. The "news" here is that the FBI can't penetrate an anonymous network.

    Am I the only one that finds this reassuring?

  • by houstonbofh (602064) on Monday June 11, 2012 @11:05PM (#40291693)

    Nothing? Not shouting fire in a crowded theater?

    Freedom of speech is not freedom from consequences of speech. Libel, inciting a riot, reckless endangerment, and conspiracy all do not limit the speech but the actions that arise from the speech.

    How about if someone rapes your daughter, films the act, and puts it on a billboard across the street from her school?

    Freedom is important, but it is not an absolute.

    Use the film to prove the rape, prosecute the bastard and send him to a prison where someone else shows him what it is like. Also, prosecute the billboard owner for obscenity. Lets face it. The worst thing happening in that hypothetical situation is not that someone took pictures. It was rape.

  • by dgatwood (11270) on Monday June 11, 2012 @11:07PM (#40291717) Journal

    As horrible as child abuse is, it is utterly irrational grandstanding to say that child abuse is worse than murder. If I asked you if you would rather be raped or killed, do you really mean to tell me that you would answer "killed"? If not, then murder is worse than any form of abuse. The heinousness of a crime is directly proportional to its effect on the victim. There can be no crime more heinous, therefore, than any crime that deprives the victim of his or her existence unwillingly.

  • by houstonbofh (602064) on Monday June 11, 2012 @11:07PM (#40291721)

    Cynical me just thinks this is part of a plan to reduce your freedom and anonymity on the internet.

    If it was just "a" plan, I would be so happy. Seems like they have several.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 11, 2012 @11:09PM (#40291735)

    Stop being pedantic. That's very likely what he was referring to. Prosecuting people over pictures of imaginary children is just ridiculous.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 11, 2012 @11:12PM (#40291761)

    It is the only situation where possession of evidence is criminal in itself. You will not be prosecuted for having a movie of a robbery. Nor of an assassination. And both required people to be harmed. Yet a manga cartoon somehow harms society more than a video of an assassination? According to a strict interpretation of the law, in the US, possession of a manga cartoon is worse than several violent crimes.

    What's worse is that most of those poor schmucks who go to prison because they have video and photos of CP aren't ones abusing children. We could use these people to help find and arrest the slime who create this stuff.

  • by Jackie_Chan_Fan (730745) on Monday June 11, 2012 @11:15PM (#40291779)

    The only reason why this was released to the public, was to drum up support to make programs like TOR illegal in the US.

    You have been warned. Once the government uses the "For the children" excuse... or "Child pornography" excuse... it should immediately make you take notice that the government is trying to outlaw something.

    In this case, its dark nets, because as we all know that is where piracy is heading, and they want to stop it.

  • by houstonbofh (602064) on Monday June 11, 2012 @11:15PM (#40291785)
    The demand for pictures is not the same as the desire to rape. Consider that the availability of adult porn has exploded in the past ten years, but the occurrence of adult rape has not grown in the same way.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 11, 2012 @11:17PM (#40291805)

    Are you really going to try to tell me that if nobody wanted to see CP, those that produce CP would stop making it?

    CP is a behavioral issue. People would continue to make CP because _they_ enjoyed it, not because they thought someone else might enjoy it.

    Anyone in the CP market to make a _profit_ would certainly suffer, but really I bet the number of CP producers turning a profit is quite small...

  • by pegasustonans (589396) on Monday June 11, 2012 @11:18PM (#40291809)

    The only reason why this was released to the public, was to drum up support to make programs like TOR illegal in the US.

    You have been warned. Once the government uses the "For the children" excuse... or "Child pornography" excuse... it should immediately make you take notice that the government is trying to outlaw something.

    In this case, its dark nets, because as we all know that is where privacy is heading, and they want to stop it.

    Fixed that for you.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 11, 2012 @11:24PM (#40291849)

    I was sexually abused as a child. I wish I had been killed instead. You don't know the hell abuse at that age can do to someone.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 11, 2012 @11:33PM (#40291909)

    Deuteronomy 22 28-29 says that a man who rapes a young girl virgin keeps her, and pay the father when discovered. Deuteronomy also says to kill those that preach against it's law.

    Raping female children means you keep them. You are opposed to this law of God and need to be killed. You want males to be raped and dominated and controlled. Deuteronomy says the man is ba'al (master). You say otherwise. You need to be killed..

  • by antifoidulus (807088) on Monday June 11, 2012 @11:39PM (#40291943) Homepage Journal
    Because people in general, and the US in particular cling to this whole "law and order" fantasy that states the stricter the punishment(and more people you arrest for it), the less the problem occurs. And have we seen with drugs, that simply doesn't work. And the paranoia and bloodlust surrounding child abuse/porn in the US probably results in MORE child rape, not less. In most places in the US psychiatrists are REQUIRED by law to report any people that come to them for help with pedophilia, regardless of whether they actually pose a real threat to anyone(and in fact may be going to the dr to help them avoid doing so, therapy has been shown effective for past offenders). So they have to essentially "go it alone" or else risk ruining their entire lives by being outed. And what often happens is that they cannot cope and end up hurting a child. And this is pretty much the only disorder that they are required to report, someone comes to them to try to avoid going on drugs or to help them with their violent tendencies nothing has to be reported unless there is a high probability the person is going to hurt themselves or others, but pedophiles are different, we somehow feel that they should be locked up for seeking help....
  • by betterunixthanunix (980855) on Monday June 11, 2012 @11:41PM (#40291955)
    Someone always brings this up whenever the issue of child sex abuse imagery is discussed. This argument is wrong and should not be pressed for the following reasons:
    1. Supply is a matter of scarcity, not a matter of demand; in this case, the scarcity only exists for new child abuse images, since the images can be reproduced at no cost once they have been released.
    2. Demand is a matter of the willingness people have to pay for something. Demand in and of itself never creates supply.

      In the case of child abuse images, it is not necessarily true that anyone who possesses such images actually did pay for them. Like anything else that can be downloaded, child abuse imagery can be downloaded at no cost online, and people so exactly that. Arresting someone who was never willing to pay for child abuse images does absolutely nothing to the demand for those images.
    3. Child sex abuse images are extremely risky to produce, since the consequences of being caught producing such imagery include lengthy (potentially indefinite) prison sentences. People do not generally produce such images and then send them to others without being paid in some way, either with money or with some sort of barter, including swapping images of child abuse. Only someone who is not bothering to act in their own best interests would send a photo or video of themselves committing a serious crime to someone who is not paying for it.

    If you want to combat the economics of child abuse imagery, you need to reserve prosecution for people who actually paid for the images in their possession. Otherwise, you are just going after the low-hanging fruit, while leaving the truly dangerous people -- the people who are abusing children -- untouched.

  • Dangerous freedom. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Voogru (2503382) on Monday June 11, 2012 @11:47PM (#40291981)
    I prefer dangerous freedom over peaceful slavery. Eventually these pedo's will screw up and get caught. Time to go do some real police work.
  • by Dahamma (304068) on Monday June 11, 2012 @11:50PM (#40292001)

    Cartoon depictions of child sexual activity (commonly found in manga) is against the child porn statutes in many countries. So, yes, I can tell the difference, but the law can not.

    Of course it can. "The law" is not a computer program, it's interpreted by people. And the law and those people can't somehow infer that an entire medium is now illegal because someone used it to do something illegal. Movies, photos, and comics (Japanese or not) are entirely the same in this regard.

    People want to pretend this is some slippery slope, but you know, it really isn't. Jeez, since when did NAMBLA have such a big following on slashdot?

  • by zill (1690130) on Monday June 11, 2012 @11:55PM (#40292041)
    Manga is basically Japanese comic books. You wrote:

    According to a strict interpretation of the law, in the US, possession of a manga cartoon is worse than several violent crimes.

    which is equivalent to saying:

    According to a strict interpretation of the law, in the US, possession of a Japanese comic books is worse than several violent crimes.

    which is completely false. Only the possession of manga that explicitly depict sexual activity involving children could be considered illegal. Just like how movies aren't illegal, only movies that explicitly depict sexual activity involving children are illegal.

    This is the exact same point Dahamma tried to bring up. His post was pretty clear, at least to me. Maybe you should read it again.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 11, 2012 @11:58PM (#40292057)

    Assuming you didn't compensate the producer of the images, you in no way contributed to the market of child pornography.

    I don't disagree with most of your points except your first. The fact others download and view the material provide validation and acceptance to the producers which probably is worth far more than money, and it also contributes to a sense of normalization of their behavior for all participants. Taking away money won't stop CP any more than taking away all CP will stop child sexual abuse but it does help discourage it.

  • by wanderfowl (2534492) on Tuesday June 12, 2012 @12:04AM (#40292097)

    ...guess I thought Tor probably already had an FBI/CIA back door.

    ... and this article disproves that how? If the FBI had a back door to Tor, the first thing they'd be doing is running articles like this one. That way everybody who wants to do something outside of FBI purview starts logging in, and Tor becomes one big honeypot for them to skim.

    I want Tor to exist and succeed for privacy and free speech, especially for people in less free countries than the US. I also know victims of childhood sexual abuse and the lasting effects it has. The FBI breaking or backdooring Tor means that kiddie porn producers get rounded up, but it also means that free speech loses one more haven. I have no idea who I'm cheering for here.

  • by dgatwood (11270) on Tuesday June 12, 2012 @12:04AM (#40292101) Journal

    Two things:

    First, although this isn't an extremely rare reaction to abuse, it is by no means the norm. The sex abuse victims I've known (admittedly a small sample size) have not wished that they were dead. Such a reaction is not healthy, and can get worse with time. If you truly feel that way, please seek proper counseling from a trained medical professional. Help brings hope. You can recover from this.

    Second, not to diminish your experience in any way, but what you're describing is a fairly well-understood psychological phenomenon. The problem with your argument is that the reaction you describe isn't limited to sexual abuse (or even actual abuse). A certain subset of the population reacts in this way because of bullying, physical abuse, serious financial losses, relationship breakups, and any number of other crises in their lives.

    Clearly a guy dumping his girlfriend isn't guilty of something as heinous as murder, or else we're all in trouble. Yet for some people, it is just as bad. For this reason, you cannot judge a crime's heinousness based on how a particular individual is affected by the crime, but rather based on the typical effect. Most people would rather live than die, including most victims, and calling abuse a worse crime than murder is essentially claiming that even the abuse victims who do not feel that they would rather have died would still have been better off dead.

  • by dgatwood (11270) on Tuesday June 12, 2012 @12:10AM (#40292129) Journal

    Yeah, I'm sure it's a piece of cake tracking down the precise identity of some random abused youth locked in a completely generic concrete basement. There are only millions upon millions of generic concrete basements out there in the world.

    You're completely missing the point. Law enforcement, like anything else that involves time and effort, is a zero sum game. Every minute they spend wasting their time chasing distributors and downloaders and other penny-ante criminals (who have almost zero chance of being actual producers) is a minute that they did not spend doing something else that might have actually resulted in an arrest of a real child molester or other abuser.

  • by Dwonis (52652) on Tuesday June 12, 2012 @12:20AM (#40292183)

    Child porn is the reason I can't in good conscience run a telephone network.

    Child porn is the reason I can't in good conscience run an ISP.

    Child porn is the reason I can't in good conscience run a shipping company.

    Child porn is the reason I can't in good conscience run a camera company.

    Your conscience needs adjustment. Every sufficiently useful and/or popular tool will be used for crime at some point.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday June 12, 2012 @12:26AM (#40292219)

    The American system has a unique solution to this conundrum, albeit executed imperfectly.

    There are two sources of law in Anglo-American jurisprudence, parliamentary and common law. The First Amendment to the US Constitution says that _Congress_ cannot pass any law limiting free speech. The amendment says nothing about limitations on free speech stemming from common law (i.e. law "discovered" by the courts, which in the late 18th and early 19th centuries meant law logically deduced from cultural principles--such as the general duties society recognizes between individuals--in the light of a sound analysis and application of real facts).

    This means it's possible for reasonable and dispassionate limitations on free speech to emerge which are actually grounded in and defined by existing scenarios, and which account not only for the demands of the present election cycle but also of those a hundred years from now. Of course, much depends on the culture of the courts. But without an enlightened and impartial judiciary you'll have lots of other stuff to worry about.

    Democracy is overrated. It's necessary but entirely insufficient. You need both a way to limit the creation and application of law (an upper-bound on democratic power), as well as a non-democratic institution capable of defining run-of-the-mill law (a lower-bound on democratic power). Democracies are really crappy at the big stuff and small stuff, because democracies are discriminatory and fickle.

  • by PopeRatzo (965947) on Tuesday June 12, 2012 @12:31AM (#40292241) Homepage Journal

    if you can't tell the difference between a comic book and child porn you are a pretty twisted person.

    My parents had a scrap book that had pictures of me butt naked in a kiddie pool in the back yard. By today's standards, they would be considered the most dangerous criminals in the world.

    Pictures of kids used as sexual imagery is icky as hell, but let's not bullshit here: it's all an excuse to stop people from downloading movies. The entire child porn hysteria is ridiculous. And if a "child was raped" to make the porn, then the rapist needs to be arrested, for rape.

    Pictures is pictures. Rape is rape. And until the FBI starts treating the ongoing sexual abuse by clergy and football coaches as seriously as child porn, it's pretty clear that the whole child porn mania is just a cover to control the Internet. There's a worldwide criminal enterprise that enables child rape and they are hiding behind "religious freedom". There is absolutely no doubt in my mind that there are dozens if not hundreds of cardinals and one pope that should have done perp walks long ago. Child porn my ass.

  • by TFAFalcon (1839122) on Tuesday June 12, 2012 @01:18AM (#40292449)

    So once a person rapes the child, there is no reason to even consider letting the child go. After all, the punishment for murder is the same, so why increase the risk of getting caught by letting the kid go?

  • by Opportunist (166417) on Tuesday June 12, 2012 @02:03AM (#40292595)

    What's worst is that we reach the point where raping a child and killing the child comes up with almost the same jail time. So what's the logical thing to do if you're a rapist?

    Hint: A dead witness cannot testify.

  • by SuricouRaven (1897204) on Tuesday June 12, 2012 @02:25AM (#40292649)
    Only low-budget movies, of course. If it comes from hollywood, it's exempt somehow. For example, Britain has a law against 'extreme pornography' which prohibits depictions of genital torture. Yet when genital torture was used to interrogate James Bond in Casino Royale, no police agency seemed particually concerned. I suspect that if exactly the same scene had been shot, word-for-word and action-for-action by a minimal-budget independant studio they'd have at least been forced to cut it to avoid a risk of prosecution.
  • by dgatwood (11270) on Tuesday June 12, 2012 @02:45AM (#40292711) Journal

    If someone lit your face on fire, don't worry. The damage and pain you feel is are well-understood physiological and neurological phenomena. People experience pain like this all the time, so your pain isn't all that special and you should really just buck the fuck up.

    That's not even remotely a valid interpretation of what I said. What I said was that the fundamental problem with the argument that death is preferable to child molestation is that in the vast majority of cases it isn't. When it is, it is caused by either the circumstances being particularly heinous or the victim being particularly susceptible.

    The heinousness of a crime in the general sense should not be gauged based upon unusually extreme examples of that crime. It is a crime to rob a bank. It is a crime to rob a bank by dropping an atomic bomb on it and sucking up the molten gold using a giant vacuum cleaner. Robbing a bank is not (typically) tantamount in heinousness to nuking a city.

    The victim being particularly susceptible/vulnerable, as a rule, means that the victim needs more/better counseling, not that the crime was more heinous (unless the reason for choosing that victim was because the victim was particularly susceptible/vulnerable).

    At no point did I suggest that anyone "suck it up". Quite the opposite. The only acceptable response to a post like that is to recommend professional counseling. Suicidal thoughts are nothing to screw around with.

    So Sexual abuse isn't actual abuse?

    You parsed that sentence wrong, though I'll admit that my elision of two implied words could cause someone to read it that way. Reinsert the implied words "limited to" and you'll understand the intended meaning:

    ...the reaction you describe isn't limited to sexual abuse (or even limited to actual abuse).

    In other words, not only is it not limited to the sexual abuse (a narrow category), but it is further not even limited to actual abuse (a broader category that includes the former). Many people experience those symptoms even in some situations where they merely perceive abuse, but no actual abuse has taken place. The key point was that until the person (whether an actual victim or not) chooses to stop acting like a victim, no healing can take place, and the fact that some people react in this way to any one particular crime is irrelevant in determining its heinousness because some people react that way to every crime to some extent (and to many, many things that are not crimes).

  • by ghostdoc (1235612) on Tuesday June 12, 2012 @02:53AM (#40292751)

    Because the demand is a mental condition that is not caused by CP.

    If you're not a pedo, you don't want to look at pictures of children being raped. If you are, you do.
    The pictures don't cause the condition, so reducing the availability of the pictures is not going to reduce the demand for them.

    However, reducing availability of the pictures could cause people with the condition to go and rape children because they can't get their jollies from the pictures.

    So clamping down on CP will have no impact on the numbers of pedos, and could conceivably increase the occurrence of child rape. The law of unintended consequences strikes again.

  • by Opportunist (166417) on Tuesday June 12, 2012 @03:34AM (#40292917)

    That's the same black and white thinking as good and bad of TOR and the internet. The internet is good because it allows us to transport information, but it can also be used for hate speech and incitement so it's bad and needs to be banned. TOR allows people in repressive countries to speak their mind, that's good, but it's bad that it can transport CP so it needs to be banned.

    NOTHING in this world is black or white. And no technology is good or evil, don't punish technology, punish the ones that abuse it. Is a car evil because a guy ran over his cheating wife? No, the guy is. Is a gun evil because a murderer used it to kill a witness? No, the guy is.

    Are taxes evil because some politician squanders it? No, the politician is.

  • by Plunky (929104) on Tuesday June 12, 2012 @03:44AM (#40292955)

    What is this "letting the kid go" thing you are talking about? The vast majority of child abuse happens in the home, by the parents.. Kids getting abducted and raped is pretty much the exception as far as I know. People don't abuse kids because they want to hurt them, they do it because they [think they] love them.. and killing is rarely going to be a part of that

    Not to mention, that letting the kid live has other advantages.. firstly, you told them not to tell and you might get away with it (vs a dead kid is pretty obvious) and secondly, you might get to do them again (you can do that with dead kids but not for long I guess).

  • by anss123 (985305) on Tuesday June 12, 2012 @03:51AM (#40292979)
    He's making a point. Child rape will happen regardless of what we do on the internet.
  • by isorox (205688) on Tuesday June 12, 2012 @04:38AM (#40293135) Homepage Journal

    Stop being pedantic. That's very likely what he was referring to. Prosecuting people over pictures of imaginary children is just ridiculous.

    Yet many western countries do this. They also prosecute people over picutres of adults that the court decides might look like a child, and they can also prosecute a husband who has a picture of his wife's tits if his wife is, or looks, under 18.

  • by Smauler (915644) on Tuesday June 12, 2012 @05:01AM (#40293235)

    I was sexually abused as a kid. It did fuck me up a bit, but not too badly, and I got over it. I'm now a relatively happy, well adjusted person - currently single, but have had numerous normal, healthy relationships.

    If you're seriously suggesting that I'd be better off dead, you can go fuck yourself.

  • by wvmarle (1070040) on Tuesday June 12, 2012 @05:17AM (#40293309)

    And that is indeed/ totally ridiculous.

    Child abuse (sexual or violent or otherwise) is a crime, and rightfully so.

    Possessing recordings of a crime (images, video, whatever), is usually not a crime (though I'm not so sure about those "snuff movies" or whatever they're called where people are actually killed in the process of making them).

    Creating or owning drawings of a crime that never took place for real, should not be a crime. That'd fall under freedom of speech (with possible limits where specific individuals or groups are targeted).

    What you see in movie theatres are often rather violent movies (especially coming out of Hollywood): people being murdered is something you very commonly see. Now I assume those people don't actually die, yet they do their best to make it look as if they really die. With lots of blood and so. A crime, but the recording of it is no problem at all.

    Similar for erotic movies. A bit less accepted by many people, the porn industry is thriving. And that also includes movies depicting rape and possibly other crimes. This again is also considered totally legal. Now these people are not actually being raped as in they take part in the scene consensually (consent given in return for a big enough cheque), yet again the movie makers do their best to make it look like the actual crime is taking place.

    In case of porn involving minors receiving consent is not possible, so the act is illegal, and the people involved should be tracked down and prosecuted. The evidence of the crime is there: the movie, presumably shot in high resolution, good quality; not grainy surveillance camera stuff.

    It'd be rather more effective for police to try to track down where this move was shot, who was involved shooting it, and prosecute those people. This should be relatively easy with the top-notch video evidence that is available of the crime.

  • by AlamedaStone (114462) on Tuesday June 12, 2012 @07:23AM (#40293699)

    If there's no demand, there's no supply

    therefore it is valid to go after demand

    Worked great for pot. We started imprisoning potheads in Federal pens, and no one grew weed anymore! *dusts hands* Mission accomplished.

  • by AlamedaStone (114462) on Tuesday June 12, 2012 @07:29AM (#40293713)

    I agree with you completely

    But why do you think your observations have any relevancy to the production and consumption of CHILD pornography?

    Increased availability of porn is positively correlated with a reduction in sexual violence. Why exactly would his observation NOT have relevance?

    http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=the-sunny-side-of-smut [scientificamerican.com]

  • by BronsCon (927697) <social@bronstrup.com> on Tuesday June 12, 2012 @01:14PM (#40297799) Journal

    Enforcement doesn't seem appropriate, let along not being enough.

    Let me try on a few hats, here (and make it clear that I am wearing a hat, that all that comes with that hat goes away once I remove it). Let's just suppose, for a moment, that I'm a drug addict.

    Now, I recognize that using drugs is destroying my life, so I seek help. I go speak to a counselor and tell them I have these urges and I need help ot figure out why I have them and what I can do to essentially make them go away. They help me and I no longer feel that I need to use drugs.

    Now, let me remove that hat and let's suppose, for a moment, that I'm a pedophile.

    Now, I recognize that actually doing anything with or to a child would irreparably harm them, so I seek help. I go speak to a counselor and tell them I have these urges and I need help ot figure out why I have them and what I can do to essentially make them go away. Later that day, I am arrested, my home raided, all of my family photo albums and computer equipment confiscated to be searched for images of child porn. A thumbnail of a girl of unverifiable age is found in my browser cache, I'm tried and convicted on charges of posession of child pornography and face 5 years in prison.

    Why? I never touched a child, the girl in the image (a thumbnail, with no accompanying full-size image found in my browser cache, indicating that I likely never even looked at it or knew it was there) may well have been over 18, and I was seeking help so that I would not harm anyone. I did nothing wrong. So, why?

    Now, let me remove that hat. I rather enjoy my freedom and situations similar to the one I describe above have happened in my country.

  • by Opportunist (166417) on Tuesday June 12, 2012 @02:00PM (#40298505)

    Are you serious? I can see a financial fine, but prison time? For what? Keeping his computer unsecured?

    Boy, if that gets punishable with time I'd guess it's time to invest in prison stock!

A committee is a group that keeps the minutes and loses hours. -- Milton Berle

Working...