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Censorship and political correctness

The Beeb gets it’s knickers in a twist:

I read a report on the BBC. ‘They’ have just realised that some authors have been writing and publishing erotic/pornographic novels and these novels are available as ebooks. This is not news to anybody except the Beeb and possible the Association of Chief Police Officers, in the UK. I’ll leave you to read the article rather than rehash it here but it would appear that, apart from the Association of Chief Police Officers who obviously live on a different planet, the problem would appear to be that there are no protection mechanisms in place to prevent children from accessing these pornographic novels.

Your starter for ten points:

Suggest a protection mechanism.

“R U 18?’

Yes of course I am. I’m not a 13 year old schoolboy I am indeed 18 so show me the porn. Hmm, perhaps one should have to scan in a birth certificate but then who’s to say that the birth certificate  actually belongs to the person scanning it in? Fingerprints, retinal scans, DNA sample perhaps? A bit intrusive and probably breaks several other laws concerning privacy and data protection.

‘Yes but RU 18?’

Yes I am.

That’s OK then, we’ve asked the question and if you choose to lie to us then that’s not our fault. Feel free to browse our selection of erotic/pornographic works.

Unless they’re free then of course before they’re downloaded they have to be paid for. Is this perhaps a method of preventing children downloading the stuff? I don’t know if minors can have debit cards but if they can would it break the data protection act if their date of birth was incorporated into the card’s chip?

So are ebook retailers pornographers then?

Oh let’s get real shall we? If somebody writes a book in support of terrorism and it’s published does that mean that the publisher supports terrorism? Hardly. If a writer  self-publishes or has published  a book supporting extreme left or right wing views does that mean the publisher or organisation that facilitates the self-publishing of the work supports those views? No, I didn’t think so either. If you take the view that a publisher or printer come to that, endorses whatever it publishers/prints then no political party would be able to publish it’s manifesto because the publisher/printer would be supporting the views expounded. Hang on a minute, maybe this is not such a bad idea after all.

The Association of Chief Police Officers:

Yes rape is a crime. Yes the victims suffer psychological damage which may last far longer than the physical damage. Incest is a crime which causes long-lasting psychological damage and needs to be treated both sensitively and sympathetically. In real life. We’re not talking about real life here, we’re talking about works of fiction. Some might find these subject matters titillating, most probably distasteful to varying degrees and many if not most of the works may be badly written. Does that mean they should be banned and/or publishers prosecuted for publishing them? You appear to think so but I remember all the fuss over ‘Girlie Mags’ in the 60s and 70s. It seems ridiculous now and your stance is equally ridiculous. The vulnerable members of society need protection, surely nobody would disagree with that. Does censorship actually afford them any protection or does it merely drive the problem, whether real or perceived, ‘under the counter’?




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