[NetBehaviour] Study finds Web isn't teeming with sex.
marc.garrett at furtherfield.org
Thu Nov 16 11:02:10 CET 2006
Study finds Web isn't teeming with sex.
ANALYSIS SHOWS ABOUT 1 PERCENT OF ALL PAGES HAVE ADULT CONTENT
By Elise Ackerman.
A confidential analysis of Internet search queries and a random sample
of Web pages taken from Google and Micrsoft's giant Internet indexes
showed that only about 1 percent of all Web pages contain sexually
The analysis was presented in a federal court hearing last week in
Philadelphia in a suit brought by the American Civil Liberties Union
against U.S. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales and obtained Monday by
the Mercury News.
The ACLU said the analysis, by Philip B. Stark, a professor of
statistics at the University of California-Berkeley, did not appear to
substantially help the Justice Department in its effort to prove that
criminal penalties are necessary to protect minors from exposure to
sexually explicit information on the Internet.
The Justice Department had commissioned the study as part of an effort
to resurrect the Children's Online Protection Act, which was signed by
President Clinton in 1998, but was immediately challenged by the ACLU.
A federal district court in Philadelphia and a federal appeals court
banned enforcement of the law. In June 2005, the Supreme Court upheld
the ban for constitutional reasons but sent the case back to district
court for more fact finding regarding Internet filters.
``One of the things we think came out of the government's study is that
the chance of running into graphic content on the Web when filters are
on is extremely low,'' said Catherine Crump, staff attorney at the
American Civil Liberties Union.
More information about the NetBehaviour