WASHINGTON, DC (February 10, 2022) – The National Center on Sexual Exploitation (NCOSE) urged the U.S. Senate to pass the EARN IT Act to better clarify the intent that CDA Section 230 does not immunize tech companies from knowingly possessing and distributing child sexual abuse material (CSAM). Today, the Senate Judiciary Committee unanimously voted to pass it out of committee and onto a full vote in the Senate.
“Yesterday, a district court ruled in our class action lawsuit against Pornhub that it is not immune under CDA 230 for hosting CSAM. This case is a huge victory and the right decision. But currently, the courts are split and other CSAM victims who made the same claims against Twitter, Kik, Reddit, and Omegle have had their cases dismissed on CDA 230 grounds. We need the EARN IT Act so survivors of these horrific crimes know where they stand and the courts have a clear understanding of congressional intent, namely, that Section 230 does not immunize knowing possession and distribution of CSAM,” said Dawn Hawkins, CEO of the National Center on Sexual Exploitation.
The EARN IT Act restores privacy to victims of child sexual abuse material (CSAM, aka child pornography). It also creates a new commission to issue recommendations and guidelines to limit sex trafficking, grooming, and sexual exploitation online.
“Tech companies currently have no incentive to prevent or eliminate CSAM. The EARN IT Act is the best piece of tech accountability legislation to ensure tech companies do the right thing, and we urge Congress to pass this bipartisan solution to confront this rampant criminality,” Hawkins said.
A New York Times investigation revealed that 70 million CSAM images were reported to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children in 2019, compared to 600,000 in 2008, and called this an “almost unfathomable” increase in criminal behavior.
For more information, visit https://endsexualexploitation.org/earnit/. Follow updates on social media: #detect2protect #endchildabuseonline #protectkidsonline