July 18, 2016

STATEMENT: Starbucks, McDonald’s, Librarian of Congress Favor Internet Filters

Statement by Dawn Hawkins, Executive Director of NCOSE

Washington, DC – As the Republican National Committee moves to recognize pornography as a public health crisis, high profile corporations and individuals are distancing themselves from pornography. The National Center on Sexual Exploitation (NCOSE) commends these recent developments.

“McDonald’s, Starbucks, and Dr. Carla Hayden—the newly confirmed Librarian of Congress—have noted the necessity of filtering pornography out of public WiFi,” said Dawn Hawkins, Executive Director of the National Center on Sexual Exploitation. “Internet filtering accuracy has come a long way since the 1990s. Thanks to unprecedented advancements in technology, we know that quality Internet filtering services are more than capable of excluding pornography without blocking access to legitimate health or educational materials. Further, Internet filtering is necessary to protect children from the harms of pornography. Twenty-seven percent of young adults first saw pornography before the age of puberty, which is alarming considering the fact that pornography is linked to decreased brain matter, compulsive use disorders, and sexual aggression. In light of the technical capabilities, it has become socially irresponsible for any corporation, public library, or public school to leave its WiFi unfiltered.”

“It is especially striking that Dr. Hayden has made comments in favor of filtering, because during her time at the American Library Association, she was opposed to it,” Hawkins stated. “In fact, the American Library Association is on the 2016 Dirty Dozen List for its consistent opposition to protecting children from exposure to pornography in public libraries despite the fact that the Supreme Court has upheld Internet filtering as constitutional. Dr. Hayden stated that her support of the ALA’s position was based on outdated information on the accuracy of filtering and that she now supports online filtering in libraries, and does not support pornography ‘any shape or form.’ I wholeheartedly agree with this statement, and I am calling on the American Library Association to amend its policies on Internet filtering as well.”

You can read NCOSE’s full statement on McDonald’s WiFi filtering policy here: http://endsexualexploitation.org/articles/statement-mcdonalds-filters-pornography-new-wifi-policy/

You can learn more about the harms of pornography here: http://endsexualexploitation.org/publichealth

Further Reading