Internet digital blocking of obscene material (3281) introduced in the MN Legislature

The bill was introduced March 1, 2018  …

Bennett, Runbeck, Heintzeman, Lohmer and Pugh introduced:

  1. F. 3281,A bill for an act relating to public safety; requiring blocking ability of obscene material on electronic devices that connect to Internet; requiring a report; proposing coding for new law in Minnesota Statutes, chapter 617.

The bill was read for the first time and referred to the Committee on Commerce and Regulatory Reform.

 

Here’s the proposed text

A bill for an act
relating to public safety; requiring blocking ability of obscene material on electronic
devices that connect to Internet; requiring a report; proposing coding for new law
in Minnesota Statutes, chapter 617.

BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA:

Section 1.

[617.239] HUMAN TRAFFICKING AND CHILD EXPLOITATION
PREVENTION.

Subdivision 1.

Internet digital blocking.

(a) It is an unlawful practice under section
617.241 to manufacture, sell, offer for sale, lease, or distribute a product that makes content
accessible on the Internet:

(1) unless the product contains digital blocking capability that renders any obscene
material, as defined in section 617.241, subdivision 1, paragraphs (a) and (e), inaccessible;
and

(2) to a minor unless the digital blocking capability is active and properly operating to
make obscene material inaccessible.

(b) A person who manufactures, sells, offers for sale, leases, or distributes a product that
makes content accessible on the Internet shall:

(1) make reasonable and ongoing efforts to ensure that the digital content blocking
capability functions properly;

(2) establish a reporting mechanism, such as a Web site or call center, to allow a consumer
to report unblocked obscene material or report blocked material that is not obscene;

(3) ensure that all child pornography and revenge pornography is inaccessible on the
product;

(4) prohibit the product from accessing any hub that facilitates prostitution; and

(5) render Web sites that are known to facilitate human trafficking, in violation of section
609.322 or 609.324, inaccessible.

Subd. 2.

Deactivation.

(a) A digital blocking capability may be deactivated after a
consumer:

(1) requests that the capability be disabled;

(2) presents identification to verify that the consumer is 18 years of age or older;

(3) acknowledges receiving a written warning regarding the potential danger of
deactivating the digital blocking capability; and

(4) pays a onetime $20 digital access fee to the person who manufactures, sells, leases,
or distributes the product.

(b) A person who manufactures, sells, offers for sale, leases, or distributes a product that
makes content accessible on the Internet may charge a separate opt-in fee for each product
that enters the state’s stream of commerce.

(c) If the digital blocking capability blocks material that is not obscene and the block is
reported to a call center or reporting Web site, the material shall be unblocked within a
reasonable time, but in no event later than five business days after the block is first reported.

(d) A consumer may seek judicial relief to unblock filtered content.

Subd. 3.

Distribution of fees; report.

(a) All fees received by a person under subdivision
2 shall be paid quarterly to the commissioner of public safety in the manner prescribed by
the commissioner. The commissioner of public safety shall deposit the fees received under
this subdivision as follows:

(1) 40 percent in the crime victims account under section 611A.612; and

(2) 60 percent in a special account to be used by the commissioner of public safety to
provide grants to state agencies, units of local government, and nongovernmental
organizations that serve victims of human trafficking to:

(i) develop, expand, or strengthen programs for victims of human trafficking and child
exploitation that may include any of the following:

(A) physical health and mental health services;

(B) temporary and permanent housing placement;

(C) legal and immigration services; and

(D) employment placement, education, and training;

(ii) ensure prevention of human trafficking including, at a minimum, increasing public
awareness; and

(iii) ensure protection of victims of human trafficking including, at a minimum, training
first responders.

(b) By February 15 of each year, the commissioner of public safety shall report to the
chairs and ranking minority members of the senate and house of representatives committees
or divisions having jurisdiction over criminal justice funding on the fees collected under
subdivision 2. The report must indicate the following relating to the preceding calendar
year:

(1) the amount of money appropriated to the commissioner;

(2) how the money was distributed by the commissioner; and

(3) how the organizations under paragraph (a) used the money.

Subd. 4.

Civil action.

If a person who manufactures, sells, offers for sale, leases, or
distributes a product that makes content accessible on the Internet is unresponsive to a report
of obscene material that has breached the filter, the attorney general or a consumer may file
a civil action. The attorney general or a consumer may seek damages of up to $500 for each
piece of content that was reported but not subsequently blocked. The prevailing party in the
civil action may seek attorney fees.

Subd. 5.

Citation.

This section shall be known and may be cited as the “Human
Trafficking and Child Exploitation Prevention Act.”

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective the day following final enactment.

 

This entry was posted in MN, Policy by Ann Treacy. Bookmark the permalink.

About Ann Treacy

I have a Master’s Degree in Library and Information Science. I have been interested or involved in providing access to information through the Internet since 1994, when I worked for Minnesota’s first Internet service provider. I am pleased to be a part of the Blandin on Broadband Team. I also work with MN Coalition on Government Information, Minnesota Rural Partners, and the American Society for Information Science and Technology.

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