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March 18, 2019

Majority in UK Have No Idea Porn Blocking Law Is About to Hit

UNITED KINGDOM—Possibly as soon as two weeks from now, the United Kingdom will begin requiring all internet service providers to block online porn sites for anyone unwilling to provide sensitive personal “age verification” documents. But even though the new law will drastically alter the way British porn fans consume their chosen entertainment, more that three out of four U.K. residents are clueless that the new law is about to hit. That figure comes from a new survey by the polling firm YouGov. In fact, the poll found, not only does 76 percent of the general British population have no idea that the porn blocking law will take effect in April, but even a majority of Britain’s most ardent porn fans have no idea that they are about to be cut off, unless they prove their age by uploading a passport or driver’s license. The survey found that 53 percent of British citizens who said that they view porn every day or at least on “most days” were unaware of the new porn law—which has been pending since it was passed by parliament in 2017—while among those who watch online porn “one to three times per week” roughly the same number, 52 percent, knew nothing about the law. But the survey also found broad support for the new law among Britons, once they were made aware of the details. But even though two-thirds, 67 percent, said that they favored the law, only about one-third, 34 percent, said that they believed the law would actually stop teens and children under 18 from accessing porn online. Even among those who supported the law, more than half said that it would be a failure. Unsurprisingly, support for the law decreased with frequency of porn viewing. Among the daily (or near-daily) porn consumers, 28 percent said that they supported the age-verification porn law, after being told the details of the legislation. And less than half, 48 percent, of the “one-to-three times per week” porn viewers supported the law. Among those in the U.K. survey who claim that they “never” watch porn, 80 percent support the imminent age-verification law, but only 40 percent say it will actually work. Photo by Adrian Pingstone/Wikimedia Commons Public Domain 

 
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