A new law calling for the automatic censorship of pornographic websites by Internet service providers was being proposed in the Knesset on Thursday.
Under the proposed regulations, service providers would block access to pornographic websites as well sites that have violent content, Yedioth Ahronoth reported.
Surfers who are straining for adult entertainment will be required to call their service providers and personally ask for access.
The law was suggested by MK Lia Shemtov (Yisrael Beytenu) who said she was motivated by the recent spate of sex offenses among the nation’s youth.
Yisrael Beytenu intends to partner with the ultra-Orthodox parties, who are likely to support the law, Yedioth reported. The idea has stimulated interest from a range of Knesset members and is expected to be pushed up for debate during the current Knesset session.
Shemtov explained that 60% of Israeli youngsters between the ages of nine and 15 view pornographic websites. Nearly half the children have computers in their rooms where they can surf behind closed doors, out of sight of their parents.
Israeli Internet service providers are already required by law to have systems in place that block access to adult sites, which customers can request to be turned on without charge. Though current regulations say providers must notify their customers that the free filtering service is available, many parents remain unaware of the option. Hence, the new law proposes to make censorship the default.
The law also suggest an option in which service providers will take it upon themselves to contact all of their customers and offer them the choice of censorship or access to titillating content. However, the cost of doing that means that service providers would likely opt to implement sweeping censorship and place the burden upon customers to ask for it to be removed individually.
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