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Attorney General Fights To Keep Kids Safe From Internet Porn


Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtleff responded strongly today against a lawsuit that aims to dismantle a new state registry that protects children on the Internet. The Attorney General’s Office filed a motion to dismiss a complaint filed November 16 in federal court by the “Free Speech Coalition”-a front for the adult entertainment industry-challenging the constitutionality of Utah’s Child Protection Registry law.

“This lawsuit shows the pornographers true colors. They claim a ’right’ to market porn to adults, but by challenging our Child Protection Registry, they have proven their real intent to force smut on our children in our homes and schools,” says Shurtleff. “The state of Utah will vigorously defend the fundamental right of parents to keep porn out of their homes. The First Amendment does not allow pornographers to send materials to kids and parents who have expressly asked not to receive them.”

Utah’s Child Protection Registry went into effect on July 15, 2005. If an e-mail address has been registered for 30 days, the law forbids sending an electronic message that “advertises a product or service that a minor is prohibited by law from purchasing; or...contains or advertises material that is harmful to minors.” (

Since July, thousands of parents have taken advantage of the Child Protection Registry to protect their homes from adult material. In addition, scores of public and private schools have placed their school domains on the registry to keep adult advertisements out of Utah’s classrooms.

The Child Protection Registry service, which is free to parents and schools, costs only a fraction of a penny per e-mail address for adult industry marketers to make certain that inappropriate messages are not sent to minors. More than 200 responsible senders, have already registered to comply with Utah’s law by removing registered addresses.

“The courts have consistently affirmed the right of local communities to set standards to protect children from pornography,” adds Shurtleff. “The Utah Child Protection Registry creates an ’adult section’ of Internet addresses and provides marketers a fair and secure way to keep salacious materials from children.”

Assistant Attorney General Thom Roberts is defending the state against this lawsuit. The Child Protection Registry is still operational pending the lawsuit and the Attorney General reminds parents that they can still sign up for the service for free. An address does not need to exclusively be used by a child to be registered: any e-mail address to which a child may have access is eligible. You can register or get more information at


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