“Merely viewing Web images of child pornography does not, absent other proof, constitute either possession or procurement within the meaning of our Penal Law,” Ciparick wrote in the decision.
See a copy of the court’s full ruling on the child pornography decision.
The court said it must be up to the legislature, not the courts, to determine what the appropriate response should be to those viewing images of child pornography without actually storing them. Currently, New York’s legislature has no laws deeming such action criminal.
The fact that you are agreeing with their foul hair splitting is nauseating. Child pornography is so evil, so revolting, that no hair splitting whitewashes a poorly written statute. At some point right and wrong trump petty legalistic “how many legalisms can dance on the head of a pin”.
We don’t want “do what we might have broadly hinted at” statutes. That is the road to tyranny, especially when the fix is blindingly easy.
Things are not illegal unless a law makes them illegal. Probably the state will fix the statute. I’ve never seen child pornography, but I’ve been on sites where others were cursing someone out for posting an (already removed) picture which they felt was child porn. These were not sex sites. I’d hate to go to jail for inadvertently viewing something. However, it sounds like NY is saying you can deliberately view this stuff on line. I bet they change the statute very quickly.
After everything is said there is one question and only one question....how did the images get on his computer if he didn’t save them?
I think you’re misunderstanding the ruling LJ. All it states is that images on the cache alone are not proof of intent. In this case, it had virtually no effect on the man’s sentencing as there was plenty of other proof that he had knowingly downloaded child porn.
And yes, it is incredibly easy to see things you don’t want to see on the internet. I called the FBI (who I believe blew me off) over a decade ago when I saw such images on an AOL message board. Those images were no doubt in my cache, so was I guilty of a crime?
Just fyi, I know of at least once instance where reading FR has resulted in users unwittingly being exposed to porn they did not wish to see. It was some website’s juvenile response to an innocent FRreeper hot linking images, and the mods quickly removed it, but still, that was an image that wound up the cache.
It sucks when laws are poorly written, but I won't refrain from saying so just because some people will claim I nauseate them.
If viewing a web image was the same as "possession" or "procurement", then listening to a song in a youtube video would be considered "possessing" the song, and would open one up for prosecution under copyright infringement laws.
Clearly, I don't "take possession" of a song, or of a newspaper article, or of a book, or of a picture, simply because I see it on the internet -- any more than we would all be in "possession" of the images we see on a TV screen in Times Square.
If the legislature meant to say that "viewing" child pornography was illegal, that's what they need to write into the statute.
And I guess I am saying that, as abhorent as child pornography is, I think the risk of judges deciding to re-write laws because they feel something is horrible is a much graver risk than the risk to children based on this particular ruling. The children were harmed when the pornography was made, there are guilty people who need to be caught and convicted.