Not to mention, depictions of things are a grey area. At what point does it transition from being 'art' to 'pornography'?
US High Court judge - "I know [hardcore pornography] when I see it". And that's the problem with all these sweeping censorship rules.
It used to be that deleting unwanted images immediately would be sufficient defence that you weren't storing it. UNLESS you have the technical ability to undelete them (which renders anyone with tech skills unable to use such a defence if it was proved they were storing them in the recycle bin). Not sure what it is now with streaming but Police say people who accidentally stumble on an image won't be prosecuted, but anyone who exhibits a pattern of repeatedly viewing an image or dodgy sites will get picked up.
What happens to photo storage sites like imgur or photobucket? do they go in the list because they have some adult material?
I suppose the "possess by viewing" argument might work if it's the type that caches and you haven't cleared your browser cache in a while...
If they go through a site's logs and see that someone accessed Image X once and left immediately then that entry can be discarded (reality stored somewhere for future "reference" no doubt) since they likely stumbled on it by accident. If someone visited Image X, hung around, then later came back to Image X and moved on to Image Y and Image Z then you have found someone exhibiting a habit of viewing said images. Of course, if courts really want to nail you for something and want to find a reason to ruin you then this all goes out the window.
@JJonas: This is one reason such sites are blocked in schools because their content cannot be policed all the time.
I had such high hopes of this Government and in particular Cameron as PM. Sadly though they have proven themselves of failing to listen to the people who have the real expertise - this filtering announcement being yet another prime example. Letting ministers foam off cluelessly at the mouth (Gove being the chief proponent) and are now firmly marked in history for their ability to waste money devising plans and policy's which are promptly scrapped or turned around. Such a wasted opportunity.
I do get the impression that there is also a great deal of confusion at policy level between just what role ISP's and hosting companies provide. For instance they seem to blame ISP's (who most often just provide the connection) for content on hosting companies servers, regardless of where in the world they are and put pressure on providers to police content they have no control over.
Looks like it might be a good time to get into the VPN business. :)
And who gets to decide what gets blocked or not? This is a very slippy slope the govt has entered into.
What about deviantart and other such sites? Will there be a centralised government controlled 'approved' and 'naughty' website list?
I have a very bad feeling about this.
Until the legal system moves at as fast as technology does technology will be impossible to regulate.