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June 25, 2024

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New Law In Italy Mandates Cell Phone Providers Block Minors From Pornography, Anonymous Web Searches

A new law in Italy is blocking children from accessing pornography. On Tuesday, a new directive from the Italian Communications Regulatory Authority (Agcom) went into effect, requiring all cell phone providers to install filtering software on SIM cards registered to minors.

The filter will automatically block pornographic websites, as well as websites featuring gambling, weaponry, and suicide-related content. The software will also bar minors from surfing the web anonymously, so that they cannot hide their age on social apps. If a SIM card is registered to a child’s parents, they have the option of turning the filtering software off or on. The software will also be available for parents to install on their home Wi-Fi routers.

Agcom Commissioner Massimiliano Capitanio commented, “The entry into force of the directive has the aim of making the web a safer and more protected place. … However, the provision will also be a test bed to verify the real willingness of adults to take an active part in the digital education of their children.” He added, “Our hope is to promote the basic digital civic education necessary to use tools that exist, but are not used, such as parental controls.”

Capitanio explained that his office is also aiming to bolster age verification services for social media sites (in Italy, children under 14 years old are not permitted to use social media but often skirt the law due to social media sites’ lax age verification procedures) and to enforce a set of guidelines that social media influencers must abide by.

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Italy’s new porn-blocking directive follows the government allocating €1 billion (nearly $1.1 billion) in funding for pro-family initiatives in an effort to boost the nation’s flagging birthrate. Those initiatives include extended parental leave, increased financial aid for working mothers, and additional funding for daycare centers. Economy Minister Giancarlo Giorgetti also implemented measures to support families, including tax deductions that increase with each child a family has. In addition, Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni established a Ministry for Family and Birth, saying that it is “time to rediscover the beauty of parenting.” Capitanio’s comments make it clear that part of parenting is protecting children from harmful content online.

In America, several states have already enacted age verification laws to bar minors from accessing pornography. Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Montana, Texas, Utah, and Virginia have required more stringent age verification for access to porn websites, prompting pornography giant PornHub to ban access to its site in most of those states.

The age verification requirement cut PornHub’s online traffic by a reported 80% in Louisiana, and the website has completely shut itself down in Mississippi, Utah, and Virginia. A poll released earlier this year reported that a vast majority (83%) of American voters support mandatory age verification for pornographic websites.


S.A. McCarthy serves as a news writer at The Washington Stand.

Editor’s Note: Pornography — A Symptom Of The Corruption In Modern Society

The Billy Graham Evangelist Association (BGEA), responding to a mother concerned by the culture’s acceptance and promotion of pornography to young people, wrote:

Pornography is both a symptom and a cause of the widespread immorality and corruption of modern society. It reaches people of all age levels through a multibillion-dollar industry including books, magazines, television, and movies, available at home and in hotels. In recent years, pornography has grown through the internet and is easily accessible through mobile devices so that it’s available with a tap on a screen. Respect and self-esteem plunge while guilt escalates. For some users, pornography leads to deviant sexual behavior and crimes.

Pornography is basically described as visual images, writing, or speech that is used for the purpose of arousing lustful sexual desires. The term derives from two Greek words: porne (“prostitute”) and graphein (“to write”). Pornographic material comes in many forms that penetrate thoughts and disturbs emotions. The saddest realization is that mankind feeds these evil desires most often through various entertainments. It will manifest itself in many ways. People may try to hide their secret life, but the Bible says, “Be sure your sin will find you out” (Numbers 32:23). Do not fulfill the lust of the flesh (see Romans 13:14).

“For all that is in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes…—is not of the Father but is of the world” (1 John 2:16). “Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body, that you should obey it in its lusts” (Romans 6:12). Flee from lust and pursue righteousness (see 2 Timothy 2:22), which can be found as one submits to Christ’s lordship by saturating our minds with the things of God.

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A new law in Italy is blocking children from accessing pornography. On Tuesday, a new directive from the Italian Communications Regulatory Authority (Agcom) went into effect, requiring all cell phone providers to install filtering software on SIM cards registered to minors.

The filter will automatically block pornographic websites, as well as websites featuring gambling, weaponry, and suicide-related content. The software will also bar minors from surfing the web anonymously, so that they cannot hide their age on social apps. If a SIM card is registered to a child’s parents, they have the option of turning the filtering software off or on. The software will also be available for parents to install on their home Wi-Fi