Twitter has changed its terms of service to explicitly allow for pedophile-type content to be allowed on the platform including discussions related to “attraction towards minors” and depictions of nude children, as long as they are “artistic.”
The new terms of service explicitly state, “Discussions related to child sexual exploitation as a phenomenon or attraction towards minors are permitted.”
The new rule adds gray legalistic language that content is allowed “provided they don’t promote or glorify child sexual exploitation in any way.”
Despite the qualifier, Twitter has stated it will allow for nude depictions of children on their platform as long as the images meet certain criteria including being “artistic.”
“Artistic depictions of nude minors in a non-sexualized context or setting may be permitted in a limited number of scenarios e.g., works by internationally renowned artists that feature minors,” states Twitter’s new rule.
Prominent pedophilia advocate Dr. James Cantor, who refers to pedophiles as “minor-attracted persons” or “MAPs“, has been pushing for Twitter to change its rules for years.
Last year, Dr. Cantor co-signed a letter to Twitter’s Director of Trust and Safety John Starr, urging Twitter to allow pedophiles safe access to its network and the ability to discuss their attraction to children on the social media platform.
Dr. Cantor was one of several academics to sign the letter which refers to “Virtuous Pedophiles” and argued that they should be allowed to network on Twitter.
The pedophile advocates claimed that if so-called “virtuous pedophiles” are not allowed to network on Twitter, they are more likely to sexually abuse children in the real world.
“In our professional opinions, terminating the accounts of non-offending, anti-contact MAPs is likely to result in the opposite effect of that which Twitter may expect or intend. Rather than reducing the incidence of child sexual abuse, if anything, it increases the risk that some pedophiles will be unable to obtain the peer or professional support that they may need in order to avoid offending behavior. It is also likely to increase the stigma and isolation associated with pedophilia and thereby increase the likelihood of some MAPs acting on their sexual feelings,” stated the letter.
Though it remains to be seen how far Twitter will take this, let us not forget that laws in this country forbid such things, and make no account for whether the images are “tasteful” or “artistic.”
Images of child pornography are not protected under First Amendment rights, and are illegal contraband under federal law. Section 2256 of Title 18, United States Code, defines child pornography as any visual depiction of sexually explicit conduct involving a minor (someone under 18 years of age).
Notably, the legal definition of sexually explicit conduct does not require that an image depict a child engaging in sexual activity. A picture of a naked child may constitute illegal child pornography if it is sufficiently sexually suggestive. Additionally, the age of consent for sexual activity in a given state is irrelevant; any depiction of a minor under 18 years of age engaging in sexually explicit conduct is illegal.
Where is the line drawn, America?