A new law took into effect in Louisiana for 2023 that will require residents to verify that they are 18 and over when visiting pornography sites like PornHub or OnlyFans. With their LA Wallet app, they will need to show identification. The law also requires online websites whose content has more than 33.3% pornographic to have its visitors also verify their ages.
The new law, known as Act 440, is seen as controversial to many residents of the state. However, the bill was signed because of the idea that minors are being overexposed 'due to advances in technology.' "Pornography contributes to the hyper-sexualization of teens and prepubescent children and may lead to low self-esteem, body image disorders, an increase in problematic sexual activity at younger ages, and increased desire among adolescents to engage in risky sexual behavior," the bill reads.
The main reasons people of the state are outraged by the bill is caused by the idea that this new law can be 'misused' by people homophobic or transphobic people in power.
"As homophobia and transphobia — especially homophobia in the context of porn — is rising, I could totally see the state zeroing in on people consuming gay porn, or lesbian porn, and either surveilling them further or criminalizing that," said Olivia Snow, a dominatrix and research fellow at UCLA’s Center for Critical Internet Inquiry, via TechCrunch.
Snow also told TechCrunch that the bill may negatively effect sex workers under the view of protecting children. "[Act 440] is really just further marginalizing sex workers, which I think is going to be the primary effect,' Snow said. 'I imagine this means that there will be an increased black market of premium content that’s non-consensually disseminated … [as well as] sex workers losing another stream of income and having to resort to less protected avenues."
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