• chevron_right

      AI-generated child sex imagery has every US attorney general calling for action / ArsTechnica · Wednesday, 6 September - 21:48 · 1 minute

    A photo of the US Capitol in Washington, DC.

    Enlarge (credit: Getty Images )

    On Wednesday, American attorneys general from all 50 states and four territories sent a letter to Congress urging lawmakers to establish an expert commission to study how generative AI can be used to exploit children through child sexual abuse material (CSAM). They also call for expanding existing laws against CSAM to explicitly cover AI-generated materials.

    "As Attorneys General of our respective States and territories, we have a deep and grave concern for the safety of the children within our respective jurisdictions," the letter reads. "And while Internet crimes against children are already being actively prosecuted, we are concerned that AI is creating a new frontier for abuse that makes such prosecution more difficult."

    In particular, open source image synthesis technologies such as Stable Diffusion allow the creation of AI-generated pornography with ease, and a large community has formed around tools and add-ons that enhance this ability. Since these AI models are openly available and often run locally, there are sometimes no guardrails preventing someone from creating sexualized images of children, and that has rung alarm bells among the nation's top prosecutors. (It's worth noting that Midjourney, DALL-E, and Adobe Firefly all have built-in filters that bar the creation of pornographic content.)

    Read 10 remaining paragraphs | Comments

    • chevron_right

      Pornhub squarely targeted in bipartisan bill to regulate sex work online

      Kate Cox · / ArsTechnica · Monday, 21 December, 2020 - 21:56 · 1 minute

    Silhouette of person in front of laser-light projection.

    Enlarge / Silhouette of person in front of laser-light projection. (credit: Getty | picturegarden )

    In the wake of recent allegations against Pornhub and its parent company, Mindgeek, senators from both parties have introduced a new bill that would impose sweeping new regulations on online sites, platforms, and apps that host adult content. Though the bill is meant to prevent exploitation and trafficking, critics argue that the changes would create significant new risks and costs both sex workers and the fewer remaining sites that would then host them.

    Sens. Ben Sasse (R-Neb.) and Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.) on Friday introduced the Stop Internet Sexual Exploitation Act ( PDF ), which they described as "groundbreaking legislation that would require all online platforms that host pornography to put in place critical safeguards to protect Americans from sexual exploitation online."

    The bill creates sweeping verification guidelines for any site that hosts adult material: any user who uploads material to such a site would have to verify their identity with the site, and every single video posted would have to come with a signed consent form from every individual who appears in the video. All pornography platforms would also be required to disable downloads of videos they host.

    Read 15 remaining paragraphs | Comments

    • chevron_right

      FBI offers $10,000 reward in search for fugitive GirlsDoPorn founder

      Timothy B. Lee · / ArsTechnica · Friday, 25 September, 2020 - 20:50

    FBI offers $10,000 reward in search for fugitive GirlsDoPorn founder

    Enlarge (credit: FBI)

    The FBI is intensifying its worldwide search for Michael James Pratt, the New Zealand-born pornographer who created the controversial GirlsDoPorn website while living in the San Diego area. This week the FBI announced a $10,000 reward for information leading to his arrest.

    Nearly two dozen women sued Pratt and his associates for using fraud and coercion to get them to appear in pornographic videos. The women won a $13 million judgment in January, but by the time the ruling was announced, Pratt had apparently fled the country.

    Meanwhile, the federal government charged Pratt with conspiracy to commit sex trafficking by force, fraud, and coercion. Prosecutors later added child pornography charges because at least one of his victims was under 18.

    Read 3 remaining paragraphs | Comments