The French government has announced it will move to block five of the world's major porn sites unless they introduce identity verification for all users to ensure that users are over 18.
Adult websites Pornhub, xHamster, XVideos, XNXX and Tukif are in
the firing line.
The move by France s Higher Audiovisual Council looks to force the websites to comply with a law introduced last year which made it compulsory to carry out age verification checks for adult content.
The council said the
sites current tactic of simply asking users to fill out a check-box stating they are over 18 is not satisfactory and that they are breaking the law by failing to introduce better controls. The move sees France align with European neighbours Germany
in their efforts to bring about change in the adult industry by taking action against sites and organisations that do not prevent children from accessing adult content.
It will be interesting to see how porn users respond to the censorship and the
dangers of handing over ID to be associated with porn use. The British Government will surely be monitoring the situation carefully. Options available to users are to subscribe to a VPN, use the Tor browsers, seek out unblocked porn websites, or possibly
share porn via different media. After all a year's worth of porn viewing can be shared on a single memory stick.
One can be sure that the French internet blocking mechanisms will surely by well analysed in what will become a hot topic for millions
of interested people. One suspects that the security services will be somewhat unimpressed if millions of people start using encrypted services to circumvent the state censorship.