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July 18, 2001 12:00am
Editorial Comment on the American Family Association's Accusations Towards Yahoo!
Source: AINews Editorial Comment
by: Steve Nelson

Over the past few months the American Family Association has released several news items heralding the evils of Yahoo harboring sanctuary for all manner of illegal sexual practices. When they started with the protest to Yahoo's announcement they were contemplating embracing Adult businesses I hardly raised an eyebrow considering the freedom we all have to voice our opinions in this great country.

Now, however, the redundancy of the cry gives one pause to reflect that perhaps these accusations are exaggerated. If these illegal practices were truly sanctioned on Yahoo wouldn't law enforcement take action? More probable, Yahoo itself would police it's own servers to conform with the law.

The following news item is printed in it's entirety just as it was released to the news wire by the American Family Association. Read and decide for yourself.

July 16, 5:14 pm Eastern Time
SOURCE: American Family Association
Company Press Release

Headline: Yahoo! Helps Child Molesters, Child Porn Traders, American Family Assoc. Says

(WASHINGTON) -- ``Yahoo! is providing a free service on its own servers that helps pedophiles find children to rape and traders of child pornography to exchange illegal photos,'' said Patrick A. Trueman of American Family Association. Through it's 'Child Pornography Crimes Members Directory,' Yahoo! facilitates these illegal and despicable practices,`` he added. On the directory, members list their Yahoo! I.D. Clicking on the I.D. opens up the members' personal Yahoo! profile, which includes information that the member has posted. This includes solicitations for sex with children and for child pornography, an e-mail address, often a sexually explicit photo of the member, a list of the members' favorite Yahoo! sex clubs and other Yahoo! member directories of interest.

One member, a male, 37, indicates his interests include incest and pedophilia and says he is ``looking for wife with whom I can start an incest family.'' Another lists his occupation as ``child porn addict,'' and says his hobbies are exchanging child porn by e-mail and having sex with his daughter. Another man makes the following solicitation: ``Mom, dad, and daughter looking for a young girl to play with us. How young? Try it and see.''

``Yahoo! should get out of the business of facilitating child rapists and child pornographers,'' Trueman said. ``Yahoo! should immediately close its Child Pornography Crimes Members Directory, he added.

AFA is starting an online petition this week (http://www.afa.net) urging Yahoo! to clean up its site, according to Trueman. Trueman is AFA's director of governmental affairs, and was chief of the Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Criminal Division, U.S. Department of Justice, from 1988 to 1992.

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