May 19, 2003 11:14am
These Days "More is Better"
by: Joan Irvine
Most people recognize Adult Sites Against Child Pornography (ASACP) as the organization established in 1996 by Alec Helmy to help the adult site industry make a difference in the battle against child pornography. Over the years, ASACP has accepted and reviewed thousands of reports of suspected child pornography, passing on only valid instances to the F.B.I. and U.S. Custom Services through NCMEC.org.
Because of the ongoing support of its Sponsors and Members, ASACP has been rapidly evolving. In addition to its previous roles, ASACP works directly with the F.B.I. on special cases, and serves as an effective intermediary by contacting site owners to obtain information; thus, speeding up the F.B.I.'s ability to apprehend perpetrators.
Also, ASACP now reviews all sites for compliance to its Code of Ethics before accepting them as Approved Members, and works closer with other organizations such as the Free Speech Coalition and ICRA. With input from adult industry leaders at quarterly Advisory Council meetings, ASACP is working to establish "Best Practices" for various segments of the industry. Increased media exposure, including a recent 6-minute segment on SexTV, is broadening its impact!
A Recent Fight
Last year, ASACP received an email from a woman claiming that illegal pictures of her were featured on an adult site. She said she was 17 years of age when the pictures were taken. She also claimed that she had contacted the site operators directly, but had not received a reply.
In a follow-up email, she stated that the company had replied, but they were not planning to remove the content. She was hurt, furious and offended, and asked ASACP to report the site to the authorities. Frankly, I felt sorry for this 'victim'.
I reviewed the site in question. Even with my limited industry experience at the time, this site did not appear to contain child pornography. The models looked over the age of 18 and the site featured prominent 2257 disclaimers. There were no 'unacceptable' keywords, such as 'lolita' or 'pre-teen.' There were so many affiliations with 'net-safety' organizations such as ICRA, NetNanny, CyberPatrol and ASACP that I could not imagine why the Webmasteroperators would risk their business and reputation by featuring illegal content.
I emailed the Webmaster explaining the situation. Within 24 hours, I received a reply stating: "We are an affiliate of ATK. The photos in question appeared on ATK Exotics, and not on our site. I will ask the Webmaster of ATK to contact you."
Within 12 hours, I received an email from Kim Nielsen, the President of Kingdom WWW Operations, Inc., a.k.a. ATK. He stated that he knew who this woman was as she had already contacted him, and that he had responded to her emails, removed all her pictures, and had instructed all resellers to do the same.
Kim offered to submit all documentation on the model. As most professional adult site owners do, he had all the required 2257 documentation: a signed model release, a driver's license with matching signatures and addresses, plus a college student ID and a VISA card. "A key in this situation is that both the VISA card and student ID had valid dates consistent with the date on the model release form and not consistent with the date that the model claimed the images were actually taken," stated Nielsen.
I also learned that ATK had purchased the pictures from a professional photographer. It's amazing that the model had not mentioned this fact.
As it turns out the model's mother had learned about the pictures, was irate, and was the person emailing everyone, including ASACP. The mother had harassed the photographer so much that he tried to obtain a restraining order.