Deleting Online Predators Act

Congress is back at it again. Rep. Michael Fitzpatrick has introduced the Deleting Online Predators Act, known as DOPA.
bq.MySpace and other social-networking sites like LiveJournal.com and Facebook are the potential targets for a proposed federal law that would effectively require most schools and libraries to render those Web sites inaccessible to minors, an age group that includes some of the category’s most ardent users. – “Declan McCullagh(Congress targets social network sites)”:http://news.com.com/2100-1028_3-6071040.html?tag=nl.e777 I think DOPEY might be a better name for it. I understand their concerns but blocking all websites that let users create public “Web pages or profiles” seemed strangely Deja Vu to me. And then I realized: that is the sort of thing that “China does(Democracy, Freedom and Human Rights)”:http://www.libraryplanet.com/2005/06/16/democracy.
bq.The term ‘commercial social networking website’ means a commercially operated Internet website that – (i) allows users to create web pages or profiles that provide information about themselves and are available to other users; and (ii) offers a mechanism for communication with other users, such as a forum, chat room, email, or instant messenger. – “Deleting Online Predators Act of 2006(Deleting Online Predators Act of 2006)”:http://www.politechbot.com/docs/fitzpatrick.social.networking.051006.pdf This bill is obviously aimed at MySpace but it would block access to just about every site on the Internet. I don’t think is constitutional but I expect there will be a long court battle before it is decided if this passes.

Posted by Michael K Pate

Michael K. Pate tends to spend a great deal time of time around computers. He has been a Librarian since 1997. Michael was born in Avon Park, Florida in 1966. Except for a couple of brief periods in his life (once in Tampa and once in Winter Haven/Haines City), he has been a life-long resident. Originally, he planned on a career as a Computer Programmer and therefore graduate from Webber College with a Bachelor of Science in Computer Information Systems in 1988. However, unhappy with career opportunities at the time, he soon returned to school and received a BS in Social Science Education from the University of South Florida. He began his career in education at Avon Elementary and later Avon Park Middle working as a Computer Lab Coordinator. While technological challenges were interesting, he found himself more and more interested in becoming a Media Specialist. He began work on his MLS in 1995. However, a summer internship at the Sebring Public Library in 1996 soon made him reconsider just what his career should be. Upon graduation in 1997, he secured a position as a Media Specialist at Eastside Elementary in Haines City. Eventually, the position he was looking for opened up and he returned to SPL as Reference Librarian in 1999. In 2003, he became Assistant Director of the Highlands County Library System, serving in that role until the position was eliminated during a late round of budget cuts in 2010. Since then, he has been the Computer Support Specialist for the Heartland Library Cooperative. In 2011, he began serving on the Board of Directors of the Tampa Bay Library Consortium.