Tag Archives: child pornography

Why possession of child porn must be re-legalised

Swedish Pirate Party founder Rick Falkvinge has written a must read essay on why “the battle over freedom of information” will be fought over laws banning possession of child pornography:

Child pornography is horrible and awful from every angle and in every aspect. But it is not dangerous to the fabric of society. Censorship and electronic book burning, however, is.

While that is his main point, he also goes beyond the “CP is horrible, but” argument, as he acknowledges that current laws criminalise the photos and videos that teenagers shoot of themselves and each other. That’s what CP has come to include today.

In a brilliant analysis, he tracks down the propagators of current legislation and concludes that ”the pressure for banning possession of child pornography comes from a whole fruit salad of Christian fundamentalists, under the pretext of protecting children”:

Making insecure teenagers feel guilt, fear, and shame over their own bodies and natural desires, causing them to suppress their instincts in fear, even criminalizing natural behavior and destroying their lives, was never a side effect. It was the whole idea.

The essay contains many illuminating (and hair-raising) examples, for example of how the copyright industry has admitted to “love child porn” since it provides censorship laws that they can use, or how filming a murder (even of a child) isn’t illegal, or how documenting an ongoing child sexual abuse can give higher sentences than the actual abuse.

This shouldn’t be a controversial topic. Remember that possession of child pornography was legal in most parts of the world until just a decade or so ago (1999 in Sweden). The Swedish Association of Journalists still is against the ban.

That’s why Falkvinge makes a point of using the word “re-legalize” instead of “legalize”.

Anyway, consider it mandatory reading – and enjoy!

Court rules: Viewing child pornography legal in New York, USA

This just in:

Viewing pornographic images or video of underage children on the Internet is legal, according to a New York State appeals court in one part of a decision about the fate of a college professor whose Internet browser had more than 100 such images stored in its cache.
The court’s decision found that looking at child pornography on the Internet without downloading it to a hard drive isn’t the same as “possessing” it, which New York State law prohibits.

Read the full story at Mashable, where you can also read the court ruling in full.

Entartete Shota – the new boy sex comic!

I’m immensely proud to announce the birth of my latest project Entartete Shota – a boy sex comic by Japanese manga artist Tsukumo Gou, translated to English by myself!

It’s been a long process to search out and contact potential artists for Entartete Shota. You know how picky I am – only the best would do, and I’m happy I did find the best one (and more are on their way!). I’ve negotiated in Tokyo (twice), designed the magazine in Berlin and finally supervised the printing of it in Prague. It took some months, but now the West is finally ready for the genre that rocked Japan.

Shotacon (shota) comics are drawings of young boys having sex. The genre is popular among male as well as female readers in Japan, and the artists too are of both sexes. The girl equivalent is called lolicon (loli).

Even though no real boys are involved in shota comics, there are countries where they are illegal. Wikipedia has a good page called The legal status of cartoon pornography depicting minors. Please read it if you’re not sure of the legal situation in your country! I will not be able to answer any questions regarding this.

If the first issue of Entartete Shota is a success, I plan to publish a new issue twice a year.

Ready to write publishing history with me? Then order your copy at Ilovemags now! (There are some sample pages there as well.)

By the way, the format is exactly the same as for Destroyer, so Entartete Shota will fit well in your collection. :)

People living in Sweden can order Entartete Shota at Sweden’s biggest book shop Adlibris, or read it at the National Library for that matter. Daily newspaper Expressen’s culture editor already wrote about it (she defended the comic despite disliking it), and Johanna Sjödin blogged about it.

There are 500 copies. It’s time to let the beat rock!

/Karl

Swedish manga translator guilty of child porn crime because of cartoons

Gaston Goor

Svea Hovrätt, a regional court in Sweden, today found manga translator Simon Lundström guilty of possession of child pornography, because of 51 drawn pictures (cartoons) that were considered child pornography. The court thus confirmed the verdict from July 2010 by local court Uppsala tingsrätt, but lowered the sentence a bit after scrutinising the drawn cartoons.

In a press release, Svea Hovrätt explains that “in four images, it cannot with absolute certainty be ruled that they depict children” and that “in eight images, it is uncertain if they are pornographic in the sense of the law”.

But they also write:

Regarding the remaining 39 images, the court finds that they are, from a legal perspective, to be regarded as pornographic images of children.

It should be remembered that there were no real children depicted in these images – all were cartoons. It was thus fantasy creatures that the court investigated. A bit surprised, they note that some of the “children” have “cat ears and tails”. Nevertheless, they come to this conclusion in the verdict, which I have read:

Even if some of the images do not appear real in all details, there is no doubt that they depict human beings.

Lundström is thus sentenced for child pornography of the lower degree, and has to pay a fine of 5,600 SEK (632 euro).

Lundström is Sweden’s most famous manga expert. He is teaching in this subject at the university and has translated over 80 manga, most of them published by Bonniers, Sweden’s biggest publishing house. One could expect that Bonniers would defend Lundström, since this verdict will most definitely affect their own business, but instead they chose to stop working with him, according to DN.

As a manga expert, Lundström possessed about three million pictures, that were investigated by the police. Of these three million, only 51 were considered child pornography (or 39 of them, according to Svea Hovrätt). One can also note, that out of these 51 pictures, 20 were duplicates from a backup disk.

Lundström says he is surprised at the verdict, and concludes that he must now stop working as an expert of manga in Sweden (from TT Spektra/SvD):

“I can work as a translator, but not as a manga expert, as I would need access to the erotic cartoons that exist in Japan. I’m not even allowed to visit manga artists’ homepages in Japan, since that is considered a crime”, he says.

Many are surprised that drawn cartoons, where no child has been involved in the creation process, can be deemed child pornography in Sweden. In its press release, the court explains the aim of the law:

The reason why the law has been extended to include drawn images is that such images are seen as humiliating to children at large, and not only to the child that might have been used as a model.

Personally, I’m very surprised too. I was convinced Svea Hovrätt would find Lundström not guilty – the court always has a choice to interpret the text in the law. Hopefully, Lundström will appeal and Högsta domstolen, the highest court in Sweden, and it will repeal the ruling.

I’ve chosen to illustrate this post with a painting by Gaston Goor (1902-1977), a French illustrator who worked closely with Roger Peyrefitte. This painting is now most definitely illegal to possess in Sweden. (Neither me nor my blog’s servers reside in Sweden.)

Wille at Prylfeber recommends Swedish manga fans to go through their mangas and cut out any picture that might be considered child porn in Sweden.

Also read my three posts in Swedish (but with illustrations that everyone will understand), about ways other than sexual that Ecpat and other defenders of the law think are goods way to humiliate children in drawings (murder for example):

I’m still convinced this interpretation of the law will not hold, or that the law will be changed. But until then, Sweden should be considered a no-go area not only for manga fans, but for artists in general.

(What’s this? I decided to start posting on the Destroyer blog again, starting with this double post from my personal blog, since it is relevant here too. Also, if you’re reading this in your reader, visit the blog too because I redid the design completely and it’s fantastic!)