It's Okay to Look… if You Want to Die

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More sex offender panic legislation, this time from the Garden State, and this time focusing a little on those notorious dens of abuse and intrigue, personals sites.

Bill S-1977, known as the "Internet Dating Safety Act" will require online dating websites to take more responsibility in fostering safe practices. The sites will be required to clearly post whether or not they provide online background checks of all participants. The new law also requires online dating websites to post a list of safety awareness tips.

"Internet dating companies bear a responsibility to their customers to provide basic screening to weed out threatening individuals," said [State Sen. President Richard] Codey (D). "At the very least, Internet daters should at least know whether or not their chosen Web service provides such screening. This will open a lot of people's eyes to the dangerous aspects of Internet dating."

Another bill creates a mandatory minimum for "creeps."

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  1. Internet dating companies bear a responsibility to their customers to provide basic screening to weed out threatening individuals,”

    How much basic screening do bars, gyms, grocery stores, and churches have to do?

  2. Do singles bars also need to perform background checks on each customer, or are perverts and sex offenders still free to walk in after paying a cover?

    We probably need background checks conducted at any place of social activity or else the perverts and sex offenders will win.

  3. The sites will be required to clearly post whether or not they provide online background checks of all participants.

    Like, it’s just too difficult to assume “no, they don’t”.

  4. Do singles bars also need to perform background checks on each customer, or are perverts and sex offenders still free to walk in after paying a cover?

    Sounds like we need some Panic! Legislation At The Disco.

  5. Are State legislators required to undergo background checks for pedophilia or other perversions prior to running for election?

  6. Are State legislators required to undergo background checks for pedophilia or other perversions prior to running for election?

    If they were, we probably wouldn’t have any.

  7. This will open a lot of people’s eyes to the dangerous aspects of Internet dating.

    Have I missed something here? Is there a rash of people being assaulted by those they meet on the internet? And how do those assault numbers match up to those that meet people on Christian weekend retreats?

  8. transparent business practices are a bad thing

  9. Where’s the downside to that scenario, Pig?

  10. I really don’t see the problem here, this is just a sensible piece of legislation which will protect womyn from the horrors of internet dating, itself a product of the white male hierarchical patriarchy.

  11. Too much time on my hands, it’s ticking away with my sanity
    I’ve got too much time on my hands, it’s hard to believe such a calamity
    I’ve got too much time on my hands and its ticking away from me
    Too much time on my hands, too much time on my hands
    Too much time on my hands

  12. I probably should have attributed my previous.
    Tommy Shaw, Styx.

  13. “Internet Dating Safety Act”, also known as the “Lets Send the Internet Dating Buisness to Other Countries Act”.

    I mean, it isn’t like someone in Canada could open a dating website targeted to Americans, yet be totally free of this insane panic legislation?

  14. Amanda-

    I’m going to handicap you as the winner of the thread. Extra points for you spelling of “womyn”. That made me laugh…

  15. transparent business practices are a bad thing

    I didn’t realize that it was currently illegal for an internet dating site to adopt and publicize a policy of screening its participants.

    OTOH . . .

    Seeing as, due to the WOD, black men are more likely to have criminal records and thus more likely to fail a background check, screening out people with criminal records will have a disproportionate impact and thus likely be a violation of current, misguided civil rights laws.

  16. I think they should just ban everything and then everyone should ignore all the laws and say neener neener neener to the lawmakers. After all, we are children and should act like it.

  17. I

    HATE

    Living

    In

    New Jersey

  18. Is there a rash of people being assaulted by those they meet on the internet?

    I think the problem is more on the MOB (Mail Order Bride) side, where dirt-poor foreign women hoping to become citizens get sweet-talked by sociopaths.

    That said, I don’t see why the government needs to get involved.

  19. Why don’t they just rewrite it a little bit, rename it the “Dating Safety Act”.
    Its main feature would be a requirement for all women to check before any date that the partner has passed a State certified background check against a PPD ( Potential Perverts Database).
    Why only women? Stoopid question, self evident, no? Failure to check would be a criminal offense $500 min fine, up to 5 years imprisonment. Failure to get certified, felony with mandatory minimum of 10 years. That’ll show all those perverts, creeps and predators who’s in control here!

    For that matter, why don’t the Feds get in on that idea?

    You heard it here first!
    Cynically yours,
    martin

    SIGH….

  20. “”””Its main feature would be a requirement for all women to check before any date that the partner has passed a State certified background check against a PPD ( Potential Perverts Database). “”””

    Didn’t Rosanna Arquete do something similar to that to Steve Gutenberg in Amazon Women On The Moon?

  21. Richard Codey is a tool, in both senses of the term.

    All of these state efforts at requiring background checks, or notices that such checks are not performed, are a result of lobbying efforts by True.com, the sole major dating service that conducts background checks on its members.

    In other words, it’s not about safety, it’s about competitive advantage.

    FWIW, all of the other state attempts at such content-based speech regulation have failed. But don’t let that stop NJ, no sir!

  22. I can’t help but think that this is, in part, to the Megan Meiers’ Suicide Case:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Megan_Meier_suicide_controversy
    I was rather shocked that Reason hasn’t yet commented on the affair.

  23. Referring to cgee’s comment, I don’t think this has anything to do with true.com trying to have a competitive advantage. If that were the case, wouldn’t they want to be the only service on the market that does that? If you actually look at the bill (have anyone actually seen and read the actuall bill? Just curious). The bill only requires that the service TELL you whether or not they provide any screening. They don’t HAVE to do a background screening at all. It also makes the service providers clearly give safety tips. That’s all. In the end, it IS the daters responsiblity to take steps to be safe. This bill just gives consumers more of a choice on which service they pick. I know that if I’m going to pay either way, I would rather pay for one that does minimum checks.

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