ANSWERS: 3
  • Not in the U.S.A. There are not actually any illegal web sites. There is illegal content (e.g. copyright) at various websites and there are web sites that are password protected. For the occasional accidental use, I would not worry. Although you get these really threatning messages, they generally do not apply unless you try going farther. Even if you access this content, they might not be able to hold you liable. E.g. music and video's. There must be intent on your part for using these. Since the government wants to crack down on this, there can be some gray area's in the law. In general, it's difficult to show intent. For example, if you access a restricted site, it must be protected by passwords and they would need to show you trying to figure out passwords in order to access the site. Another example would be downloading music from a website that is for file swapping. You would need to download several songs to prove intent and the description of the hyperlink would need to be obvious that you are downloading copyrighted material. If you accessed this material from a source that is not obvious then it is normally not a problem. For instance an Email that says to look at a hyperlink without including any description. The exception to this would be continually receiving these Emails from the same person because that would involve colusion. The other person is likely finding the material for you so that you can say you did not intentionally download such material.
  • If a website contains obscene content like child porn, then it is not legal to have that in your possession even as a browser-cached page. The law isn't really intended to punish something like accidentally clicking a link (you might even consider yourself a victim), but intentionally returning is asking for trouble. Basically, if you come across something bad, the easiest thing is to just close the site, maybe clear your browser cache, and try not to return. If you did this as a minor at school or other place where this would apply, then follow their procedure to resolve it.. like turn the screen off and contact a supervisor. You shouldn't have much to worry about as long as you respond properly.
  • Yes, but there are only two situations where visiting such a site would get the viewer in trouble. First, it is illegal for you to download and possess child porn. All content on the web is downlaoded to your computers RAM (this is how the computer is able to dispaly the image). Thus, if you intentionally went to such a site, you are in illegal possession of child porn. If you did it unintentionally, you have technically not broken the law, but can be arrested since the mere possession is enough probable cause to arrest. You would defend yourself by showing it was unintentional. The other situation is intentionally going to sites that display copyright infringing material. NOTE: This is different from download sites, which act like a search engine. However, this is only criminal if you watch a lot of infringing material. If it is only occasional, you may be sued for infringement, but not arrested. Again, it Once you click on a link, the pictures are downloaded to your ocmputer

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