North American Network Operators Group

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Duties of US ISPs

  • From: Sean Donelan
  • Date: Tue Jun 12 11:16:35 2007

On Mon, 11 Jun 2007, John Levine wrote:
Also, ISPs in the United States are not common carriers.  Even the
ISPs that are owned by phone companies (which are common carriers for
their phone service) are not common carriers.

The Communications Decency Act, Digitial Millinium Copyright Act, Electronic Communications Privacy Act and even ISP's own Terms of Service give operators substantial protection for "Good Samaritan" acts to filter, screen, allow, disallow or report objectionable material.

In addition, under 42 USC 13032, US public electronic communication providers (also known as ISPs) have the *DUTY* to report, not monitor, child pornography to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. Failing to file a report could result in a fine of $50,000 or more, except due to a quirk in how the statute was written, apparently no US government agency was given the authority to issue the fines.

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