Tuesday, February 26, 2013

2013 Indiana Senate Bill 344 Child Protection Registry - Legislation Part 33

Senator Randall Head, a former prosecutor, brings to us the Child Protection Registry bill which is aimed at restricting marketers of products which are illegal for minors [tobacco, alcohol] or considered harmful to minors from contacting them through electronic points such as mobile devices or email. This is one of those bills that while serving its stated objective should have an ancillary benefit.

Senate Bill 0344 affects the following citations : IC 24-4.3 The synopsis is as follows:
Child protection registry. Requires the secretary of state to establish the child protection registry. Permits a person to register with the registry certain "contact points" that belong to a minor. Defines a contact point to be: (1) an electronic mail address; (2) an instant message identity; (3) a mobile or other telephone number; (4) a facsimile number; or (5) a similar point of communication defined by rule by the secretary of state. Permits a school or other institution that primarily serves minors to register its domain name with the registry. Provides that a person may not send a communication to a contact point that has been registered for more than 30 days if the communication: (1) has the express purpose of advertising or promoting a product or service that a minor is prohibited by law from purchasing; or (2) contains or has the express purpose of advertising or promoting material that is harmful to minors, as described in Indiana law. Requires persons who send such communications to check the registry (for a fee) to ensure compliance with the law. Authorizes the secretary of state to adopt rules to administer the statute and the registry. Provides for civil enforcement of the statute.

Advertisers who wants to inundate us with their unsolicited promotions will be required to check the registry to ensure that they do not send advertisements to the contact points of minors that have been registered with the secretary of state. This will be similar to the states Do Not Call list.

The ancillary benefit that I mentioned? There is a fee to check the list. If it can be more costly for us to be annoyed by these ads then all the better. The other benefit – unless there is some sworn declaration about the age of the person whose contact points are being registered – I will become a minor once the registry is established.

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More information about child custody rights and procedures may be found on the Indiana Custodial Rights Advocates website.

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