My classes have been working on international treatment of Internet Censorship. It’s led to interesting discussions about company and national policies. But it’s easy (for me at least) to fall into the Internet is new and unique trap. It’s true, but sometimes it’s also irrelevant.
Here is an excerpt from Craigslist’s list of items that are forbidden to be advertised. These restrictions are the results of prosaic US laws on advertising and commerce. As far as I know, they are exactly the same for ads in newspapers, flyers, or even word of mouth. I don’t “like” certain of these restrictions, but by and large it’s a sensible list.
- Tickets you are not allowed to sell, including airline tickets that restrict transfer.
- Coupons or gift cards that restrict transfer or which you are not authorized to sell.
- Lottery tickets, sports trading card grab bags, raffle tickets, sweepstakes entries, slot machines, other gambling items.
- Used or rebuilt batteries, or batteries containing mercury.
- Used bedding and clothing, unless sanitized in accordance with law.
There are a few controversies about Craigslist ads that seem to have more specific Internet nuances. Sexual crimes seem to feature prominently in them.