Fresh off unsubstantiated claims that Canada is a piracy haven, the media is now reporting that Canada is also a "pedophile haven." At least two groups are quoted in a CTV article claiming that Canada has lax laws and should require Internet service providers to take stronger action against pedophile and child porn sites. Moreover, Conservative MP Art Hanger infers that the law should be changed to require ISPs to report sites, even if they are not illegal.
Pedophelia and child pornography are obviously unconscionable and all countries should have strong laws to criminalize such behaviour. To my knowledge, there is no reason to think that Canada falls short in this regard. Not only are there criminal code provisions to address these issues, but Canadian ISPs voluntarily launched the controversial Project Cleanfeed initiative to block child pornography images. Moreover, the OpenNet Initiative summary of Canada and the U.S. leaves no reason to believe that U.S. ISPs face stricter scrutiny or liability for this form of conduct (several U.S. law initiatives have been struck down as unconstitutional). Everyone wants to find effective tools for addressing this issues, but misleading and inaccurate characterizations of Canadian law is simply not the way to do it.