The Batman of Obscenity

Myles Jackman, aka Obscenity Lawyer, is one of the most important people fighting for your rights as a consenting adult right now, whether you realise it or not.

“My fight is broadly against the forces which wish to constrain human sexuality,” said Jackman in a recent Guardian Long Read piece by Edward Docx. “I’ve always said that the BDSM community is about 20 years behind the LGBTQ community in terms of rights, recognition and visibility.”

Whatever your own sexual/lifestyle preferences or kinks, you may have heard about the “porn filter” – a misnomer, as it’s far more than just adult content being censored. You may also have heard about the CJIA of 2008, criminalising the possession of BDSM images involving consenting adults. As a sexual minority, those in the kink community have long been persecuted by the media, legal system and medical establishment.

Gradually, these things are changing, but it takes people like Myles Jackman to make that happen. Here is why he is now crowdfunding his work:

“1) To provide legal advice and representation for members of sexual minorities and to promote freedom of expression and privacy, for all consenting adults.

2) To campaign and advocate in public for the rights and recognition of the BDSM, LGBTQ, Adult Industry and Sex-Work communities.

3) To lobby, campaign and make legal challenges to the UK’s obscenity laws including the Obscene Publications Act and the Extreme Pornography laws.

4) To lobby, campaign and make legal challenges to the UK’s sex-work laws, working towards the goal of complete decriminalisation.

5) To spread this message of acceptance through mainstream and social media, through journalism, blogging, commenting and appearing in media outlets; as well as by providing free lectures to students, campaigns, organisations and individuals; and free legal advice clinics.”

The vast majority of his work is pro-bono. Support him at his Patreon page. It’s important for all of us, kinky or otherwise.

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Regulatrix

I’ve been neglecting my blog for a little while so am late reporting on this, but it’s something rather close to my heart, for obvious reasons. Below is a snippet from a story in the Independent about The Urban Chick Supremacy Cell vs ATVOD.

“Ms Urrutia, who described herself as a performance artist, has claimed that she had been victim to a crackdown on smaller, niche pornography providers by the Authority for Television on Demand (ATVOD).

‘…Whenever I see who has been reported to ATVOD, it is usually material that could be classified as kink – especially femdom [female domination],” she said.

ATVOD, designated as the “co-regulator” of on-demand television by Ofcom, was founded in 2010 following an EU directive on the regulation audiovisual media. It is responsible for regulating on-demand services such as ITV Player and Channel 4’s 4oD – as well as paid-for content on websites which are deemed to be “tv-like”.

In June 2013, Ms Urrutia received a letter from the regulators saying she had breached rules one, four and 11 of their code. While rules one and four related to the categorisation of her online content as TV on-demand, rule 11 relates to “material which might seriously impair the physical, mental or moral development of persons under the age of 18.”

Ms Urrutia said that as a small-time website owner she should not be regulated by ATVOD, which is funded by a service charge levied on all on-demand providers. She also insisted that her work, which she defines as performance art, did not contravene the Obscene Publications Act.

Ofcom upheld Ms Urrutia’s appeal, finding that her site did not constitute TV on-demand. Some changes had been made to the site since ATVOD’s initial investigation…’

Read the full article here, and read more about the case at Obscenity Lawyer’s blog.

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Porn Trial

I’ve previously mentioned Myles Jackman (pictured below), aka Obscenity Lawyer, who is currently defending a legal case that you should be interested in if you’ve ever seen a kinky photo. That’s right. All you need to do is to receive an unsolicited picture of an entirely legal BDSM activity in your inbox and you could end up in court. Here’s a snippet from Obscenity Lawyer’s blog post on this week’s case:

“Today the Crown Prosecution Service will attempt to persuade a jury that images of fisting should be classified as “extreme pornography” with the risk to the defendant of three years in custody, inclusion on the sex offenders’ register and damage to his personal and professional standing. All for a type of image which is commonly viewed, of an activity which is itself is legal to perform and is even discussed in the book Fifty Shades of Grey…”

See Obscenity Lawyer’s excellent blog here, find out more about how Backlash is helping people here, and watch how things progress through the Twitter hashtag #porntrial.

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