Meet the Internet Posting Removal Act, an Illinois Bill That’ll Make Your Head Spin

State lawmakers all across the country busy at work crafting ridiculous, head-spinning laws can take the day off. There is no way they can top this.

A new bill proposed in the Illinois State Senate looks to completely wipe out any form of anonymity on the internet by requiring that the operators of basically any website on the entire internet take down any comment that isn’t attached to an IP, address, and real name-verified poster.

It’s called the Internet Posting Removal Act and was introduced on February 13th by Illinois General Assembly veteran Ira I. Silverstein [D].

Here’s the summary of the bill:

Creates the Internet Posting Removal Act. Provides that a web site administrator shall, upon request, remove any posted comments posted by an anonymous poster unless the anonymous poster agrees to attach his or her name to the post and confirms that his or her IP address, legal name, and home address are accurate. Effective 90 days after becoming law.

Not wanting to leave any bases uncovered, Silverstein includes that an “Anonymous Poster” means “any individual who posts a message on a web site including social networks, blogs, forums, message boards, or any other discussion site where people can hold conversations in the form of posted messages.”

Silverstein also proposes that “all web site administrators shall have a contact number or e-mail address posted for such removal requests clearly visible in any sections where comments are posted.”

Beyond the obvious questions about self-verification of IP addresses (?) and home addresses (wat?), the logistics of this thing are mind-boggling at best. Any comment on any site that has commenting? And we haven’t even talked about the constitutionality angle.

When people who have no idea how the internet actually works start drafting laws, this is what happens. This isn’t the first, nor the last bill of this type that will hit state legislatures. More than likely, this bill will never make it out of committee (it’s been referred to assignments). But the simple knowledge that this kind of thing could even exist is enough to make you need a drink.

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11 Comments on Meet the Internet Posting Removal Act, an Illinois Bill That’ll Make Your Head Spin

  1. So every time anyone says anything like “screw the government and their spying, laws like this go to far towards orwells ‘thought policing’ ” it’s extra easy for them to put you on a list with everyone else who has something negative to say about their moronic drivel. They’ll already refuse you at borders because of keyword searches. Now they want to be able to basically say ‘we don’t like that, let us track you for it or we’ll censor you”?! Free speech my arse. On a technical note, modern ISP’s use dynamic IP adresses, which change periodically to protect your privacy, so the *only* way for you to be spyed on is through a warrant issued to your ISP. Now I don’t know if that therefore implies that the legislators behind this are just completely inept and have no idea about the Internet, or something a little bit more sinister?

  2. I’ve noticed this movement further afield and whilst many do post under their real name you will start to see JohnSmith574356986 or JohnSmith7536 appearing everywhere. The reality is that the Internet is tightening up and if we go down this road watch all the commentating dry up on ‘state’ controlled sites. Freedom of Speech is under attack and people should dig their heels in before losing their rights.

  3. Lovely, indeed; hey Southern baptist, I think your real name is Southern Idiot> I think you should thump-up on your silly bible little more often, Obama likes it, you moron!

  4. if the government are going after people for not being honest, then they need to line there self up infront of a fireing squad, and let the shoot the hell out of them bastards all of them!!!!!!!

  5. No one asked Baptist. Its not about being a coward its about freedom. It the Government is going to start going after people for not being honest there is going to be a lot of people getting in trouble. And lying is protected by the 1st amendment.

    Am I to believe Southern Baptist is your real name. #COWARD ??

  6. I AGREE with this law! If you are ashamed of what you post you shouldn’t post it!

    I have NEVER used fake names…ONLY COWARDS DO!

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