Taskforce Conference Wraps in Belfast, ASACP Attends

LOS ANGELES —The EU and Virtual Global Taskforce (VGT) Conference on Protecting Children Online took place in Belfast, Ireland last week. More than 200 representatives from law enforcement, government, industry and non-government organizations from around the world met to discuss efforts to combat child pornography.

Or, rather, combat “child abuse,” a term Jim Gamble, deputy director general of the National Crime Squad and chairman of the VGT, said should be used to describe pornographic images that feature children.

Using “pornography” to describe such images is confusing, Gamble said, and associates an industry that employs consenting adults with one that profits from “online child abuse activities.”

The VGT has no interest in consenting legal adult entertainment, Gamble added.

Representatives from the U.S. Department of Justice, Microsoft, Visa International, the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children and the ASACP were in attendance.

Joan Irvine, executive director for ASACP, said the conference provided a beneficial platform to show the adult industry’s support in the battle against child pornography.

“People were surprised but pleased that the adult entertainment was being proactive in [this] battle, protecting children and establishing best practices,” Irvine said.

While attending a pay-per-view workshop at the conference, Irvine said she was glad to discover that attendees knew who was primarily to blame for child pornography.

“It was good to hear that they know that most of the commercial child porn sites are run by organized crime, especially out of the former Soviet Bloc,” Irvine said.

Irvine said she even briefly spoke with Andrew Oosterbaan, chief of the Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section under Attorney General Alberto Gonzalez—clearly no friend of the adult industry of late.

“I introduced the ASACP to Mr. Oosterbann and let him know how the adult industry was working to combat child pornography,” Irvine told XBiz. “The conference was beneficial for ASACP. I [also] reconnected with other child porn reporting hotlines that I met at INHOPE.org meetings in the last few years and introduced ASACP to various international law enforcement agencies and companies.