Basically the german online youth protection entity put the largest fan fiction site in the world on the index (banned sites/media) and thus blacklisting it (does not appear on google searches anymore). Press had to put a lot of pressure on them to even make them give an answer. They said because the site contains virtual CP in text form.
They lifted the ban cuz they forgot to follow protocol; give the site owners time to fight. It will be banned again tho and they will possibly even restrict the access entirely later on since a court last year gave them the “Ok” to ban sites who give access to porn without asking the viewers age through passport and the owner referred to US laws and their CSEM definition.
Pixiv and all the other art sites should be next, so that finally people realize this circus. Might as well report every guy I see trying to sell Doujins on local german auction sites. People think this is some underground material. Imagine restricting access to a site that millions use and treating it like some dark web human trafficking place cuz someone wrote the wrong number in their story. Oops, of course the author meant 21 and not 12! Awful number twist. Yikes!
Enjoy your censorship.
Oh, I heard that the ban was just Google, I didn’t know the government triggered it. Does someone have an article confirming that?
It has to be some sort of misunderstanding on the German government’s part.
I mean, they wouldn’t be the first to say text on a page is too dangerous (and the country that already did that literally has a constitutional amendment protecting free speech)
I think they already are. A creator I follow on Pixiv, recently announced his intention to leave there as the rules have gotten too ridiculous and restrictive.
Under German law as of 01.07.2022 the distribution of fictional “child pornography” such as texts is punishable with imprisonment between 3 Months and 5 years.
- disseminates child pornographic content or makes it available to the general public, whereby pornographic content (section 11 (3)) is deemed to be child pornography if it relates to
a) sexual acts performed by, on or in the presence of a person under 14 years of age (child),
b) the reproduction of a child in a state of full or partial undress in a provocatively sexual pose or
c) the sexually provocative reproduction of a child’s bare genitalia or bare buttocks,
'4. produces, obtains, supplies, stocks, offers, advertises or undertakes to import or export child pornographic content in order to use it within the meaning of no. 1 or no. 2, or to facilitate such use by another, unless the offence is subject to a penalty under no. 3,
incurs a penalty of imprisonment for a term of between one year and 10 years. If, in the cases under subsection (1) sentence 1 no. 1 and no. 4, the child pornographic content reproduces no actual or realistic act, the penalty is imprisonment for a term of between three months and five years.
So no this is not an Accident and neither is it the first time Fictional content gets censored. All The Fallen for example already got censored so do porn games on steam (yes even adult ones you can not visit there sites from a German IP)
I have not been able to find an article about it. However, I did find a post on r/FanFiction about the situation: https://www.reddit.com/r/FanFiction/comments/104q69n/on_the_ao3_on_german_google_dilemma/
Welp, remember shortly before Christmas how we were suddenly unable to google for Ao3 in Germany? Yeah?
Welp, we (some friends and I) now got to the bottom of it. Took a bit of e-mail writing, inquiry writing and waiting time, but… What we had feared was right: Ao3 got indexed for CP. That’s why it doesn’t show up on google and might stop showing up on other search engines. And there is a chance we could use total access to it. Basically this is the reply we got:
The page in question was indexed on the 13th of December 2022 via the decision 15399 on the basis of offering child p***graphic contents.
Upon indexing of website they will be put on a blacklist, the so called BPJM-Module. Since google is using this module, the message you described should appear on trying to access the website.
To add to this we remind you that the legal consequences of child p***graphic contents are much harsher than those concerning usual youth protection matters.
Do you wanna know the biggest irony?
Germany has no law against written forms of CP. Never had. Which is why there are published books out there that involve sexual violence on children. So this is absolute BS. (Also, Pixiv, a website that got slammed in Japan for having actual CP, is still not indexed in Germany.)
Oh, wow, that is… That Is Not Great. Jesus Christ. I’m so tired of this current wave of thought crimes bullshit.
Watching Germany round up and destroy every uncensored copy of Josephine Mutzenbacher is going to be interesting.
oh nono that is historically relevant art completly different from someone on the internet drawing something and putting it on the internet don´t you see …
(as a more Serious side note: You could probably get active against it using the freedom of art defense. But as someone who worked on the Anti Doll ban lawsuit I can tell you being right does not mean you will find a lawyer that argues for you in the court room.)
Couldn’t you just defend yourself?
The supreme Court does have the requirement to have a lawyer. Mind you the state can just order a lawyer to take up your case in a supreme court challenge (at least it can if the case has any chance of success). But the lawyer you get then is not going to be very motivated and as such it´s probably not a good Idea.
Isn’t Germany a constitutional government? Can’t these radical and unreasoned actions be challenged?
It will keep on going and then they will forget about it and chase another boogeyman. It goes on and on. Next boogeyman may be AllTheFallen and their AI art.
People are saying it’s ‘back’, maybe Germany backed off?
They can sure. But being able to and finding the required lawyers and so on are two different things.
They are currently back because they forgot that to give them time to appeal / answer the claims. (including challenging it infront of a court)
The thing is through even if they decide to challenge the classification as child porn, they can and will just get it down for not having sufficient age verification just as they did with Steam.
To comply with German law you essentially need to Passport/ credit card or similar thing. Steam back then refused to do such a verification and instead just limited all porn games to not be displayed in Germany. And for Ao3 doing such a verification is even more of a death then for steam. So yeah you could probably challenge it in the court room but it won´t archive anything.
As for an unattached individual: The current supreme court are taking the requirement of being directly inflicted in a very narrow interpretation. So as a third person I see little to no chance to challenging this in front of the court as for now this is between the BMJSFJ and the website.
At that point, it’s not really a ‘child porn’ issue anymore, then, just a user-side age verification.
You had me thinking that Germany went out and banned fiction.
well it did. And this is because of that they clearly say so. I´m just saying even if you strike the ban down they will just get it through anyway because Youth protection.
I… do not think that’s the case. But we’ll just have to wait and see. I think the rules are limited to stories or expressions based on real events, not pure fantasy.
But I could be wrong, let’s hope not though.