I enjoy using Tor very much since discovering it. I find the biggest problem is the prevalence of child exploitation on various .onion sites, while looking for adult porn which I already feel ashamed of looking at. I didn't intend to use Tor for porn reasons and I hopefully have nailed the last nail in the coffin of this bad habit, but it makes me wonder:

Although Tor itself isn't responsible for this content on the websites, but at the same time is the only gateway to them, is not some responsibility in removing child pornography and other exploitation of innocent people partly their/our responsibility? I don't agree with closing down other services, but to take the innocence of childhood and mix it with the other sections of this website is abhorrent to any decent human, and those that have problems with this need to get help. I don't know how, as I believe that those who have this problem will find most avenues disciplining them rather than helping them overcome it, due to the stigma, even though it is an illness that needs working with. Back on subject though, if the perspective was "fix it or lose it", would Tor be more inclined to remove access to these sites that do this?



If Tor made itself able to censor arbitrary websites because of objectionable content then it would open itself up to political pressure from governments to censor other content too. This would require major reengineering to reduce the security of Tor and would undermine it's own goals and ultimately make the Tor network untrustworthy.

All such censorship efforts are subject to "scope-creep", once you grant a power to a group of people the reasons for which they deploy that power are malleable. Once you justify it for one cause, it is much harder to deny it for the next and the next.

Where I live the first internet sites blocked by court mandate were piracy websites, at the request of the music and film idustry. Since then it has been expanded to pornography (at least the kinds of pornography that conservative old men don't like) and they are now pushing for radical political ideaologies and literature to be next.

Tor doesn't cause people to do bad things. Crime is a social issue which is best addressed through social means rather than censorship. Cenorship doesn't stop crimes from happening, it just hides the fact that they are happening. It would be counter-productive, people wouldn't know it was a real issue that needed to be addressed if it were just swept under the rug.


You can best compare Tor with a postal service. It takes packages from one person and delivers it to another person. The address is printed on the outside of each package. The postal service does not open each package and looks what is inside. In fact in many countries such behaviour would be illegal.

Tor does basically the same it takes packages and delivers them from one computer to another. Like the postal service uses existing infrastructure (roads etc.) to for their service, Tor uses also existing infrastructure (Internet).

So that is one of the reasons why Tor is not and should not be responsible for the contents it delivers.

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