Washington – The Computer & Communications Industry Association submitted comments this week to state legislatures in Idaho, Montana, and Tennessee in opposition to proposed legislation requiring mandatory content filters on smartphones and connected devices activated in each respective state. CCIA agrees that younger users may require additional protections for certain material online, but expressed concerns about the practical feasibility of implementing a state-specific content filter for devices manufactured nationally. Manufacturers do not produce devices with state-specific parameters.
CCIA emphasized that ID SB 1163, MT HB 349, and TN HB 761/SB 138 would hinder the ability for users to manage their own settings and preferences. Further, many digital services already provide features that allow parents to employ protective measures that block material they do not wish for their children to access.
The following may be attributed to CCIA State Policy Director Khara Boender:
“Requiring a state-specific content filter would be technically infeasible for businesses to implement as manufacturers produce devices at the national – not state – level. In addition, it is unclear how the bills’ provisions would apply to devices bought on the secondary market. Digital services already provide parents with tools and settings to manage the type of material that is available to their children. CCIA cautions against advancing legislation to address an issue that can already be mitigated with other solutions that are already operational.”