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CONTACT: Amy Smorodin
March 19 , 2007
(202) 289-8928
Age Verification for Social Networking Sites to be Debated
Panel Features Experts on Policy and Enforcement at March 23rd Event

WASHINGTON D.C. - Prompted bychild safety concerns, some legislators and state attorneys general are demanding that social networking sites impose age restrictions on those looking to join their sites. Will age verification make children safer online? These proposals and other methods of ensuring safe online environmentswill be discussed Friday, March 23rd by panelists at "Age Verification for Social Networking Sites: Is It Possible? And Desirable?," a Congressional seminar hosted by The Progress & Freedom Foundation.

The discussion panel will be moderated by PFF Senior Fellow Adam Thierer, Director of PFF’s Center for Digital Media Freedom. Thierer has written extensively on the issues of child safety, parental controls and Internet regulatory policy. Panelists will debate both the technical and policy aspects of the debate over age verification for social networking websites . Jay Chaudhuri , special counsel to North Carolina Attorney General Roy Cooper, will speak. Attorney General Cooper is one of several AGs who have proposed age verification for social networking sites. Also speaking will be John Cardillo President & CEO of Sentinel Tech Holding, a leading online identification and background verification firm. Sentinel Tech Holding recently announced a partnership with in which they will be developing technology to identify and block registered sex offenders from the networking site. Jeff Schmidt, CEO of Authis, an expert in information security and infrastructure protection, will also be on hand. He is also the director of the private sector component of the FBI's InfraGard Program. Raye Croghan, who is Vice President of IDology, Inc., another leading i dentity and age verification provider, will also be speaking. Finally, Tim Lordan who serves as Executive Director of the Internet Education Foundation, a non-profit group that works to educate policymakers on Internet related issues, will be on hand.

The event, “Age Verification for Social Networking Sites: Is It Possible? And Desirable?” will be held from noon to 2 pm on Friday, March 23 rd in Room 2322 of the Rayburn House Office Building. Lunch will be served. Those wishing to attend can register online. General questions can be addressed to Jane Creel at 202-289-8928 or Media enquiries can be addressed to Amy Smorodin at 202-289-8928 or

Prior to the event, Thierer is releasing a new report, "Social Networking & Age Verification: Many Hard Questions; No Easy Solutions," which addresses identifies the many unique policy issues age verification mandates would raise.

The Progress & Freedom Foundation is a market-oriented think tank that studies the digital revolution and its implications for public policy. It is a 501(c)(3) research & educational organization.



The Progress & Freedom Foundation