Internet Dating Safety Act

General News
  • Contributed by:
  • Views: 4,020
On January 14, 2008, New Jersey passed the first United States online dating legislation called the Internet Dating Safety Act (Senate Bill-1977/A4304). This law will take effect in 120 days. Several other states have tried to pass different variations of this Act but New Jersey is the first state to succeed. All I can say is this Internet Dating Safety Act is a mess. In a nut shell it requires all New Jersey-based members to be informed if criminal background checks are performed and if the people who are deemed to have a criminal background are prevented from joining the site. This sounds ok on the surface but, as pointed out on Online Personals Watch this section quoted below from the act will cause some major headaches for dating websites:

"If an Internet dating service does not conduct criminal background screenings on its members, the service shall disclose, clearly and conspicuously, to all New Jersey members that the Internet dating service does not conduct criminal background screenings. The disclosure shall be provided when an electronic mail message is sent or received by a New Jersey member, on the profile describing a member to a New Jersey member, and on the web-site pages of the Internet dating service used when a New Jersey member signs up. A disclosure under this subsection shall be in bold, capital letters in at least 12-point type."

I also have to wonder why dating sites are getting picked on here. Going to Bars, Dance Clubs, etc.. offer a no safer place to meet singles and these establishments are not required to do background checks on their customers. Plus,quality of a background check has to be put into question. How far do you need to go here? All this act will do is just lead to a false sense of security for people dating online in New Jersey. Not all criminals get caught!