From Gannett State Bureau
BY Michael Symons
TRENTON — The Senate budget committee Monday advanced a proposal to require online dating services to tell customers whether criminal background screenings are done of members using the site to look for dates.
The bill now heads to the Senate floor, over the objections of a group of online companies whose lobbyists said the proposal won't prevent child predators and could soothe people into thinking they're safer online than they are.
Steve DelBianco, executive director of NetChoice, a coalition of e-commerce companies and trade groups, said more than a dozen states have considered but not passed such laws.
One thing is for sure: there are creepy people on the Internet. But it is also fair to say that there are creepy people at work, school, bars, dance clubs, church and in the neighborhood. While a criminal background check would be a step that could plausibly make Internet dating mildly safer, it would be a false aegis. Dirtbags of all ilk would just manage to obfuscate their identities. It may sound like a stretch, but some people falsely represent themselves on the web sometimes. We’re not saying that the background check wouldn’t help, but you always need to remain a bit vigilant when meeting someone new. Especially if that someone happens to be a politician.