Legal compliance depends on each project’s terms, content and jurisdiction. Website should respect legal requirements for your business jurisdiction and also for all users that will be accepted on site.
These are some generic compliance suggestions, not legal advise.
Before starting such business, seek legal advise from a professional consultant.
Some considerations related to US legal requirements related to adult websites (seek professional legal advise before starting such site):
Compliance of Federal Law requiring Maintenance of Record
Federal law, specifically Title 18 USC s. 2257 & 2257A, requires that any publication of actual or simulated sexually explicit conduct be supported by specific categories of performer records, maintained in a particular manner. While these statutes are the subject of a legal challenge, the obligations currently exist. Any 2257 records keeping protocol should be developed in close consultation with legal counsel. By way of summary, the records must include:
- a 2257 compliance form (containing the model’s legal name, address, date of birth, stage names or aliases, and the date of original production of the content);
- a legible copy of the model’s picture identification card;
- a list of all URL’s associated with the performance; and
- a copy of the content. For live webcam networks, this last category can be addressed by maintaining a representative sample of the model’s content, sufficient to identify the model. The records must be maintained by any producer, which is broadly defined in the law to include websites that publish the content. The location of the records must be disclosed on the website, in a specific manner, and inspections allowed if requested by the Attorney General. Failure to comply with this statute is a federal felony carrying fines and imprisonment.
18 U.S. Code § 2257A. Record keeping requirements for simulated sexual conduct
(a) Whoever produces any book, magazine, periodical, film, videotape, digital image, digitally- or computer-manipulated image of an actual human being, picture, or other matter that —
(1) contains 1 or more visual depictions of simulated sexually explicit conduct; and
(2) is produced in whole or in part with materials which have been mailed or shipped in interstate or foreign commerce, or is shipped or transported or is intended for shipment or transportation in interstate or foreign commerce;
shall create and maintain individually identifiable records pertaining to every performer portrayed in such a visual depiction.
(b)Any person to whom subsection (a) applies shall, with respect to every performer portrayed in a visual depiction of simulated sexually explicit conduct—
(1) ascertain, by examination of an identification document containing such information, the performer’s name and date of birth, and require the performer to provide such other indicia of his or her identity as may be prescribed by regulations;
(2) ascertain any name, other than the performer’s present and correct name, ever used by the performer including maiden name, alias, nickname, stage, or
professional name; and
(3) record in the records required by subsection (a) the information required by paragraphs (1) and (2) and such other identifying information as may be prescribed
(c) Any person to whom subsection (a) applies shall maintain the records required by this section at their business premises, or at such other place as the Attorney General may by regulation prescribe and shall make such records available to the Attorney General for inspection at all reasonable times.
(1) No information or evidence obtained from records required to be created or maintained by this section shall, except as provided in this section, directly or indirectly, be used as evidence against any person with respect to any violation of law.
(2) Paragraph (1) shall not preclude the use of such information or evidence in a prosecution or other action for a violation of this chapter or chapter 71, or for a violation of any applicable provision of law with respect to the furnishing of false information.
(1) Any person to whom subsection (a) applies shall cause to be affixed to every copy of any matter described in subsection (a)(1) in such manner and in such form
as the Attorney General shall by regulations prescribe, a statement describing where the records required by this section with respect to all performers depicted in that copy of the matter may be located. In this paragraph, the term “copy” includes every page of a website on which matter described in subsection (a) appears.
(2) If the person to whom subsection (a) applies is an organization the statement required by this subsection shall include the name, title, and business address of the individual employed by such organization responsible for maintaining the records required by this section.
Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act
Section 230(c)(1) of the Communications Decency Act of 1996, codified at 47 U.S.C. § 230, provides immunity from liability for providers and users of an “interactive computer service” who publish information provided by third-party users:
Under this law “no provider or user of an interactive computer service shall be treated as the publisher or speaker of any information provided by another information content provider.” Therefore, you as a publisher of content are, even otherwise, not responsible for any content that is published by the models located outside the US.
Performers must not be Minors
18 U.S.C. § 2422(b) prohibits the use of a computer by an adult to send messages on the Internet to “persuade and entice” a person under 18 years of age to engage in sexual activity that constitutes a criminal offense.
18 U.S.C. § 2422(b)
(b) Whoever, using the mail or any facility or means of interstate or foreign commerce, or within the special maritime and territorial jurisdiction of the United States knowingly
persuades, induces, entices, or coerces any individual who has not attained the age of 18 years, to engage in prostitution or any sexual activity for which any person can be charged with a criminal offense, or attempts to do so, shall be fined under this title and imprisoned not less than 10 years or for life. Therefore, you need to ensure that all models are 18 years or old.
Consent Forms must be signed
You also need to ensure that every model signs a consent form giving you her written consent for her performance.
18 U.S.C. § 1801.
(a) Whoever, in the special maritime and territorial jurisdiction of the United States, has the intent to capture an image of a private area of an individual without their consent, and knowingly does so under circumstances in which the individual has a reasonable expectation of privacy, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than one year, or both.
Disclaimer: Depending on each project contents and jurisdiction, additional steps or site features may be required for legal compliance, beyond standard capabilities implemented by this software. After receiving professional legal advise, software developers can evaluate additional compliance features that can be implemented (for additional fees).
This can includes special tools for verification/confirmation of user identity and agreement, reporting abusive content and users.