Clarity on UK pornography law ?

Hi, I was reading the UK pornography laws today and it is clear that "possession" of certain types of extreme pornography such as beasitiality, childporn, porn depicting rape , acts that pose a risk of death etc are all understandably illegal.

What is not clear however, is the definition of "possession " since porn can be viewed either in : 1) hard copy such as in print, 2) downloaded and saved to a computer in electronic format or 3) viewed online without saving but potentially the web address could be automatically saved in the devices log files. I assuming that viewing porn that has been sought by the viewer would be considered the same as possession although difficult to prove an offence was committed but am interested to know the letter of the law in such cases. Anyone able to comment?

1 and 2 are definitely illegal. 3 is questionably territory and I think accidentally stumbling across it wont lead to any sort of punishment but repeat offences do. ISP's can track web activity with tracking cookies and all.

Why'd you ask? Sounds... suspicious haha

If you haven't viewed or owned any you have nothing to worry about. I agree- sounds suspicious 😒

I asked out of curiosity since I do watch online porn which could include bdsm which often will have a short interview upfront with the women participating and I then a review from them afterwards which I suppose is done to show that the participation is consensual. If you only saw the bdsm part, it would be unclear whether or not consent was given in some cases and if it was not consensual, then it would clearly be classed as extreme pornography and in some cases even rape.

I understand that opening a video, seeing something is not quite right and immediately closing it again would be acceptable . I have twice in the past stumbled across what appeared to be underage and once what appeared to be rape and reported this to the UK authorities online so personally have nothing to hide but do wonder what the actually legal position is on viewing such material and how a court would see things. If opening a link for 1 second and closing it again is OK and clearly not intentional, what if it was open for say 1 minute or even 10 minutes as can be the case with some automatic links?

of course the safest route is no porn browsing but that would be a shame!

I'm surprised they are easy to accident find or popup. Not something I've ever experienced thank god!

Accidentally not accident

It is the wording of the law which is key (for example, likelihood of injury, rather than simply risk).

Guidance can be found here:

Whether streaming Facial Abuse videos could be considered possession, is a difficult one.

People vs James D Kent in NY (2012) in the New York Court of Appeals ruled they weren't the same thing. But of course this is the USA.

In the UK, this link could be helpful with clarification of what constitutes possession.

Your best bet really is to ask a legal expert, however.