No social networking for Minn. sex offenders


If you are a sexual predator in Minnesota, good luck making any online friends. You'll have to save the "poking" for in-person interaction. Actually, scratch that idea. Just stay away from everyone, please.

The Minnesota House and Senate unanimously passed a bill that would give authorities more control to monitor computers used by predatory offenders placed on intensive supervised release. The bill bans these offenders from logging onto, creating or maintaining any personal web page or social networking account if they are able to chat with minors.

More from the Star Tribune:
The restrictions apply to chat rooms, instant messaging and popular sites like MySpace and Facebook, as well as operations such as Craigslist that may not be traditionally defined as social networking sites.

The Department of Corrections is given authority to examine computers and other devices with Internet capability. Violations could send offenders back to prison to serve out their full sentences. The bill takes effect next year.

Gov. Tim Pawlenty is expected to sign the bill.

Sites like MySpace have been working to rid their sites of creeps, but some still find their way onto the sites and sometimes use them illegally. Since 2007, MySpace has closed 90,000 accounts run by sex offenders.