The New York Times posted a story about a police office who participated in online chats about raping and cannibalizing women, including his wife. The story is horrific because it reminds you what depraved thoughts we as humans may have toward one another and that these thoughts are being expressed online everyday.
Fortunately the women discussed in these chat rooms were not harmed so the prosecution may have a hard time showing that thinking and talking about it was a crime. There was plenty of malice but no bodily injury or harm.
My question is, what would be the difference between a horror movie writer like Stephen King or Rob Zombie sitting in on an online chat discussing different more macabre ways to scare their audiences? Would the notion that the discussion is being held merely for artistic purposes be enough to distinguish the two conversations?
If not, then this police officer might get off. If so, then the Internet might be subjected to a different level of scrutiny.