The Journal Sentinel reports that at least two dozen people living in the Milwaukee area appear to have matching profiles in both the Wisconsin sex offender registry and MySpace, the wildly popular online social networking site. Finding people from one site who are on the other is simple. Both are searchable by name and ZIP code. Wisconsin has online mug shots for the vast majority of the registered sex offenders, and MySpace users regularly post photographs of themselves on their profile pages.
After a month that has seen stories across the country detailing how sexual predators use MySpace to attract teenagers, the company, which is owned by Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp., announced this month that it hired a former federal prosecutor to be its chief security officer. MySpace also launched public service announcements on its site about the dangers inherent in meeting strangers online. There is no blanket prohibition against Wisconsin sex offenders being active on MySpace or any other online community.