UK Mobile Operators Aim To Block Content From Minors

A group of UK wireless carriers are going to try to work together to designate content that is inappropriate for minors – and then block those under 18 from accessing it via new 3G mobile phones. While the intent is good, this seems like a waste of time. Every other effort to successfully censor content on an open network has proven to be nearly impossible. First of all, show me a blocking system, and I’ll find you a large number of kids who have worked out how to get around such a system in just a few minutes. Second, how will the firms determine what is, and what isn’t appropriate? What if there’s a site that one set of parents believe is perfectly fine for their child, but another parent feels otherwise about? Also, there is always going to be “bad” content that slips through unlabeled. Once again, while the intent is good, the execution is likely to be a mess – and about the only thing it will do successfully is annoy some people who are trying to get to perfectly legitimate sites.

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