by Karl Bode
Mon, Apr 26th 2010 5:01am
A UK ISP has teamed up with the British Board of Film Classification (BBFC) to create a new parental control and filtering system that's based on the same classification system being used by the UK film industry. UK Wireless ISP Tibboh uses internet filter technology created by Netsweeper to classify websites under the BBFC's rating system (U, PG, 12, 15 or 18). Facebook and Twitter are given a "12" rating (only suitable for those over twelve), Blogger and Wordpress sites are given a "15" rating, while major news outlets are given a "U" certificate (suitable for everyone). The idea seems like a fusion of a bunch of ineffective and bad ideas. It's based on Internet filters that, of course, will block some useful content, but which kids will be able to bypass anyway. The filter system adds a new wrinkle by pretending it's possible to assign a valuable age restriction metric to information delivery platforms -- as if your kid couldn't possibly run into something foul via Twitter, in a blog, or in the news. The service provides the illusion of safety to people who'd rather pay twenty Pounds a month than pay attention to what their kids are doing -- or talk to them face to face about smart technology use.
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