Saturday, December 27, 2008

This Site Rated PG

In an interview with The Daily Telegraph, Andy Burnham says he believes that new standards of decency need to be applied to the web. He is planning to negotiate with Barack Obama’s incoming American administration to draw up new international rules for English language websites.

The Cabinet minister describes the internet as “quite a dangerous place” and says he wants internet-service providers (ISPs) to offer parents “child-safe” web services.

Giving film-style ratings to individual websites is one of the options being considered, he confirms. When asked directly whether age ratings could be introduced, Mr Burnham replies: “Yes, that would be an option. This is an area that is really now coming into full focus.”

ISPs, such as BT, Tiscali, AOL or Sky could also be forced to offer internet services where the only websites accessible are those deemed suitable for children.

Read the entire story.

Of course this is a concept in its early stages, and as the saying goes "the devil will be in the details." But based on first impressions I think this is a good idea as long as it does not actually restrict free access on the part of adults to any websites they wish to visit or give legal license to track their movements on the web (something the U. S. Government already does clandestinely). It seems a reasonable and balanced approach to a serious problem. I look forward to seeing what they actually wind up proposing.

P.S. When I wrote my initial post I had the title label this site as rated G. After some thought I concluded that occasionally subjects are addressed on A/O that might not be suitable for really young children. I felt kinda odd slapping a PG rating on my own blog.

1 comment:

By John Alden said...

Greetings John,

Speaking as a concerned parent, going the opposite direction of societies majority, my comment is to not be concerned about keeping such a liberal rating as a G. Many parents do not approve of using electronics at all. I am going in their direction.

Parents should guide the entirety of a youngsters life, so a rating system suggesting no parental guidence required, like G, is antichrist at best. I would go further and say the entire Internet is antichrist.

I can only hope to point others in a safe direction while allowed. Our time is about up. May we all be ready.

Thank you for the thought provoking post.