xxxaware is a UK adult industry initiative aimed at addressing the issue of child protection from adult material. xxxaware offers practical guidance to parents on how to prevent minors accessing unsuitable videos and images online.
Since xxxaware launched on Safer Internet Day last year, the UK government has increased the pressure on Internet Service Providers to introduce default-on internet filters within the family home. Sky, BT and TalkTalk have responded with their active choice ‘opt in’ for all new customers.
Using an ISP filter is one option open to parents. However there are already concerns about the extent to which these filters may be underblocking or overblocking and either providing insufficient protection or conversely restricting access to legitimate sites.
xxxaware serves as a resource to inform parents of the range of tools available by offering a round-up of parental controls on a device by device basis. The site will give parents the choice, control and confidence to judge what is right for their children. As the website develops it will reach out to parents via social media for feedback.
As an industry-wide initiative, it is hoped that xxxaware can help encourage the uptake of parental controls so that adults can continue to access the content they want, without risk to children and without heavy-handed government intervention.
The site has been developed by adult broadcaster Portland TV with industry support from ASACP, Home Studio, Intelligent ID, Metacert, Mistress Miranda, Paul Raymond Publications, Speedybee, Studio 66, Swank, Veridu, WMIT and .XXX.
The initiative has been driven by Portland TV’s Managing Director, Chris Ratcliff. Chris has worked in the regulated adult sector since 1995 as a broadcaster, DVD distributor and on demand provider. Chris was a founding member of the Adult Industry Trade Association (AITA), sat on the Board of ATVOD (the Authority for Television On Demand) and is now working to advise policy makers on regulatory reform.
Chris has two young children and believes that that parental control has a large part to play in protecting kids online. “Having children has really focussed my mind. I want them to grow up with internet access from an early age. The problem is there’s so much inappropriate content for them to stumble across. To restrict this you need the right tools for the job, particularly if you want to continue to access adult sites yourself. xxxaware is designed to help parents to make informed choices and find the solution that is right for them.”
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