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UK needs age ratings for under-18 mobile content

Guess what? The mobile industry is actually doing something right for once. Yep, according to watchdog Ofcom, the system of self regulation operators have in place to stop kids getting their hands on adult material before they’re 18 is working out fine, although it did administer a gentle slap on the wrist over information: apparently precious few of us know how about the age verification mechanisms used to block kids from accessing inappropriate content.

Ofcom did say:

“The current arrangements block access to 18-rated material to non-age-verified customers. With increasing numbers of younger children having access to mobiles capable of accessing AV content, mobile operators may need to consider if a binary system at 18 provides sufficient protection from inappropriate content for younger users, or whether a more granular system should be considered.”

The Guardian reckons that’s a sign that we’re going to get cinema style age ratings on mobile content. Not a bad idea, I reckon, assuming operators can put up with the hassle of verifying young customers’ ages – and if there’s a profit in it, I expect they can – I can really see it working.

4 replies on “UK needs age ratings for under-18 mobile content”

It's a good idea and makes things standard across media – if films and games get ratings the mobile content should be too. The system must be objective and fair though – the guidelines need careful thinking about or else rushed thinking will create a flawed system that helps nobody.

Shame OFCOM can't/don't/won't (delete as appropriate) stop unsolicited premium-rate “adult” spam being sent to handsets. That's where real regulation is needed.

I agree with Chris (by the way I owe you a drink) that ratings should be standard across all media. It shouldn't matter what you're watching a film or TV show on – if it's got a BBFC rating then it's got a BBFC rating!

Personally I'd like it if operators such as 3 UK removed (or allowed their users to remove) the soft-core porn from the mobile portal that's there nightly. I'm not a prude, I just don't want it there when using my phone's browser in public!

Shame OFCOM can't/don't/won't (delete as appropriate) stop unsolicited premium-rate “adult” spam being sent to handsets. That's where real regulation is needed.

I agree with Chris (by the way I owe you a drink) that ratings should be standard across all media. It shouldn't matter what you're watching a film or TV show on – if it's got a BBFC rating then it's got a BBFC rating!

Personally I'd like it if operators such as 3 UK removed (or allowed their users to remove) the soft-core porn from the mobile portal that's there nightly. I'm not a prude, I just don't want it there when using my phone's browser in public!

Shame OFCOM can't/don't/won't (delete as appropriate) stop unsolicited premium-rate “adult” spam being sent to handsets. That's where real regulation is needed.

I agree with Chris (by the way I owe you a drink) that ratings should be standard across all media. It shouldn't matter what you're watching a film or TV show on – if it's got a BBFC rating then it's got a BBFC rating!

Personally I'd like it if operators such as 3 UK removed (or allowed their users to remove) the soft-core porn from the mobile portal that's there nightly. I'm not a prude, I just don't want it there when using my phone's browser in public!

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