CBC News has posted an amusing article titled, “Film-style ratings needed for websites: British minister.” The lead sums it up nicely:
Britain’s culture minister says websites should be rated the way films are to protect children from offensive material.
How could it be a bad idea if it’s for the children, right? Unfortunately, the culture minister reveals no real substance to his plan. The first question that springs to my mind is who’s going to pay for it? Google’s got more than 20 billion pages indexed. Is the culture minister going to pay someone to look through them all? Yea, I thought not.
He also appears not to really understand how the internet works.
Burnham also suggested the internet follow television’s example, which often doesn’t broadcast violent material prior to 9 p.m.
The problem is everyone in every time zone accesses the same server to view a site. Television stations broadcast to a limited geographic area. Web servers offer pages to everyone in the world.
But hey, it’s just tubes right? Let someone else figure out how to make it really work. The culture minister has a good sound bite, and that’s what’s important to the politicians.