British Telecom Blocking Porn by Default for New Customers

British Telecom today announced that it would block all adult content by default for new customers. The company is launching a new network-based filter called Parental Controls that will require customers to actively choose their parental controls when setting up their internet connection.

BT's Parental Controls will need to be activated when new customers first connect to the web. By default, the controls are pre-selected and switched on, so customers will have to actually switch them off during this set up in order to see adult content. Customers will be able to choose from three levels of intensity (strict, moderate, and light) and the filter can be switched off during certain periods. Of course, the goal behind this is to protect children from unsavory content on the internet. 

"BT takes the issue of online child protection extremely seriously and we are very pleased to be able to launch the whole-home filter to help parents keep their families safe online. It adds to the many tools we already make available for free to our customers. We’ve been focused on the issue of online safety since we developed the world’s first Cleanfeed filter to block child abuse images and made the technology available free to other ISPs across the world a decade ago."

Current customers won't be able to avoid the new system, either. BT said today that this new Parental Controls program will also see current customers contacted and asked to make a decision regarding their parental control settings. The news follows a report in October 2011 that said the UK's four major ISPs were working on having users opt in for pornographic or adult content.

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  • I'm so glad I'm not British right now.
    28
  • "Customers will be able to choose from three levels of intensity (strict, moderate, and light) and the filter can be switched off during certain periods."

    But no option to just have no content filtering at all? Or am I misunderstanding this?
    19
  • This article is misleading as porn isn't the only thing going to be blocked. Another article stated that it's going to be adult content. This means extreme language, gratuity, and more.

    This isn't really parental controls if the parents do not have the option to turn it off, is it? This is more like ISP control because they have the final say in what is and isn't acceptable. They will also force existing users into the system as well. As it's setup right now, they stated that they are going to "nag" them in someway until they accept the filter.

    I know this ISP is caving from government pressure but this is just sad. No longer will new customers of this company have true internet but instead a filtered one. A bowl half filled with water only approved by the government.
    16
  • Other Comments
  • "Customers will be able to choose from three levels of intensity (strict, moderate, and light) and the filter can be switched off during certain periods."

    But no option to just have no content filtering at all? Or am I misunderstanding this?
    19
  • I'm so glad I'm not British right now.
    28
  • Amen to that Freyj!
    7