‘Growing up on the Internet’ – Education is key!

Posted on Mar 23 2017 by Paul Heritage-Redpath | No Comments

This week the House of Lords’ Communications Committee published a new report, ‘Growing up with the Internet’ which looks at how children should be protected online and sets out a number of new recommendations for industry and Government.

Key recommendations from the report are:

    • We recommend that all ISPs and mobile network operators should be required not only to offer child-friendly content control filters, but also for those filters to be ‘on’ by default for all customers. Adult customers should be able to switch off such filters.
    • Those responsible for providing filtering and blocking services need to be transparent about which sites they block and why, and be open to complaints from websites to review their decisions within an agreed timeframe. Filter systems should be designed to an agreed minimum standard.
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    Bye bye net neutrality, hello state censorship?

    Posted on Dec 13 2016 by Paul Heritage-Redpath | No Comments

    Not content with forcing ISPs to store the browsing history of UK citizens (as enshrined into law via the Investigatory Powers Act), the Government now appears to be ignoring the concept of net neutrality with its latest Bill entering the House of Lords. The Digital Economy Bill, due its second reading in the Lords today (13th December 2016), compels websites carrying material which “it is reasonable to assume from its nature that any classification certificate issued in respect of a video work including it would be an R18 certificate” to carry out age verification checks to try and stop youngsters accessing such material. If the sites don’t do this, ISPs will be required to block them. Yet EU net neutrality rules state that all Internet traffic must be treated equally and goes so far as to say that Governments cannot block access to sites that are legal – even if they are distasteful.

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    What you haven’t been told about BEREC’s net neutrality guidelines

    Posted on Sep 06 2016 by Neil Watson | No Comments
    Categories : Net Neutrality, Regulation

    This time last week we were readying ourselves for BEREC (that’s the Body of European Regulators for Electronic Communications to you and us) to publish its latest round of guidance on net neutrality. The guidelines that it’s produced aim to help Ofcom (and its European counterparts) enforce the “common rules to safeguard equal and non-discriminatory treatment of traffic in the provision of internet access services and related end-users’ rights” that came into force in November 2015. Following BEREC’s press conference, it didn’t take long for net neutrality advocates to declare the guidelines a victory for civil society. Meanwhile, telecoms companies across Europe and America, who have been campaigning to be able to exploit the Internet’s commercial opportunities to their fullest extent (this doesn’t include Entanet we hasten to add), gave their views on “a missed opportunity” through gritted teeth.

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    Brexit: what needs to happen now that our government’s gone AWOL?

    Posted on Jun 29 2016 by Paul Heritage-Redpath | No Comments

    Shock, awe, disgust, celebration. Whatever your reaction, nobody ever expected that we’d be left with no leadership and no plan of action. With David Cameron’s resignation, George Osborne and Theresa May keeping a very low profile and Boris Johnson off playing cricket, one may be forgiven for thinking our government has gone AWOL in the wake of last week’s Referendum vote. In any case, there is no firm plan and we’re all left scratching our heads as to what Brexit actually means for our country, our personal lives and the industry that we represent.

    Since businesses are keeping the country ticking over while the politicians scrabble around to decide who’s in charge and what needs to be done, we thought we’d seize the opportunity to remind Whitehall what needs to be considered so that the connectivity industry can depart from the EU as painlessly as possible.

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    Will UK net neutrality be broken by parental controls?

    Posted on Jan 19 2016 by Neil Watson | No Comments

    Most of our readers are well aware of the ongoing debate over the protection of net neutrality and its recent legal protection thanks to the EU. However, it looks like net neutrality could potentially be under threat once again and this time it’s from the UK Government and its plans to protect their existing ‘opt-in’ based parental controls.

    The Government already has agreements in place with most of the major ISPs to force Internet users to specifically ‘opt-in’ via their ISP to view sexually explicit or violent material, in an attempt to help protect children from inadvertently seeing unsuitable material online. This means the account holder has to specifically request to turn off any parental control style filters (usually at the point of signup by unchecking a box which is known as an ‘enforced’ option) and all filters will be turned on by default.

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