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UK: Four internet service providers to block access to porn sites

As part of a government bid to tackle the sexualisation of children, some the UK’s main ISPs will automatically block access to sites showing sexually explicit imagery – unless customers specifically request to be able to view pornography.

File photo of a row of computer monitors at an Internet cafe
File photo of a row of computer monitors at an Internet cafe
Image: AP/Press Association Images

THE BRITISH Prime Minister David Cameron has announced that four of the country’s largest internet service providers (ISPs) will begin automatically blocking users’ access to pornography websites – unless specifically asked not to do so by customers.

BT, Sky, TalkTalk and Virgin will introduce the “opt in” service to new customers, meaning that users will have to request to be able to access sexually explicit images, the Guardian reports.

Camerom has recently pursued a campaign aimed at challenging the sexualisation of children, which has seen advertisements and children’s clothing targeted. The British government is responding to a report by Mothers’ Union charity, which indicated that childhoods were being negatively impacted by heavily sexual imagery.

Last June, in a letter to the charity’s chief executive Reg Bailey, Cameron said: “As you say, we should not try to wrap children up in cotton wool or simply throw our hands up and accept the world as it is.

“Instead, we should look to put ‘the brakes on an unthinking drift towards ever greater commercialisation and sexualisation’.”

The Prime Minister will also unveil a website – Parentport – that will allow parents to complain about inappropriate television programmes, adverts or products aimed at children, the Telegraph reports.

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