Adult industry leaders unite to protect children from inappropriate content
6th March 2002
Internet Content Rating Association Salutes Visionary Companies for Aggressive Stance On Self Regulation, Web-Site Labeling
Washington, DC, March 6, 2002 - Leading companies in the adult entertainment industry ranging from Larry Flynt Productions and MaxCash to YNOTMasters and Epoch are taking a proactive and aggressive stand to protect children from inappropriate or harmful Internet content, according to the Internet Content Rating Association (ICRA). ICRA is a global, non-profit organization of Internet industry leaders committed to making the Internet safer for children, while respecting the rights of content providers.
Many of the most popular content providers and most respected companies that support the adult online entertainment industry have stepped up voluntarily to support ICRA and include the ICRA labeling system on their Web sites. The companies that have demonstrated a strong corporate commitment to protecting children include:
- Adult Chamber of Commerce which responds to the needs of the online adult Webmaster business community (www.adultchamber.com);
- Adult Entertainment Broadcast Network (AEBN), the adult video-on-demand industry leader
- AVN Online, the most popular online magazine in the industry;
- CashQuest2.com and its entire WebQuest network of Websites;
- Epoch Transaction Services, one of the largest Internet transaction gateways in the world (www.epochsystems.com) and (www.PayCom.net);
- Klixxx Magazine, a policy and regulator resource;
- Larry Flynt Products, including (www.hustler.com) and its affiliate program;
- Playboy Enterprises, Inc., including (www.playboy.com);
- RJB Telcom, Inc. and its Maximum Cash program (www.maximumcash.com), a leading provider of adult Webmaster affiliate programs; and
- YNOTMasters.com, the most visited news source for the adult entertainment industry (www.ynotmasters.com).
"We firmly believe in protecting children from adult materials online and have joined forces with ICRA to do just that," said Larry Flynt, President of Larry Flynt Productions. "We have labeled all of our Web sites, including our two most-visited sites, www.HUSTLER.com and www.BarelyLegal.com, and encourage every adult Web site to support and participate with ICRA, too."
In addition to labeling their Web sites using the ICRA labeling system, companies and organizations that partner with ICRA can utilize the Protecting Kids with Digimarc program. This program allows Webmasters to embed imperceptible code into digital images to flag the images as containing adult content. The digital "flag" stays with the image as it is copied, allowing the flag to travel with the image to other Internet destinations such as e-mail, newsgroups and Websites and enabling the image to be identified and managed as it is used online.
"It's gratifying to see so many adult entertainment companies taking stewardship in their industry," said Mary Lou Kenny, director of ICRA, North America. "We applaud their voluntary efforts to protect children from inappropriate material and empower families to control their online experiences."
The ICRA labeling system offers content providers an online questionnaire to help define and describe the content available on their Web sites. ICRA then generates a content label, a Meta tag, which the Webmaster adds to his or her site. This tag does not disturb or interfere with the Website or its content. Users can set up their Internet browser or compatible filtering software to allow or disallow access to Websites based on the individual labels.
Additional quotes from participating companies
Adult Chamber of Commerce
"Protecting children from adult content is every parent's responsibility and we at AdultChamber.com feel that each adult Webmaster should take steps to protect adult content from being viewed by minors. With more than 5,100 webmasters visiting AdultChamber.com daily for professional tools and services, we hope to inform adult webmasters of the new services and find new ways to share this responsibility so that all children can be reasonably protected from viewing pornographic material online."
Marc Laffer, president and CEO, Adult Chamber of Commerce
Adult Entertainment Broadcast Network (AEBN)
"There are millions of people who enjoy adult entertainment, but among those millions should not be children. We're proud to set an example by partnering with ICRA to help parents control the online experiences of their children."
Cynthia Kwasny, senior vice president of marketing, AEBN
"We think it's critical to preserve the First Amendment right to free speech for the adult industry, and the best way to accomplish that is to regulate ourselves and maintain audience integrity, especially on the Internet. ICRA has provided an excellent vehicle and we encourage the entire adult industry to get with the program."
Erik McFarland, publisher and managing editor, AVNonline.com
"We are pleased to work with ICRA to develop new filtering solutions that help make the Internet a safer place for children. Our digital watermarking also allows adult industry webmasters to manage, track and identify their content and images. This is a win-win for all involved and we encourage all the companies and content providers in the adult arena to jump on board."
Reed Stager, vice president and general manager, Digimarc Licensing
Epoch Transaction Services
"As a leader in the business of payment processing, we want to help encourage the industry down a path of fiscally and ethically responsible behavior. Partnering with ICRA is, without question, a step in the right direction both to protect children and to reduce unqualified transactions from minors. This helps ensure that our clients retain control of their content and shows that we are all doing our part to protect children from inappropriate material."
Rand Pate, director of corporate communications, Epoch and Paycom.net
"By voluntarily partnering with ICRA and embracing its labeling system, these leaders in the adult online industry have made a bold statement to the rest of the industry and to government regulators. These companies are demonstrating a high level of corporate responsibility and integrity."
Joe Devlin, publisher, Klixxx Magazine
RJB Telcom, Inc. and its Maximum Cash program
"We stand firm in our belief that children should not have access to online adult content. In helping to meet that goal, we not only label all of our own sites, but also make a substantial effort in educating the Webmasters in our program so that they too will voluntarily label their sites. We are pleased that our partnership with ICRA will help to further educate adult site Webmasters and aide in protecting children from viewing inappropriate materials."
Alyssa Smythe, vice president, marketing and operations, RJB Telcom, Inc.
"As the oldest and most comprehensive Webmaster resource site in the industry, established in 1996, we are particularly sensitive to the free-speech issue and protecting that right. At the same time, we want to protect children from adult content and provide families with the tools to ensure positive online experiences for the entire family, which we have been doing since our inception. We have been labeled with ICRA and its predecessor for years, and believe partnering with ICRA and embracing its labeling system allows us to succeed in protecting both children and free speech."
Greg Geelan, president, YNOT Master
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