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Canadian Net firm plans porno ghetto

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A Canadian Internet company wants to clear the Web of porn by creating a new regulated network that prevents children and others from accidentally stumbling across adult material. If successful, it would ghettoise porn into a sealed-off area accessible only by those who actively chose to interact with the adult material. It's understood to be one of the first examples of the Web-based porn industry trying to keep its own house in order and protect the wider audience on the Net. Developed by Vancouver-based Nescom Systems Corporation, Adult Cyberspace (ACS) is a closed network of porn sites that can only be accessed by those who have the ACS browser. It is this which ACS claims should help make it difficult for children to enter this "adult-only" area. Although Nescom concedes no amount of software can replace proper parental supervision, its claims the ACS browser has a built-in 'childlock' that helps prevent kids from accessing the network or temporary Internet files. The software can also permanently disable PCs from being able to download the ACS software or gain access to the network. Jackie Barnard, ACS' VP marketing, said: "It was obvious that with the ongoing child pornography problem, and legal cases against Internet Service Providers, along with the potential for Internet censorship, the online adult industry had to come up with a solution." "In essence we've created a self-contained, self-regulated community that celebrates sex, and enfranchises adults to enjoy top-notch adult-related Web sites. At the same time it makes it virtually impossible for minors to join in and excludes illegal materials." Around 160 Webmasters representing thousands of porn sites have already signed up to ACS although a spokeswoman said they had not ceased publishing their material on the Web. Kelly Boje, a spokeswoman for ACS, admitted that convincing Web masters to abandon the Web in favour of a walled sub-network would not be easy, but that was Nescom's intention. While this flaw could ultimately undermine the credibility of the whole scheme, Ruth Dixon of the Internet Watch Foundation said that anything that meant that users were less likely to stumble across porn was a good thing. But she questioned whether the practicalities of such a move would stand in the way of Nescom's vision of cleaning up the Net by creating a separate adult network. ® Related Stories A selection of the oh, so many porn stories we've written Where The Law stands on Net porn Singer Gary Glitter jailed for kiddie Net porn Bishops bash Web pornmongers Intel porno squatters want $400k -- bare faced cheek The naked civil servant -- online Down Under Hardcore porn ads sneak past Excite filters And there's plenty more where that little lot came from, oh yes!

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