Feeds

Premium rate watchdog primes 'Miss Bimbo' probe

PhonepayPlus thinks of the children

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

The premium rate regulator, PhonepayPlus, will investigate Miss Bimbo, the controversial website for young girls that has been accused of promoting crash dieting and plastic surgery.

The virtual fashion game encourages players to become the "hottest, coolest, most famous bimbo in the whole world".

The site falls under PhonepayPlus' remit because it offers premium rate text message services on top of its free website registration, which is available to anyone who'll say they are at least nine. Players text for £1.50 a pop to buy "Bimbo dollars" to pay for outfits in the game.

In a statement, the watchdog said:

In addition to issues around cost, our rules make clear that services should not exploit or provide content that parents are likely to think unacceptable.

We are looking into claims that the Miss Bimbo service might contravene these requirements. If any parents or children have views or concerns about this or any other service, they should contact us.

The PhonepayPlus site is here. The announcement comes as a rash of press reports reflect outrage from parents over Miss Bimbo.

The game's French sister site caused a similar kerfuffle when it launched there last year. It now has 1.2 million players.

Creator Nicolas Jacquart, based in London's Tooting, insists it is harmless fun. He told the local paper: "The breast operations are just one part of the game and we are not encouraging young girls to have them."

"It simply mirrors real life in a tongue-in-cheek way."

Miss Bimbogate sets the stage nicely for the release of the Byron Review tomorrow. Child psychologist Dr Tanya Byron has been charged by the government with investigating the effects of the web and videogames on young minds. ®

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

More from The Register

next story
Crouching tiger, FAST ASLEEP dragon: Smugglers can't shift iPhone 6s
China's grey market reports 'sluggish' sales of Apple mobe
Sea-Me-We 5 construction starts
New sub cable to go live 2016
EE coughs to BROKEN data usage metrics BLUNDER that short-changes customers
Carrier apologises for 'inflated' measurements cockup
Comcast: Help, help, FCC. Netflix and pals are EXTORTIONISTS
The others guys are being mean so therefore ... monopoly all good, yeah?
Surprise: if you work from home you need the Internet
Buffer-rage sends Aussies out to experience road rage
EE buys 58 Phones 4u stores for £2.5m after picking over carcass
Operator says it will safeguard 359 jobs, plans lick of paint
MOST iPhone strokers SPURN iOS 8: iOS 7 'un-updatening' in 5...4...
Guess they don't like our battery-draining update?
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.