Feeds

Premium rate watchdog primes 'Miss Bimbo' probe

PhonepayPlus thinks of the children

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

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. ®

Security for virtualized datacentres

More from The Register

next story
TEEN RAMPAGE: Kids in iPhone 6 'Will it bend' YouTube 'prank'
iPhones bent in Norwich? As if the place wasn't weird enough
Consumers agree to give up first-born child for free Wi-Fi – survey
This Herod network's ace – but crap reception in bullrushes
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
New EU digi-commish struggles with concepts of net neutrality
Oettinger all about the infrastructure – but not big on substance
PEAK IPV4? Global IPv6 traffic is growing, DDoS dying, says Akamai
First time the cache network has seen drop in use of 32-bit-wide IP addresses
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?
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
The next step in data security
With recent increased privacy concerns and computers becoming more powerful, the chance of hackers being able to crack smaller-sized RSA keys increases.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.