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New UK Mobile Broadband ISP Tibboh Limits Content by Film Classifications

Posted: 22nd Apr, 2010 By: MarkJ
tibbohA somewhat unique new Mobile Broadband (3G) provider - Tibboh - has launched today that aims to protect your family with cinema style ratings for the internet developed with the British Board of Film Classification (BBFC). The package itself costs £19.99 per month and comes with a 10GB data usage allowance.

Users of the service will get an Internet free of the kind of content that worries children and parents, enabling age-appropriate access via a filtration system accredited by the BBFC, which has itself developed the policies for tibboh in line with the UK’s film and DVD classifications: U, PG, 12, 15, 18.

Martin Large, CEO of tibboh, comments:

"tibboh marks the internet’s coming of age as a service. tibboh now offers a cleaned-up version, with classified age-appropriate content, for families and schools. This has been tried before but –the beauty of tibboh is that it’s more subtle in its distinctions than the “black and white” option offered by conventional filtering; after all, what’s suitable for a 17 year-old is not the same as what suitable for an 8-year old.

Few parents know how to achieve this and to keep it up-to-date. The BBFC symbols are easily identifiable and understood for parents and teachers, saving them from the time and hassle of setting their own policies.

If the internet were built today, tibboh’s functionality would be a standard feature. I predict that in a couple of years’ time, no one will dream of giving their children unfettered access to the internet."

The bizarrely named service is also the first and only broadband internet provider to offer the CEOP button on Facebook; this suggests that they may deliberately be changing the content of FB's website because FB uses a different button (good idea?). Tibboh is fully supportive of the UK Council for Child Internet Safety (UKCCIS)’s “Zip It, Block It, Flag It” campaign.

Tibboh itself, which is backed by mobile operator Vodafone UK, has been available for over a year in schools and is now being made available to the general public. The filtering service is not software and instead managed by the operator, which makes it easy to keep updated. A number of schools are already using tibboh successfully as a solution for school and home-based internet access.

The provider has also announce a proof of concept scheme with Birmingham City Council, which is currently engaged with the delivery of the national programme, Home Access for Targeted Groups. This programme, delivered by Link2ICT, seeks to provide appropriate ICT facilities and connectivity for 600 young people who may otherwise become disengaged from education.

One downside to this unique approach is that Mobile Broadband technology itself is far from perfect. Reception, connection reliability and speed often suffer from poor performance or other problems. Ideally Tibboh needs to offer a fixed line equivalent alongside its mobile package, for those more demanding users.
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