The UK’s video on-demand regulator has cracked the whip again, this time coming down hard on the Sunday Sport XXXtra adult site and seven other providers.
As is often the case with ATVOD (Authority for TV On Demand)’s rulings, the majority of culprits have been rapped on the knuckles for failing to put age verifying systems in place.
Currently, the rules state that providers of adult content must at least have an ‘Enter only if 18 older’ warning in place, post no pornographic preview clips and that paywalled content cannot be accessed with debit cards or any payment method that’s available to anyone aged under 18.
Six providers – Sunday Sport XXXtra along with Joybear Pictures, UK XXX Pass, Lisa Cross, Luke’s Lair and Lucy Zara – all failed in this regard one way or another.
Two other sites fell afoul of rules introduced last December, which prohibit publication of anything that wouldn’t earn an R18 certificate from the BBFC. Both The Bondage Mistress Club and Dreams of Spanking allowed unrestricted viewing of forbidden activities with no age restraint mechanisms in place.
Both sites are currently subject to enforcement action, with the owner of Dreams of Spanking seeking a review of ATVOD’s determination. Regardless, both sites will have to edit or remove the prohibited material by August 27.
ATVOD is calling for stricter age verification systems, which move beyond providers putting porn behind credit card paywalls.
Chief executive of ATVOD Pete Johnson said: “Asking visitors to a website to click an ‘I am 18’ button or enter a date of birth or use a debit card is not sufficient – if they are going to offer explicit sex material they must know that their customers are 18, just as they would in the ‘offline’ world.”
The government wants porn providers to ask users to verify their age by using information held on public databases, things like NHS numbers, credit references and bank details, ostensibly to make sure anyone watching isn’t someone underage
David Cameron has called for UK-based adult sites which don’t play by the new rules to be shut down. ATVOD is also calling for credit card payments to overseas-based porn providers including RedTube and YouPorn, to be blocked if they don’t adopt age verification systems.
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