I came across a short news release yesterday about a new plugin for WordPress that made me scratch my head and say “huh?”
“RTA (Restricted to Adults) was developed by ASACP out of a need for a free, easy-to-use and internationally recognized label that designates content for adults only.
The RTA label is a unique string of meta data, which can be inserted into the computer code of any website. Parental filtering software recognizes the tag and prevents children from viewing adult content. Installing the RTA tag on a WordPress install can be somewhat complicated, so the RTA plugin takes only one click to activate.”
The ASACP is the Association of Sites Advocating Child Protection, founded in 1996 and dedicated to reporting and closing sites containing child pornography. This is a worthy goal but I am not convinced that the “RTA” label will be of benefit. The tag relies on two separate things for success:
1) that web masters for adult sites will add the required plugin or code, and
2) that the computer being used will have some type of filtering software that will recognize the code and block the site.
I can see the adult entertainment industry adopting this wholeheartedly as a CYA measure… and there are Public Service Announcements starring porn stars in the sidebar of the ASCPA website. That in itself is a bit incongruous and from my perspective an attempt to milk the ASCPA for publicity and goodwill.
I’m less confident that end users will take the time, or the expense, of installing filtering software. I have reviewed several of the programs and found that they are often more trouble than they are worth as they require you to setup exceptions for sites containing content that might be considered to be merely PG-13.
I would be interested in hearing what you think about the concept, so please leave your comments below.