State Attorney Generals Want To Control Access To Internet TV

Feb 19th, 2007 | By | Category: Digital Video Downloads, General, Streaming Video, Vlogs logoAttorneys general of more than 20 states have written to Anheuser-Busch, asking the brewer to provide tighter access controls to make sure underaged viewers aren’t accessing its new beer-themed video site, Bud.TV.

The site asks for your name, zip code and birthday to verify that you are 21 or over. The attorneys generals are asking Anheuser-Busch to use a more effective age-verification tool. They request that, at a minimum, you should have to enter your name and full address, or a driver’s license number, exactly as it appears on a government-issued ID before a person could access the site.

The situation raises questions about the responsibilities of online publishers, and also whether the government should regulate Internet video sites, and if so, how. Thousands of video sites offer content, without age restrictions, that is more adult than anything at Bud.TV.

Tighter restrictions at Internet video sites could reduce the sites’ usability and dramatially reduce their audience.

“Despite the fact that this software has turned away tens of thousands of visitors, we have continued to use it to show that we’re serious about wanting to prevent illegal underage drinking,” saidAnheuser-Busch representative Francine Katz. “Despite these extraordinary efforts, some have urged us to make the age verification process more difficult and even more invasive of people’s privacy.”

The Attorney Generals propose several other possible safeguards, like sending a postcard to the home or making a phone call to check that a legal-aged adult, and not a child below the drinking age, is checking out the site.

via Ad Week

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