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Re: KidCode: Next steps

From: Terje Norderhaug <Norderhaug.CHI@xerox.com>
Date: Mon, 19 Jun 1995 01:55:48 -0800
Message-Id: <ac0adf1a010210044b90@[]>
To: tony@info.anu.edu.au (Tony Barry), www-talk@www10.w3.org
Cc: rating@junction.net, nsb@nsb.fv.com (Nathaniel Borenstein)
At 9:23 PM 6/18/95, Tony Barry wrote:
>The net is global therefore self ratings will be in a cultural context.  If
>Hindus, Christians, Buddhists and Jews do not agree on ratings how will
>those who differ in views on the need to guide versus the need to liberate?

Care must be taken so that a rating system will not empose the constraints
of a particular culture (Read: American puritanism) on the rest of the
world. One potential solution consistent with the philosophy of the
Web is to make sure that the documents contains the right information
to automatically make a judgement, but not the rating itself (compare to
the idea of separating content and presentation form).

Following this philosophy, the document might be indexed with phrases
such as "Intercourse", "Blood", or "Murder", as well as a number of other terms
according to some thesaurus. It should not include interpretations such as
"Indecent material", "not suited for kids under 18", or "PG-13".
This decentralizes the rating and allows optimal adaptability to
people's needs. More advanced indexing that follows these principles might
of course be applied instead.

Note, however, that the rating of documents thus is identical with
the more general problem of finding interesting information and
avoiding uninteresting content. This suggest that instead of focusing
finding a rating system for documents, there would be a better idea to
concentrate the efforts on how to support the automatic evaluation of what
a document is about.

> A single rating or a small set of ratings will not work globally even if
> global agreement was possible for a scheme.

Content information instead of ratings might provide an alternative,
instead of supporting those that would be happy to enforce their values on
the rest of the world. The responsibility of technologists is to
leave the choice to each individual (as well as cultural group), and
try to minimize constraining peoples freedom. This also applies to other
architectures for content filtering capabilities.

-- Terje <Norderhaug.CHI@xerox.com>
Received on Monday, 19 June 1995 04:56:14 UTC

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