11 U.K. Porn Sites Found to Have Violated Age-Verification Rules
LONDON — ATVOD, the authority that regulates video-on-demand in the U.K., has disclosed that three U.K. online adult companies were determined to have violated Rule 11, which requires that website operators make sure those under 18 can't access hardcore porn.
ATVOD’s findings against Studio66 TV, G Spot Productions and Abused Piggy brings to 17 the number of adult companies successfully challenged by the regulator over the past 18 months.
The three companies in the latest probe operated 11 websites that included on-demand video content.
Regulators, in a statement, said: "The content of the videos was explicit: if it were offered on DVDS, the discs could be sold only in licensed sex shops."
"ATVOD’s action resulted in each service taking rapid steps to bring to an end the breaches," they said.
ATVOD found that G Spot Productions broke statutory rules in two ways — by allowing trailers of explicit sex without age verification and by failing to place effective access controls with debit cards. The company operates ArseWithClass.com, ExclusiveDogging.com, PleasurableFantasy.com, Pleasureville.co.uk, MyGloryholeConfessions.com, SouthernCumsluts.com, SouthCumslut.com, Adult-Excitement.co.uk and ILoveMyM elons.com
Abused Piggy, which specialized in fetish content at AbusedPiggy.com, was found to have free-to-view access sample footage in violation of the regs. That site closed shop because of ATVOD's actions
Studio66 TV, operating Studio66TV.com, was ruled to have failed to put in place effective access controls in relation to its content.
Fines haven't yet been levied on the companies; however, such investigations have resulted in significant financial penalties in some cases. Playboy TV UK and Benelux Ltd. were fined £100,000 in January for “serious, repeated and reckless” breaches of ATVOD rules.
ATVOD’s interpretation of Rule 11 is that there should be in place an effective Content Access Control System, known as the CAC System, that verifies that the user is 18 or over at the point of registration or access by the mandatory use of technical tools for age verification, including:
- Confirmation of credit card ownership or other form of payment where mandatory proof that the account holder is 18 or over;
- A personal digital identity management service, or PIN, which uses checks on an independent and reliable database, such as the electoral roll; or,
- Other comparable proof of account ownership which effectively verifies age.
Jason Kirk, brand manager for CCBill, told XBIZ that the ATVOD regulations are simply a step to protect minors from accessing age-inappropriate content. The processor has a significant amount of business in the U.K.
"I think we can all agree protecting children is important, but at the same time we need to be mindful of online merchant’s ability to accept transactions," Kirk said. "The Web Validate (Cards by Country) feature we launched late last year specifically addresses changing regulations like these by letting merchants configure their offerings as needed based on regulations, consumer preferences, or economic norms."