Even if you never tinker with the PICS controls
on your web browser, one thing you can be certain of is that we have done everything
in our power to ensure that every web site indexed here is PICS rated using ICRA
and/or SafeSurf. What this means to you is the authors who publish what is indexed
here cared enough about the quality of their content to rate it. We use these
ratings and filtering of questionable content to limit what is included in our
Prohibited are any links
to sites containing:
- Glorification, manufacture or procurement of illegal drugs,1
- Glorification, manufacture or procurement of illegal weaponry,1
- Profanity and abusive language,
- Promotion of intolerance, hate and violence towards others,
- Online gambling.
to any of the above. 2
Setting PICS filters
Because most everything here is labeled,
parents have the option of tailoring the online experience for every user individually
by way of PICS controls. This is especially useful if children of widely varied
ages use the same computer. To help you with this, we have included two chapters
from the book "Child Safety-Net: How to protect your children from harm
online" with step by step instructions; one for users of Netscape, the
other for Microsoft Internet Explorer. It's amazingly easy and time very well
spent. Just click the related link below to begin.
Communicator v4.0 and above.
Internet Explorer v4.0 and above.
Placement in the SURFSAFELY.COM
directory is, first and foremost, dependent on the presence of ICRA
or SafeSurf PICS
<META> tags in the <HEAD> of your HTML documents, perhaps even both.
Without at least one your pages will not be indexed here.
Click here to rate with ICRA
or Click here to rate with
SafeSurf. We do not recognize any other labeling systems.
PICS labeling is a voluntary system so Please
label your material truthfully. Complaints received regarding gross falsification
of PICS information will be dealt with by suspension of the domain from the index
until corrected. Repeat offenses will result in your domain being forever barred
Parents who follow our instruction on the usage
of PICS will set their browsers to block all unrated content. That's what makes
the index at SURFSAFELY.COM so powerful. You
must rate your content to be seen by our users. That's why we say everyone should
rate regardless of content. If you omit rating you may be excluding a substantial
Description and keywords for your listings are
scanned from those meta tags on pages submitted. Keep in mind that the
worst thing you can do with your keyword and description meta tags is to use the
exact same text for them throughout your web site and, next to
being unlabeled, is the quickest way to have pages from your site excluded from
our directory. We need unique content for the directory to be of value to our
users. The last thing they need is page after page of exactly the same information.
If no description and keyword meta tags are found, the first text found in the
body of the document is used instead.
Titles, descriptions and keywords may be updated
in our directory by simply resubmitting the same URL after changes have been made.
Listings will be refreshed the next time we run a batch update. Newest submissions
always prevail over older ones.
with multiple systems
Labeling with both systems can help to ensure
you do not exclude users who may have installed only one filter type in their
web browser. The text book answer is to include multiple PICS labels but this
can cause problems with Internet Explorer's Content Advisor. Shown below is an
example of separate SafeSurf and RSACi Meta tags as one might normally see them
content='(PICS-1.1 "http://www.classify.org/safesurf/" l r (SS~~000 1))'>
content='(PICS-1.1 "http://www.rsac.org/ratingsv01.html" l r (n 0 s 0 v 0 l 0))'>
Internet Explorer's Content Advisor will only
recognize the first PICS label it comes across, ignoring any subsequent ones.
In the example above, because Internet Explorer comes bundled only with the RSACi
filter (SafeSurf must be added manually if desired), someone browsing this site
with Content Advisor enabled to block unlabeled sites would still receive an error
that the page was unrated because the tag it does recognize did not come first.
One solution is to place the RSACi tag above all others but a better solution
is to combine the two systems into one meta tag. This is known as concatenating
l r (SS~~000 1)
l r (n 0 s 0 v 0 l 0))'>
In this example the two labeling systems are
rolled into one PICS Meta tag. They are shown on separate lines only for greater
clarity. You may, in fact, deploy it this way but be very careful. Breaking up
code like this into multiple lines can cause problems with the labeling authority
when their spider comes to visit and double check to make sure the code is in
place and the syntax correct. As is always the case with computer code, be very
careful about punctuation! Test the concatenated tag on your pages by enabling
the various systems in your browsers individually and then together to make sure.
Once you're certain all is well, save your tags as part of a template. It will
make applying the tags to your pages a joy rather than a burden.
You too can label your sites using the tools
provided in PageBuilder. To demonstrate, a page has been created there with instructions
on just how to do it. Click
here to find out more.
Site wide labeling
The original ICRA white paper I used to link to here gave instruction on how to apply ICRA (and anyone else's for that matter) PICS labels at the server level instead of having to apply labels to each and every page. Since their move to RDF exclusively, this information has been withdrawn. I'm not in complete agreement with their decision to abandon PICS entirely. Server wide labeling made it possible to label entire sites without changing or adding meta tags to any HTML documents within the site, but required an understanding of web server administration and access to the web server configuration files. Like server wide labeling, RDF does allow one to change or adjust the rating of an entire site by altering one descriptor file. Unlike server wide labeling, RDF again makes it necessary to add and maintain RDF meta tag placeholders to each and every page within a site.
So, the new URL to label using ICRA RDF is here.
SurfSafely.com is now fully compatible with
XML and XHTML content.
If you receive an error that your page is not
presenting a proper title, chances are good it's buried too far down on the page.
Moving <title> to the very top line inside the <head> of your documents
should correct the problem.
If you cannot apply PICS labels to the <head>
of your html documents because your pages are constructed at community sites that
do not allow access to it, one way we have found around this problem is to encase
the PICS label inside a comment tag like this:
<META http-equiv="PICS-Label" content='(PICS-1.1 "http://www.rsac.org/ratingsv01.html"
l r (n 0 s 0 v 0 l 0))'>
This method still hides the tag from normal
view but allows the browser to act on values in it. Keep in mind, it still should
be placed as close to the top of your html document as possible.
ICRA maintains an extensive library of technical information
regarding the use and application of PICS labeling in English, Deutsch, Français,
and Español which is updated constantly, most of which will apply to other
labeling systems as well. Please visit the ICRA
website directly for the latest info.
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1) The term "illegal" shall be defined by the existing
federal laws of the Unites States of America.
2) "Site spamming" is the term used when users become
bombarded with numerous new browser windows just by going to a page and is a favorite
tool of porn predators. What then appears is entirely at the discretion of the
web site operator and often against our terms for inclusion in this directory.
Sites given to such practices, even though their material may be suitable, will
be barred from this directory until such time as they discontinue this practice.
Our rule of thumb for determining how much is too much will be - Only one pop-up
window allowed, pointing only to content within the same domain to material suitable
for our directory.