Critics take aim at new filtering service

Thursday, 27 June 2002, 1:41 AM EST

ew filtering software that relies on Web site operators to label their content has found favor with some of the Internet's most popular portals, but developers of commercial filtering products question the value of the system's voluntary approach.

The nonprofit, industry-backed Internet Content Rating Association (ICRA) released ICRAfilter, a free software product that works in conjunction with electronic "meta-tags" installed by Web site operators.

At a press conference to unveil the product, executives from America Online, Microsoft's MSN service and Yahoo announced that they had labeled 93 percent of the sites under their control with ICRAfilter-compatible tags.

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