Tech companies back 'net ratings

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A group of leading companies with Internet interests is backing an MIT initiative to provide guidelines for ratings of Internet content. The system, called the Platform for Internet Content Selection, has two goals: to help content providers to develop content labeling or rating schemes, and to help create tools that would allow consumers to block certain content. Consortium members include Apple Computer, America Online, AT&T, CompuServe, IBM, MCI Communications Corp., Microsoft Corp., Netscape Communications Corp., Open Market, Prodigy Services Co., Progressive Networks, Spyglass, Time Warner and Viacom's Nickelodeon. The industry effort is an attempt to forestall tough legislation the U.S. Senate called for last year.

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