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By Peter Hoskin
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CPParliament
may be about to shut down for Christmas, but that doesn’t mean the business of
politics has stopped. The Prime Minister has a fairly significant article in
today’s Daily Mail
on the Government’s plans for protecting children from the
“darkest corners of the Internet”. Apparently, under those plans, people
switching on their computers for the first time will be asked if there are children
in their house. If they answer “yes”, they will be prompted to apply a whole
range of filters to their web browsers.

Later
in the article, Mr Cameron also reveals that Claire Perry has been appointed as
his special adviser on “preventing the sexualisation and commercialisation of
childhood”. This has, of course, been a cause of Ms Perry’s for some time.
Earlier this year, she chaired an independent Parliamentary Inquiry into
protecting children online, whose report can be read here.
In September, she delivered a petition to No.10 asking for an “automatic block”
on online porn, by which over-18s would have to contact their internet service
providers if they wanted to access adult material.


I
wouldn’t be surprised if this forms part of a renewed drive on family policy in
2013. It’s striking how Mr Cameron’s article emphasises both that he is a “father
of three young children,” and that Ms Perry is a “mother of three”. There are
some government advisers who believe that this is an area where the
Conservatives can really distinguish themselves — and mend relations with female
voters, in particular, in the process.

In
any case, here’s the statement that Ms Perry has released about her
appointment:

“I
am absolutely delighted that the Prime Minister has asked me to be his adviser
on preventing the commercialisation and sexualisation of childhood. I am very
much looking forward to helping the Government introduce more robust filters
for internet content in our homes, working to improve age rating information on
music videos, helping to improve education for parents and children about
online safety and making sure the other excellent recommendations of the Bailey
Report are implemented”.

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