Virgin Media's Internet Filter Fails the Kids, Says Primary School

By Gary Cutlack on at

A primary school using Virgin Media's business internet claims the service is doing a rubbish job of filtering search results, with teachers reporting all sorts of tragi-comic incidents where kids are finding rude stuff while searching for innocent things.

The complaint against Virgin is being made by the head teacher at Pokesdown Primary School in Bournemouth, who says nine-year-old children have been exposed to inappropriate language while using the internet, despite the fact that there's usually a teacher standing over them ready to leap in and CMD+W away any bad things that may pop up.

Pokesdown business manager Terri Jowett said: "At one point we were being told by Virgin you cannot block a word unless it has seven letters, but unfortunately most words we'd like to block have less than seven letters. We recently changed provider at the school, and this choice was based on filtering, not price."

Filtering that's not good enough, as staff report that simple web searches for poem brought up "inappropriate images" and sexual swearing. Virgin's business boss has apologised, and said the team is trying harder to do what's probably quite an impossible policing job. Perhaps he should just send the school a pack of crayons and some paper and tell them to leave the internet alone. [Telegraph]