New Browser Offers ISPs Money-Making Opportunity

Helping parents police their children’s Internet surfing may build goodwill for Internet companies, but says it can also build profits. A large group of Internet companies, including ISPs, portal operators, computer and network designers and others, kicked off its Get Net Wise program Thursday morning. Meanwhile, BrowseSafe was trying to drum up business for its PlanetGood Web browser.

The company is targeting the top 1,000 U.S. Internet service providers, hoping to forge agreements under which the ISPs would sell access to the PlanetGood browser to their family customers. BrowseSafe is banking on parents’ willingness to spend a little bit more to gain control over which sites their children visit on the Internet. BrowseSafe offers licensing agreements that allow ISPs to sell PlanetGood to customers for an additional charge of $5(US) per month. Each new PlanetGood sale represents a profit opportunity of $2 per month for the ISP, BrowseSafe says.

Major Browser Backing

BrowseSafe already has strategic alliances with Microsoft and Netscape to offer their Internet Explorer and Navigator browsers, respectively, alongside PlanetGood. The company has also lined up 21 ISPs with more than 1.4 million subscribers to sell the browser.

Unlike other parental control software programs, PlanetGood does not block or censor incoming content. It is an Internet browser that allows adults to choose what types of sites children visit, as well as the sites they visit themselves. BrowseSafe employs a review board of parents and educators to rate Internet sites based on content. Parents using the browser then select which rating levels are appropriate for their children.

Using a ratings process enables parents to differentiate between sites appropriate for teens and those appropriate for younger children, the company says. The sites are listed in three ratings categories. PlanetWow, for kids 10 and under, includes onscreen instructions to access specific sites. PlanetCool, for kids 11 to 16 years old, focuses on teen issues. PlanetHome is designed for adults, with a variety of sites loaded as favorites.

In addition to ISPs, Planet Good is available from online and traditional retailers and is directly available to schools and libraries.

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