This press release is from our friends at The Good Source, who take advantage of the technology built by Safe Surfer to create a remarkably clean online surf experience.
Harmful digital content, such as pornography and violence can now be blocked at the source, protecting young and vulnerable internet users, thanks to a technological breakthrough pioneered by a new safety-first Internet Service Provider (ISP).
Tauranga-based company, The Good Source, will provide fast, family-friendly fibre internet that blocks harmful digital content. The new technology being used features an open and transparent approach to content moderation, empowering users to categorise the Internet using smart AI tools in a first for New Zealand.
The innovation of this new company will be revealed at the launch event on 16 December to raise awareness surrounding Internet safety standards, the existing issues, and the importance of keeping children safer online. The event will be hosted by the three dads (and founders) of The Good Source: Darryl McConnell, Ryan Kilfoil, and Steve Turner. Joining them on the panel are Jo Robertson (Sex Therapist & Porn Researcher) and Parenting presenter Holly Jean Brooker.
Ryan Kilfoil, co-founder of The Good Source, said, “We’re excited to launch our family-friendly internet service and believe all families deserve to have a safe and secure internet experience. We are committed to providing that for our customers.”
The problem? Harmful web content is hurting Kiwi families, particularly children. Research conducted by the NZ Classifications Office found “72% of NZ young people said they had seen something online that made them feel uncomfortable” and a more recent report found one in three Kiwis saw violent material, and one in five saw content encouraging “harmful behaviour, such as suicide, self-harm, and eating disorders”. The kicker: most Kiwis “think it’s hard to protect children from inappropriate or harmful online content”.
Jo Robertson said “Having spent 5 years researching the porn industry, its content, and young peoples experience of it - I can confidently say that if we want to tackle issues like sexual violence, we need platforms like ‘The Good Source’ available. The mainstream porn that young people stumble across and engage with is often sexist, racist, non-consensual and unfortunately shaping their real life sexual encounters. Professionals in every field in the country have been waiting on an initiative like this, we are deeply concerned about the online landscape for our young people.”
The solution for The Good Source was to partner with Safe Surfer, a Kiwi tech company building online safety and security products that also prioritise privacy. The partnership resulted in the development of tools that support healthy online habits for families and remove unwanted content at the source.
Other ISPs currently offer limited solutions and are not keeping up with the fast-changing landscape of technology. Darryl McConnell, who previously worked for a major telco, said he saw “no real desire” to provide effective solutions. Steve Turner said, “Our focus is on a problem other ISPs have not prioritised.”
Rory Birkbeck, co-founder of Safe Surfer, said, “The significant investment made in industry-leading web crawler technology, along with customisable filters, means that families can have confidence in content not being over-blocked, which was a major issue with technology of the past.”
With tech regulation starting to hit Australia, conversations are shifting, showing that The Good Source is well ahead of the curve in New Zealand.