Playboy UK hit with hardcore fine

Playboy UK has been fined £100,000 (€120,000) by Ofcom for offering hardcore videos and images online that could be accessed by children.

The regulator said the company’s failure to have proper controls to stop young people accessing two of its websites was “serious, repeated and reckless”.

Ofcom found that Playboy did not have acceptable web controls to check that users accessing the porn sites were aged 18 or over. The regulator found that Playboy’s Demand Adult homepage carried hardcore material that was possible to view by anybody at the click of a button. Extra pornographic material could be accessed with just a debit card. Ofcom fined Demand Adult £65,000.

The Playboy TV website required users to self-certify age, however the homepage material was not as explicit as that on Demand Adult. Again access to further material was available with just a debit card, which Ofcom said is not an effective age verification system, as under-18s can use them. Ofcom fined Playboy TV £35,000.

“We concluded that Playboy’s failure to protect children from potentially accessing these sites was serious, repeated and reckless,” said Ofcom.

In 2011, the Playboy TV channel was fined £110,000 for broadcasting a series of television ads for its adult sex chat services featuring presenters enticing viewers with sexual gestures.

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