Maturity ratings for applications and other software

Registered by Matthew Paul Thomas on 2011-03-22

Some people would rather not, or would rather that their children or students or employees did not, see or install software featuring particular qualities: violence, horror, sex, degrading language, gambling, and so on. We should cater for these people by having maturity ratings for every package in the Ubuntu and Canonical archives, every PPA, and every package submitted to developer.ubuntu.com; and by providing an interface for setting and following your preferred ratings in Ubuntu Software Center, apt-get, and maybe elsewhere.

Blueprint information

Status:
Not started
Approver:
Steve Langasek
Priority:
Undefined
Drafter:
Matthew Paul Thomas
Direction:
Needs approval
Assignee:
Michael Vogt
Definition:
Pending Approval
Series goal:
Proposed for oneiric
Implementation:
Unknown
Milestone target:
None

Whiteboard

Work items:
[sg] Produce a classification policy for USC, comparing with iOS and Android etc: TODO
[sg] With help from Michael Vogt, share ideas with Debian about the classification policy: TODO
[sg] Decide on moderate defaults for the decided software classification policy: TODO
[mvo] Investigate how much the Debtags work in Launchpad would be: TODO
[mpt] Investigate go-tag (Web interface for tagging) for software: TODO
[mpt] Design a UI for developers to classify their own software in developer.ubuntu.com: TODO
[mpt] Design a UI for end users to set their classification preferences: TODO
[mpt] Design UI for hiding filtered applications in USC: TODO
[mvo] Implement limited user account mechanism: TODO
[jasonwarner] Find people to design and implement easy creation of limited user accounts in User Accounts settings, and replace this work item with work items for those people: TODO

------------

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Content_rating
http://techcrunch.com/2009/06/29/heres-how-iphone-app-store-ratings-work-hint-they-dont/
http://market.android.com/support/bin/answer.py?answer=188189

Examples for thought-testing any rating mechanism:
- http://www.cnn.com/2011/TECH/mobile/03/22/gay.cure.app.mashable/
- http://www.facebook.com/notes/omg-ubuntu/watch-out-pedobears-about/198901333475120

Using debtags: https://lists.ubuntu.com/archives/edubuntu-users/2008-March/003738.html

[removed info about IFLA Internet Manifesto, which isn't relevant to admin-controlled use of ratings]

== UDS session notes ==

- kind of things we'd classify

=== How would we classify things? ===

Countries have widely varying classification systems
- e.g. countries differ in their system
- other countries disallow selling games unless they've been reviewed by their classification office
- Do we need to match those rating systems?
 - Each country's rating for an application could be a unique tagtag
- specific unusual examples, e.g. Nazi imagery in France
- Canonical has company risk for classifications, whereas Debian does not

[sg] Produce a content control policy for USC, comparing with iOS and Android etc
- share ideas with Debian with help from mvo
- cf. Miriam Ruiz, Debian Open Ratings System https://lists.ubuntu.com/archives/edubuntu-users/2008-March/003738.html - http://wiki.debian.org/OpenRating - http://www.miriamruiz.es/weblog/?p=155

=== Who would do the classifying? ===

For the Ubuntu archive: packagers and volunteers

For third-party software: proposed by the software developer

Possibility: additional user rating

[mpt] Design a UI for developers to classify their own software in developer.ubuntu.com

=== What would happen if the classification was bad? ===

- They'd get bad reviews
- Worry about appeals later

=== Where would the preferences be stored? ===

Launchpad needs to store and transmit Debtags
- These can be updated separately from updating the package itself (e.g. support time information, tasks)

- You can drop extra debtags sources in /etc/debtags/sources.list.d/ and apt-xapian-index will make use of these — possibly an alternative implementation

[mvo] Investigate how much the Debtags work in Launchpad would be
[mpt] Investigate go-tag (Web interface for tagging)
Enrico Zini

Debtags would be aggregated into the Packages file
Search would still work fine, integrating into xapian

=== What would the default setting be? ===

- Default to a moderate setting
- Maybe show a link, in search results, to filtered items
[sg] Decide on moderate defaults for the decided content control policy

=== How would people set their preferences? ===

Default to the preferences appropriate for the country they set

[mpt] Design a UI for consumers setting their classification preferences

=== How would classifications be enforced? ===

We would need:
- a limited account, one that
  - can install software from known sources
  - cannot add other sources
  - cannot install software outside the current classification settings
  - cannot use apt-get etc at all

- PolicyKit permission for aptdaemon

- Easy limited user account in User Accounts settings

[mvo] Implement limited user account mechanism

[jasonwarner] Find people to design and implement easy creation of limited user accounts in User Accounts settings.

[mpt] Design UI for hiding filtered applications in USC

- maybe make a set of guideline ages that certain content can watch and set the highest age for the content that is being rated. It would be a fairly easy system to maintain

(?)

Work Items