Remember television? Apparently it's a thing people still watch when they aren't surfing the Internet, if you can believe that.
In case you've forgotten, here's a quick refresher. Television -- or TV, as it is more commonly known -- features video episodes ranging from 30 minutes to two hours, usually interspersed with much shorter 15- to 30-second episodes designed to give viewers opportunities to get snacks and visit the bathroom.
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There are essentially two kinds of TV show. One revolves around the love lives of men and women in their 20s who are pretending to be teenagers. In the other shows, someone has usually died and the characters that are left spend all their time poring over the DNA evidence and looking deeply troubled.
Before each episode, a brief rating -- such as TV-Y (for all children) to TV-MA (mature audiences only) -- flickers on screen. These are supposed to let parents know which programs their children are recording to watch later after the old folks have gone to bed.
According to a report in the New York Times (a website that occasionally appears in tangible physical form on something known as newsprint), those TV ratings are coming to the Web.
I for one think this is an excellent idea. But I also think the TV rating system of Y, Y7, PG, MA, and the like is just far too limited for the breadth and scope of the Webbernets. I believe all sites should be rated for both content and maturity, or lack thereof.
That's why I've come up with a ratings system of my own, which I would be more than happy to share, royalty free, with whoever's job it is to do these sorts of things. Here's how I'd rate the Web, in alpha order (note that some sites may qualify for more than one).
AO (Apple Obsessed): This would include nearly all of the tech gadget blogs -- as well as content aggregators like TechMeme and personal blogs like Daring Fireball -- that twist themselves into knots every time someone in Cupertino passes gas or just thinks about it. If the blog is rated AO, you know that rumors of the iPhone 6, iPad 4, or Steve Jobs' beautification are just around the bend.
BW (Badly Written): This would encompass about 98 percent of personal blogs and all content farms (eHow, Examiner.com, Demand Media, and so on) except for those that are rated SR (Simply Unreadable).