Conservative Christians are in the forefront of creating filters that block out pornographic and other offensive sites on the Internet, although they are divided whether to view such an endeavor as a ministry or a business.
The Fort Worth Star-Telegram (Nov. 4) reports that “Christian-led Internet companies dedicated to providing smut-free online service” are a growing trend in the hi-tech world. Steve Watters, an Internet research analyst for the evangelical ministry Focus on the Family, says the growth of these companies displays “kind of a missionary mentality.”
The Nashville-based HEDGEBUILDERS.com is headed by a Southern Baptist pastor and provides churches and schools with reduced-rates or free service. Evesta.com and Safeconnect.com are up front about their Christian backgrounds but appeal to all families regardless of their faith.
“We want them to experience the service and values without necessarily bringing any baggage,” says Scott Jenkins of the Kansas-based Safeconnect.com. Watters says that about “50 percent of the filtered customers are new to the Internet because they didn’t want to get on until they get a service they could trust.
A lot of the more hard-core Christians or concerned parents would rather get a service that’s full-throttle protected.”