Online catch-up TV services have been slammed by MediaWatch UK.

The organisation, which was founded by the the late clean-up campaigner Mary Whitehouse as the National Viewers' and Listeners Association, claims both the BBC's iPlayer and Channel 4's 4oD, along with other catch-up services, are ignoring the traditional 9pm watershed for adult-themed shows.

The watch anything online anytime option means younger viewers can potentially watch unsuitable programmes, including HBO's True Blood - shown on Channel 4 - and the BBC's Spooks and The Graham Norton Show, unsupervised claims Mediawatch UK.

The group's new director Vivienne Pattison accused broadcasters of paying "lip-service" to the need to protect children.

"The technology has moved ahead of the regulation and that's the problem," Pattison told The Telegraph.

"Ofcom's most recent research found that fewer than a third of parents use parental controls or are confident about how to use them. And often it's children of parents who cannot or will not do something about it who are the ones you are most concerned about," she added.

Mediawatch UK's solution is to password protect online streaming TV channels from the BBC, Channel 4, ITV and others, something they intend to campaign strongly on in 2010.

"This is a really obvious one, it would be simple to do and we hope to campaign on it big next year," Pattison added.

According to their website, Mediawatch UK actively campaigns for socially responsible broadcasting and against content that is offensive and harmful, for example violence, swearing and pornography.

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See also: BBC iPlayer lets kids watch 'inappropriate' TV