A CONSORTIUM of media companies and academics is drawing up categories to rate the sex-and-violence content of Hong Kong magazines and newspapers soon to be available by computer link. The classification system is part of a greater project managed by the Chinese University. Using $3.26 million of Industry Department funding, the project will help media companies move to the Internet and other electronic systems. But Dr Cheung Kwok-wai, senior lecturer at Chinese University's department of information engineering, said ethical and social issues would be more important to the project than technology. The consortium has attracted Chinese-language media organisations Ming Pao, Sing Tao Limited, Commercial Radio, Breakthrough Magazine and China News Service (Hong Kong) and is seeking more. Dr Cheung said rules had to cope with new members who might have more controversial materials and would have to reflect the territory's culture. The system being developed includes the ability to transmit moving pictures, sound and text in English and Chinese characters. When it starts early next year, Dr Cheung said anyone in the territory would be able to ring a number at Chinese University and tap into a range of services and have a link to the Internet worldwide. The South China Morning Post will start offering its own electronic services starting around the end of the year.