My son’s friend got his first computer recently and they called today to ask about putting parental controls on it. We have been using K9 Web Protection for quite some time and I really do like it a lot. It’s easy to set up and you can block by category, plus you can add specific sites to white and black lists if you need to. You can set up times for your kids to use the internet with it, you can review what they have been doing, all sorts of stuff.
I’m big on free speech, but I also want to block some types of things that just aren’t appropriate for younger people. My son isn’t a little kid any longer, but we still use this and he is ok with it and understands why I think it’s essential. As he has grown and matured we have been able to easily go in and adjust the settings to allow more content for him.