Number of child porn sites down

For the first time since it has been keeping count, the UK-based Internet Watch Foundation reports that "the number of Web sites hosting child pornography has fallen," Australian IT reports. The number has gone from 3,052 in 2006 to 2,755 last year, according to the latest figures available from IWF. Most of these child-abuse sites […]

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New guide to videogame parental controls

The videogame ratings board and Parent Teacher Association have teamed up to help parents get a better handle on videogame safety. They've published a free parents' guide to both the ratings system and the parental controls on game consoles, including step-by-step instructions for the controls' settings on PLAYSTATION 3, the Nintendo Wii, Xbox 360, and […]

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Kids posing online as pedophiles

This is an important heads-up if parents are worried about predators contacting their children online. The "predators" could be other kids playing pranks or being cyberbullies, because anybody can pose as just about anybody else online. Apparently that's happening in southwestern England, where police are saying "children as young as 10 may be posing as […]

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‘Running l8, luv, mom’

Kids are seeing texts like that from their parents more and more, the Washington Post reports. "Parental text messaging is outstripping the growth rate among younger generations. In the past two years, use of texting among people 45-54 increased 130%, the Post added, citing M:Metrics research – compared to a mere 41% increase among people […]

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UK government’s guidelines for social sites

The Home Office's guidance is a significant step of progress in online-child-safety consensus-building.

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UK government’s guidelines for social sites

As I mentioned last week, two milestone documents out of the UK have just been released, one a 200-page report requested by Prime Minister Gordon Brown and called "The Byron Review," and the other a set of guidelines for social-networking-service best practices issued by the Home Office itself . Both have worldwide relevance not just […]

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Mother-son digital divide bridged

A recent discussion in ConnectSafely.org that illustrates what's still missing in best-practice guidance: dealing with the third-party code and hacks that, increasingly, are jeopardizing users' computers (and maybe sometimes their relationships with their parents!). This exchange also illustrates how parents' tech illiteracy can widen the parent-child digital divide referred to in the Byron report (see […]

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Former bullies help fight bullying

Here's a concept: Have former bullies star in a film to educate teens about bullying. That's the idea behind "The Stories of Us," a 25-minute film that's fiction but looks more like a documentary to some educators, who are showing it in American schools, the Chicago Tribune reports. Teens wrote, acted in, and produced it. […]

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Love-sick teen not convicted

For posting comments such as "I love you," "we need to be together," and "I will never stop trying to talk to you" in a 14-year-old girl's MySpace profile, an 18-year-old man was charged by New York state prosecutors with "aggravated harassment and endangering the welfare of a child," a Wired News blog reports. But […]

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Computer security sea change & youth

You know that old argument about Mac vs. PC security? Well, it really is an old argument now. Computer security really isn't about what operating system your computer has anymore. Now it's really about 1) what browser you use and where you go online, and 2) how smart you are (or your child is) about […]

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