Bulgaria discusses online safety

Bulgaria's public discussion about children's online safety just got a boost from a national roundtable on the subject, SofiaEcho.com reports. The roundtable was held by Microsoft Bulgaria, Bulgarian child portal Az-deteto.com and the Blagodeyatel Foundation. Presented at it was a survey of Sofia children 6-14, which found that all of them use the Net. Most […]

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‘Predator’ myths exposed: Study

Despite all that parents hear, "sites such as MySpace and Facebook do not appear to increase [children's] risk of being victimized by online predators," according to a new analysis by the Crimes Against Children Research Center. US society has been overreacting, the CACRC's article in American Psychologist, "Online 'Predators' and Their Victims," indicates. Another myth, […]

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Participatory justice

NPR aired a story about a shop owner whose security cam recorded a thief scooping up and making off with a couple of watches. "After filing a police report, [the retailer] handed out fliers with the suspects' pictures and posted the surveillance tape on YouTube." Whether the motive is public humiliation or catching the thief, […]

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Facebook & user privacy

Ya gotta hand it to Facebook for responsiveness to public concerns (and news media reports on said). No way to be sure we have a perfect cause-and-effect situation here, but one week in January we hear from CNET that it's really hard to delete a profile from Facebook and the UK government is concerned, sharing […]

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Stealing personality?!

First there were identity theft and cut 'n' plagiarism. Now there's cut 'n' paste personality theft, the Wall Street Journal reports. It's more sad than threatening. "These identity thieves don't want your money. They want your quirky sense of humor and your cool taste in music." The Journal says people are not just stealing others' […]

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Right age for cellphones?

The age group more and more parents are asking about is 8-to-12-year-olds, "the fastest-growing segment of the US cellphone market," the Houston Chronicle reports (already, 72% of 13-to-17-year-olds have mobile phones). The Chronicle cites experts as saying that, generally children around 10 or 11 can handle responsible use of a cellphone. But it really does […]

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Phone-based ‘icebreaker’

A new "real-space social networking" product for iPhones, iPod Touch devices, and laptops called iFob is a sign of the way social networking is going. It's marketed as being "simple, fun, and gamelike," and it probably is in the right hands. "Instead of logging onto a social networking site and searching through lists of far […]

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‘Mom-tested’ sites for tweens

It's hard to find out much about MomLogic on the Web (couldn't easily find an About Us page), but the site put its stamp of approval on five sites for preteens: Stardoll (digital paper dolls + social networking), the Whyville virtual world, Imbee blogging, Allykatzz social networking for girls 10-15, and Yamod (a kind of […]

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Ukrainian parental controls got top spot

To mark the fifth-annual Safer Internet Day today, the European Union unveiled a three-year study it sponsored of parental controls software and services. In the study, the big-name brands in the US "were all beaten to the top spot by a small partnership that employs no more than 50 people, mostly designers and developers in […]

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Self-produced child porn: Good discussion

It's good to get the thinking of three legal scholars on this growing problem (I first picked up on it way back in 2004). They spoke at a University of Virginia Law School event entitled “Self-Produced Child Pornography: The Appropriate Societal Response to Juvenile Self-Sexual Exploitation,” Virginia Law Weekly reports. The professors talked about this […]

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