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Pretty faces in social media vs. mass media

The story about the impact of all those ‘pretty friends’ in social media on self-esteem offers one good explanation for self-presentation fatigue. Researchers in the UK, Iowa and Ohio used Facebook to look at the impact on body image of selfies in social media vs. photos of celebrities and other beautiful people in magazines. They […]

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Risk implications of kids going mobile: Research

Even back in 2010, the EU Kids Online researchers in 25 countries noted that “the ways through and the locations from which children go online are diversifying, and this trend is continuing.” It has indeed continued. Increasingly obvious to parents, the mobile platform enables “ubiquitous internetting,” as Dutch researchers put it way back in 2006). […]

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Anonymous apps and services are not synonymous with ominous

I’ve heard a lot of consternation about apps and sites that let users post anonymously and, indeed it is possible to use services like Whisper, Ask.FM, Secret, and Yik Yak to be annoying, mean, or downright cruel. But the same can be said for any tool that enables social interaction, whether it’s a social network, […]

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A positive, insightful new book for schools on bullying

In the preface to her new book, Positive Relations @School (& Elsewhere), author and risk-prevention educator Nancy Willard tells of a conversation with a very smart 5th grader in a dance class waiting room. She was explaining to another parent why a “rules and punishment approach” to dealing with bullying wasn’t working for schools, when […]

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Facebook’s ‘Nearby Friends’ feature: What you need to know

This post is adapted from one that first appeared on Forbes.com Facebook is rolling out a new feature for its mobile app that allows you to  share your approximate location with friends. The opt-in feature (it’s turned off by default) enables you to find and be found by nearby friends. The feature can be turned on […]

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Students called heroes in this 6th-grade class

If your child is seriously into videogames – and Pew Internet research has found that 97% of US 12-to-17-year-olds are – it may help to read about New York teacher Peggy Sheehy’s heroes, also known as students. The middle school humanities teachers calls them heroes because she co-created the WoW in School curriculum “A Hero’s […]

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Identity theft a problem from cradle to grave — Kids most vulnerable

by Larry Magid April 8, 2014 was a scary day. Microsoft ended support and security updates for Windows XP, leaving millions of users vulnerable to hack attack from what will soon be an out-of-date operating system riddled with vulnerabilities. But by the end of the day, we had something else to worry about. Security researchers […]

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How to protect your family from Heartbleed security flaw (slideshow)

First, don’t panic. This is a serious problem but you need to put it into perspective. While there is clearly a vulnerability, there are so far no reports of the flaw being exploited. And even though this flaw has been around for the past two years, almost all the major sites have fixed it — […]

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In the face of school violence, what do we default to?

Certainly what all the coverage of the Murrysville, Pennsylvania, school stabbings indicates is a society trying to make sense of a so far inexplicable tragedy, but there is no – zero – sense or accuracy in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette’s “report” that this is “the latest face of the national epidemic of school violence.” There is […]

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Are sites you use vulnerable to Heartbleed security flaw?

Update: CNET has posted a list of Heartbleed status for top 100 sites A flaw in the most popular web encryption system could leave people vulnerable to data theft according to security researchers. That little padlock in the lower right corner of a browser window or the letters “https” in the address bar are supposed […]

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