Tag Archives | online safety

Proposed ‘rightful’ framework for Internet safety

Internet safety is a basic right of Internet users. But it’s not the only one. There are other fundamental rights that Net users of all ages have, and I propose that Internet safety will actually serve all Internet users better – and have much more relevance to the younger ones in our homes and schools […]

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Social media reality check from Canadian youth: Key study

Before releasing its report on online conflict, MediaSmarts presented a much broader picture of young Canadians’ experiences in social media: “Life Online.” This is important context for any discussion about cyberbullying and other negative aspects of digitally informed life, whether we’re setting policy at the household, school or national levels. “There are a lot of […]

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Whisper’s popularity no longer a secret

It’s being said that the preference pendulum in social media culture is swinging back from transparency (as in Facebook) to anonymity (as in Whisper). And the growing popularity of the Whisper app – where users’ posts are Internet meme-style photos overlaid with text (the app makes posting easy by offering up photos it “thinks” match […]

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The Snapchat New Year’s hack: Fuel for discussion

The hack against Snapchat at the turn of the year appears to have done more awareness-raising than harm, but awareness – on the part of users and their parents as well as startups and young digital media companies – is crucial. The publishing of the screennames and partial phone numbers of 4.6 million users was […]

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AG’s office apologizes for a school Net safety preso

There was good news and bad news in a story coming out of Pennsylvania last week, and the good news is a clear sign of progress. The bad news happened first: As part of Pennsylvania’s attorney general’s “Operation Safe Surf” program, 4th and 5th graders at Merion Elementary School, about 30 miles northwest of Philadelphia, […]

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Challenging ‘Internet safety’ as a subject to be taught

“Way back” in 2008 – at least a decade after “online safety” was starting to be seen as a subject that needed to be taught to children – I suggested that it was becoming obsolete. Now what I’m seeing is that it never really was a single stand-alone subject that could become obsolete. We’ll look […]

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Media siege mentality: Antidote for parents

Over the 15-or-so years I’ve been covering family technology, I’ve noticed a kind of siege mentality that developed among parents about kids’ use of digital media. Then, a few years ago, when sociology professor David Finkelhor at the University of New Hampshire gave his milestone talk, “The Internet, Youth Deviance & the Problem of Juvenoia,” […]

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Less bullying & fear at school: Fresh federal data

Do people ever consider the possibility that, if they’re exposed to increased reports about a social problem, it’s the reporting that has increased rather than the problem? It’s increasingly clear that this is the case with school bullying: Only news reports about it have increased, not the behavior itself. In fact, both bullying and fear […]

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Social cruelty on Ask.fm & the whack-a-mole tendency

Remember Formspring.me? Three years ago some terrible trolling that reportedly involved teens in New Jersey made the site, which announced it was shutting down* last month, a national news story in the US. Teens’ viral adoption of Formspring and its format (ask a question, get an anonymous answer) reportedly took the site by surprise. Disturbing […]

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Australian teen panelists on social media: Meaty insights

My visit to Australia for the World Congress on Family Law & Children’s Rights has been rich in hospitality and insight – I’ve had the privilege of talking with people in government, online-safety advocacy, industry, school (students!), primary and secondary education, research, of course many parents and grandparents, and even “Australia’s Dr. Phil,” as Michael […]

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