William Gibson – the one-time science fiction author who now writes about the present and coined "cyberspace" – had something to say about youth in an interview he gave Rolling Stone for the magazine's 40th anniversary issue. He said (and I think he's right) that "one of the things our grandchildren will find quaintest about us is that we distinguish the digital from the real, the virtual from the real. In the future, that will become literally impossible. The distinction between cyberspace and that which isn't cyberspace is going to be unimaginable [as it is now to many young social networkers]. When I wrote 'Neuromancer' in 1984, cyberspace already existed for some people, but they didn't spend all their time there. So cyberspace was there, and we were here. Now cyberspace is here for a lot of us, and there has become any state of relative nonconnectivity. There is where they don't have Wi-Fi." I recently heard a group of women bemoaning the fact that teens actually say they "hang out" with friends in social sites, that they can say they hang out with people who aren't even in the same room. How anti-social, they felt. Maybe if a child, out of fear or anxiety, is social networking is replacing socializing with people in "real life," maybe not if s/he is just making use of another tool for socializing with real-life friends, nearby or distant. But what do you think? Would love it if you'd post your thoughts at ConnectSafely.org – or email me at email@example.com. Thanks!
NetFamilyNews – by Anne Collier
- A positive, insightful new book for schools on bullying
- Students called heroes in this 6th-grade class
- In the face of school violence, what do we default to?
- Popularity: The other kind of vulnerability
- FB & Oculus VR: The potential of a virtual-reality platform
- What’s (importantly) different about Snapchat
- We ‘like’ faces in social media: Study
- Yik Yak update: How the app came to geo-fence off US schools
Analysis & News – by Larry Magid
- Anonymous apps and services are not synonymous with ominous
- Facebook’s ‘Nearby Friends’ feature: What you need to know
- Identity theft a problem from cradle to grave — Kids most vulnerable
- How to protect your family from Heartbleed security flaw (slideshow)
- Beware of Heartbleed inspired phishing scams
- Are sites you use vulnerable to Heartbleed security flaw?
- Microsoft ends support of Windows XP: Machines highly vulnerable to security risks
- The evolution of online safety: Lessons learned over 20 years