Too much, too soon

The Age recently published an article looking at how parents can stop their children inadvertently viewing pornography online.

Statistics on pornography:

• 70% of boys and 53.5% of girls have seen porn by age 12; 100% of boys and 97% of girls have seen porn by age 16. (Source: The Sex Lives of Australian Teenagers by Joan Sauers.)

• 67% of teens have cleared out their browser history or cache to make sure their parents can’t view their online activity; 64% of parents do not use online parental controls or filtering software. (Source: Microsoft, 2011.)

• 88% of scenes in mainstream pornography contain some sort of physical or verbal aggression. Significantly, 94 per cent of that aggression is directed towards women. (Source: Aggression and Sexual Behavior in Best-selling Pornography Videos, University of Arkansas.)

• Porn sites account for 30% of all internet traffic. (Source: Google DoubleClick Ad Planner 2012.)

• The most popular porn site on the internet attracts 4.4 billion page views per month. (Source: Google DoubleClick Ad Planner 2012.)

Tips for parents include:

• Create individual logins, passwords and security settings for each family member. Microsoft recommends that passwords contain at least eight characters and be a combination of upper-case and lower-case characters, punctuation, numbers and symbols.

• Employ security filters, such as Net Nanny or Norton 360 Multi-Device.

• For Apple iOS devices (iPhones, iPads, iPod Touch) you can change and control settings in just three clicks. For more information on parental controls go to support.apple.com/kb/HT4213.

• The Parents, Tweens and Sex iPad app is available on iTunes. For more information, see ptsapp.com.au.

Read the whole article here.

Teen “Sexting” Behaviors

The US Department of Justice has recently released a report entitled Building a prevention framework to address teen “sexting” behaviours. Although a lengthy report, some pointers can be taken from the recommendations:

The focus group participants converged in the sentiment that parents and families play a central role in shaping teen values and decisions surrounding sexting and related issues. The participants also offered insights into both the necessity and challenges of engaging families and parents as part of our responses. Participants in the parent focus groups often lamented the laxness of standards and discipline exercised by other parents… we observed wide variation in participants’ level of atunement to, and understanding of, teenage social use of technology in general, and teen sexting behaviors in particular. Parents also regularly described teens’ use of digital communication technology as a source of tension and conflict, highlighting themes such as the costs of cellphone bills, challenges of enforcing and monitoring internet usage, and the negative and disruptive qualities of texting and social media.

Again, an open line of communication between parents and children is recommended as well as parents teaching their children about their expected values.

I need to know about online shopping

Today’s resource provided by the Australian Communication and Media Authority‘s Cybersmart website, looks at online shopping. The page looks at:

  • Will I get what I paid for
  • Know the basics
  • Protect yourself
Well worth a look for anyone who shops online.

You can access the whole page here.

I need to know about social networking and online friends

Continuing on with the resources provided by the Australian Communication and Media Authority‘s Cybersmart website, the information social networking and online friends is very useful. It includes information on:

  • Are they my friends in real life too?
  • Know the basics of safe social networking
  • Meeting online friends in the real world – do you really know who you’re meeting?
Well worth checking out. Read the whole post here.

http://www.cybersmart.gov.au/Teens/I%20need%20to%20know%20about/Social%20networking%20and%20online%20friends.aspx

Digital citizens in Minecraft

 5th Graders designed a Digital Citizenship & Cyber Safety Game in Minecraft during an after school technology club. The game was entirely built by the students and this was their first try at gamification for an educational project based learning experience in the school library.

A worthwhile video for any student who loves using Minecraft.

I need to know about online gaming

Another resource provided by the Australian Communication and Media Authority‘s Cybersmart website is about online gaming. Covering both video games and gambling, this resource includes information on

  • knowing the basics and
  • protecting yourself

Read the whole post here.

Facebook hands teenagers a megaphone

Recently ReadWrite published a post explaining that Facebook now

…officially wants teens to overshare as well, in ways that might also make them better fodder for advertising.

Facebook announced today that teenage users can now make their posts public on Facebook. Previously, the social network limited users between the ages of 13 and 17 to distributing posts to their extended network—i.e. friends and friends of friends. Teenage users also now have the option to turn on the “follow” setting for their accounts, letting public updates appear in news feeds.

Read the whole post here.

A social profile is not a CV

Recently The Age published an article stating that a social media profile is not a CV. Year 11 student Olympia Nelson states:

Young people need to be protected from cyber-spying by prospective employers.

It’s creepy to think that you’re being stalked. But how much creepier is it that a group of people sit around a long table analysing information on your Facebook profile in order to decide whether you’re worthy of a job in their organisation?

The government is not going to protect you from people looking at what you publish. It’s up to you to portray yourself as you’d like to be seen. She continues:

When teachers say: ‘‘Do you know that employers will actually search you on Facebook’’, they are implicitly condoning, rather than condemning, this despicable and illogical intrusiveness. Why aren’t they devoting their energies to berating search companies for cyber-stalking?

Like it or not, what you put out to the public domain via social media is going to be viewed and used by others. Whether it’s a prospective employer or worse, what you publicly publish is open to all. We aren’t condoning it, we’re just telling it like it is. A reminder to think before you post.