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MySpace Agrees to Block Sexual Predators


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#1
sari

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MySpace.com has agreed with 45 states to add extensive measures to combat sexual predators.

An official familiar with the multistate agreement said MySpace, the huge online social networking Web site, agreed to include several online protections and participate in a working group to develop age-verification and other technologies.

The official said MySpace will also accept independent monitoring and changes to the structure of its site.



http://apnews.myway..../D8U5NQVO1.html
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#2
ScHwErV

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There is no way that an automated system can screen sexual predators. They are paying lip-service to a real problem and I believe they have no real plans to do anything about it. Nor do they care. MySpace is a company, they are in business to make money. They are currently making money hand-over-fist and while that continues, they will do little to hurt the bottom line.
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#3
PsychPosse

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While I can appreciate effort to target online predatory behavior, I have to agree that MySpace is simply using a very negative advertising ploy here. I suppose their sales will sky rocket now. (however it is they make money)
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#4
james_8970

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There is no way that an automated system can screen sexual predators. They are paying lip-service to a real problem and I believe they have no real plans to do anything about it. Nor do they care. MySpace is a company, they are in business to make money. They are currently making money hand-over-fist and while that continues, they will do little to hurt the bottom line.

While there isn't any way to really screen sexual predators (you'd be surprised by how many use their real name), it'll give many parents a falsified feeling of security. So if parents slowly begin allowing their children to go onto MySpace, then their revenue and profits will likely grow.
James
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#5
ScHwErV

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As I said, they are in business to make money.
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#6
zorba the geek

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As I said, they are in business to make money.


21th century cyberspace mafia


Well said ScHwErV :)
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#7
IceKeyMaster

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Wait, wait, wait. You mean they where not ALREADY stoping Sexual Predators? And people wonder why so many kids are being raped :).
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#8
LynnAisling

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I'm going to jump in here and play devil's advocate.....

It's not MySpace's job to protect the kids. The *parents* are responsible for knowing what their child does. The predator can stalk the kid online but in order for sexual abuse (or anything else) to occur the child has to meet the predator. While I will not loudly argue the fact that you can not control all of your child's interactions on the web (but really I don't buy that), you can definitely control where they going, whom they are meeting, etc..etc.....

I think parents need to wake up and smell the coffee. As stated in other posts MySpace is a company out to make a buck. Are you going to trust the safety of your children to a company???
I think kids are too spoiled today. Computers and laptops in their bedrooms?? No way. Not in my house. Then again I don't even allow TVs in the bedroom.

The computer is in a common public area. *I* approve any friend requests, I have all the passwords, can check (and do check) all email, IM histories, profiles, etc..etc... I have a keylogger on the system as well. We have also spoken about the hidden dangers of displaying personal information, meeting strangers, etc..etc....... If something happens to the child I'm taking care of (as I do not have my own children, but participate in respite foster care) it is my fault, not MySpace's.
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#9
hfcg

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I'm going to jump in here and play devil's advocate.....

It's not MySpace's job to protect the kids. The *parents* are responsible for knowing what their child does. The predator can stalk the kid online but in order for sexual abuse (or anything else) to occur the child has to meet the predator. While I will not loudly argue the fact that you can not control all of your child's interactions on the web (but really I don't buy that), you can definitely control where they going, whom they are meeting, etc..etc.....

I think parents need to wake up and smell the coffee. As stated in other posts MySpace is a company out to make a buck. Are you going to trust the safety of your children to a company???
I think kids are too spoiled today. Computers and laptops in their bedrooms?? No way. Not in my house. Then again I don't even allow TVs in the bedroom.

The computer is in a common public area. *I* approve any friend requests, I have all the passwords, can check (and do check) all email, IM histories, profiles, etc..etc... I have a keylogger on the system as well. We have also spoken about the hidden dangers of displaying personal information, meeting strangers, etc..etc....... If something happens to the child I'm taking care of (as I do not have my own children, but participate in respite foster care) it is my fault, not MySpace's.

People, even children, have a right to use legal services offered in our society with out fear.
They should not have to fear going to a shopping mall, school, or social event.
The child should be taught about any danger in our society, crossing the street, substance abuse, Etc...
Meeting some one you do not know is no different.
However no one has total control over another human. (Nor should they, even if it is a child).

Edited by hfcg, 27 February 2008 - 10:23 AM.

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#10
Tal

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I'm going to jump in here and play devil's advocate.....

It's not MySpace's job to protect the kids. The *parents* are responsible for knowing what their child does. The predator can stalk the kid online but in order for sexual abuse (or anything else) to occur the child has to meet the predator. While I will not loudly argue the fact that you can not control all of your child's interactions on the web (but really I don't buy that), you can definitely control where they going, whom they are meeting, etc..etc.....

I think parents need to wake up and smell the coffee. As stated in other posts MySpace is a company out to make a buck. Are you going to trust the safety of your children to a company???
I think kids are too spoiled today. Computers and laptops in their bedrooms?? No way. Not in my house. Then again I don't even allow TVs in the bedroom.

The computer is in a common public area. *I* approve any friend requests, I have all the passwords, can check (and do check) all email, IM histories, profiles, etc..etc... I have a keylogger on the system as well. We have also spoken about the hidden dangers of displaying personal information, meeting strangers, etc..etc....... If something happens to the child I'm taking care of (as I do not have my own children, but participate in respite foster care) it is my fault, not MySpace's.


I disagree. I think it's important to make sure children understand the dangers of the internet (been there, done that :)), but I don't think it's morally correct to have a keylogger on the system, and check emails & friend applications. I think the internet is somewhat similar to real life. You wouldn't want your parents to open up your mail box? Log everything you say to your friends on the phone? IM is just like chatting. You wouldn't bump into your kid's chat with a friend, right?

I have very private information in my IM logs, and being a teenager, I don't think it's anyone's business. Also, putting up a keylogger without the child actually knowing it, is somewhat shady. I don't want my phone calls recorded, and I think you agree.

I think the key here is proper education. I've never had a MySpace account nor I intend to open one. You can block MySpace. You can educate your kid and make sure he doesn't visit sites like this. Personally, I add only people I know very well from the internet to my personal IM account. People I know less from the internet, I add to my secondary IM account, which doesn't have any private information at all (you also can't fish out the IP address from it). It's just like real life. You don't give your private information to strangers. I don't.

A child should have a minimum amount of privacy, in my opinion. Parents should educate their children, just like in the real world. But reading IM history is, I think, an intrusion to privacy. Even children's chats can contain sensitive information, and you can bump into it without knowing it or realizing it.
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#11
hfcg

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I disagree. I think it's important to make sure children understand the dangers of the internet (been there, done that :)), but I don't think it's morally correct to have a keylogger on the system, and check emails & friend applications. I think the internet is somewhat similar to real life. You wouldn't want your parents to open up your mail box? Log everything you say to your friends on the phone? IM is just like chatting. You wouldn't bump into your kid's chat with a friend, right?

I have very private information in my IM logs, and being a teenager, I don't think it's anyone's business. Also, putting up a keylogger without the child actually knowing it, is somewhat shady. I don't want my phone calls recorded, and I think you agree.

I think the key here is proper education. I've never had a MySpace account nor I intend to open one. You can block MySpace. You can educate your kid and make sure he doesn't visit sites like this. Personally, I add only people I know very well from the internet to my personal IM account. People I know less from the internet, I add to my secondary IM account, which doesn't have any private information at all (you also can't fish out the IP address from it). It's just like real life. You don't give your private information to strangers. I don't.

A child should have a minimum amount of privacy, in my opinion. Parents should educate their children, just like in the real world. But reading IM history is, I think, an intrusion to privacy. Even children's chats can contain sensitive information, and you can bump into it without knowing it or realizing it.

Hear, hear! I could not agree with you more.
Children are not property, they are people.
It is the place of the adult to teach safe practices.
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#12
sari

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I have 2 teenage daughters. I try to respect their privacy, because they are people. I wouldn't listen in on their phone conversations, so I don't record their IM conversations either. Nor do I read the text messages on their phones. Their profiles on MySpace are private, so you can only see them if you're accepted as a friend - not a perfect means, but ti does provide some measure of privacy. I've checked them on occasion, and I've also talked to them about not giving out personal information, etc. to people they don't know.

When I was growing up, we didn't have cell phones or computers. I was raised by my mother, because my parents divorced when I was 10. Because my mother worked, I was on my own after school. She didn't know where I was or how to get in touch with me, but we also had rules about when I had to be home and what I was and not allowed to do. That should still apply today. While it's important to keep your kids safe, you need to teach your kids how to behave, in public, on the internet, in school, etc. You also have to respect them and their need for privacy, and at that age, they have an incredible need for privacy, as did I when I was a teenager. I can teach my children to distrust me, meaning they hide even more information from me, or I can show them that I do trust them, which only strengthens our relationship.
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#13
Stinky Britches

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Bless you parents who contend with the new world we live in. It wasn't all that long ago when 'Stranger Danger' and similar films were played in school to warn children to beware. I watch those cable TV specials with Chris Hansen interviewing would-be ne'r-do-wells who show up with bad intent, expecting to meet a youngster. Blows my mind. I think they could have one of those shows on every week and the letches would continue to crawl out of the gutter. Scary stuff. We were never "blessed nor cursed with children" as W.C.Fields would say, but they are a gift, the most precious gift of all. I don't know how you parents do it - I would be a nervous wreck!
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#14
The Admiral

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I'm going to agree with Lynn on this one. hfcg said that "People, even children, have a right to use legal services offered in our society with out fear. They should not have to fear going to a shopping mall, school, or social event." You're right, they shouldn't have to fear going to a public place. But if they have met somebody online they would like to meet with, they should have fear, as should the parent. Everyone has the right to use social networking services. People abuse that right, and use it as a tool for finding children to abuse. MySpace can't stop it, because "it's a right." So it is the parents job to keep their children out of harms way.
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#15
Tal

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Of course it is, I think we all agree that the parents should prevent it. But there are various means to do it. I, for one, won't open a MySpace account, and it's not blocked on my PC.

Besides, if I ever meet someone from the internet (and I didn't yet do it), I meet only those who I know very well, and I will surely tell my parents about it. I think, again, the key lies in education and not just blocking sites and reading IM history. It doesn't help the child understand why it is dangerous.
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