Friday, May 09, 2008
Digital media's impact on youth: Fresh research
Among the key findings in the Executive Summary are....
What should be done, then? Rather than regulate, the project says, government should help parents and educators do the regulating in homes and schools. It should also help the development of positive content that educates and counteracts negative or non-constructive messaging in electronic media - it should "fund the creation and evaluation of positive media initiatives such as public service campaigns to reduce risky behaviors."
Chapters of particular interest to anyone involved with children's online safety: "Media and Children's Aggression, Fear, and Altruism," "Online Communication and Adolescent Relationships," and "Media and Risky Behaviors."
More safety features at Facebook
Toward solving 'cyberbullying': Editorial
One Post source suggested that parents occasionally ask their kids if there was "any bullying on Facebook today?" Maybe it'd be better either to read up on some of the specific online behaviors and incidents in the news and talk about those, using them as "teachable moments" they can relate to. Or just ask questions about their school day - the kinds of questions our parents asked us. Then we can ask if they've noticed those things going on with their friends (or them) on MySpace or Facebook and how they'd handle it.
The Post reports that one principal "identified MySpace as the possible source of a conflict" that got physical at school and in a local mall. MySpace wasn't the source; its role was more like that of the school or the mall, the place where the behavior occurs. When we're talking with our children, it'd be helpful to understand this, too. Yes, their MySpace use can help expose their attitudes and behaviors to a lot more peers simultaneously and that certainly is a problem, but MySpace, Facebook, etc. are not the source of their behavior. Social sites are no more responsible for mean gossip or bullying than a locker room is.
Parenting young people who see little distinction between online and offline will get more effective when we stop blaming the places where antisocial behavior occurs (because we're better informed than that) and start asking relevant questions based on their own social experiences on the Net and everywhere else. When we can communicate in language they can relate to, sending the clear message that they are accountable for their social behavior online as much as offline, we'll move much more quickly toward solving the cyberbullying problem.
Thursday, May 08, 2008
Benefits from having virtual selves
UK leads Europe in social networking
Labels: international social networking
Tuesday, May 06, 2008
Two new WB sites for kids & youth
Disney.ru & other Russian sites
Reality TV fans more at risk?
Monday, May 05, 2008
Grand Theft Auto IV's realism all bad?
This just in: In its first week of release, GTA4 made $500 million in sales, the Wall Street Journal reports. Its maker, Take Two Interactive, said retailers sold more than 6 million copies worldwide, claiming that a record for first-week sales of a videogame." Halo 3 sold $300 million its first week, the Journal added.