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Monday, November 17, 2008

New Study: Stranger Danger is not the Risk but FRIENDLY FIENDs are

I've pulled out my notations from a great Carnegie Mellon blog post about a Rochester Institute Study surveying children about their behaviors online -- you'll see quotes below and my comments.  (Source of Graphic: Rochester Institute of Technology)

MySecureCyberspace: Children Online: Getting Younger and Continuing to Take Risks
  • Not surprisingly, the study found that children are communicating with friends, peers, and others online in ways that show a lack of knowledge in what is ethical, safe behavior.
    • This is NOT suprising to those of us who work with children. WE MUST have digital citizenship education in schools!!! MUST! comment by Vicki Davis
  • Only 50% of these young children said that their parents watched them as they used a computer, revealing that the other half were exposed to unchecked Web browsing and interaction with others online. About 48% of these young children saw online content that made them feel uncomfortable, and one in four of them said they did not report the uncomfortable experience to a trusted adult.
    • Do parents know to watch their children? We need to educate parents as well! comment by Vicki Davis
  • Only 32% of second and third graders reported being watched by their parents while online, and 31% of fourth through sixth graders said they were watched "a little" or "sometimes." Almost one-third (27%) of fourth through sixth graders said they were completely unsupervised when online.
  • 16% posted personal interests 15% posted information about their physical activities 20% gave out their real name 5% posted information about their school 6% posted their home address 6% posted their phone number 9% posted a photograph of themselves
    • Again, education is so important of both students and parents. comment by Vicki Davis
  • Among second and third graders, 9% admitted to being "mean to someone online" and 18% reported that someone online had been mean to them within the last school year. Among fourth through sixth graders, 7% reported being a victim to bullying and threats online, and 10% reported being embarrassed.
  • 13% said they had been bullied or threatened online, and 15% had been embarrassed. Among tenth through twelfth grader, 15% reported having been harassed or stalked online, and 17% had been embarrassed.
    • 15% of 10-12th graders have ben harassed and STALKED online!!!! comment by Vicki Davis
  • it is more common for children to run into problems with people they know online than with strangers. These troublemakers are more likely to be other students rather than adults.
    • To me, this gets to the core of the problem - it is NOT stranger danger but Friendly fiends that are the problem! comment by Vicki Davis
  • a more prevalent problem that children face online is cyberbullying. 
This comes back to Digital Citizenship education, like we're doing here with Digiteen.

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