Young people, risky behavior and the net: the facts

Young people, risky behavior and the net: the facts

Cory Doctorow at 10:08 PM Thursday, Jun 24, 2010


Danah Boyd and Samantha Biegler have released a draft literature review on “Risky Behaviors and Online Safety,” commissioned by Harvard’s Berkman Center for Internet & Society. It looks at the latest papers on the risks presented to young people by using the Internet; if you’ve been reading the newspapers, the distance between the reality and what you’ve heard in the sensationalist accounts of pedos, cyberbullies, etc, will surprise:

Concerns about online predators are pervasive, but the image that most people hold doesn’t necessarily match with the data about sexual crimes against minors. For starters, the emphasis on what takes place online tends to obscure the fact that most cases of sex crimes against children do not involve the Internet at all. As we seek to help youth who are victims, we must continue our efforts to address victimization in the home and in the community; addressing Internet- initiated victimization alone will not help the vast majority of children who are victimized…

… We need interventions that get at the root of bullying, regardless of where it takes place. Because research consistently shows a connection between psychosocial troubles, family and school issues, and bullying, we cannot presume that parents are always equipped or present to intervene (and may in fact be part of the problem). Although countless programs have been developed to educate kids about bullying, far too little is known about the effectiveness of these programs. Finally, what happens online is more visible to adults, but we cannot assume that the most damaging acts of bullying are solely those that we are able to witness.

Risky Behaviors and Online Safety: A 2010 Literature Review


Text from boing boing – check the site for the full thing

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