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Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Help Keep Children Safe Online with KidZui :: Mysticgeek’s Realm

Help Keep Children Safe Online with KidZui :: Mysticgeek's Realm

Help Keep Children Safe Online with KidZui

A great tool to help you keep your kids safe online is KidZui, a kid-themed browser that boasts over 1 million kid friendly websites, photos, and videos. Today we'll take a tour through how it works.

This is a free application that should keep your kids happy online but for extra features you will need to purchase a subscription. KidZui is cross platform and works with Windows, Linux, and Mac OS X.


Court rejects CA's videogame law

California's became the latest state videogame law to be deemed unconstitutional in a federal court. The Ninth US Circuit Court of Appeals ruled last Friday that "a California law restricting the sales and rental of violent video games to minors and imposing labeling requirements is too restrictive and violates free speech guarantees," Reuters reported. According to the San Francisco Chronicle, the court declared the law unconstitutional "because even the most graphic on-screen mayhem is free speech, and there's no convincing evidence it causes psychological damage to young people." Though one of the bill's sponsors, State Sen. Leland Yee, urged officials to appeal the decision to the Supreme Court, Reuters reported that the three-judge panel's unanimous opinion "could have a far-reaching impact on efforts by other states to establish mandatory video game labeling requirements."

Saturday, February 14, 2009

AT&T and iKeepSafe Promote New Privacy Initiatives in Florida

AT&T and iKeepSafe Promote New Privacy Initiatives in Florida

In recognition of Data Privacy Day, AT&T Services introduced The Privacy and Online Reputation Project in an effort to increase consumer awareness of privacy issues on the Internet. Working with partner iKeepSafe and the Florida School Guidance Counselor Association, this new pilot program will provide school counselors with a handbook of guidelines on what students are posting on the Internet and provide guidelines on existing cyber-ethics tools for social networking. The handbook will inform students how to protect themselves and will include a Parent’s Primer with information about how to connect with industry for assistance when needed.

“Students, parents, and educators need to understand the importance of privacy and reputation in today’s rapidly changing digital world. Guidance counselors especially need to understand that the rules applied to the offline world also apply to the online world when it comes to future academic and employment opportunities,” said Marsali Hancock, president of iKeepSafe who spoke at the Data Privacy Day event. “AT&T has played an integral role in helping to provide school counselors and parents with insightful information and necessary tools to keep them up to speed on what kids are doing online. We are thrilled to work with AT&T on this initiative.”

Data Privacy Day was created in 2008 to promote privacy awareness and education among teens in the United States and now provides the opportunity to further international collaboration and cooperation on privacy issues. “Data Privacy Day is an especially important time to take a look at the issues we are facing with online privacy, particularly when it comes to the students in our schools who are on social networks,” said Dorothy Attwood, chief privacy officer of AT&T Services. “We look forward to working with school counselors and iKeepSafe to give these important educators the materials they need to protect students’ identities online.”


To read more about AT&T’s The Privacy and Online Reputation Project and get information on their library of Internet safety and security tips, click HERE.


Girl Scouts of the USA and Microsoft launch online safety campaign | Daily Connect

So Long Juicy Campus, And Good Riddance, Larry Magid Bids Adieu To Gossip Site That Promoted "Vicious Innuendos, Hateful Messages, And Downright Lies" - CBS News

NetFamilyNews: Teens best adults on privacy

At Facebook, 60% of teens use privacy controls compared to 25-30% of adults, a sitepoint blog cites Facebook numbers as showing. Computer Associates offers some confirmation with a recent study finding that "79% of teens aged 13-17 who are members of a social networking site like MySpace or Facebook protect their profiles from the general Internet in some way (i.e., only allow friends or friends of friends to view their information), according to the blog. The study also found something not so surprising: that teens "are very likely" to post photos of themselves online. That may be why they're more careful about privacy. Good news!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

CyberPatrol Releases Free Web-Surfing Safety Toolkit

CyberPatrol Releases Free Web-Surfing Safety Toolkit

by Dian Schaffhauser

CyberPatrol, a company that sells parental controls and Web filtering technologies, announced a free online Web-surfing safety assessment toolkit. The toolkit is intended to help parents and educators review online surfing habits and determine what safety measures should be implemented.

It includes the company's Threat Detector tool, released in beta at the Consumer Electronics Show in January and now available in full release. Threat Detector specifically helps users determine the number and kind of inappropriate and unsafe sites found on a PC that CyberPatrol's Parental Controls software would block. Also available in the Toolkit is Web site lookup. This lets the user to enter a URL to determine how CyberPatrol categorizes the Web site.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Yahoo! Launches New Yahoo! Safely Site Featuring iKeepSafe

iKeepSafe’s partner Yahoo! recently launched the new and improved Yahoo! Safely. Through their ongoing efforts to promote a safe online experience, Yahoo! updated the Yahoo! Safely website to provide the same great expert advice and information, but now with an edgier format targeted at a teen audience. The website is home to iKeepSafe’s PSAs targeting important safety topics, such as cyber-bullying and online reputations. Yahoo! continues to provide excellent resources for parents and teens.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Technology and Dating Abuse: The Research

2 Applications To Improve Internet Parental Control |

iKeepSafe: Internet Safety and Security | Age Verification Programs Miss the Mark

Internet Safety and Security | Age Verification Programs Miss the Mark

Recently, there has been a media blitz regarding age verification technologies preventing sexual predators from using social networking sites like MySpace or FaceBook. At first glance parents may be pacified by the hope that a single technology solution will significantly reduce their child's risk online. The reality is that if parents and policy makers focus solely on social networking sites, or any single technology solution, then the mark for real Internet safety is missed: by a mile.

My goal as a parent is to have my child become an ethical, responsible and resilient cybercitizen.  Age verification will not help me do this. Here is why:

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Video game dropouts | WINK News - Southwest Florida | Eye on Education

Video game dropouts

By WINK News

Lee Hutto’s first attempt at college was not successful.

“My first semester I withdrew because I was gonna fail all my classes,” he says.

As a college freshman, Lee was not prepared for the fraternities, parties, sports and long hours of hard work.

“It’s very, very easy for students to become over-committed very quickly and to lose sight of why they’re in college,” says Dr. Sherrie Nist, director of academic enhancement at the University of Georgia.

In fact, some estimates show 20 percent of college students drop out before the start of their sophomore year- one in five!

Read more:

Michael Pritchard: Lessons from the Heart | Edutopia

A champion of social and emotional learning reaches out to students.

Teen accused of sex assaults in Facebook scam

MILWAUKEE (AP) — An 18-year-old U.S. student is accused of posing as a girl on Facebook, tricking at least 31 male classmates into sending him naked photos of themselves and then blackmailing some for sex acts.


"The kind of manipulation that occurred here is really sinister in my estimation," Waukesha County District Attorney Brad Schimel said Wednesday.


Anthony Stancl, of New Berlin, west of Milwaukee, was charged Wednesday with five counts of child enticement, two counts of second-degree sexual assault of a child, two counts of third-degree sexual assault, possession of child pornography, repeated sexual assault of the same child and making a bomb threat.


Stancl's attorney, Craig Kuhary, said Stancl plans to plead not guilty to the charges and hopes to reach a plea agreement with the district attorney


"It's too early in the case for me to make a statement, other than the fact at some point we are going to go into events that had taken place earlier that might have had some impact on what he did here," he said. He wouldn't go into specifics.


The incidents allegedly happened from spring 2007 through November, when officers questioned Stancl about a bomb threat he allegedly sent to teachers and wrote about on a school's bathroom wall. It resulted in the closing of New Berlin Eisenhower Middle and High School, which he attended.


According to the criminal complaint, Stancl first contacted the students through the social networking site Facebook, pretending to be a girl named Kayla or Emily.


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Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Is Technology Producing A Decline In Critical Thinking And Analysis?

ScienceDaily (Jan. 29, 2009) — As technology has played a bigger role in our lives, our skills in critical thinking and analysis have declined, while our visual skills have improved, according to research by Patricia Greenfield, UCLA distinguished professor of psychology and director of the Children's Digital Media Center, Los Angeles.

 Read article:

Psychedelic Drugs Just a Click Away Online - PC World

The Internet has become a rapidly growing supermarket for herbs, mushrooms and other substances that will get you high-but may also make you very sick.

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