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article imageStudy Says Internet More Dangerous than School Violence and Sexually Transmitted Diseases for Children

By Chris V. Thangham     May 6, 2007 in Internet
A University of Michigan Poll finds Internet safety more dangerous than school violence, abuse and sexually transmitted diseases.
A new survey from the C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital, The National Poll on Children’s Health, has found that US parents rate Internet Safety as being a more serious health threat to children than school violence, sexually transmitted diseases, abuse and neglect.
This child health poll was conducted by the University of Michigan, Department of Pediatrics and Communicable Diseases and the University of Michigan Child Health Evaluation and Research (CHEAR) Unit.
There are others higher than Internet safety such as smoking, drug abuse, childhood obesity, and alcohol abuse by teens, driving accidents, teen pregnancy. But the Internet safety, is a new health issue, parents are facing it as a big problem. They found women are more likely to find it as a big problem, 32% of women report Internet safety as a big problem compared to men 21%. This is found whatever the education status, income level or marital status, all consider Internet safety a bigger issue.
The report notes: “state and federal legislators appear to have responded to public concerns about Internet safety for children, considering new legislation and issuing consumer alerts“.
Recently we have seen many articles how children are affected in MySpace and other networks, how children come into contact with abusers easily and deceived easily as well. There has been a huge awareness raised by the big media and bloggers alike. That might be the reason for the new legislation.
Michael Arrington, TechCrunch editor says this legislation will be difficult to enforce and costlier for new startups to impose, where they have limited funding available and most of them are meant for developmental purposes. Rules and regulations that will have a cost in terms of compliance and implementation, taking money away from R&D and making the pursuit of success by any affected start up that little bit harder.
Whether there is going to be legislation or not, the web companies who have a social network should enforce rules and screen and separate the kids from adults. If kids like MySpace, then MySpace should establish a site for children separately not mix them together in a big mix with adults. Facebook implements its better you don't see children there, why can’t MySpace and others do the same, how costly it can be?
Do you find Internet Safety a big problem and a health concern?
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