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Online Safety & Parental Controls (see all subjects)
 

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Sen. Klobuchar Stirs Up Facebook Child Safety Technopanic

Sen. Amy Klobuchar just released a letter to Facebook demanding the site require "a prominent safety button or link on the profile pages of users under the age of 18"--akin to the so-called "panic button" app launched earlier this week by the UK's Child Exploitation & Online Protection Centre (CEOP). She doesn't seem to realize that this app is available to all Facebook users, not just those in the UK. But her focus on empowerment tools and education is admirable, and it's certainly a fair question to ask what sites like Facebook and MySpace are doing in these areas.

Unfortunately, Klobuchar's letter also engages in blatant fear-mongering:

Recent research has shown that one in four American teenagers have been victims of a cyber predator.  And when teens experience abusive behavior online, only ten percent discuss it with their parents and even fewer report the misconduct to law enforcement.  It's clear that teenagers need to know how to respond to a cyber attack and I believe we need stronger reporting mechanisms to keep our kids safe.

Klobuchar doesn't actually cite anything, so it's not clear what research she's relying on. The 25% statistic is particularly incendiary, suggesting a nationwide cyber-predation crisis--perhaps leading the public to believe 8 or 9 million teens have been lured into sexual encounters offline. Perhaps the Senator considers every cyber-bully a cyber predator--which might get to the 25% number. But there are two serious problem with that moral equivalence.

First, to equate child predation with peer bullying is to engage in a dangerous game of defining deviancy down. Predation and bullying are radically different things. The first (sexual abuse) is a clear and heinous crime that can lead to long-term psychological damage. The second might be a crime in certain circumstances, but generally not.  And it is even less likely to be a crime when it occurs among young peers, which research shows constitutes the vast majority of cases. As Adam Thierer and I noted in our Congressional testimony last year, there are legitimate concerns about cyberbullying, but it's something best dealt with by parents and schools rather than prosecutors (like Klobuchar in her pre-Senate career).

Second, a series of official taskforces have concluded that the cyberpredator technopanic is vastly overblown.

Continue reading Sen. Klobuchar Stirs Up Facebook Child Safety Technopanic . . .

posted by Berin Szoka @ 4:46 PM | Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Friday, July 2, 2010

Parenting & Education Are the Best Bet Against Cyberbullying

A recent New York Times article once again brings up the issue of cyberbullying and the appropriate response by schools and parents.
Schools these days are confronted with complex questions on whether and how to deal with cyberbullying, an imprecise label for online activities ranging from barrages of teasing texts to sexually harassing group sites.
Various attempts have been made to either institute criminal law punishing cyberbullies or to educate and build awareness of the problem. When the U.S. House Committee on the Judiciary's Crime Subcommittee held hearings last September on cyberbullying and two competing legislative responses (criminalization and education), PFF's Berin Szoka and Adam Thierer filed extensive written testimony arguing that the best way to protect children from bullying is to educate both the students and their parents about the dangers of online bullying as well as the steps that can be taken to prevent it.
The reason educational-based approaches are so vital is because they can help teach kids how to behave in--or respond to--a wide variety of situations. Education teaches lessons and builds resiliency, providing skills and strength that can last a lifetime.
If anything, the Times article shows that parents and school administrators are taking an increased interest in their children's activities online, as well as the steps that can be taken to protect them. If Congress needs to "do something," it should facilitate parenting and education efforts, rather than encroaching upon free speech rights or making teen-on-teen cyberbullying a felony offense, thus branding young people forever for mistakes made in their youth.

posted by Zach Breig @ 1:58 PM | Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Thursday, July 1, 2010

Troubling COPPA Filing by Common Sense Media

Common Sense Media (CSM) is a media "watchdog" group that provides a terrifically useful service to the public through independent reviews of popular media content (movies, music, TV, games, and more). As a parent, I find their service indispensable and, as a policy analyst, I have praised their rating system and their media literacy / digital citizenship programs again and again, including numerous endorsements in my special report on Parental Controls & Online Child Protection and other testimony and filings before Congress and federal regulatory agencies.

Thus, being such a big fan of CSM, I was quite dismayed to see the comments they just submitted to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) as part of the agency's review of the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA). They advocate not just expanded educational efforts, which are great, but also expanding COPPA's age scope to cover all kids under 18 as well as opt-in mandates for the collection and use of any "personal information" or "behavioral marketing." For all the background on the law and the FTC's resulting COPPA rule, see this beefy paper Berin Szoka and I authored last year and this testimony and follow-up submission Berin did for the Senate Commerce Committee. And then read the joint submission made by PFF, CDT, and EFF in the same FTC proceeding that CSM just filed in.

Sadly, it's clear to me that Common Sense Media didn't take anything we warned about in those papers or filings seriously--or perhaps that they just didn't bother to read them very carefully, if at all. Their filing is a classic example of good intentions gone wrong. I understand that they want to take additional steps to protect children online, but they completely ignore the practical realities of COPPA expansion and its associated trade-offs:

Continue reading Troubling COPPA Filing by Common Sense Media . . .

posted by Adam Thierer @ 4:10 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls, Privacy

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Joint CDT-PFF-EFF Comments on FTC's COPPA Review & the Dangers of COPPA Expansion

"Don't turn COPPA into a sweeping age verification mandate for the Internet!" That was essentially the core message of joint comments (below) Adam Thierer and I today filed with the Center for Democracy & Technology and the Electronic Frontier Foundation on the FTC's Implementation Review of the rules that implement the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act of 1998 (which requires verifiable parental consent for kids under 13 to use most interactive sites and services if those sites are "directed to" them or if the site has "actual knowledge" it might be collecting personal information from such kids or allowing them to share such information through the site).

Specifically, we counsel the Commission against expanding COPPA beyond its original, limited purposes and scope, or calling on Congress to enact an expansion. In a techno-functional sense, COPPA is already "expansive," since it is essentially device- and technology- neutral--essentially applying to any site or service that uses the Internet. That flexibility should allow the FTC to apply the statute in a changing landscape without further legislative changes. But we explain why COPPA is necessarily narrow in its age scope and the "directed to" and "actual knowledge" concepts that actually trigger COPPA's requirements--and why changing any one of these three critical parts would inevitably lead to unconstitutional restrictions on the speech rights of adults, minors, and site operators, while actually reducing online privacy but without enhancing the online safety of children.

We call instead for the agency (i) to use the breadth and flexibility already given to it by Congress in the COPPA statute to enforce the statute in a manner consistent with the rapidly changing technical landscape and (ii) to supplement enforcement of that existing law with increased educational efforts and promotion of parental empowerment solutions.

Adam and I certainly have our differences with CDT and EFF on some issues, but this is not one of them! I'm deeply proud to join with these organizations in pointing out the unintended consequences of expanding regulation in an area where all too many people stop thinking carefully about the effects of regulation because, they seem to think, "We can never do enough for the children!" As we point out in our comments, the trade-offs here aren't just between "The Children" and anyone's narrow economic interests, but run far, far deeper. Adam & I did our best to succinctly capture the true, complex cluster of issues at stake with the title of the paper we released last summer about COPPA expansion: "COPPA 2.0: The New Battle over Privacy, Age Verification, Online Safety & Free Speech."

The stakes here for our digital future could hardly be higher, yet more subtle.

Continue reading Joint CDT-PFF-EFF Comments on FTC's COPPA Review & the Dangers of COPPA Expansion . . .

posted by Berin Szoka @ 3:23 PM | Advertising & Marketing, Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Thursday, June 17, 2010

Latest Video Game "Essential Facts" Report

The Entertainment Software Association, which represents the video game industry, has just released its latest "Essential Facts about the Computer and Video Game Industry" publication. It's a handy annual resource that I always look forward to reading. There are many interesting facts and figures found in the report, but here a few worth calling out from the data they have aggregated:
  • 93% of the time parents are present at the time games are purchased or rented
  • 64% of parents believe games are a positive part of their children's lives
  • 86% of the time children receive their parents' permission before purchasing or renting a game
  • 48% of parents play computer and video games with their children at least weekly
  • 97% of parents report always or sometimes monitoring the games their children play
  • 76% of parents believe that the parental controls available in all new video game consoles are useful
The survey also bolsters the findings of many other polls and reports which have found that parents employ a variety of what I have labeled "household media rules" to monitor or control their children's media consumption:

Continue reading Latest Video Game "Essential Facts" Report . . .

posted by Adam Thierer @ 4:37 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls, Video Games & Virtual Worlds

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Thursday, June 10, 2010

event notice: "Sending an Online Safety Message to Congress" (June 29th, 9am)

On June 29th, The Progress & Freedom Foundation (PFF) and the Family Online Safety Institute (FOSI) will co-host a National Press Club briefing entitled "Sending an Online Safety Message to Congress." This event will feature a discussion about the recently released report of the Online Safety and Technology Working Group (OSTWG), "Youth Safety on a Living Internet." OSTWG -- a congressionally-mandated blue ribbon working group -- analyzed the state of online child safety and offered policymakers and parents a wide array of recommendations for how to keep kids safe and secure in today's "always-on," interconnected world. [For more background on OSTWG and our final report, see this post.] Several OSTWG leaders will be on hand to discuss the report and outline the next steps that need to be taken on this front. Here are the details.
What: Sending an Online Safety Message to Congress -- A discussion about the OSTWG final report and the future of childrens' online safety and public policy.
When: Tuesday, June 29 9:00 a.m. - 10:45 p.m. (breakfast provided)
Where: National Press Club First Amendment Lounge, 13th Floor 529 14th Street NW Washington, D.C. 20515
Who: Hemanshu Nigam, Founder, SSP Blue, and Co-Chair of OSTWG Larry Magid, Co-Director, ConnectSafety.org Michael McKeehan, Executive Director, Internet & Technology Policy, Verizon Adam Thierer President, The Progress & Freedom Foundation Stephen Balkam Chief Executive Officer, Family Online Safety Institute, (moderator)
To Register: Space is limited, so an RSVP is required to attend. Please register here.

posted by Adam Thierer @ 7:26 PM | Events, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Monday, June 7, 2010

Kids, Media, Commercialism & Moral Panic

I spend a lot of time here trying to debunk media "moral panics," "techno-panics," or unfounded hysteria over the impact of commercialism in general on kids. To believe what some politicians and regulatory agitators have to say, today's youth always seem at the precipice of the moral abyss. Our misguided youth are seemingly all going straight to hell and they dragging our culture and society down with them.

Except they're not. It's all the same old tripe we've heard one generation after another. As the late University of North Carolina journalism professor Margaret A. Blanchard once noted: "[P]arents and grandparents who lead the efforts to cleanse today's society seem to forget that they survived alleged attacks on their morals by different media when they were children. Each generation's adults either lose faith in the ability of their young people to do the same or they become convinced that the dangers facing the new generation are much more substantial than the ones they faced as children." And Thomas Hine, author of The Rise and Fall of the American Teenager, argues that: "We seem to have moved, without skipping a beat, from blaming our parents for the ills of society to blaming our children. We want them to embody virtues we only rarely practice. We want them to eschew habits we've never managed to break."

Anyway, I was reminded of this again today as I was finally reading through a report published last year by the U.K.'s Department for Children, Schools and Families and the Department for Culture, Media and Sport. It's entitled "The Impact of the Commercial World on Children's Wellbeing" and it is very much worth your attention. Several people had recommended I check it out in recent months, but I'm ashamed to say I am only now getting around to it as I prepare an amicus brief for the Supreme Court's review of a California video game law. But this U.K. report is not to be missed. Here are a few of the choice bits from the study:

Continue reading Kids, Media, Commercialism & Moral Panic . . .

posted by Adam Thierer @ 10:32 AM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Friday, June 4, 2010

Online Safety and Technology Working Group (OSTWG) Final Report Released

The Online Safety and Technology Working Group (OSTWG) has just released its final report to Congress entitled, "Youth Safety on a Living Internet." As I mentioned here last year, this government task force was established by the "Protecting Children in the 21st Century Act," (part of the ''Broadband Data Improvement Act',' Pub. L. No. 110-385) and its mission was to review and evaluate:
  • The status of industry efforts to promote online safety through educational efforts, parental control technology, blocking and filtering software, age-appropriate labels for content or other technologies or initiatives designed to promote a safe online environment for children;
  • The status of industry efforts to promote online safety among providers of electronic communications services and remote computing services by reporting apparent child pornography, including any obstacles to such reporting;
  • The practices of electronic communications service providers and remote computing service providers related to record retention in connection with crimes against children; and,
  • The development of technologies to help parents shield their children from inappropriate material on the Internet.
The task force included over 30 experts from academia, industry, advocacy groups, and think tanks. It was my great honor to be a member of OSTWG and to serve as the chair of 1 of the 4 subcommittees. The four subcommittees addressed: data retention, child pornography reporting, educational efforts, and parental controls technologies. I chaired that last subcommittee on parental controls. Our conclusions will not be surprising to those who have read previous online safety task force reports, which I have summarized in 2009 white paper, "Five Online Safety Task Forces Agree: Education, Empowerment & Self-Regulation Are the Answer." Generally speaking, we concluded that there is no silver-bullet technical solution to online child safety concerns. Instead - and again in agreement with previous research and task force reports - we have concluded that a diverse toolbox and a "layered approach" must be brought to bear on these problems and concerns. Here's how we put it in the report:

Continue reading Online Safety and Technology Working Group (OSTWG) Final Report Released . . .

posted by Adam Thierer @ 4:14 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Thursday, June 3, 2010

What We Didn't Hear at Yesterday's FTC COPPA Workshop

Yesterday, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) hosted an all-day workshop on "Protecting Kids' Privacy Online," which looked into the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act of 1998 (COPPA) and challenges posed to its enforcement by new technological developments. The FTC staff did a nice job bringing together and moderating 5 panels worth of participants, all of whom had plenty of interesting things to say about the future of COPPA. But I was more struck by what was not said yesterday. Namely, there was:


  • ZERO explanation of the supposed harms of advertising, marketing, and data collection. Advertising-bashing is an old sport here in Washington, so I guess I should not have been surprised to hear several panelists yesterday engaging in teeth-gnashing and hand-wringing about advertising, marketing, and the data collection methods that make it possible. But this grousing just went on and on without any explanation by the critics of the supposed harms that would result from it.

  • ZERO appreciation of the benefits of advertising, marketing, and data collection. Not once yesterday -- NOT ONCE -- did anyone pause to ask what it is that makes all these wonderful online sites, services and content free (or dirt cheap) to consumers. Everyone at this show was guilty of the "manna fallacy" (that all this stuff just falls magically to Earth from the Net Gods above). Well, back here in the real world, something has to pay for all those goodies, and that something is advertising and marketing, which are facilitated by data collection! Or would you like to pay $19.95 a month for each of those currently free sites and services? Yeah, I didn't think so.

Continue reading What We Didn't Hear at Yesterday's FTC COPPA Workshop . . .

posted by Adam Thierer @ 1:46 PM | Advertising & Marketing, Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls, Privacy

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Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Follow-up on April Senate COPPA Hearing

On April 29, I testified before the Senate Commerce Committee's Consumer Protection Subcommittee on Examining Children's Privacy: New Technologies and the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA). Today, I filed 23 pages of responses to questions for the Congressional Record from Subcommittee Chairman Mark Pryor (D-AR), touching on many of the concerns and issues Adam Thierer and I developed in our May 2009 paper, COPPA 2.0: The New Battle over Privacy, Age Verification, Online Safety & Free Speech.

At the April hearing, Senators asked whether COPPA could be improved. Today, as in my April oral and written testimony, I again urged lawmakers to "tread carefully" because COPPA, as implemented, basically works. I explained why COPPA's technological neutrality and flexibility should allow the FTC to keep pace with technological convergence and change without the need for legislative changes. But expanding the statute beyond its limited purposes, especially to cover adolescents under 18, could raise serious constitutional questions about the First Amendment rights of adults as well as older teens and site and service operators, and also have unintended consequences for the health of online content and services without necessarily significantly increasing the online privacy and safety of children.

The Committee's follow-up questions also inquired about COPPA's implementation, the subject of today's FTC Roundtable. I noted that COPPA implementation has gone reasonably well, meeting its primary goal of enhancing parental involvement in children's online activities, but that implementation has come at a price, since the costs of obtaining verifiable parental consent and otherwise complying with COPPA have, on the one hand, discouraged site and service operators from allowing children on their sites or offering child-oriented content, and, on the other hand, raised costs for child-oriented sites. The FTC could do more to lower compliance costs for website operators, thus allowing achievement of COPPA's goals at a lower cost for parents and kids in foregone content and services.

Finally, I raised concerns about the FTC's seeming invitation for changes to the COPPA statute itself. As a general matter, regulatory agencies should not be in the business of re-assessing the adequacy of their own powers, since the natural impulse of all bureaucracy is to grow. Though the agency has done a yeoman's job of implementing COPPA, ultimately it is the responsibility of Congress, not the FTC, to make decisions about modifying the statute.

Continue reading Follow-up on April Senate COPPA Hearing . . .

posted by Berin Szoka @ 10:53 PM | Online Safety & Parental Controls, Privacy

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Thursday, April 29, 2010

PFF TechCast #4: Senate Testimony on the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA)

posted by Berin Szoka @ 10:18 AM | Advertising & Marketing, Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls, PFF Podcasts, Privacy

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Saturday, March 27, 2010

Eric Goldman on New Threats to Sec. 230

posted by Adam Thierer @ 1:42 PM | Intermediary Deputization & Section 230, Online Safety & Parental Controls, Philosophy / Cyber-Libertarianism

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Wednesday, March 24, 2010

FTC Announces Broad COPPA Review for Children's Online Privacy

posted by Berin Szoka @ 10:24 PM | Advertising & Marketing, Online Safety & Parental Controls, Privacy

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Sunday, March 21, 2010

David Burt's Amazing Guide to Parental Controls Technologies

posted by Adam Thierer @ 9:53 PM | Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Wednesday, February 24, 2010

PFF & EFF File Joint Comments in FCC's "Empowering Parents & Protecting Children" NOI

posted by Adam Thierer @ 3:49 PM | Advertising & Marketing, Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Digital Citizenship, Media Literacy & Child Safety

posted by Adam Thierer @ 12:25 AM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Thursday, January 14, 2010

Robotic Prostitution, Parental Controls, Caprica & Sex in the Uncanny Valley

posted by Berin Szoka @ 10:06 AM | Online Safety & Parental Controls, Video Games & Virtual Worlds

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Monday, January 11, 2010

Virtual World Safety: Some Good Parenting Tips

posted by Adam Thierer @ 12:22 PM | Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Bob Barr Denounces Cyberbullying Criminalization

posted by Berin Szoka @ 10:20 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Saturday, November 28, 2009

The "Problem of Proportionality" in Debates about Online Privacy and Child Safety

posted by Adam Thierer @ 1:45 PM | Free Speech, Generic Rant, Online Safety & Parental Controls, Privacy

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Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Is There Really Any Shortage of Good Programming Options for Kids?

posted by Adam Thierer @ 1:12 PM | Mass Media, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Thursday, October 29, 2009

Does TV Cause Violence Against Women? PTC's "Women in Peril" Report

posted by Adam Thierer @ 1:00 AM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Sunday, October 25, 2009

FCC's New Notice on "Empowering Parents and Protecting Children in an Evolving Media Landscape"

posted by Adam Thierer @ 11:57 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Heading to Oxford Univ. for Forum on "Child Protection, Free Speech and the Internet"

posted by Adam Thierer @ 10:06 AM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Saturday, September 26, 2009

Recap of PFF Hill Event on "Next-Generation Parental Controls & Child Safety Efforts"

posted by Adam Thierer @ 2:25 PM | Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Friday, September 18, 2009

Skype, Child Safety & the Worse Case Scenario Mentality

posted by Adam Thierer @ 12:24 AM | Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Tuesday, September 15, 2009

The Irony of Mandatory Filtering in China vs. the U.S.

posted by Adam Thierer @ 4:37 PM | China, Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Monday, September 14, 2009

List of Recent of State Cyberbullying Measures

posted by Adam Thierer @ 9:54 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Is There a Relationship Between Online Safety Concerns and Broadband Uptake?

posted by Adam Thierer @ 8:43 PM | Broadband, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Collier & Magid's "Online Safety 3.0": A Refreshing Approach to Internet Safety

posted by Adam Thierer @ 11:07 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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LA Times on the "Overreaction to Online Harassment"

posted by Adam Thierer @ 9:37 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Thursday, August 20, 2009

Good Advice for Parents & Kids about Online Privacy & Reputation

posted by Adam Thierer @ 11:43 AM | Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Transcript of 7/27 PFF Event on Child Safety, Privacy, and Free Speech

posted by Adam Thierer @ 1:49 PM | Events, Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls, PFF Podcasts

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Wednesday, August 12, 2009

If NCMEC's Going to Regulate the Internet for Child Porn, It Should At Least Be Subject to FOIA

posted by Berin Szoka @ 11:44 AM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Thursday, July 30, 2009

Maine's COPPA 2.0 Law Actually an Indirect Age Verification Mandate

posted by Berin Szoka @ 9:45 AM | Add category, Advertising & Marketing, Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Monday, July 27, 2009

"Parental Controls & Online Child Protection" PFF special report (Version 4.0 Release)

posted by Adam Thierer @ 10:05 AM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Thursday, July 23, 2009

We Are Living in the Golden Age of Children's Programming

posted by Adam Thierer @ 2:33 PM | Free Speech, Mass Media, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Thursday, July 16, 2009

Australian Government Survey on Parents' Ease of Managing Media Use

posted by Adam Thierer @ 11:24 AM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Against Techno-Panics

posted by Adam Thierer @ 11:16 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Magid on How to Address Cyberbullying

posted by Adam Thierer @ 10:23 PM | Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Monday, July 13, 2009

Upcoming July 27th Event on Online Safety, Privacy & Free Speech

posted by Adam Thierer @ 11:31 AM | Events, Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls, Privacy

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Tennessee Enacts Flawed Cyberharassment Law

posted by Berin Szoka @ 10:38 AM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Five Online Safety Task Forces Have Generally Agreed

posted by Adam Thierer @ 12:08 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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"PointSmart. ClickSafe." Online Safety Task Force Report Released

posted by Adam Thierer @ 9:35 AM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Cyberbullying Legislation Debate: Video from FOSI Capitol Hill Event (6/12)

posted by Adam Thierer @ 2:28 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Friday, June 19, 2009

Cyberbullying Legislation: Why Education is Preferable to Regulation

posted by Adam Thierer @ 11:21 AM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Wednesday, June 17, 2009

China's Green Dam Filter and the Threat of Rising Global Censorship

posted by Adam Thierer @ 3:49 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Friday, June 5, 2009

Free-Range Kids by Lenore Skenazy: Bringing Some Sanity Back to Parenting Debates

posted by Adam Thierer @ 2:24 PM | Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Thursday, June 4, 2009

Online Safety Technology Working Group (OSTWG) Is Underway

posted by Adam Thierer @ 10:44 PM | Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Monday, June 1, 2009

Thomas Sowell on the Model that Drives Elitist Ideological Crusades

posted by Adam Thierer @ 2:15 PM | Books & Book Reviews, Free Speech, Generic Rant, Online Safety & Parental Controls, Privacy

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Sunday, May 31, 2009

Free Speech Implications of COPPA Expansion

posted by Adam Thierer @ 11:22 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Reply Comments in FCC's "Child Safe Viewing Act" Notice of Inquiry

posted by Adam Thierer @ 3:00 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Tuesday, April 28, 2009

NTIA names Online Safety Technical Working Group members

posted by Adam Thierer @ 7:07 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Thursday, April 23, 2009

Collier on "Why Technopanics are Bad"

posted by Adam Thierer @ 11:12 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Monday, April 20, 2009

Major Filings in FCC's "Child Safe Viewing Act" Notice of Inquiry

posted by Adam Thierer @ 11:41 AM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Comments in FCC "Child Safe Viewing Act" Proceeding

posted by Adam Thierer @ 10:51 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Friday, March 6, 2009

The Future of Sec. 230 and Online Immunity: My Debate with Harvard's John Palfrey

posted by Adam Thierer @ 12:41 PM | Free Speech, Internet, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Privacy Solutions Series: Part 3 - Internet Explorer Privacy Features

posted by Adam Marcus @ 9:50 AM | Internet, Ongoing Series, Online Safety & Parental Controls, Privacy, Privacy Solutions, Software

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Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Dawn of Convergence-Era Content Regulation at the FCC? "Child Safe Viewing Act" NOI Launched

posted by Adam Thierer @ 10:44 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Sunday, March 1, 2009

Another Reminder Why Age Verification Mandates Would Be a Bad Idea

posted by Adam Thierer @ 11:08 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls, Privacy

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Friday, February 27, 2009

New PFF Study: "Who Needs Parental Controls?"

posted by Adam Thierer @ 11:05 AM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Monday, February 2, 2009

Nancy Willard Puts Social Networking Risks in Context

posted by Adam Thierer @ 11:34 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Some Great Podcasts about Online Safety & the ISTTF

posted by Adam Thierer @ 6:29 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Internet Safety Technical Task Force releases final report

posted by Adam Thierer @ 11:13 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Monday, December 15, 2008

2008 FOSI Conference & Awards

posted by Adam Thierer @ 8:31 PM | Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Thursday, December 4, 2008

My debate with USA Today about new study on media & kids

posted by Adam Thierer @ 9:59 AM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Tuesday, December 2, 2008

"Child Safe Viewing Act" (S. 602) signed by President Bush

posted by Adam Thierer @ 9:02 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Thursday, November 20, 2008

Putting Youth Social Networking Activities and Safety in Perspective

posted by Adam Thierer @ 10:52 AM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Saturday, November 15, 2008

NYT Article on Age Verification & Schools

posted by Adam Thierer @ 3:59 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Sunday, November 2, 2008

What's More Dangerous: The Internet or Drunk Drivers?

posted by Adam Thierer @ 4:11 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Video Game Censorship Heading to Supreme Court?

posted by Adam Thierer @ 11:09 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Friday, October 10, 2008

book review: Palfrey & Gasser's "Born Digital"

posted by Adam Thierer @ 4:23 PM | Books & Book Reviews, Free Speech, Generic Rant, Online Safety & Parental Controls, Privacy

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Thursday, October 2, 2008

Senate passes "Child Safe Viewing Act" (S. 602)

posted by Adam Thierer @ 11:19 AM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Thursday, September 25, 2008

Age Verification Debate Continues; Schools Now at Center of Discussion

posted by Adam Thierer @ 2:07 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls, Privacy

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Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Version 3.1 release: "Parental Controls & Online Child Protection"

posted by Adam Thierer @ 7:08 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Thursday, August 28, 2008

Safe Search Tools & Portals for Kids - The List Keeps Growing

posted by Adam Thierer @ 12:49 PM | Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Get Ready for Internet Advertising Regulation "for the Children"

posted by Adam Thierer @ 10:25 AM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Friday, August 8, 2008

CDT-PFF Supreme Court Brief in FCC v. Fox Case

posted by Adam Thierer @ 10:19 AM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Tuesday, August 5, 2008

True Cost of Video Game Censorship (continued)

posted by Adam Thierer @ 3:45 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Joint FCC Filing on Internet Filtering Plan for AWS-3 Spectrum

posted by Adam Thierer @ 11:20 AM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls, Spectrum

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Tuesday, July 22, 2008

"Scientific" Media Ratings & Labels: What Exactly Does That Mean?

posted by Adam Thierer @ 5:49 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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2008 edition of "Essential Facts about Video Games" is out

posted by Adam Thierer @ 8:54 AM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Thursday, July 17, 2008

Dear Gov. Patterson... Regarding that Video Game Bill You Are About to Sign

posted by Adam Thierer @ 10:44 AM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Saturday, July 12, 2008

The Next Great Technopanic: Wireless Geo-Location / Social Mapping

posted by Adam Thierer @ 5:46 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls, Wireless

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Thursday, July 10, 2008

Technopanics and the Great Social Networking Scare

posted by Adam Thierer @ 3:07 PM | Books & Book Reviews, Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Pacifica Anniversary Week, Part 4 (Pervasiveness is Moot)

posted by Adam Thierer @ 12:08 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Understanding The True Cost of Video Game Censorship Efforts

posted by Adam Thierer @ 11:51 AM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Friday, June 6, 2008

What's Worse Than Rigged Auctions & Internet Censorship? How About Both in One Package!

posted by Adam Thierer @ 6:05 PM | Broadband, Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls, Spectrum

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Thursday, May 15, 2008

Forbes on "Making Social [Networking] Sites Safer"

posted by Adam Thierer @ 10:13 AM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Monday, May 12, 2008

Will they age-verify the Pope?

posted by Adam Thierer @ 10:19 AM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Thursday, May 8, 2008

latest FTC "secret shopper" survey shows improving ratings enforcement

posted by Adam Thierer @ 2:10 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Monday, May 5, 2008

Virginia points the way on Internet safety

posted by Adam Thierer @ 10:26 AM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Sunday, May 4, 2008

Obama on Grand Theft Auto and personal responsibility

posted by Adam Thierer @ 9:59 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Wednesday, April 23, 2008

review: Dr. Kourosh Dini's "Video Game Play & Addiction"

posted by Adam Thierer @ 8:23 PM | Books & Book Reviews, Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Students, Cyber-Bullying, & Online Free Speech

posted by Adam Thierer @ 11:21 AM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Monday, April 14, 2008

review: Kutner & Olson's "Grand Theft Childhood"

posted by Adam Thierer @ 2:42 PM | Books & Book Reviews, Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Thursday, March 27, 2008

Byron Commission (UK) report - initial thoughts

posted by Adam Thierer @ 11:57 AM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Google's excellent new online safety campaign

posted by Adam Thierer @ 10:13 AM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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"Parental Controls and Online Child Protection" - Version 3.0 release

posted by Adam Thierer @ 1:56 AM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Friday, March 7, 2008

Young kids and rational messaging about online safety

posted by Adam Thierer @ 12:41 PM | Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Friday, February 29, 2008

Putting online dangers in perspective

posted by Adam Thierer @ 3:43 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Australian government online safety report

posted by Adam Thierer @ 1:28 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Kids and Media

posted by Amy Smorodin @ 10:29 AM | Free Speech, Mass Media, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Thursday, February 28, 2008

new Internet Safety Technical Task Force

posted by Adam Thierer @ 8:40 AM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Mobile phone censorship regime coming?

posted by Adam Thierer @ 2:02 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Are All Video Games Violent?

posted by Adam Thierer @ 2:48 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Scalia on video game regulation

posted by Adam Thierer @ 8:46 AM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Friday, February 15, 2008

Leading pornographer lecturing Google & Yahoo about cleaning up online porn

posted by Adam Thierer @ 2:59 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Wednesday, February 13, 2008

UK's "Unique Learner Number"

posted by Adam Thierer @ 3:14 PM | Online Safety & Parental Controls, Privacy

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Wednesday, February 6, 2008

new PFF-CDT index of free speech / content bills

posted by Adam Thierer @ 10:40 AM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Wednesday, January 23, 2008

USA Today, age verification, and the death of online anonymity

posted by Adam Thierer @ 8:07 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Monday, January 14, 2008

Today’s MySpace-AG Agreement

posted by Adam Thierer @ 9:41 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls, Privacy

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Friday, January 11, 2008

FOSI's "State of Online Safety Report 2008"

posted by Adam Thierer @ 11:00 AM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Friday, December 14, 2007

Latest Census Numbers on Kids, Parents & Media

posted by Adam Thierer @ 1:27 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Sunday, October 21, 2007

FT on age verification for social networking

posted by Adam Thierer @ 9:31 AM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Thursday, October 11, 2007

Parental Control Perfection

posted by Adam Thierer @ 4:42 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Thursday, October 4, 2007

Cyber-Safety in a Web 2.0 World

posted by Amy Smorodin @ 12:39 PM | Events, Internet, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Thursday, September 27, 2007

New Online Safety Bills

posted by Adam Thierer @ 7:53 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Friday, September 7, 2007

Who Killed TV's "Family Hour"?

posted by Adam Thierer @ 2:30 PM | Free Speech, Mass Media, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Tuesday, September 4, 2007

New Mobile Parental Controls

posted by Adam Thierer @ 7:32 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Tuesday, August 7, 2007

First Amendment & Video Games [Updated] Score: Gamers 11, Censors 0

posted by Adam Thierer @ 3:35 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Thursday, July 26, 2007

Version 2.2 of PFF book on "Parental Controls & Online Child Protection"

posted by Adam Thierer @ 3:19 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Monday, July 2, 2007

"Child Safety" -- 100 Years Ago vs. Today

posted by Adam Thierer @ 9:30 PM | Free Speech, Generic Rant, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Sunday, July 1, 2007

Summary of 10-Part Series on "National Internet Safety Month"

posted by Adam Thierer @ 9:54 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Saturday, June 30, 2007

Internet Safety Month, Part 10: Good Parenting Means Everything!

posted by Adam Thierer @ 4:30 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Sen. Rockefeller Gives Up on Parenting at Senate Violence Hearing

posted by Adam Thierer @ 7:46 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Monday, June 25, 2007

New Polls Suggest Radical Theory: Parents are Parenting!

posted by Adam Thierer @ 7:03 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Sunday, June 24, 2007

Internet Safety Month, Part 9: Online Safety and Law Enforcement Efforts

posted by Adam Thierer @ 11:27 AM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Friday, June 22, 2007

testimony at House hearing on "The Images Kids See on the Screen"

posted by Adam Thierer @ 8:35 AM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Wednesday, June 20, 2007

new book on Parental Controls & Online Child Protection

posted by Adam Thierer @ 1:50 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Sunday, June 17, 2007

Internet Safety Month, Part 8: Social Networking Safety

posted by Adam Thierer @ 1:31 PM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Internet Safety Month, Part 7: The Importance of Online Safety Education

posted by Adam Thierer @ 10:40 AM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Thursday, June 7, 2007

Internet Safety Month, Part 6: A Voluntary Code of Conduct for Online Safety

posted by Adam Thierer @ 10:40 AM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Internet Safety Month, Part 5: Search Engine Filters and Portals for Kids

posted by Adam Thierer @ 9:34 AM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Monday, June 4, 2007

Internet Safety Month, Part 4: Website Labeling and Metadata Tagging

posted by Adam Thierer @ 10:40 AM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Internet Safety Month, Part 3: Operating Systems and Web Browser Controls

posted by Adam Thierer @ 8:01 AM | Free Speech, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Sunday, June 3, 2007

Internet Safety Month, Part 2: Internet Filters & Monitoring Tools

posted by Adam Thierer @ 2:37 PM | Online Safety & Parental Controls

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Internet Safety Month, Part 1: Online Safety Metasites

posted by Adam Thierer @ 10:52 AM | Free Speech, General, Online Safety & Parental Controls

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