Ms.Boyd describes the well known statistics concerning children under 13 on Facebook, their relation to the US COPA law (the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act ) and the research she and her colleagues did about that data:
She points out that
"Rather than reinforcing or extending a legal regime that produces age-based restrictions which parents actively circumvent, we need to step back and rethink the underlying goals behind COPPA and develop new ways of achieving them. This begins with a public conversation about what it means to parent in a digital world."She is writing from the US; her audience is mainly Americans who could be in touch with their law makers. (In Britain, the site is banned for children under 13 under a voluntary "good practice code".)
Those of us outside the US are interested in this discussion because most of the websites we use with our students (and our own children) are based in the US, or another country which follows strict child protection laws. Everyone's decisions affect all of us. Read the whole article, which includes very interesting, graphic charts.
"Why Parents Help Their Children Lie to Facebook About Age: Unintended Consequences of the 'Children's Online Privacy Protection Act'"First Monday
You can read more about this issue at these web pages:
Should Kids Be Allowed on Facebook?
Facebook's 7.5 Million Underage Users Are Largely Unsupervised: Consumer Reports Survey
7.5 Million Facebook Users Are Below the Minimum Age
|From The Huffington Post article. Image Credit: Tim Roe|
"...the right to love and understanding, preferably from parents and family, but from the government where these cannot help.(Taken from the Declaration of the Rights of the Child Plain Language Version)
... the right to go to school for free, to play, and to have an equal chance to develop yourself and to learn to be responsible and useful. Your parents have special responsibilities for your education and guidance.
...(a child) should be taught peace, understanding, tolerance and friendship among all people."