Online Safety

Today is European Online Safety Day and blogs, local authoruty sites and Twitter are brimming with links, lessons, videos, activities and the like in an attempt to bring to the fore the matters that are to do with the eductation of the population to keep them all safe online. The BBC launched its morning news with the headline: Online safety push for five-year-olds and then spoiled it by its next paragraph: Children as young as five are being targeted in a new online safety campaign by the UK body charged with protecting children from abuse. – an unfortunate use of the word ‘targeted’.

There will be lots and lots of good things that come out of today in homes, schools and colleges and people will be safer for the publicity and the ideas. But it must’nt stop there. This is an all-day, every day thing. Just like road safety – people need to keep on being aware of how to keep themselves safe.

Tim Rylands has put a most comprehensive and useful summary and resume of the ‘block or not’ question on his blog.

The day reminds me what a tremendous resource the WWW is and the enormousness of the things that I can now do that I couldn’t do before. Tom Barrett has recently written an excellent blog post about what gets blocked in schools and what doesn’t. He comments : In my opinion it comes down to some hard decisions. The longer, more protracted path of educating young primary school children in dealing with open content on the web (including YouTube) is too hard a path for some to consider. The easy route is to block it. And that is what has happened.  It is hard to fully appreciate the effect this will have on years and years of children not being given guidance about open content, from the very people who are best placed to provide it.The post is well worth a read and a real consider.

Attribution: Image: ‘safety pins galore

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