Thursday, May 26, 2005

Are blogs unsafe for teens?

Were good old-fashioned web-pages unsafe for teens?

Well, there's lots of evidence to show that they were, in some cases, as in the high profile Sam Manzie murder case in New Jersey, and in the murder of the 13 yr old girl by a 26 yr old in Connectcut.

But "blog" is a buzzword. Regardless of the fact that blogs are alot like old-fashioned personal websites that took longer, and a little more knowledge, to build than the average blog.

They're no more of a threat to identity than personal websites...and won't necessarily attract more stalkers than personal websites.

Although they might inflate adolescent egos just a bit more and ratchet up the insufferability factor in most households. Perhaps that's what parents are really concerned about.

1 comment:

Ed said...

If you look at teens' blogs on LJ, they appear to occupy a grey area between old-style personal websites and IM. Websites were often one-way transmissions, because not many people had the technical chops to set up comment facilities. IM is completely real time. The comments on LJ, with their ease of submission and near-real-time updates, can take on the look of a short IM conversation.

As far as teen's danger on the Internet, email is still the ultimate security risk. That's where the conversations get deep, and it's done a lot more privately than on a blog or chat (IM is pretty private too).

I know I'm going to have to work hard to resist the temptation to hack my kids' computers to keep an eye on what they're up to. Hopefully they won't be too secretive about their activities, blanking their screens every time I walk up the hall.

We'll see. But I'm not going to lose any sleep just yet. For now, I think there's still a lot of MSM fear-mongering playing into this, just like NJ101.5 seems incapable of leading their newscasts with anything but sex-offender stories.

I think my kids will be smart enough to know when they've encountered a perv.