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10 Things to Teach Your Kids About Internet Safety

By Steven Woda on March 13, 2012 at 11:55 AM

 

Like anything else, you need to teach your kids how to use the Internet if you expect them to use it safely and responsibly. Parental control software can be a good training tool, but eventually they need the skills to do it alone. Have you taught your children these 10 critical things about going online?

    1. If you accidentally come across something inappropriate, shut off the computer and tell an adult.

    2. Not everything you read online is true. From rumors to homework resources, no one is fact-checking the Internet for accuracy.

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Information Overload on the Internet

By Tim Woda on February 11, 2011 at 3:02 PM

Thanks to the Internet, information is easier to get than ever. Kids can get online to do their homework, learn how to apply to college, or find out how long it takes Saturn to make a revolution around the sun.

Of course, when information is so easy to get it can be a little scary. Try Googling a phrase like “how to kill yourself,” “homemade bomb instructions,” or “play the choking game” and you’ll find a scary assortment of search results.

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LG Text Education Program for Parents

By Steven Woda on February 6, 2011 at 3:04 PM

text educationIn December at an FCC conference in Washington, D.C., the LG Text Education program got recent attention. So I thought I’d check it out.

Usually I’m dubious about corporate-sponsored campaigns that are supposedly for the “public good.” After all, LG is a mobile phone manufacturer and their motivation is to sell their products and services, not protect our kids’ best interests.

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Is IMVU Appropriate for Your Kids?

By Tim Woda on January 14, 2011 at 3:08 PM

At the top of the homepage is a screenshot of a shirtless man and a busty woman in a bikini top embracing in waist-deep water and staring into each other’s eyes with the phrase “Create your fantasy” underneath.

The website is called IMVU, a realistic Sims-like game and social networking virtual world purported to be for kids ages 13 and up.

IMVU players select an avatar and buy clothing and items to personalize its world. The avatars have adult bodies (not 13-year-old ones,) and virtually all of the female avatars are sexy and large-chested with suggestive outfits to match.

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Internet Addiction May Put Teens at Risk for Facebook Depression

By Tim Woda on August 6, 2010 at 3:19 PM

Facebook imageWould your teen start to get the shakes after 15 minutes if you took away the computer and all their Bluetooth-enabled devices? If so, it may be time to worry about their online usage’s impact on their mental health.

A study published on Monday by the Archives of Pediatric & Adolescent Medicine suggests that teenagers who are pathologic Internet users are twice as likely to develop clinical depression.

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