A lot of mums lack confidence about technology but not for much longer…
Cyberbullying is becoming an alarming problem among children and young people, not only because of its links to mental health and well-being but because it is so widespread that is becoming to be considered a worse problem among teenagers than drug abuse.
Not all news are disheartening though…
Apple is not willing to weaken its hard-to-crack encryption protocols after being asked by a magistrate judge to build a weaker new version of its mobile operating system. This request comes from the FBI as an attempt to access the content of the iPhone used by one of the gunmen involved in the San Bernardino shooting. It has been argued that law enforcement officials wanted to use this high-profile act of terrorism as a way to create political pressure on Apple to comply with the FBI demands and set a dangerous precedent for future cases.
According to the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR,) information society services that wish to process any personal information related to a child under the age of 16 years will require parental/guardian consent. The GDPR is the European Commission’s tool that will unify data protection in the EU and there are plans for it to be adopted in 2018. In the most recent GDPR draft released by the European Council, the age limit where parental consent is mandatory has raised from 13 to 16 years. The implications for children digital rights are not well understood and, at the moment, nobody knows if this regulation will protect children or by the contrary make them more vulnerable. Something certain is that, until now, minimal consultation to incorporate the children voice has taken place and consequently, children’s digital rights are not being treated with the respect or seriousness they deserve.
Young people are a highly vulnerable group on social media. Current research (summarised here https://www.nspcc.org.uk/services-and-resources/research-and-resources/2015/how-safe-are-our-children-2015/ ) suggests that 1 in 3 have been victims of cyber bullying and 1 in 4 have experienced something upsetting on a social media site. The ‘Digital Wildfire’ project (www.digitalwildfire.org) explores the spread of provocative and antagonistic content on social media and seeks to identify opportunities for the responsible governance of digital social spaces. As part of this we have spent time engaging with young people and school teachers to find out their views on social media and the harms it can cause.
CaSMa hosted, in collaboration with the Wildfires team, a workshop on how rumours, provocative content and (mis)information flows and goes viral on social media.
This is a serious problem which can lead to confrontation between freedom of information and societal safety. Self-regulation is a solution, however, how to promote self-regulation and awareness is the real challenge. Continue reading Digital Wildfires
The CaSMa team -in collaboration with Making Waves and Social Futures at the Institute of Mental Health– organised a series of events for public engagement and debate at Nottingham Contemporary called Voices from the Crowd.
Unlike traditional seminars, Voices from the Crowd does not bring experts or keynote speakers under the assumption that we -the audience- are all experts on social media. As internet users we all have something valuable to say about how technology is affecting and influencing our everyday lives and ways we interact with others. Voices from the Crowd promotes a more democratic and horizontal structure for participation by encouraging attendees to engage in discussions and learning conversations about many different aspects of social media.
I approach the topic of young people’s rights on the internet not only as a researcher but as a mother. How will I inform and protect my children from the complex interactions young people experience online that lead to their mental health being affected?
The whole CaSMa team joined ETHICOMP2015 at De Montfort University (Leicester) early last week. EHICOMP2015 was a fantastic ‘old school reunion’ that gathered well established researchers in the field – to discuss the role of computing in our societies and the question of the ethical values and consequences linked to the ever-growing importance of technology in our lives. The ETHICOMP community claims to be more than a highly multidisciplinary group of academics and industry related partners, and definitely more than a conference. ETHICOMP aims to be a ‘community mentor’ that would go beyond the usual conference academic output, and I could not disagree with this statement. A notorious aspect of this conference was the non-hierarchical, approachable and friendly attitude of delegates, presenters and keynote speakers and an obvious willingness to be as inclusive as possible. Continue reading 20 Years of ETHICOMP: A Celebration
An interesting international unconference took place early last week in Madrid Hacking Big Data Brother: From Biometrics to Intra-action. Continue reading Hacking Data Big Brother