Disturbing. Right Wing Sparkle links to a Frontline story on the Great Big Scary Internet.
Of course it’s disturbing. That’s what Frontline (and all “news” shows) sells: disturbing, scary, ominous, whatever makes them seem relevant. Every now and again one of these shows will come up with something actually useful. (I think it was Dateline NBC that introduced us to the Charlie Foundation.)
But they can’t–or don’t think they can–survive on a diet of just useful information, so even when they have useful information, they dress it up in fear.
The abused analogy of ten years ago was “information superhighway”. But if we were putting up superhighways now, these shows would sell stories on the basis of the fatal accidents that occur on them, and less on the value to commerce and even lifesaving value they can have.
Meanwhile, a modicum of common sense is all that’s required with regard to the ‘net, not too much more sophisticated then “look both ways when you cross the street”. Most kids can and do benefit from the ‘net, educationally and socially. Not just “most” but the vast number, to where the seriously harmed ones are statistical outliers.
Speaking of outliers, there are some kids who probably need to be kept far away from the ‘net, just like there are some that need to be kept away from television, and others that need to be kept away from soy products.
The cyber-bullying thing is kind of interesting though.. I sort of wonder if the upshot of being exposed to Internet Trolls is that this next generation is going to be very hard to intimidate or even provoke. It’s impossible to function online very long without learning to ignore them.
Maybe everything bad IS good for you!