Childnet response to the Culture Media and Sport Committee's report on harmful content on the Internet.

Posted on 31 July 2008

Childnet International provided written and oral to the Culture Media and Sport Committee on harmful content on the Internet, and has welcomed today’s publication of the Committee’s report on this matter and the attention that the publication of this report will bring to the safety of children and young people online.

The Committee made a number of welcome recommendations, in particular that parents need to be involved and engaged in their child’s use of technology alongside the acceptance that parents should have more knowledge of social networking services and what children and young people are doing on them in order to better understand the risks and how they can act to help minimise them. Childnet is pleased to be shortly re-launching our award winning Know IT All for Parents resource (referenced in the Committee’s report at Paragraph 166) updated with clear guidance for parents on social networking sites. 

Childnet is aware from regularly working in schools and with parents that there are high levels of parental concern as to how social networking providers and others respond to reports of incidences such as cyberbullying. In light of this Childnet welcomed the Committee’s suggestion for the UKCCIS to look at a consistent and transparent policy on take-down procedures. 

Childnet welcomed the Committee's recommendation that social networking sites users should be required to take a deliberate decision to make their personal information more widely available and Childnet is committed to continue to work to educate parents about social networking sites and how users can protect themselves.    

Childnet’s Communication Manager Lucinda Fell said,

“We are pleased to support the valuable steps that have already been taken in this area, in particular the social networking guidance document produced by the Home Office Task Force on child protection on the Internet, but it is vital that industry implements what has been outlined in this guidance document and continues to respond to the user's needs, making sure that all users - both parents and children are aware of the ways that they can protect themselves.  We believe that the Committee's recommendations outlined above will help industry to achieve this and at Childnet we are committed to continue educating and empowering parents on these important issues.”

- Ends-

For further information contact:

Lucinda Fell  –

[email protected]

You can access a PDF of the Childnet response to this consultation at the following link:

Childnet International is a registered charity, established in 1995, working with children, young people, teachers, parents and carers, industry, government and policy makers to help make the Internet a great and safe place for children, both in the UK and on a global level. For the past twelve years, Childnet has sought to promote the positive use of technology, by highlighting the creative and beneficial things that children are doing with new technology, as well as responding to the potential risks.

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