Youth Safety on a Living Internet

Youth Safety on a Living Internet is the report of the USA’s Online Safety and Technology Working Group. I discovered it when Penny Patterson posted the link to it on Becta’s Safetynet email discussion list.

It's available as a free PDFAt 148 pages it’s quite a read but, astonishingly for an official report, engagingly written. It’s full of the sort of common sense advice that makes you go “Of course"!”, but backed up by research findings.

Although the committee’s remit covered only the USA, it cites studies from other countries, such as the UK’s Byron Review. Moreover, although the evidence base will be different between the USA and the UK, a number of things will be applicable here.

For example, the citing of different kinds of safety, which I have certainly mentioned in these pages – see, for example, The Pros and Cons and Safety Aspects of Social Networking and 11 Essential Elements of a Digital Financial Literacy Course.

Also, stating the (what ought to be) obvious point that youngsters will use the internet regardless of what sort of measures are in place to protect them, so a sensible thing to do would be to help them learn how to use it safely.

All in all, a worthwhile read, which is both well-structured (there are lots of summaries near the beginning) and, as I said, readable.