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Growing up with risk$
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Betsy Thom, Rosemary Sales, and Jenny Pearce

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9781861347329

Published to Policy Press Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1332/policypress/9781861347329.001.0001

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New technology and the legal implications for child protection

New technology and the legal implications for child protection

(p.94) (p.95) six New technology and the legal implications for child protection
Growing up with risk

Alan S. Reid

Policy Press

The fixed and mobile internet offers tremendous possibilities for human interaction, entertainment, and education. Anonymous accessibility to the internet, however, poses particular dangers for young people. They face physical and virtual dangers from adults, other children, and exposure to inappropriate, illegal, or harmful multimedia content. This chapter discusses the legal issues surrounding the availability and use of e-communication technologies. It discusses the dangers associated with e-communication and options available to mitigate these risks. The chapter argues that risk assessment must strike a balance between overcautiousness and foolhardiness. Effective technical, legal, and regulatory measures must be appropriate to the level of risk, and proportionate, inclusive, and holistic in their approach. Educational initiatives must raise awareness of the risks and inculcate a culture of individual responsibility. The eventual creation of an information technology-aware society will ensure that new technology is enthusiastically embraced, not feared or distrusted.

Keywords:   e-communication, information technology, risk assessment, internet, young people

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