Hurdles for .KIDS.
I’ve been saying this for a long time. The concept of a greenspace for kids online through specially reserved domains such as .kids or .kids.us is a good idea in theory but only in a perfect world. Therein lies the dilemma. In a perfect world, there would be no need for a greenspace. The reality is, even in this world, there is no need for a greenspace. Take a minute to read the following article link below then ask yourself: In the climate of supervision and penalties they wish to create for Kids or .kids.us, if I were a web developer, would I rush in to develop content for this namespace? I think not.
What there IS a need for is cooperation among web developers to target their intended audiences specifically and active participation from the rest of us to use the tools already available to us to help web developers achieve this goal. What there IS a need for is POSITIVE incentives for compliance.
The entire reason I created the SurfSafely.com web directory was to provide web developers with the positive incentives they so desperately needed for voluntarily compliance with existing standards. You would be hard pressed today to find a web developer who has not at least heard of my directory. The more it grows, the more the growth rate accelerates and the more web developers appreciate the need to take responsibility for their content. I am very proud of what I have achieved through this vehicle and will continue to do so as long as I live.
That is MY mission. If you’ve added my search form to your home page, you’re helping too! Keep reading and let me show you how you can join me in this mission even further.
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Supreme court rules on CIPA.
This month I was going to write a little bit about the FCC rulings recently handed down pertaining to ownership of multiple media outlets in given market areas and my concerns for the possibility of resulting changes to the quality and diversity of content. My concerns not withstanding, something else came up this month that caught my attention even more.
On June 23rd, the U.S. Supreme court upheld the Children’s Internet Protection Act with provisions requiring libraries to install content filtering on their Internet connected computers else face loss of federal funding. The American Library Association was quick to denounce the move. We, however, applaud it and wonder why they fear it so.
Do they not already have sections of the library set aside for children’s reading material and adult reading? And in those sections for adults, do most not already prohibit explicit pornography? When is the last time you walked into your public library and picked up a pornographic magazine for casual reading out in the open? Which of course begs the question, why should they allow access to pornography online?
I found a very good, well balanced analysis of this decision at the Findlaw web site. Please take a few minutes to read this.
Given that filters are known for their imperfection, libraries who grant adults online access are required to give them unfilterd access at their specific request should the filters interfere with their research. This goes a long way toward taking the ALA’s first amendment argument out of the picture. Ultimately, what I envision happening is that libraries will have separate computer station areas entirely, just as they do now for reading materials. One for children, one for adults. Doesn’t it just make sense?