Friday, December 2, 2011

Twenty-eight technology companies agree to better protect children on the Net

Twenty-eight leading technology companies have agreed on Thursday to the European Commission (EC), on a voluntary basis, measures for the Internet a safer place for children, but also more rewarding.

The goal is to implement actions to make it easier to report content that may be harmful to children, to ensure that security settings are appropriate for their age, and offer wider options for parental control, the EC said in a statement.

The coalition is made ​​by Apple, BSkyB, BT, Dailymotion, Deutsche Telekom, Facebook, France Telecom-Orange, Google, Hyves, KPN, Liberty Global, LG Electronics, Mediaset, Microsoft, Netlog, Nintendo, Nokia, Opera Software, Research in Motion, the RTL Group, Samsung, Sulake, Telefónica, TeliaSonera, Telenor Group, Myspace, Vivendi and Vodafone.

EC Vice President and head of the Digital Agenda, Neelie Kroes , said that these companies, through voluntary commitment adopted, should provide both children and parents "tools of protection more transparent and consistent. "

The Commissioner expects that, following the lead of these companies come together and adopt other measures needed to promote child safety online.

Specifically, the companies will perform in five areas , one of which corresponds to the introduction of mechanisms to report inappropriate content simpler and easier to find on web pages.

Also accommodate the privacy at the age of the children , so that personal data or upload pictures to the Internet are not available to the general public automatically, and make a broader classification of the types of content, with categories based ages so that parents find it easier to filter content.

On the other hand, parental control tools themselves will be easier to use, and strengthen collaboration with the security forces to eliminate the network any content related to child sexual abuse.

According to the Commission, on average, European children start using the internet to seven years , while 38% of children aged between nine and twelve years who use claim to have a profile on a social network.

Brussels said the coalition will review its efforts in the summer of 2012, to determine what further steps could be taken.

On the other hand, in a speech by Kroes in an education conference in Berlin, the commissioner warned of the problems that can arise if teachers do not show good control of new technologies in classrooms.

"We need every teacher is digital , digital to each student. From the very beginning of formal education, "Kroes said, according to the text of his speech provided by his press service.

"When digital media can be combined to create rich interactive content, why are we based on blackboards, books and a uniform approach for all?" He said.


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