Technology is one of the key concerns of most parents with school going children today. The internet has provided the school going children with a wide range of sites to utilize. With this massive growth in the field of technology, several social networking sites have emerged. Examples of such sites are MySpace, Friendster and twitter, u tube and face book. The sites are continuously becoming more appealing even to the school going children because of their unique services.
The Cons of cyber socialization
Discussing the challenges that come with internet socialization, Fitzpatrick notes that such sites may be detrimental to the younger children especially because they provide avenues to child bullying and put the children at a higher risk of being trafficked. He therefore seeks to introduce the Deleting Online Predators Act as part of the Suburban caucus agenda.
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His reason of bringing the act was that the parent’s ability to restrict how their children’s use internet is limited only to the short time they spend at home. He notes that most of the child’s time is spent either in school or in the libraries. In the Act, he proposes certain measures such as implementing a technology that protect the children’s access to the risky commercial networking sites. He also proposed the need to design a website to provide the necessary information on the dangers of surfing the internet to the learning community. To him, such measures will enable the parents to address the internet related issues with their children with much understanding. He also proposed strict policies to regulate what such social sites can release to the public especially those sites with information on sexuality
The pros of the cyber socializing
Even with such challenges, the social networks are not without their advantages. I agree with Jenkins Henry that the society is at a transition moment from face to face interaction to more advanced forms of interaction. He noted the role of the social sites in enabling interaction among people of different race, tribes, and nations all over the world. I also want to agree with him that instead of shutting kids from the social networks sites, the focus should be on equipping the children to exploit their potential while avoiding the risks of the sites.
He also noted the value of the site in education. Teachers from many schools are increasingly embracing the use of blogs to facilitate the sharing of knowledge in schools. They also utilize the mailing lists technology to communicate the information concerning homework to parents and students. This has improved the performance of most students. The teachers have also been able to facilitate the sharing of information by the students with other students from all over the world. The technology therefore enables the students to share their experiences with their fellows whom they probably had never seen.
Though I am not objecting the recommendations of the proposed federal legislation, I am against the restriction it seeks to put on the access of the sites by the public schools and the libraries. Such practices will limit the effectiveness of the teachers by denying them a chance to use these services to improve the performance of their students. The act will also encourage discrimination as the teens lacking internet access at their various homes will be disadvantaged. Such youths may begin to look down upon themselves due to the inability to continue interacting with their friends.
In conclusion, I therefore believe that as much as there is need for the regulation in the use of the social networks by the students, it should not be completely erased. Instead, appropriate policy measures should be put in place to regulate their use to the betterment of the students in all the aspects of life. Such policies should address the specific measures to be taken against those who are found using such sites for bullying and child trafficking.