I received this information from a gentleman at FTC I wanted to pass on.
> This morning, U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, Federal Trade
> Commission Chairman Jon Leibowitz, and Federal Communications Commission
> Chairman Julius Genachowski introduced "Net Cetera: Chatting with Kids
> About Being Online" at Jefferson Middle School in Washington, DC. This
> free guide from OnGuardOnline.gov tells parents and teachers what they
> need to know to talk to kids about issues like cyberbullying, sexting,
> mobile phone safety, and protecting the family computer. Read more
> about today's event at http://ftc.gov/opa/2009/12/netcetera.shtm.
> Net Cetera is available at
> http://www.onguardonline.gov/topics/net-cetera.aspx and in Spanish at
> http://www.alertaenlinea.gov/topics/net-cetera.aspx. Feel free to link
> to the guide, grab the button for your website, and post sections on
> your blog or website. And let your constituents know that they can
> order free copies to share with family and friends - or with a school,
> scout troop, or soccer team - from http://bulkorder.ftc.gov.
> We've already gotten a great response to Net Cetera. Schools and school
> systems, police departments, libraries and other community organizations
> have ordered almost 300,000 copies. That includes 120,000 that the Cobb
> County, GA schools will distribute to every student in the system in
> January. We've got 1.2 million left in our first printing. Again you
> can order at bulkorder.ftc.gov.
The Net Cetera material from the FTC is very good. Within the federal government, it is clear that the responsibility for imparting information about Internet concerns has been transferred from the Department of Justice to the FTC. This is very good.
An interesting story about the FTC. When social networking first emerged, the FTC posted material on their site that was pretty fearful. In less than a year, however, they had pulled that initial material and posted material that was much more balanced and accurate. In my experience, it is rare for a government agency, especially federal, to engage in this kind of ongoing and rapid review and modification. So I really applaud the actions of this group within the FTC.
Nancy Willard, M.S., J.D.
Center for Safe and Responsible Internet Use
Cyberbullying and Cyberthreats: Responding to the Challenge of Online Social Aggression, Threats, and Distress (Research Press)
Cyber-Safe Kids, Cyber-Savvy Teens: Helping Young People Learn to Use the Internet Safely and Responsibly (Jossey-Bass)