Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Will Social Software Become Another Product of "Wikialiaty"?

How many stories like this could an elected official ignore before his voters would remove him from office? Here is another "Wikialiaty" -- 'the Internet is full of evil, so let's block it.' Ironically, enough folks believe it, so it must be true. Right? Wes Fryer mentioned in his recent podcast that the current version of DOPA that was passed in the US House and is now in the Senate Trade committee, has a stipulation that Blogging is allowable in schools if the project is approved by a teacher. Fryer interviewed Jonathan and Michelle Moore about the role of Moodle in schools. This is a very good podcast and one I will listen to again. I wonder if how many schools will allow Blogging or Moodle at all if any Federal Laws are passed banning blogs like in the article below.

I think educators that are trying to use Blogs in their classroom will find that there will be a "throwing out the bathwater with the baby" of all social software in the majority of school districts if DOPA is passed into Federal Law. School Boards are not going to stick their necks out for a few early adopters for technology. It ain't going to happen. If DOPA passes, watch, teachers will not use blogs and Moodle and anything that could get them in trouble. Teachers go by the rules. They will not invest the energy to learn how to effectively include blogging strategies in their instruction. I am sorry if I sound negative, it is just reality speaking here. Educators should not fold your cards on this issue.

What will be blocked next? Should schools even have Internet access? Do we really even need computers to teach reading, (w)riting, and (A)rithmatic? Where will it stop? We all know teachers that would be just happy as a clam if they took all the computers in the school out tomorrow anyway. No it is not just the "old farts", I know beginning teachers too that never to check their email and never take their students to the lab or ask for the laptops, because it is too much trouble. The issue is out of my hands. Just interesting to follow and observe which way the politicians go with it.

Teen arrested for MySpace meet-up

Aug 1, 2006 04:17 PM

PENDER COUNTY -- The internet is a source of endless information, but it's also a place where predators can lurk, waiting to prey on underage teens and children.

Just recently authorities arrested a 19-year-old Virginia man for encounters with a 14-year-old Pender County girl.

Investigators say the two met through the popular website MySpace.

Authorities say 19-year-old Jonathan Nylen was caught red-handed having relations with an underage Pender County girl he met on the popular website MySpace. They say the relationship started in early 2006 and escaladed to the point where Nylen drove more than 300 miles to pursue the girl.

Det. Scott Lawson of the Pender County Sheriff's Office said, "He began contacting and conversing with a 14-year-old Pender County girl. Over the course of a couple of months they eventually exchanged enough information to where they met up with each other."

Authorities say Nylen drove down from his hometown of Springfield, Va. and met up with the girl on more than one occasion.

"And on one of those occasions some alleged inappropriate sexual activity took place," Det. Lawson said.

The girl's guardians did some investigating into her MySpace account and found out about the relationship. They then notified authorities who began their investigation into what kind of information was exchanged between the two through MySpace.

"I think what people don't understand is that if you type it and you save it we can access it. We can find out what you've talked about, what you've planned, what you know because someone has told you as far as who you are, where you live, or how old they may be," Det. Lawson said.

Investigators say Nylen knew the girl was 14 but pursued the relationship anyway. Now he's facing felony charges of statutory rape and first-degree kidnapping.

"He did not have, he being an adult, the right to take her anywhere, in North Carolina that's considered kidnapping."

Prosecutors in the case hope to have Nylen in front of a grand jury by next month. Until then Nylen is banned from coming to North Carolina and from having any contact with girl or anyone she knows.

Since the incident in Pender County authorities there are working to get parents more educated on protecting their children.

The Pender County Sheriff's Office now has free computer software called Computer Cop available to anyone who requests it.

The software is designed to run a scan of chats and websites visited on a computer and then flag certain hot-button words.

The software is also available if you live in New Hanover County. You can pick it software up at the Sheriff's Office, the Wilmington Police Department or the District Attorney's office. SOURCE

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