My Quest To Teach

June 26, 2012

Filed under: Uncategorized — William Jackson @ 23:15

Sexting and Texting Presentation

Children Dangerously Flirting Online

I was asked to repost this blog by some mothers here in
Jacksonville, Florida to prove a point to their daughters
about the dangers of the Internet. This blogs influence
came from the news story on the 12 year old girl
situation and Facebook.

Girl lured into sex trade through Facebook Invite.

The access to online sites that promote innocent Flirting is drawing attention by
law enforcement because of the growing incidents of rapes on minor age boys and girls.

This is scary as a parent and elementary school teacher. Presenting at conferences
and seminars I hope to teach youth the dangers of online content that they post and
the dangers of making unseen friendships in chat rooms. Many sites entice and
encourage young girls and boys to flirt to gain a larger and young audience, but it
is being found that older men are enticing young girls and even boys to meet face
to face with dangerous results.

News reports have shown a dangerous trend with online contact with older men and
minor young teen girls. Flirting is seen as innocent and playful; high school girls
and boys flirting, even elementary school age kids experimenting with who they like.
This ”greenness” form of flirting is perceived as cute and harmless in most cases.
Skating the edges of emotional connectivity to see if there is a potential for a
relationship either as friends or a more serious relationship. The Internet has
created a dangerous opportunity for sexual encounters for girls and even boys and
opened the door for Sexting, sexual luring, and Cyberbullying using sexually
explicit content.

Parents need to be aware and involved in their children’s Internet activities.
The seriousness of this can be seen from NY Times reports that show this is not
an isolated incident of rapes, but a growing concern. There are Internet Apps
that aid in flirting, the danger is so sever that mobile apps that help flirty
users connect with others has shut down service for minors after three teens
were allegedly raped by an adult predator using it on cell phones.

The challenge is that technology has allowed an open and unregulated
connection that parents must be concerned. Unfortunately pedophiles, stalkers
and child molesters visit sites and pretend to be teens. They study conversations,
styles, words, slang and the best times to be online to make contact. Teens also
will lie about their ages to gain access to adult sites. Even though there are
dangers, teens discount the dangers for the chance to act as adults and engage
in adult conversations and sometimes behaviors.

Any type of technology in use by children, parents must be informed and
involved. Just as Facebook is researching lowing the age for allowing younger
members access, there are thousands of minors already using Facebook because
they lied about their ages. As an elementary school teacher I hear students in
fourth and fifth grade talking and their conversations are adult in nature,
discussing their online activities.

The results potentially dangerous as seen from information that cases have shown:
15 year old Ohio girl said she had been raped by a 37 year old man, a 24 year old man
has been accused of raping a 12 year old girl in California and a 21year old man
from Wisconsin is facing charges that he sexually assaulted a 13-year-old boy.
Teens post content that can lead to dangerous situations and tragic results that
impact their future lives.

Parents need to make sure that even if they allow their minor children or teens to
access sites that promote social contact that their children understand not to post
their address, phone numbers, or other personal information that can be used online
to find them. Online maps are so accurate that just a small amount of information
a stalker can find a child’s school, home, hangout areas. Vint Cerf, considered
one of the “Fathers of the Internet” stated, “The Internet is a reflection of
our society and that mirror is going to be reflecting what we see. Children do
not see any reflections, they just see what they want and what excites them.

Parents if you have not done so talk to your children or you may wish you had
later and don’t have the mentality of some parents that the Internet is totally
safe, “I had no clue this was even going on in Central Texas. I thought it was
a third world country situation” as an Austin, Texas aunt claimed after finding
her niece that was abducted and sold into prostitution after she met someone
online and decided to meet that person even after told not to by her mother.
We are not a third world country and most third world countries do not have
open and uncensored Internet access in their homes for children to use unmonitored
and uncensored by their parents or family members.

Parents take your responsibility as a parent seriously. Computers and the
Internet are not 21st century TV’s.

William Jackson, M.Edu.
My Quest To Teach

If interested in workshops or seminars for youth and teens.

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