01 October 2008

The ISTTF: Chicken or egg?

by Anne Collier. "ISTTF" stands for Internet Safety Technical Task Force, the result of an agreement last January between 49 state attorneys general (minus Texas) and MySpace. The emphasis is on the word "technical," because the attorneys general basically charged the task force, of which I'm a member, with reviewing technical solutions to online youth risk - "age verification" technology being their stated predetermined solution of choice. Why? Because they're law enforcement people. They deal with crime - not all these other subjects that have come up in online-youth and social-media research - so they probably feel that this is all about crime and technology, so some technology that separates adult criminals from online kids, or that somehow identifies every American on the Web, is what will make the Internet safe for youth. See also Age Verification Debate Continues; Schools Now at Center of Discussion (Progress & Freedom Foundation) by Adam Thierer and State attorneys general push online child safety snake oil by Chris Soghoian.