MySpace blocks sexoffenders
One of the largest social platforms, MySpace announced it has discovered and removed 90,000 sex offenders from its network. The number almost doubles the estimates MySpace made last year, according to the Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal. They might be blocked, but where did they go?
MySpace is in the spotlight today because it revealed that 90,000 registered sex offenders have been kicked off its site in the past two years. But where did all of those sex offenders go? Some evidence suggests that a portion of them are now on Facebook.
The Techcrunch article cited above has a nice description of how MySpace detects sex offenders and what Facebook could learn. It also includes reactions from Facebook officials.
One of the possible avenues to explore, according to some, is that Social Networking sites block profiles of minors to older members. I'm not sure that solves the problem. We've seen reports of people lying about their age with several networking sites. It's easy to register with false information.
The problem is, we haven't got a certification authority on the web for websurfers. We've got certificates to prove the identity of websites, like those of VeriSign, but no one can vouch for the identity of surfers. This is, in my opinion, one of the priority issues to solve on the internet in the coming years.
One thing we need to be carefull about is what kind of information do we actually put up on the internet. We need to be more aware of our online Identity and our privacy. Especially youngsters should be carefull in using these sites and be taught and guided in using them. Parents need to get involved in what their kids are doing online. They have to show an interest in their kids online social life.