Tuesday, January 15, 2008

The War On MySpace Continues

Forget cyber-bullying. MySpace has agreed to new security measures, thanks to the legal bullying of Connecticut's Richard Blumenthal and other state attorney generals. Of course, despite MySpace going above and beyond the call of duty in their efforts to protect children, there are still those who insist that MySpace must do more to protect children.

I'm beyond getting frustrated with the nannyism, political pandering, and political strong-arming that have become the bane of social networking sites everywhere. I'm just still amazed that more people don't see through the bullshit. As the telegraph article (the last link) notes, both sex offenders and children are unlikely to open accounts in their real names- And short of legally eliminating all anonymity on the internet, it's difficult to imagine a legal solution which would prevent children from meeting and talking to creepy and/or dangerous adults on the internet.

The sad truth is that the rhetoric of the politicians and the AG's doesn't fit the reality that everyone who uses MySpace is familiar with. Apparently, 20% of teen MySpace users have met up with someone they had never previously met in person. 20%! Of millions of users! Think of how many millions have met up with no problems. Politically, it's more feasible to focus on the website that makes connections possible rather than focus on the stupid decisions teenagers make. But it doesn't make it right - The MySpace debacle highlights everything wrong today with public perception of government, public perception of the law, and the media's complicity in fear-mongering at every possible turn.


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