Who can argue that the internet has not become a fixture in our lives, all of our lives; whether you are a priest, pastor, businessman or student. It is amazing to see my four-year-old go through the vast expanse of educational and recreational content on abcmouse.com.
Of course I would to continue to provide him with internet access throughout his years. Given my IT proficiency and awareness, I know how to protect him from the undesirable content that is also present— pornography, nudity, hate, illegal drugs, offensive public chat, bomb making, gambling, and other dangerous or inappropriate subject matter. With the aid of some expensive software which requires constant updating and management some of us parents can afford to keep our children relatively safe on the internet.
However, for other parents who are not as fortunate as we are, this could be a big problem. While they recognize the need to expose them to the internet, there is a more profound feeling against the idea fearing their exposure to inappropriate content.
Some parents have to go through the painful task of physically monitoring their children’s screen displays to ensure that they don’t view WebPages of inappropriate content. Other parents choose to err on the side of caution and do not offer them access period—like destroying the house to kill a mouse.
We are convinced that this problem could be easily solved if the government would mandate Internet Service Providers (ISPs) to provide the public with the option of Filtered Internet Service.
With the availability of filtered content parent and business places could feel safer about their internet access knowing that certain content would be blocked from entering their private networks by their ISPs. The task of keeping filtering software updated and monitoring new and emerging ‘problem’ sites would become the job of the ISP and not the parent who may not be IT capable enough to adequately deal with it.
The internet is a very good educational tool which we must continue to expose our children to, but only when it is safe to do so. We can’t safe guard them by totally disconnecting them from the internet—we just need Filtered Internet Access Options.
In the same way that the Cable TV Network give us the option to leave out Channels with adult content from those that we purchase; we need to be given a similar option when it comes to purchasing internet service. If you are a parent and have those concerns that I have discussed here please contact your Parliamentary Representative in government and demand that the government require all ISPs to provide Filtered Internet Access Options with every internet package that they sell including cellphones data packages.
Kids having unbridled and unsupervised access to the internet is as dangerous as leaving a loaded machine gun in their reach.
Let’s act now before it gets to be too late.