Let Parents, Not Politicians, Keep Kids Safe Online

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Many parents today are rightly concerned about what their kids see on social media and how much time they spend online. And politicians have noticed. In fact, there are so many parents with those concerns that the political juice was worth the squeeze for members of the Senate Judiciary Committee to drag tech executives to a hearing on Wednesday for questioning. Or, more accurately, to be berated by members in diatribes loosely styled as questions—questions which the executives then weren’t allowed to answer before being cut off by the next harangue.

It was good political theater, especially in an election year. But the spectacle did little to ease the understandable anxieties parents have about their kids’ online lives. 

Officially, Wednesday’s hearing was focused on online child sexual exploitation, which everyone agrees is intolerable and demands an urgent response. Law enforcement needs increased resources and new strategies for dealing with this kind of criminal behavior. It’s also important for parents to hear about the worst-case scenarios, especially given that platforms with billions of users will never be able to eliminate all risk. Since parents will remain the first line of defense, the victims who participated in the hearing did a great service to all families.  

Read the full article on The Dispatch.