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New facts about online predators May 8, 2009

Posted by Malene Charlotte Larsen in Internet Safety, Survey.

I recently read an article from Switched reporting on a new study from University of New Hampshire’s Crimes Against Children Research Center. The study deals with data collected from an sample of American law enforcement agencies about crimes by online sex predators during two 12-month periods, in respectively 2000 and 2006.

Here are some of their conclusions based on the study:

  • Arrests of online predators in 2006 constituted about 1 percent of all arrests for sex crimes committed against children and youth.
  • Arrests of online predators increased between 2000 and 2006. Most arrests and the majority of the increase involved offenders who solicited undercover investigators, not actual youth.
  • The internet is not more dangerous than other environments that children and adolescents frequent.
  • Social networking sites are not necessarily dangerous environments (predators are more likely to use online chat rather than SNSs to initiate contact to possible victims).

Read more about the study and the measurements here.

Be aware that the numbers represented may not reflect the full number of crimes committed by online predators, as “many sex crimes against minors never come to the attention of law enforcement”. However, it is safe to say that children are still “most likely to be exploited by acquaintances and family members, rather than strangers on the Internet”, as pointed out in the article from Switched.

Go online with your kids May 19, 2008

Posted by Malene Charlotte Larsen in Internet Safety, Social Networking, Survey, Youth Culture.
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This weekend the Danish newspaper Berlingske Tidende published an article about children and young people’s use of social network sites and how much knowledge parents have about their children’s online activities. The article is based on the survey I have conducted together with with The Danish Media Council for Children and Young People. It uses some empirical examples from our study and the overall message is that parents should go online with their kids.

You can read the article here (unfortunately only in Danish). I like the cartoon that goes along with the article 😀

How much time do Danish youngsters spend on social network sites? February 14, 2008

Posted by Malene Charlotte Larsen in PhD Data, Social networking sites, Survey, Youth.

As promised, I would blog in English about the new survey on Danish young people’s experiences on social network sites. I can start off with something simple; the amount of time that they spend on social network sites.

According to the questionnaire, 30,9 % of the Danish users between the age of 12 and 18 spend more than two hours a day on SNS:

[Respondents’ answers to the question: ”How often do you use communities or social network sites?”]

Please note that these are not average numbers for all Danish teenagers, but reflect the amount of time that users of social network site between the age of 12 and 18 spend on the sites that they themselves consider to be social network sites. In the questionnaire we did not predefine SNS as we wanted the respondents’ take on it. Many of them consider MSN Messenger to be a social network site/community/chat portal as well.

In the category “Other” many of the wrote “All the time” or informed that they spend up to four, five or even ten hours a day on social network sites.

About the survey
The survey was conducted in 2007 together with The Danish Media Council for Children and Young People. It consisted of an online questionnaire with both factual questions about media habits and use as well as questions to which respondents could answer qualitatively. 2400 youngsters between the age of 12 and 18 years old answered the questionnaire with personal views on as well as examples from their online experiences.

New survey: Young people’s experiences on social network sites February 12, 2008

Posted by Malene Charlotte Larsen in PhD Data, Safer Internet Day, Social network sites, Survey, Youth.
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Today is Safer Internet Day 2008. In that connection the Danish Media Council and I launch some of the results from our online survey about Danish children and young people’s use of social network sites. See more about the survey here.

Download press release.

Download fact sheet with central findings.

Unfortunately, the documents are in Danish, but I promise to blog about the central findings in English when I have more time. Now I have to get ready for the Safer Internet Day event in the Experimentarium in Copenhagen.

Go’ morgen Danmark February 11, 2008

Posted by Malene Charlotte Larsen in Media coverage, News media, PhD Data, Social Networking, Survey, Youth.
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Tomorrow morning at 7.15 I will be in “Go’ morgen Danmark” on TV2 (Danish television). I will be talking about the new survey I did with the Danish Media Council for Children and Young People. See more about the show here.