A new survey reflects the love/hate relationship parents have with the Interent, reports USA Today
. The survey showed that parents are worried about kids meeting pedophiles on social networking sites like MySpace but realize that that the Internet can be a valuable education tool as well.
"It's this complete dichotomy. They see this incredible potential, and they know their kids have to be there. But it's also what they are scared of most," says James Steyer, CEO of Common Sense Media, which today will release results from a survey commissioned about parental attitudes toward the Internet.
In the May survey, 80% of parents are concerned about kids meeting sexual predators online. Another study, conducted by Greenberg, Quinlan, Rosner Research, shows 30% of 18- to 24-year-olds worry about getting harassed or stalked online. These surveys show that young people who have grown up with the web as a social networking outlet, feel more comofortable with it. In fact, 78% said they have a personal website or blog.
91% of parents surveyed think the Internet helps their children explore their passions, and 77% think the Internet is one of the most valuable education tools teens have. But 88% think it's important to know what their kids are doing online.
Parents also recognize the importance of the Net. The survey shows 91% think the Internet helps their children explore their passions, and 77% think the Internet is one of the most valuable education tools teens have. But 88% think it's important to know what their kids are doing online.
The new findings have spawned a multimillion dollar educational campaign that includes a website, fliers and a public service advertising campaign.
"We tend to do a good job of reaching those parents who are paying attention," she says. "But we are also struggling in finding ways to get to those parents who are not paying attention." Nancy Willard of Eugene, Ore., an Internet safety consultant.