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Parents To Block Kids From Joining MySpace

kdawson posted more than 6 years ago | from the how-hard-is-a-new-gmail-address dept.

Social Networks 337

Reservoir Hill writes "A New York Times blog notes that attorneys general of 49 states are announcing a partnership with MySpace to fight sexual predators on social networks by letting parents submit the e-mail addresses of their children, so the company can prevent anyone from using that address to set up a profile. MySpace will also set up a 'closed' section for users under age 18 so only their established online friends can visit their pages. MySpace also promises to hire a contractor to identify and delete pornographic images on the site. 'This set of principles is a landmark and milestone because it involves an acknowledgment of the importance of age and identity authentication,' said Connecticut attorney General Richard Blumenthal." Blumenthal also actually said "If we can put a man on the moon..."

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Blocking email addresses? (5, Informative)

Kelson (129150) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045174)

With a half-zillion free email providers out there, blocking a kid's email address will last all of two minutes. All they have to do is create an alias at Gmail, Yahoo, etc.

It reminds me of the early days of Hotmail, when they "verified" that you were a US resident by having you enter a matching city and ZIP code. Which just meant that all their overseas users lived in Beverly Hills, 90210.

Re:Blocking email addresses? (1)

snotclot (836055) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045208)

Ahh I remember those days.. when I was a kid in Canada and my brother watched 90210 (but I didn't). The only thing useful to me about that show was an easy ZIP I could always use for everything and anything. LOL

Re:Blocking email addresses? (2)

aussie_a (778472) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045686)

Being an Australian it was double useful for me as I had no idea what any valid American postcodes were, except for that single one.

Re:Blocking email addresses? (4, Funny)

CastrTroy (595695) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045228)

You think 90210 is fun? Well I'm from Canada, so whenever I need a fake address, I use the postal code H0H 0H0. Looks like I'm getting some coal in my stocking.

Re:Blocking email addresses? (3, Interesting)

Fyre2012 (762907) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045838)

you live in the north pole?

I live in Canada and when I was a kid my parents used to get us to write letters to Santa, and they were sent to 1 Candy Cane Lane, North Pole, H0H 0H0.
Back in the day when people wrote letters to santa instead of just calling him [google.com]

Re:Blocking email addresses? (1)

Alcoholic Synonymous (990318) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045274)

Which just meant that all their overseas users lived in Beverly Hills, 90210.

Funny, so did I!

I still do this when I purchase/register something and it asks me for this information with no option to decline.

Re:Blocking email addresses? (5, Interesting)

jorghis (1000092) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045290)

This isnt about providing real security. Its about myspace getting some publicity and paying lip service to doing the right thing. Its more symbolic than anything. Sure, people will still get around it, but myspace will be able to say "hey, we are doing our best to stop them".

Re:Blocking email addresses? (3, Funny)

Frosty Piss (770223) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045870)

I think people are missing the opportunity here. Instead of thinking about how idiotic this idea is and how it's just MySpace getting "free publicity" (they need any?), consider this: If we all start registering random email addresses with MySpace's "do not call list", maybe we can save someone from the horrible horrible slip of sane judgment of getting a MySpace account in the first place.

Re:Blocking email addresses? (4, Insightful)

Max Threshold (540114) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045916)

So? Fake problem, fake solution, everybody's happy.

Re:Blocking email addresses? (3, Insightful)

gnick (1211984) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045952)

...but myspace will be able to say "hey, we are doing our best to stop them".
I'm assuming that I'm one of a million of /.ers that has witnessed this, but this is incredibly common in my arena. There's a safety/security problem in a related facility, so we do something nonsensical but somewhat related. Productivity and morale go down, but we can say we responded to a potential problem proactively. Considering the litigious society we live in, it makes a sick kind of sense. Once you combine a half a dozen facilities all doing the same thing, the issue compounds exponentially.

On the bright side, the effect may aid start-ups...

Re:Blocking email addresses? (1)

renegadesx (977007) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045344)

What I found funny was their aim to hire someone to remove all pornographic images.
Does anybody remember the time MySpace got Goaste'd?

For those who dont: http://digg.com/tech_news/MySpace_Gets_Goatse_d [digg.com] NOTE: The link in the digg story does NOT contain Goatse itself

Re:Blocking email addresses? (1)

CastrTroy (595695) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045852)

That's hillarious. I was just thinking of doing that for one of the images on my site that was being used by a bunch of myspace members. In the end, I didn't do it, just deleted the image, as I wasn't using it any more. However, that probably would have worked just as well.

Re:Blocking email addresses? (5, Insightful)

rucs_hack (784150) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045440)

well I don't know about you, but in my house, everyones email login and password is saved locally on every machine in the house.

My son could bypass any system to verify parental consent easily. However, in my house we practice this apparently rare thing called, 'mutual respect' whereby he doesn't do such things, and I don't invade his privacy. It's all about trust really, and that has to be taught, it can't be either assumed or enforced by stupid schemes like this one.

Re:Blocking email addresses? (5, Insightful)

Rogerborg (306625) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045520)

That takes me back. I used to scam my parents all the time too, and it won't be long until my kids are old enough to look me in the eye with a straight face and lie through their teeth. They grow up so fast. :(

Great idea.. Parents always know their kids emails (5, Interesting)

Kahless2k (799262) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045182)

Really.. When I was younger I told my parents what all my email addresses were, and I would never have created a new hotmail, etc address without telling them......

Someone needs a dose of reality.

Re:Great idea.. Parents always know their kids ema (4, Insightful)

betterunixthanunix (980855) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045590)

This is just another attempt by some politicians to claim that they are fighting to protect our children. Later on, when nobody actually remembers any of this, these politicians can tell a cheering crowd, "I worked hard to give parents the ability to limit their child's MySpace access, and help shield their children from sexual predators online." Of course it is idiotic, and children will find a way around it in less than a minute, but if this were really about protecting our children, it would be an educational program, not another pathetic attempt at technical measures to block their access.

This is arguably the stupidest thing ... (5, Insightful)

ScrewMaster (602015) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045188)

I've seen on Slashdot all month. Parents can submit email addresses all day long, and their kids will create disposable addresses all day long.

Pointless, but I suppose it makes the parents feel like they're doing something.

THIS is arguably the AWESOMEEST thing ... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22045246)

Well, step aside my friend
I've been doing it for years
I say, sit on down, open your eyes
And open up your ears

Say
Put a tree in your butt
Put a bumblebee in your butt
Put a clock in your butt
Put a big rock in your butt
Put some fleas in your butt
Start to sneeze in your butt
Put a tin can in your butt
Put a little tiny man in your butt
Put a light in your butt
Make it bright in your butt
Put a TV in your butt
Put me in your butt
Everybody say

I, hey, that's, man, I ain't putting no trees in nobody's butt,
no bees in nobody's butt, putting nothing--
You must be out your mind, man,
y'all get paid for doing this?
Cause y'all gotta get some kind of money
Cause this don't sound like the kind of--
I'd rather golf, to be perfectly honest,
than put somethin in somebody's butt
to be truthful

Well step aside my friend and let me
show you how you do it
When big bad E just rock rock to it

Put a metal case in your butt
Put her face in your butt
Put a frown in your butt
Put a clown in your butt
Sit on down in your butt
Put a boat in your butt
Put a moat in your butt
Put a mink coat in your butt
Put everything in your butt
Just start to sing about your butt
Feels real good

Wasn't really that awesome. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22045292)

Not especially awesome dude. sorry

Re:Wasn't really that awesome. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22045338)

it did say arguably.

Re:Wasn't really that awesome. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22045356)

I'd desperately like to see that argument.

Re:THIS is arguably the AWESOMEEST thing ... (1)

riff420 (810435) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045464)

Enough is enough is enough, I can't go on!

Re:This is arguably the stupidest thing ... (4, Insightful)

rubycodez (864176) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045286)

the first thing that came to my mind was, how to create a high-quality list of edresses for the nation's pedophiles to seek.

Re:This is arguably the stupidest thing ... (4, Insightful)

TheGratefulNet (143330) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045374)

Pointless, but I suppose it makes the parents feel like they're doing something.

you know, you can apply that answer to MUCH of what is going on with the government, today.

sad but true.

Re:This is arguably the stupidest thing ... (1)

betterunixthanunix (980855) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045526)

Parents already have the ability to employ technical measures to block their children's access to MySpace, so all this really is is a way for politicians to claim that they are fighting for our children. Yeah, I know, kids can already get around other measures, but hey, kids can get around this too, as everyone has already pointed out.

What these 49 states should be doing (as should the 1 state not participating) is starting a program to educate children and their parents about the risks of social networking websites, and how to handle situations where a predator might contact a child on such websites.

Re:This is arguably the stupidest thing ... (1)

Elsapotk421 (1097205) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045684)

I do agree with this idea very much. I'm not that old. a few years older than these kids who are being shielded from the internet. People should educate not blindly block what their children are doing or watching. For example, what do you think would happen if say an intruder breaks into your house, you in an effort to protect your family shoot the intruder. Instead of calming your child down you just rush him or her to their room and tell them to relax and just stay there. what do you think that child will grow up thinking if you never talk to them? I feel it's basically a similar, however much less serious situation. It's important that at appropriate times you educate your children on the choices they will have to make and how they will affect them and the people around them. but raise your kids as you will.

Cool (5, Funny)

JimboFBX (1097277) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045190)

I'll start by submitting the e-mail addresses of everyone I dislike and claim to be their parents and say that they are lieing about their age. Another well thought out government idea.

Re:Cool (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22045280)

It's just myspace. I suggest we give them every single email address in existence! This way, I won't be force to go there because someone decided it was "cool" to have a myspace profile but not a decent web site.

Sign up for another address (0, Redundant)

CastrTroy (595695) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045192)

What's to stop the kid from creating a secondary address via Hotmail, Yahoo, GMail, or any one of the millions of other free email services available on the internet?

Re:Sign up for another address (4, Funny)

Seumas (6865) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045238)

I'd like to see the parents asking their twelve year old girl what her email address is so they can lock down her myspace account and see where they went wrong when their child responds with "sweetltlhottie69@hotmail".

Re:Sign up for another address (1)

calebt3 (1098475) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045320)

They will only see letters and numbers, not words. Even though you spelled out two of them.

Re:Sign up for another address (5, Funny)

exley (221867) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045364)

I'd like to see the parents asking their twelve year old girl what her email address is so they can lock down her myspace account and see where they went wrong when their child responds with "sweetltlhottie69@hotmail".

With an e-mail address like that they're going to be even more surprised to find out that their 12-year-old daughter is actually a lonely 40-year-old man.

Re:Sign up for another address (1)

Seumas (6865) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045478)

Touché.

Re:Sign up for another address (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22045576)

Nothing at all, which is probably why MySpace is all too happy to agree. They basically get handed thousands of verified email addresses for free, plus the new email addresses the kids create to sign up anyway. I'm sure MySpace promised not to use those addresses for anything but the blacklist, but then again I promised to stop smoking dope and just look at m

Statistics (5, Insightful)

Seumas (6865) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045200)

And exactly how many rapes and molestations occur because of MySpace? How about we place the same restrictions on schools and churches, where you are certainly more likely to end up being molested.

Also, since when did we place the responsibility on the WEBSITE to prevent an IP address from reaching it? And what about DHCP? What about the next person that gets your IP in a few months? Why can't you filter out access on your own rather than placing the burden of your absurd paranoia on websites that have nothing to do with your ridiculous "my baby gonna get raped" fantasies?

And no, I didn't RTFA. Look at my UID. I'm old school and that's how I roll.

Re:Statistics and the art of blame. (1)

gandhi_2 (1108023) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045300)

The answer is none!
No one is raped because of any factor OTHER than the intent of the rapist. If we start down the road of blaming other things, offenders get an easy second party to transfer some of the responsibility.
You see people try to pass blame on everything. What she/he was wearing. How he/she was raised. What the school didn't do. What the website did. Is it a post-modern thing where we don't want to just say that the offender did it, the offender is responsible?
MySpace can be blamed for a lot of things (like promoting 1990's style web layout), but offender blame is 100% owned by the offender. This is another case of nanystate think-of-the-children bullcrap.

Re:Statistics and the art of blame. (2, Insightful)

Cassius Corodes (1084513) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045592)

For what you say in the first sentence to be true, the rapist's target has to be chosen randomly, and it most certainly is not. Therefore behaviour by the victim modifies their chance of becoming a victim, and hence they play a part in becoming a victim.

Naturally this of course has nothing to do with the sentencing of rapists, but is just common sense. Denying it in the name of PC will not help the situation.

Re:Statistics (1)

QuasiEvil (74356) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045946)

I've got an idea. Why don't we make all minors walk around with an artificial (if necessary, or just pump 'em up on Big Macs) beer belly and a Nixon mask? 'Cuz nobody's gonna want that...

I mean, think of the children!

Contractor paid to search for porn? (5, Funny)

Cherveny (647444) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045206)

What do you bet there may be a long list of people wanting that job?

Re:Contractor paid to search for porn? (1)

AaxelB (1034884) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045240)

Damn you! Beat me to it by less than a minute!

So, uh... I'll go back to my coding now...

Re:Contractor paid to search for porn? (4, Funny)

iminplaya (723125) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045250)

Search for porn? That funny. I never have to search for it. It justs pops up, all by itself.

Re:Contractor paid to search for porn? (1)

Eighty7 (1130057) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045402)

That's what she said.

Re:Contractor paid to search for porn? (1)

aussie_a (778472) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045878)

This is looking for child porn. If that sounds like a dream job to you, you're either a terrific human being or a terrible one. Regarldess you're a terr* human.

Re:Contractor paid to search for porn? (1)

edwardpickman (965122) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045902)

The job was $500 a week, it was all I could aford.

Let's just block a certain kind of kid. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22045214)

You know...

niggers?

well it's a good thing then.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22045218)

that there's no way for kids to sign up for a hotmail, or gmail, or any of the thousands of other of disposable email accounts out there. Finally government action that isn't easily subverted by clever children. Now we can all sleep at night while machines and other people of unknown character raise our kids.

Only 49 states? (4, Interesting)

EsonLinji (723693) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045242)

I'm wondering just which state is not taking part in this scheme? And could kids just claim to be from there to avoid the list.

Re:Only 49 states? (2, Informative)

BeanThere (28381) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045550)

Seemingly Texas [chron.com] . (Saying 'agreement to protect young users against sexual predators doesn't go far enough')

Re:Only 49 states? (2, Informative)

JavaManJim (946878) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045816)

Yes its Texas. For sometimes good reasons and more often bad ones (as in the Microsoft monopoly case). This time its a good reason. The attorney general says the agreement did not go far enough about verifying ages. I don't know how an any age verification would work. Factual data like emails or birth dates can be easily faked. Perhaps name the continents? No, that would knock out a lot of college students today. Thumbprints? DNA samples anyone?
http://www.wfaa.com/sharedcontent/dws/wfaa/latestnews/stories/wfaa080114_mo_myspacetx.21af3d6b.html [wfaa.com]

Jim

"If we can put a man on the moon..." (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22045248)

To quote Dilbert: Your flawed analogy only shows that other people can do other things.

RElated story: Websites block online games (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22045254)

Heres a related story: psychopathic homo-techno-fetishistist-with-social deficit blog blocks online game [tinyurl.com]

Re:RElated story: Websites block online games (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22045548)

yes, looks like it's that time again.. time for taco & crew to block tinyurl.

Hire me! (1)

foxxo (262627) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045296)

Soooo, what's a guy gotta do to score that job?

anyone stupid enough... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22045304)

to give this a second thought should be put out to pasture. There is nothing more they can do for society.

50th state? (2, Interesting)

doombringerltx (1109389) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045312)

Whats the 1 state that hasn't jumped in on this?

Re:50th state? (1)

Romancer (19668) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045528)

The state of reason.

(Sorry, just had to.)

Re:50th state? (1)

enoz (1181117) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045530)

Washington.

Wait, is that even a state?

Re:50th state? (0)

calebt3 (1098475) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045718)

Depends upon whether you mean D.C. or not. D.C. is not. Washington State is in the far Northwest.

Re:50th state? (1)

ScrewMaster (602015) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045706)

Whats the 1 state that hasn't jumped in on this?

Canada.

Next Up: theft of Myspace address DB (3, Funny)

G4from128k (686170) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045328)

This list sounds like a perfect high-value target for every malware distributor and sicko in the net. I'd bet that most kids are worse than their parents at opening emails and clicking yes to "interesting" installs. "OOOHH! A free Pony Screen Saver!" Pwned by ponies....

Re:Next Up: theft of Myspace address DB (1)

wizardforce (1005805) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045384)

more like a one stop shop for anyone who gets hold of the list on whatever server myspace is going to be using to make all of this work. emails that work no less, perfect for spamming and anything else you can think of.

They already have that... (1)

DarkNinja75 (990459) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045330)

"...a 'closed' section for users under age 18 so only their established online friends can visit their pages." The difference between 'closed' and the already-existing 'private' function is...?

Re:They already have that... (1)

calebt3 (1098475) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045388)

The account user's choice in the matter?

Re:They already have that... (1)

Gyga (873992) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045410)

I guess it's mandatory without your parent's say so.

"Hey mom, can you enter your password and click accept." "Of course dear." "Sucker." "What was that?" "Nothing mom."

Oh the irony... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22045332)

A well-organized paragraph supports or develops a single controlling idea, which is expressed in a sentence called the topic sentence. A topic sentence has several important functions: it substantiates or supports an essay's thesis statement; it unifies the content of a paragraph and directs the order of the sentences; and it advises the reader of the subject to be discussed and how the paragraph will discuss it. Readers generally look to the first few sentences in a paragraph to determine the subject and perspective of the paragraph. That's why it's often best to put the topic sentence at the very beginning of the paragraph. In some cases, however, it's more effective to place another sentence before the topic sentence--for example, a sentence linking the current paragraph to the previous one, or one providing background information.Paragraphs can contain many different kinds of information. A paragraph could contain a series of brief examples or a single long illustration of a general point. It might describe a place, character, or process; narrate a series of events; compare or contrast two or more things; classify items into categories; or describe causes and effects. Regardless of the kind of information they contain, all paragraphs share certain characteristics. One of the most important of these is a topic sentence.
"It may also be objected that my opening remark about the appealing character of Pyrrhonism is wrong or surprising, given that it is not possible for anyone to think that the stance I have presented is attractive and worth adopting. For instance, not only does the Skeptic not promise that the suspensive attitude will certainly make possible the attainment of ataraxia, but he does not even regard this as an aim that is intrinsic to his philosophy. To this objection, I would first reply that the appeal of Skepticism seems to lie in the sort of radical changes that this philosophy may entail in a person's life. For, if adopted, the cautious Pyrrhonean attitude will prevent one from making rash judgments about any topic that one has not examined or found final answers to, which in turn will prevent one from acting hastily. Another profound change consists in the fact that, even if at some point the Skeptic broke some of the most important moral rules of the society to which he belongs, he would perhaps experience some kind of discomfort, but he would not believe that he has done something objectively wrong. This would free him from the shame and remorse that those who believe that such an action is morally incorrect would experience in the same situation. In sum, the Pyrrhonean philosophy would produce, if adopted, profound changes in a person's thoughts, feelings, and actions; changes that at first glance seem to be beneficial. But secondly, I think that whether or not Pyrrhonism is an appealing philosophy cannot in the end be determined a priori. For it depends on whether one values such attitudes as caution, open-mindedness, and intellectual modesty; or, if one does, on whether these attitudes are preferred to, for example, the sense of assurance that one may experience when espousing philosophic systems or religious beliefs. This is why my opening comment was just that Pyrrhonism may still be found attractive and worth adopting."

You're completely right. I've separated the paragraphs because I've been criticized because of not doing it. I think I could set everything in two paragraphs, each one addressing one objection and the corresponding replies. Sth like this:

"Before concluding, I wish to look at two possible objections to my position. First of all, it could be argued that the emphasis I put on the distinction between defining and non-defining characteristics of Pyrrhonism is itself foreign to the Pyrrhonean spirit, since the Skeptic would refrain from theorizing about the real nature of his ajgwghv. I think this objection would overlook two facts. First, the first book of PH is devoted to an account of the Skeptical attitude: Sextus carefully defines and describes the skevyi", and emphasizes the differences between Pyrrhonism and neighboring philosophies. Of course, this account should be interpreted as no more than a report of how things appear to Sextus at the moment he is describing them (PH i 4), but this does not make it less true that he gives a careful explanation of the character of his Skepticism and makes clear what his stance is not. Second, even if one accepts that from the Skeptic's point of view the distinction in question is completely futile, I do not think this should prevent an interpreter with an interest in understanding the Pyrrhonean outlook from trying to determine what defines it. In my view, the significance of such a distinction lies above all in that it shows that neither the search for and the attainment of ajtaraxiva nor the adoption of a philanthropic outlook can be taken as touchstones for determining whether some present-day thinker may be considered a Pyrrhonist. Hence, if a person adopts a first and a second-level ejpochv, and restricts his utterances to the realm of his appearances, he may be deemed a Pyrrhonist.

The second objection is that my opening remark about the appeal of Pyrrhonism is wrong or surprising, given that it is not possible to think that this philosophy is attractive and worth adopting. For instance, not only does the Skeptic not promise that the suspensive attitude will make possible the attainment of ajtaraxiva, but he does not even regard this as an aim intrinsic to his philosophy. To this objection, I would first reply that the appeal of Skepticism lies in the sort of radical changes that this philosophy may entail in one's life. If adopted, the cautious Pyrrhonean attitude prevents one from making rash judgments about any topic that one has not examined or found final answers to. This in turn prevents one from acting hastily. Also, even if at some point the Skeptic were to break some of the most important moral rules of the society to which he belongs, he would perhaps experience some discomfort, but he would not believe that he has done something objectively wrong. This would free him from the anguish suffered by those who believe that such an action is morally wrong. In sum, the Pyrrhonean philosophy produces, if adopted, profound changes in a person's thoughts, feelings, and actions - changes that at first glance seem to be beneficial. However, I recognize that whether or not Pyrrhonism is an appealing philosophy cannot in the end be determined a priori. Such a determination depends on whether one values such attitudes as caution, open-mindedness, and intellectual modesty; or, if one does, on whether these attitudes are preferred to the sense of assurance that one may experience when espousing, for instance, philosophic systems or religious beliefs. This is why my opening comment was merely that Pyrrhonism may still be found attractive and worth adopting."
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with fish sticks! (No don't!)

Eat a chicken stick?
No, I won't!
Eat a magical candy stick?
What is this, some kind of a trick?
The only stick I eat comes from the sea.
It's not a stick that comes from a tree.
It comes from a fish deep fried in batter.
Eat one! (Enough with the chit-chatter!)

Eat some, with katsup sauce!
Tony Danza told me that I'm the boss.
'Cuz I'm really cool. (Cool)
I eat fish sticks when I party at the pool.
Or when I'm in a magic forest.
I eat fish sticks when I rap the chorus.
(Hey Josh, what's the word on the street?)
Fish sticks, are a delicious treat!

Fish Sticks!
Fish Sticks!
(What a delicious treat!)
Fish Sticks!
Fish Sticks!
(They're very good to eat!)
Fish Sticks!
Fish Sticks!
(Yumm!)
Gimme gimme gimme lemme have some!

Fish Sticks!
Fish Sticks!
(What a delicious treat!)
Fish Sticks!
Fish Sticks!
(They're very good to eat!)
Fish Sticks!
Fish Sticks!
(Yumm!)
Gimme gimme gimme lemme have some!

Girls with boobs dance on my lap,
I'm cool, check out my backwards hat.
My rapping is good. (Good!)
Everybody likes my rap in my neighborhood.
Like my neighbors, Betty and Jim.
When I do rap, I'm in to win!
My rapping is cool. (Cool!)
I do rapping, when I'm sitting at school.
I can do rap, NON STOP!
I ribbity ribbity ribbity ribbity rap alot!

7, 12, 14, a million,
100, 3, 6, a billion!
(Hey Josh, what's the word on the street?)
Fish sticks, are very good to eat.
They're the best, to digest.
I eat fish sticks when I wear my magic vest.

Fish Sticks!
Fish Sticks!
(What a delicious treat!)
Fish Sticks!
Fish Sticks!
(They're very good to eat!)
Fish Sticks!
Fish Sticks!
(Yumm!)
Gimme gimme gimme lemme have some!

Fish Sticks!
Fish Sticks!
(What a delicious treat!)
Fish Sticks!
Fish Sticks!
(They're very good to eat!)
Fish Sticks!
Fish Sticks!
(Yumm!)
Gimme gimme gimme lemme have some!

Re:Oh the irony... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22045494)

Delicious Cake (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22045378)

I'll just have to create a profile that's under 18 to get to the lolis.

Oh, wait, there's only sluts on MySpace. Nevermind. Get them off the Internet, either by parental intervention or raep - doesn't bother me so long as they're gone.

Blumenthal (0, Flamebait)

niteice (793961) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045430)

I am continually ashamed that he represents my state.

So.. wouldn't this give them an alibi? (4, Insightful)

Rinikusu (28164) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045442)

"Your honor, I trusted myspace to verify the age of the people I met online. I know she only looks 13 your honor, but her profile said she was 19!"

Good intentions but.. (1)

rastoboy29 (807168) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045450)

They also intend to default 16-17 year olds profiles to "private".  Not a bad idea, but how do they plan on verifying age?

Re:Good intentions but.. (1)

SomeGuyTyping (751195) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045848)

yep - my niece's page says that she's 29 - I think she doubled her actual age

Re:Good intentions but.. (1)

oddaddresstrap (702574) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045890)

They'll ask them how old they are. Duh.

Better idea (3, Insightful)

FlyByPC (841016) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045452)

One of the comments below TFA has it right, I think. No competent kid is going to be slowed down by more than a few seconds by these restrictions. Better to allow them to create a profile openly -- and for their parents to create a MySpace persona to keep tabs on them and see what's being posted etc.

Most of the people that I know who are old enough to have kids on MySpace know a LOT less about using the Internet than their kids do. (Yeah, I know; there will be a few /.ers reading this who have kids and who DO know what they're doing; I'm not talking about you.)

Any "security" measures designed to "protect" kids don't have a chance of working unless either:
  • The kids want them to work, and/or
  • The security measures take into account that the kids are very knowledgeable and their parents generally aren't.

Censorship? Really? (1)

T-Bone-T (1048702) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045458)

Don't you think that is a little strong to be calling a parent's actions to provide a good environment censorship?

P.S. Don't ask what I think a good environment is. I haven't had kids but I believe it resembles the one I grew up in.

Re:Censorship? Really? (1)

Fulcrum of Evil (560260) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045586)

Not really. Part of the job of a parent is to decide what their kid is ready for. Good or bad, it's still censorship.

Re:Censorship? Really? (4, Insightful)

betterunixthanunix (980855) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045700)

Except that this isn't parents trying to provide a good environment, it is just parents trying to bar their children from access to a certain website. Parents trying to provide a good environment would sit down and talk about the dangers of sexual predators on MySpace and similar websites, and instruct their children to immediately contact mommy or daddy if someone starts propositioning them for sex (not that we live in a culture where parents are encouraged to discuss anything pertaining to sex with their children). Growing up, the Internet was just starting to reach its current level of popularity, and my mother was very clear with me when we got our first computer about what to do if someone asked to meet me or started talking about sex, I listened, and there was never a problem with me using the computer, even if I was unsupervised.

Oh well, we haven't encouraged parents to actually speak to their kids about this stuff for a long time, opting to shield children from anything deemed harmful by anyone.

While easy to get past, this is not a big deal (2, Insightful)

scourfish (573542) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045474)

Parents have choice over the content their children view; children do not. It is part of the parenting process; this is just a tool for such, like the V-chip. Different parents hold different values, and children mature at different rates, so such tools are not really that bad, given that once somebody becomes of legal age, such restrictions are gone. For example: I've been able to watch R rated movies since the age of 5, yet in the early 90's when we first got a computer and the internet, my old man kept draconian enforcement over it; it really wasn't a big deal in the long run and I never grew up deprived as a result.

Include internet predator info in sex ed class (2, Insightful)

Jeff1946 (944062) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045502)

Much better idea is to include info about internet predators, etc. in sex ed class. If done right would do much more to prevent problems than trying to tie My Space to email accounts which many respondents have pointed out is so easy to bypass. Forbiding kids from doing something just makes it more enticing. Realistically explaining the dangers of things is more effective than prohibition.

Re:Include internet predator info in sex ed class (1)

Anubis350 (772791) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045724)

Unfortunately, in a fair bit of this country right now there *is no* sex-ed class. 'Cause if they don't hear about *safe* practices in school, of *course* they won't have sex. ::rolls eyes::

Re:Include internet predator info in sex ed class (1)

Muffinmasher (1147183) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045948)

Sounds like a good idea but, atleast where I'm from (Texas), you aren't required to take the class in which Sex Ed is taught (health) until the second semester of your senior year, by which time you're probably no longer a minor. Texas might be the exception in this case though.

An easier solution... (1)

MikeUW (999162) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045508)

...would be to just shut down MySpace altogether. That'll accomplish essentially the same thing, won't it? Unless anyone over the age of 18 actively uses MySpace (except for self-promoting politicians and pop-stars)...

Attack tree (4, Interesting)

Digital_Quartz (75366) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045518)

So, in security, we have this notion called an "attack tree". Let's suppose you want to stop someone from stealing your family jewels. You put the in a safe, and all is well, right? Well... maybe not. We create this tree, where the root is "steal the jewels", and the children under the root are various ways you might accomplish this ("Use a key to open the safe", "Drill out the hinges on the safe", "Create hole in safe"). And each of these nodes can be divided out further into more children, so to use a key for example, you either need to steal a key, or be one of the people who has a legitimate use for the key, or be the locksmith who installed the lock.

Similarly, if the attackers goal is "molest my children", then you have an attack tree that might have "hang out by the school", or "give candy full of drugs", and so forth. "Lure children on the internet" is one child of that tree, and "lure children using MySpace" would be a subchild.

For each of these nodes, there's a cost associated with fixing the problem. Ideally, you fix the problem right at the top of the tree, so for example we could make sure our keys are only given to a select group of people whom we trust, that our keys are locked securely in other safes (excepting the obvious recursion problem), and kill the locksmith. OR, we could go up one node in the tree, and eliminate the key altogether, and use an electronic keypad with a user definable code, which neatly solves the entire problems of keys.

Similarly, we can do some sort of bizzare and flawed attempt to do age verification using email addresses to stop pervs on MySpace (How do we stop kids from creating multiple accounts? How do we know the parents are the ones submitting the email address and not a malicious party intent on removing a MySpace page?), and we can implement the same system on all the social networking sites, and all the online games, and all the other online communications systems in the world, effectively black-holing our children and removing them from this filthy online world... Or, we could go up one node in the tree, and tell our kids "Don't go visit weirdos on the internet without telling us first", just like we tell our kids "Don't take candy from strangers", and "Don't get into cars with people you don't know".

Not to say that we can't take steps at multiple levels in the tree; I just think there are steps we could take which are more effective.

Re:Attack tree (1)

ScrewMaster (602015) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045732)

Don't forget "look both ways before flossing."

Re:Attack tree (1)

teh moges (875080) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045768)

An excellent comment. Wish I had mod points to give.

The only real technical hurdle that I can think of that would work would be to block access to MySpace at the entry point of broadband into the house. Naturally, this doesn't stop kids accessing it from their friend's house or from school, work (if they have a casual office job) or anywhere else, but it would stop it happening so much at home.

The much better idea would be monitor, not stop the usage of internet sites. Either tell the kid or do it silently, but monitor so that you can be better informed if there is a problem.

Re:Attack tree (1)

symbolic (11752) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045846)

You know what else makes this whole thing rediculous? How many kids have you heard of being attacked by so-called 'predators' they came in contact with through MySpace? By contrast, how many kids have been molested by people they know and trust - in real life? Teachers seem to be one of the biggest risks these days - especially when it comes to female teachers and under-aged (male) students. I can't help but notice that the safety measures they've come up do all of nothing to combat what appear to be more common vectors of predatory involvement.

the parenting solution (2, Insightful)

shadylookin (1209874) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045540)

This won't work for all of the above reasons. I think parents are going to have to learn that if they want their children to not do bad things on the computer that they are going to have to monitor their children themselves. There simply isn't anyway to pull anything like this off without some major governmental privacy violations. So I think we should stop wasting millions and let parents raise their children. I'm sure parenting children is a tough job, but I think it's one best left to those that made them.

stranger with a gift (1)

Essequemodeia (1030028) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045578)

Is this how we treat our society's ugliest children? By protecting them from boys? And older creepy men? Maybe one of those men has a diamond ring in his pocket...

it's politics (1)

nguy (1207026) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045580)

I suspect many people know that this is bogus. It's just something that's easy to do politically and legally and gives the appearance as if MySpace and politicians are "doing something".

I wouldn't complain to loudly about it; it's far better than if they actually came up with something effective instead.

Cruise Control for parenting (2, Insightful)

TehZorroness (1104427) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045608)

You must EDUCATE kids. Hiding them in a bubble solves nothing. It is an insult to their intelligence, and it teaches them falsities about the world. Ratings on media can be a beautiful thing as it can act as a warning sign for parents who may need to sit down and have a talk with their child before injecting them with the media. On the other hand, systems like the V-Chip, or in this case, "banning" children from "myspace", end up with children missing something without the understanding as to why. The perfect way to brew defiant kids who lie is to start by lying to them first. These defiant kids will end up seeking that missing bit, no matter what stops them, completely rejecting important advice at the moment where it is most important.

I'll be the first to admit I have no experience here (neither a parent or a psychologist) but this seems like common sense to me.

Re:Cruise Control for parenting (1)

aXis100 (690904) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045750)

I disagree, but then again I'm not a parent or psychologist.

I think that children are growing up too fast these days. Between the media, computers entertainment and fashion we have: 12 year olds dressing like sluts, children desensitised to murder and violence, obesity, inactivity, attention defecit.... the list goes on. I'd rather see kids be kids for alot longer, I'm pretty sure it worked fine for the generations before us.

Personally if/when I have a child I'll be sheilding them from alot of this until I can see they are mature and responsible enough to deal with it properly. That would probably be well under 18, but that's not the point. It's good that there is a means for responsible parents who are taking an interest in their chlilds online activities to maintain some control.

parents could have blocked their kids all along (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22045652)

but instead it took fags screwing their little kids in the butt to get parents to be active in their kids lives. not that fags shouldn't be blamed but let's turn our attention to the real slackers, the parents.

In other news... (1)

Jefan (1096649) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045784)

In other news, Yahoo.com announces 3 million new email users.

I'm going to go ahead and fix this story (4, Insightful)

Fortunato_NC (736786) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045804)

Today, the Attorneys General of 49 states took another step towards running for governor by knocking down yet another straw-man.

There, fixed that story for you. No need to thank me.

This is a good thing. (2, Funny)

Egdiroh (1086111) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045836)

Kids who aren't smart enough to come up with an email address that their parents don't know genuinely do need to be protected from online predators, who will abuse their ignorance.

Also this way, rather then imposing arbitrary restriction based on age, their is a built in opt out based on a child's actual readiness to dis-regard their parents tech ignorance.

Hmmmmm..... (1)

IHC Navistar (967161) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045858)

The Attorney General should be going after parents who don't parent their children. But no politician has the balls to go after his own irresponsible constituents.

This is potentially groundbreaking! (1)

GrnArmadillo (697378) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045864)

All someone has to do is write a script that systematically generates and submits email addresses, and no one would ever be able to create a new Myspace account ever again!

(Yes, I know, you'd probably need to make a full-scale DDOS out of it so that MySpace can't tell that all the submissions are coming from the same IP address, and it's entirely possible that you'd crash Myspace's servers before successfully submitting all of the possible email addresses at pingable domains. Perhaps a more attainable goal would be to wipe out all of the possible Gmail/Yahoo/Hotmail addresses fewer than 10 characters long?)

In other news... (2, Funny)

bhmit1 (2270) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045886)

children everywhere are being hospitalized due to uncontrolled fits of laughter.

And later, nerds who read news want to create a blacklist to block stupid politicians and law makers from being able to make new laws.

It could be possible at the ISP level (2, Funny)

Billly Gates (198444) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045934)

Infact I could see why not?

Maybe as a CEO of a major telecom I could charge an extra $5 a month to firewall sites. ... oh wait proxies. Nevermind unless there is a way to block them too.

Or I could just charge $5 a month more and have the kids still find free proxies to go around it.

In the meantime a simple fix in the /system32/etc/host file by adding the I.P. for www.barneythedinosaur.com for www.myspace.com scares my kids quite well and blocks myspace. Good thing they haven't figured out that one yet.

ridiculous (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22045984)

This problem is so blown out of proportion that it's ridiculous.

My way worked (3, Interesting)

rossz (67331) | more than 6 years ago | (#22045988)

I had the home network running through a transparent proxy which blocked certain websites. MySpace was on the block list (because the kid broke the rules about posting personal information, such as phone numbers).

She could still get to MySpace if she went to a friend's house, but the inconvenience of doing that made it "not a fun thing."

The blocking by email system is nothing but a feel-good bandaid that does nothing.
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