On 21st March the House of Select Committee on Communications published a report called ‘Growing up with the internet’. The report is based on an enquiry conducted by the House of Lords into Children and the Internet. UnBias team member Professor Marina Jirotka served as a specialist advisor to the enquiry and team member Professor Derek McAuley gave verbal evidence to it, elaborating on the written evidence submitted by Perez, Koene and McAuley.
The report sets out recommendations which call for sustained leadership from the Government at the highest level. It calls for an ambitious programme of digital literacy, minimum standards for those providing internet services and content, and a commitment to child-centred design.
Commenting on the launch of the report, Committee Chair Lord Best said:
“In the past twenty years, the internet has become an all-encompassing aspect of growing up. One Minister described this as “almost the largest social experiment in history”. It is in the whole of society’s interest that children grow up to be empowered, digitally confident citizens. This is a shared responsibility for everyone, it is essential that we improve opportunities for children to use the internet productively; improve digital literacy; change the norms of data collection and to design technology in ways that support children by default.
“We believe that children must be treated online with the same rights, respect and care that has been established through regulation in offline settings such as television and gambling.
“The Government’s Internet Safety Strategy is a welcome start in addressing many of the dangers children are faced with online but action must be broader than a focus on preventing harms, and it must be sustained in the long-term.”
You can read the report here: