Your nine-year old has just shown you how to get “onto the internet,” and you‘ve just stumbled onto this website. You really don’t know much about computers, or being “online,” and frankly, it’s a little scary. You’ve heard about such things as violence and pornography on the internet, and you are thinking to yourself, “How do I keep my family safe from these sorts of things?”
First, it is important to understand that there is no 100% foolproof internet filtering device that will block out all negative and pornographic material. Even many safe search engines have problems filtering out the approximately 400 new pornographic site per day that come onto the internet.
Here are some tips for internet safety, compiled from a presentation given by Valerie Reese, a licensed family therapist:
- Keep the computer in an open, supervised area of the home.
- Stay out of chat rooms.
- Pornography can appear on your computer unsuspectingly. The peddlers of this filth have managed to create pictures that will “freeze” your computer. Every time you press a button, a new pornographic picture will appear. If this EVER happens to you, immediately turn off the computer and make sure your kids know to do this, and then to immediately tell an adult what happened.
- Use Blocking techniques.
- Use filters. (See below)
- Learn to view browser history and other computer functions.
- Know where your children view computers outside the home.
- Find family friendly sites.
- Maintain good family relationships and communication.
Finally, anyone with online access should read the transcript of the broadcast, “How To Protect You And Your Family From Computer Pornography” by Eric Denna, given at a conference at Brigham Young University. Eric Denna is currently the Vice President of Technology and CIO of BYU.
An internet filtering system can be a software program you buy, or it can be in the form of an Internet Service Provider (ISP). Your ISP is the company you go through to dial into the internet (AOL, Earthlink, Juno, etcetera).
Internet Filters on the Internet from About.com
Internet Filtering Software Reviews from Yahoo!
Internet Service Providers
MSTAR LDS based, offers a state-of-the-art filtering service. Highly rated.
Information, How-To and more on Filtered ISPs from About.com
Links to Kids Search Engines: Links to search engines for kids that filter out junk on the Internet.
Linkopedia: A Canadian based filtered search engine.
Parents Guide To The Internet: New to the world wide web? This is a great place to learn about how to keep your surfing experience a good one.
WAP Family Friendly Websites: A list of family friendly websites on a variety of topics.
WorldVillage Family Site of The Day: Look at the site of the day or go through a year of archived sites.
Plugged In!: Helping parents and youth leaders guide teens through the world of popular youth culture. My favorite place for reviews.
Ted Baehr’s MovieGuide: Dr. Baehr is the Chairman of the Christian Film and Television Commission, a non-profit organization, committed to educating the entertainment industry and the general public of the impact mass-media has on its audiences.
Dove Approved Movies: The Dove Foundation is a nonprofit organization dedicated to encouraging Hollywood to produce and release more wholesome movies and videos.
Screen It! Entertainment Reviews for Parents: Not only movies, but music, too.
Family Movie Reviews Online A large database of old and new movie reviews