Online Safety Consortium Backs Education, Coordination


The best practices guidelines from the PointSmart.ClickSafe (PS.CS) task force on online safety and literacy released Wednesday put a heavy emphasis on education and a complaint/response procedure when problems arise.

To make sure both parents and children are educated about online safetly, the group recommends national coordination of the effort and sufficient resources.

That would include putting a "lead" federal agency in charge of marshalling an online safety and literacy effort.

Members of the PS.CS coalition include Comcast, Cox, Google, Verizon, Yahoo!, AOL, and Symantec form the industry side, as well as Common Sense Media, the Internet Keep Safe Coalition (iKeepSafe), and the PTA.

The best practices report, which is available online at, specifically asks policymakers to emphasize digital media literacy in online safety education, create a set of national educational goals and a standard digital literacy curriculum, and making sure that any educational efforts are funded through competitive grants with periodic reviews of the process.

"NCTA is proud to have been part of this outstanding group of companies, educators, advocacy groups and online safety pioneers that all share the same goal of improving our Internet safety and education efforts," said NCCTA President Kyle McSlarrow in the joint announcement of the guidelins. "This report and the best-practice recommendations are the culmination of thoughtful discussion and constructive suggestions from all members of the task force. We will continue to do our part to help cable companies provide a safe and positive online environment for all."