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Why we shouldn’t be pathologizing online gaming before the evidence is in

Why we shouldn’t be pathologizing online gaming before the evidence is in

Internet-based video games are a ubiquitous form of recreation pursued by the majority of adults and young people. With sales eclipsing box office receipts, games are now an integral part of modern leisure. However, the American Psychiatric Association (APA) recently identified Internet Gaming Disorder (IGD) as a potential psychiatric condition and has called for research […]

From private profit to public liabilities: how platform capitalism’s business model works for children

Two concepts have recently emerged that invite us to rethink the relationship between children and digital technology: the “datafied child” (Lupton & Williamson, 2017) and children’s digital rights (Livingstone & Third, 2017). The concept of the datafied child highlights the amount of data that is being harvested about children during their daily lives, and the […]

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Design ethics for gender-based violence and safety technologies

Digital technologies are increasingly proposed as innovative solution to the problems and threats faced by vulnerable groups such as children, women, and LGBTQ people. However, there exists a structural lack of consideration for gender and power relations in the design of Internet technologies, as previously discussed by scholars in media and communication studies (Barocas & […]

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Cyberbullying is far less prevalent than offline bullying, but still needs addressing

Bullying is a major public health problem, with systematic reviews supporting an association between adolescent bullying and poor mental wellbeing outcomes. In their Lancet article “Cyberbullying and adolescent well-being in England: a population-based cross sectional study”, Andrew Przybylski and Lucy Bowes report the largest study to date on the prevalence of traditional and cyberbullying, based […]

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Social media is nothing like drugs, despite all the horror stories

Nothing like Instagram. cliplab.pro/Shutterstock Letting your child use social media is like giving them cocaine, alcohol and cigarettes – all at once, or so we’re told. If you have been following recent press reports about the effects of social media on young people, you may well believe this. But there is no scientific evidence to […]

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How and why is children’s digital data being harvested?

Everyone of a certain age remembers logging-on to a noisy dial-up modem and surfing the Web via AOL or AltaVista. Back then, the distinction between offline and online made much more sense. Today, three trends are conspiring to firmly confine this distinction to history. These are the mass proliferation of Wi-Fi, the appification of the Web, […]

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We should look to automation to relieve the current pressures on healthcare

In many sectors, automation is seen as a threat due to the potential for job losses. By contrast, automation is seen as an opportunity in healthcare, as a way to address pressures including staff shortages, increasing demand and workloads, reduced budget, skills shortages, and decreased consultation times. Automation may address these pressures in primary care, […]

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Exploring the world of self-tracking: who wants our data and why?

Benjamin Franklin used to keep charts of his time spent and virtues lived up to. Today, we use technology to self-track: our hours slept, steps taken, calories consumed, medications administered. But what happens when we turn our everyday experience — in particular, health and wellness-related experience — into data? “Self-Tracking” (MIT Press) by Gina Neff […]

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Tackling Digital Inequality: Why We Have to Think Bigger

Numerous academic studies have highlighted the significant differences in the ways that young people access, use and engage with the Internet and the implications it has in their lives. While the majority of young people have some form of access to the Internet, for some their connections are sporadic, dependent on credit on their phones, […]

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Exploring the world of digital detoxing

As our social interactions become increasingly entangled with the online world, there are some who insist on the benefits of disconnecting entirely from digital technology. These advocates of “digital detoxing” view digital communication as eroding our ability to concentrate, to empathise, and to have meaningful conversations. A 2016 survey by OnePoll found that 40% of […]

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