Put in place to protect the rights of the child, the Convention on the Rights of the Child is a set of non-negotiable standards. A core principle underpinning the Convention is the child's right to participate fully in social arenas and to access sources of social support without excessive interference. Juxtaposing this is the right of the child to be shielded from harm, abuse and exploitation. Over the past several decades the Internet has emerged as a fast and easily accessible medium for people to connect and communicate. While the Internet provides children with a source of support through chat rooms, online communities and social networking sites, just as equally it can expose vulnerable children to predatory and deviant individuals exacerbating the potential for harm. Upholding the Convention in cyberspace is a challenge. The Internet is not owned or regulated by any governing body and accountability is difficult to enforce. This article discusses some of the difficulties of upholding the Convention online and provides recommendations for policy-makers to protect children as they participate in cyberspace.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
- Community and Home Care
- Developmental and Educational Psychology
- Health(social science)