When a minor visits the forum

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06 Dec 2016 14:37 #267410 by Avalon
I don't think this system has failed at all, and I think you do a good job Roz. If anything, I just wanted to bring forward the importance of why the rules are the way they are right now and should remain that way. I'm concerned about what might happen if we just start removing current rules, because I think the rules as they are in place are good.

No, we can't protect the kids everywhere on the internet, but that's no reason for us to not at least extend that protection to them here. I say that from having been raised by a cop; I say that from having worked in a Cyber division while I was active duty for 6 years. What we have now is a good, solid, working system, and I really do worry about what might happen if we decide to start removing safeguards, purely because of the philosophy of "It's the internet; we can't protect them from everything."

I can see the argument for allowing kids to say they're kids (we can direct them in the right direction), and I can see the argument for not allowing kids to say they're kids (it draws undue attention to them). Maybe that needs discussing, maybe it doesn't.

But no, Roz. You haven't failed. You do an amazing job with the kids :laugh:

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06 Dec 2016 15:18 #267414 by Leah Starspectre
Would it be possible to maybe have a special "Youth Member" rank? That way, the forum at large knows that the member is a minor and can keep an eye out for unsafe behaviour and can temper their own behaviour accordingly.
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06 Dec 2016 15:36 #267419 by Kohadre

Leah Starspectre wrote: Would it be possible to maybe have a special "Youth Member" rank? That way, the forum at large knows that the member is a minor and can keep an eye out for unsafe behaviour and can temper their own behaviour accordingly.


I would think something like this would just make an easier target for the creeps that search out youth members to begin with. Pedo's aren't going to follow forum rules concerning interactions with minors, much less common law.

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06 Dec 2016 15:38 #267420 by Angelus
I think the point made about how this is a church and that this forum calls for a touch of decorum is a good one. If behavior has to be changed for a minor, then that behavior simply has to be changed, whether or not a minor is present.

I joined this forum 8+ years ago when I was a kid, things turned out fine.

Just be respectful and be mindful of the fact that this is the internet and you don't really know who you're speaking with a lot of the time.

Even if some minors don't identify themselves, I think decorum and common sense when makings posts - or responding to them - is generally sufficient for protecting minors.

Now let's entertain the idea that there may indeed be predatory characters here...isn't a badge identifying posters as minors tantamount to advertising that fact?

Minor or not, if you're being harassed, report it. If you see it happening to someone else, report it.

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06 Dec 2016 15:40 #267421 by Leah Starspectre
Propriety aside, as a registered non-profit, don't we have some kind of legal obligation to keep a close eye on minors, though?

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06 Dec 2016 15:48 #267424 by Angelus
Aren't we already doing something about it? Members under 18 have to register and give parental consent...I had to. We have moderators and Youth Officers, a dedicated Youth Forum. If dedicated Youth Officers are informed of their age and keeping an eye on things, which they are, then aren't we doing enough?

If someone lies about their age or their intentions, we can't do much to counter that.

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06 Dec 2016 15:54 - 06 Dec 2016 15:55 #267426 by Avalon
That's not something I could answer specifically, but I don't think painting a target on them via a special membership badge is a good idea either. I've personally never seen the current rules as anything more than a "We're keeping an eye out for you"... certainly not as an exclusionary method, definitely not to draw attention to them.

The system as it is is designed to keep a good idea on the kids, and I think it works the way it's supposed to. At best I would say we should review whether or not it's kosher for them to announce that their a minor (not their age, but just "I'm a minor"), because there are valid arguments either way. I've seen cases where it's not so much of a good idea (my previous mention of societally engrained adult biases against children), but cases where it's been a brilliant idea (new adult members talking in ways that could be potentially extremely bad with minor members, but only because they didn't realize the minor was in fact a minor).

I'm not entirely certain anything even needs to be changed (aside, perhaps, making the Youth FAQ a bit more visible again...).

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Last edit: 06 Dec 2016 15:55 by Avalon.

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06 Dec 2016 15:55 #267427 by Leah Starspectre
I was under the impression from the existence of this thread that something wasn't enough, or rules weren't being properly followed.

The protection of minors is the responsibility of a whole community, not just a dedicated few. The Youth Officer's specialize in it, and moderate/support the dedicated area for minors, but minors participate in the regular forum, too. Wouldn't it be all of our business to do what we can to ensure it's as safe as possible (within reason, of course).
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06 Dec 2016 16:00 #267429 by Avalon
Last question first: Yes of course. And I think that's what we do.

First question last: I think the thread started out as a reminder of "please make sure you're keeping an eye out for the kids". It's definitely turned into a discussion on the rules though! lmao

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06 Dec 2016 16:01 #267430 by Kohadre
As has been otherwise stated in the thread, and could due use to be stated again.

We already have an existing set of rules and procedures in place to protect minors against possible transgression by members of the forum who may not have their best interest in mind, or be otherwise predatory.

If the minors who come here choose not to follow those rules and policies, even after being informed of them and instructed on what rights and permissions they have here, there is little more we can do for them. The only other option (I can see) is to forbid minors presence on TOTJO entirely, in which case there will STILL be minors who intentionally lie about their age in order to register an account and participate here.

Kids intentionally do things wrong, because they want something and god forbid if there are rules in place to prevent them from getting it. That's why through the process of growing up, they are disciplined in order to cultivate a sense of maturity and responsibility.

Just as is the case with society in general. We have laws that prohibit theft, murder, bribery, trespassing, immoral acts, among other unsavory elements of the human condition. Despite these laws being clearly established and widely known by the general population, there are still and will always be a percentage of the population who intentionally breaks these laws in the pursuit of personal gain.

So unless we plan on forming a TOTJO branded justice force, I don't see what more we can do, or better yet, should have to do to protect minors who purposely ignore the existing rules of the forum.

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