Q: What is the ISTTF?
A: The Internet Safety Technical Task Force is a group of Internet businesses, non-profit organizations, academics and technology companies that have joined together to identify effective tools and technologies to create a safer Internet environment for children and youth..
Q: Why was the Task Force
A: The Internet Safety Technical Task Force was convened in response to an agreement between MySpace and 49 State Attorneys General. The agreement, announced on January 14, 2008, reads, in part:
“MySpace will organize, with support of the Attorneys General, an industry-wide Internet Safety Technical Task Force (“Task Force”) devoted to finding and developing … online safety tools with a focus on finding and developing online identity authentication tools. This Task Force will include Internet businesses, identity authentication experts, non-profit organizations, and technology companies. … The Task Force will establish specific and objective criteria that will be utilized to evaluate existing and new technology safety solutions.”
Q: Who is on the
A: The Task Force includes Internet businesses, identity authentication experts, non-profit organizations, academies and technology companies. The Task Force is chaired by John Palfrey, and co-directed by danah boyd and Dena Sacco, all of the
The Task Force will also include two sub-groups, the Research Advisory Board and the Technology Advisory Board. Membership on these boards was determined by the
Q: Who named the members
of the Task Force?
A: Members of the Task Force were invited to participate by MySpace, pursuant to its agreement with the Attorneys General.
Q: What is the Research
A: The Research Advisory Board (RAB) is chaired by the
Q: What is the Technology
A: The Technology Advisory Board (TAB) is chaired by Laura DeBonis (formerly of Google), and is comprised of twelve members and eight observers representing a cross section of industry expertise and scholarship, including computer scientists, security experts, and technologists. The TAB’s purpose is to examine possible technology solutions to the problems of youth online safety. Through a formal evaluation process, the TAB will consider technologies introduced by the Task Force, those that emerge through the Research Advisory Board, and those introduced by the public. To this end, the TAB recently announced a call for technology submissions from vendors working in this area. The TAB will assess proposed technology solutions in terms of their viability, effectiveness, security, and potential pitfalls in relation to the goals of the Task Force, and will write a report to the Task Force based on their findings. As with the Research Advisory Board, the
Q: What is the scope of
the Task Force’s inquiry?
A: The scope of the Internet Safety Task Force’s inquiry is to consider those technologies that industry and end users can utilize to keep children and youth safe on the Internet. The bulk of the Task Force's attention will be given to issues concerning contact: preventing harmful contact with adults, preventing harmful contact with other minors (including cyber bullying and sexual predation). As time allows, we will also address two content areas: preventing access to inappropriate content and preventing illegal content (such as child pornography). The Task Force will consider youth safety on the Internet as a whole, rather than looking at one particular environment. The solutions to be considered include a broad range of technology tools and services. The Task Force also recognizes the importance of other solutions – such as social norms, law, policy, and market factors – and will situate technology-based solutions within the context of these other types of solutions.
Q: What will the Task
A: The Task Force is responsible to the Attorneys General for quarterly reports, as well as a Final Report due on December 31, 2008.
Q: How will the
Task Force operate?
A: To undertake its work, the Task Force will hold a series of meetings open only to Task Force members and those they invite to make presentations. In addition, there will be one meeting open to the public to be held in September 2008 at
Q: When will the Task
A: The Task Force is scheduled to hold four meetings throughout the year, as well as a public meeting in September 2008 at
Q: How can I get involved
in the Task Force?
A: For practical reasons membership is currently closed; however, we strongly encourage and appreciate input from stakeholders on all sides of this important issue, including the technology industry, law enforcement, youth advocates, educators and families.
public participation in the problem-solving work of the Task Force, we will
host a public meeting at
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Last updated January 13, 2009