Children and the internet

Posted on 19th October 2016

Media lecturer contributes to parliamentary inquiry.

Senior Lecturer in Journalism Dr Vera Slavtcheva-Petkova has had written evidence accepted by the British parliamentary committee inquiry on Children and the Internet.

The parliamentary Communications Committee "is conducting an inquiry into children's access to, and use of, the internet. It aims to investigate the risks and as well as the benefits. The Committee will also investigate how children's use of the internet is governed and regulated, examining the roles that parents, schools, media companies and regulators should all play."

Vera's evidence is based on research she has conducted in collaboration with colleagues at the Oxford Internet Institute.

Vera's research emphasizes the importance of schools' work in "teaching media literacy in general and digital literacy in particular from a very young age." Her research argues that "rather than focussing almost exclusively on the potential dangers of internet use, schools should do much more to educate children how to use the internet (and other media) in a positive and educational way, including as a valuable resource on news, current affairs and information about other nations, cultures and ethnicities."

Head of Media Dr Alec Charles said: "The impact upon society of the internet and social media is an essential aspect of our department's media research and teaching. This is a very important area of study and it is very fitting that the value of this research has been recognized by its inclusion in the evidence publications of this important inquiry."

Vera is currently working on book entitled Russia's Liberal Media: Handcuffed but Free, and is also co-authoring Global Journalism: An Introduction to be published next year.