This is a community for fans of the CBS series "Survivor" (or those who just like to yammer about it!)
Since we've had some problems with people posting in-show details before the show has aired in the western time zones, I guess I need to spell this out more explicitly...
On show nights, if you're going to be posting anything from the show that could even potentially spoil the show for people from time zones that haven't seen it yet, USE LJ-CUT! Moderation will be in effect from just before the show airs in the US Eastern Time Zone until sometime after it has finished airing in the Alaskan and Hawaiian time zones (2-3 hours later than Pacific time zone, depending on DST).
And whether on show nights or not, if you make a post that contains information that could be considered a "spoiler", PLEASE USE LJ-CUT!
It's easy to use...
Just plop the following code in front of whatever spoilerish text you may have, and it will be tucked safely away inside your post so that only those who choose to click the generated link will be reading it...
<lj-cut text="Caution, possible spoilers inside!"> Simple, eh? :)
If you happen to be in this community and underage (Under age 18), please read this very carefully. It is for your benefit and knowledge is power.
Millions of teenagers go online every day, and most are safe. The way to stay safer is to understand the dangers and follow some simple rules to help you steer clear of trouble. By following these rules you’ll minimize the risks and have more fun.
ON THE WEB
When you visit web sites you can read newspapers, tour museums, check out libraries, visit distant lands, play games, look at pictures, shop, or do research to help you with your homework. There are millions of web sites on just about every subject imaginable.
Some web sites are awesome, others are boring, and some contain so-called “adult” images and other material that can be dangerous for teens. Others are demeaning, racist, sexist, and violent or contain false information. Some of these sites contain stuff that can make people feel badly or even hurt people. If you end up in any of these areas, immediately leave by clicking on the Home icon, going to another site, or shutting down your browser.
Some web sites ask for information about you. The site may ask for your name, your mailing address, your E-mail address, and other information before letting you in. It may ask you to provide information in exchange for sending you a gift or entering your name in a contest. Never enter any information about yourself without first checking with your parents or guardians.
When you enter information on a web site or any place on the Internet, you’re giving up some of your privacy. Your name may wind up in some database, probably to be used to sell you something now or later. Or it may be used to try to harm or take advantage of you.
Just because a web site seems to be OK doesn’t mean it necessarily is what it seems to be. Anyone — including creeps and criminals — can set up their own web site.
If you download anything from a web site, be extra careful. Some web sites ask your permission to download a program or “plug-in.” In some cases these programs can be used to display annoying advertising on your computer. Even worse, they can invade your privacy by tracking what you’re doing online. They can also plant viruses or increase your risk of a “hacker attack.” Don’t download anything unless you’re certain it is from a trustworthy source.
Some teenagers have their own web sites or post information on web sites run by the school they go to or an organization they belong to. That’s terrific, but if you do post something on the web, be sure to never include your home address, telephone number, school name, or photograph. If you do want people to be able to contact you online, just give a nondescript E-mail address, but make sure you have your parents’ or guardians’ permission first.
Chatrooms let you have a conversation with people around the block or around the world. It’s like being on a party line, only you type instead of talk. Everyone in the “chatroom” can see everything you type.
Types of chatrooms tend to be different. Some chatrooms are just open conversations where everyone has an equal role. Some rooms are moderated where a “speaker” leads the chat and tries to keep everything in order. Some rooms have chaperons or monitors who try to make sure things don’t get out of hand and can kick people out of the room if they don’t behave. Even so, in some of these rooms what you type is seen right away by everyone. And the monitor can’t prevent you from going off to a private chat area with a person who may want to hurt you or type information that may put you in danger.
A chatroom is probably the most dangerous area on the Internet. You never know who is in one, so never type anything you wouldn’t say in public.
It’s not uncommon for people to meet in chatrooms. You enter a room; start chatting with someone; and, before you know it, you’re having a conversation. That relationship may turn out OK, but there are some not-so-happy stories. Chatrooms are sometimes used by people to take advantage of others. To put it bluntly, chatrooms — especially those used by teenagers — are sometimes also used by child molesters to find victims. Adults or even older teens seeking to exploit younger people don’t necessarily tell the truth about who they are. Even teens your own age may try to hurt you. You have the right to remain in control of your own experiences. You don’t have to accept inappropriate behavior from anyone.
You may meet people in a room who seem to have a lot in common with you. They may be friendly and good listeners too. If the dialog remains strictly online, that may be OK. Just be careful not to give out any personal information.
You may want to get together with someone you meet in a chatroom, but remember – people are not always who they seem to be.
Never give out personal information and never arrange a face-to-face meeting with someone you first “meet” in a chatroom unless your parents or guardians have said it’s OK. Even then you need to follow the precautions in “Do Not Meet in Person.”
Stay away from chatrooms that get into subjects associated with sex or cults or groups that do potentially dangerous things. It may seem interesting or fun, but some people may take you seriously or try to convince you to do something you don’t want to do. Be particularly suspicious of anyone who tries to turn you against your parents, guardians, teachers, or friends.
On some services and web sites you can enter into a private chat area. Once there you can arrange to meet people. In some cases those rooms are truly private, but in other cases they may be listed in a directory of rooms. If so, there is nothing to stop others from entering those rooms. So be extra careful in these rooms, or avoid them altogether.
A smart way to avoid harassment in a chatroom is to choose a name that doesn’t let people know if you’re a girl or guy. Just make sure the name doesn’t let anyone know anything about you or mean something that may encourage others to bother you.
Instant messaging (IM) is an easy way to stay in touch without having to wait for an E-mail response. You type a message and click “send.” That message instantly appears on another person’s screen wherever he or she happens to be. You can exchange instant messages on computers and cell phones or between computers and cell phones or any other Internet-connected devices.
As great as it is, IM can be dangerous. Like chatrooms, you need to be careful about whom you IM with and what you type. Never give out any personal information in an instant message unless you are 100 percent sure of who is receiving the IM and your parents or guardians have given you permission to do so. Some instant message services make it possible to exchange messages with several people at once — just like a chatroom. So make sure you know everyone on your IM list.
Some instant messaging software can be used to send your picture — in real time — along with your words. Be careful about your privacy and protecting it. Remember, don’t send anyone your photograph online.
Some services encourage you to post a “profile” with information such as your age, sex, hobbies, and interests. These profiles can help you meet similar people, but they can also make you the subject of harassment, even if you don’t post your name and address or other information. If you don’t have a public profile, you’ll be safer and avoid a lot of hassles.
Be sure you know who is receiving the IMs you send. Even if you do know the recipients, anything you type can be forwarded to other people. There is no way to “take back” something once you send it. Be careful about using video or digital cameras and sending images of yourself during an IM session. Remember, you don’t have to respond to any messages especially if they are rude, annoying, or make you feel uncomfortable.
E-mail is just like regular mail. In this case you write to someone electronically, and the person can respond to your message electronically.
People and companies use E-mail to send messages to thousands of people at a time, encouraging them to buy something or visit a web site. The process, known as “spamming,” can be intrusive and annoying. Some use spamming to try to entice people to visit sexually explicit web sites.
Each E-mail message you send and receive contains a return address. Many people don’t realize the return address can be fake. So, just because you get a message from “firstname.lastname@example.org” doesn’t mean it’s really from grandma. It may really be from email@example.com.
E-mail also contains a “header.” Headers provide more information about who sent the message and where it came from. Understanding the header information can be difficult, but if you ever receive an E-mail message that doesn’t make sense; is threatening; or contains things that make you feel scared, uncomfortable, or confused, you should report it to your Internet service provider and ask them to investigate where it came from. You can easily find that address on the service’s main web page (www.servicename.com). When in doubt report the message to firstname.lastname@example.org (substitute the name of your service for “servicename.”)
If you think any information you receive is illegal, you should report it to the CyberTipline® at www.cybertipline.com or call 1-800-843-5678. Illegal material includes threats to your life or safety, threats to others, pornographic images of children, and evidence of other crimes. NCMEC will refer this report to the appropriate law-enforcement agency.
Be careful about replying to E-mail from people you don’t know. Remember, the sender may not be who he or she seems to be. By replying you are verifying a valid E-mail address to the sender, and that information can be used to encourage a person who may send inappropriate messages or put you on even more E-mail lists. Never send a photograph of yourself or any personal information to someone you don’t know.
E-mail can easily be copied and forwarded to others. So if you do send personal information to friends, be sure they will respect your privacy.
Peer-to-Peer (P2P) systems let you exchange files without a web site or other centralized system. The most famous of these services are used to share music files. There are plenty of other P2P systems. Some allow you to exchange other types of files including video, photographs, text documents, and software.
Aside from the legal and ethical issues regarding the unauthorized sharing of copyrighted material, there are some serious safety issues regarding these services. Some of the downloaded files — including photographs and videos — may be upsetting or harmful. It’s also a popular way for child molesters to exchange illegal images of children.
P2P file-sharing systems encourage users who download files to upload them as well. This may turn your PC into a server that shares your files, which can place you in legal trouble or possibly allow others to gain access to personal stuff on your computer. It’s like giving someone you don’t know the opportunity to know everything about you. It can also cause problems for other computers if you’re on a business, home, or school network.
Another problem with file-sharing services is the software used to access them can sometimes come with unwelcome extra “features” such as “spy ware” programs that can invade your privacy and display annoying advertising.
If you use a file-sharing service, be careful about what “permissions” you give when you set it up. Avoid sharing your own files and say no to any offers to install extra software. Even then, there is no guarantee you will not experience problems as a result of having the software on your computer.
Newsgroups, sometimes called bulletin boards or forums, are places where you can read and post messages or download or upload files. Unlike chatrooms, newsgroups are not live or “real time.” If you post a message it remains on the newsgroup for people to look at later. In newsgroups you can also post files including computer programs, illustrations, pictures, and stories.
There are newsgroups on almost every possible subject. Normally they are used as ways to get questions answered and share information about hobbies, musical groups, or any other subject of interest. Unfortunately, newsgroups, like other areas of the Internet, have risks.
The biggest risk is in revealing information about yourself. Whenever you post, in most cases, your words are available for anyone to see, even if you are responding to a particular individual’s posting. Remember the basic rules, and never reveal identifying information about yourself.
And posting something usually makes your E-mail address available to the public. Thus, even if you don’t say anything personal, your address will be available for people who may send you “junk” or inappropriate E-mails.
Some newsgroups contain sexually explicit illustrations, photographs, and stories. Some of this material may be illegal especially if it contains images of people who are younger than the age of 18 or certain other material that has been defined as “obscene.” This can be upsetting and uncomfortable to view. It should be avoided
Recent incidents involving Internet crimes against children have been prominent in the media. In some incidents, the crimes have involved suspects and victims who met each other on social networking or blogging sites such as MySpace, Friendster, Xanga, and Facebook.
Blogs and social networking sites have recently exploded in popularity. The number of visitors to MySpace went from 4.9 million in 20051 to currently over 67 million.2 Like most new technological developments, this brings both positive and negative implications.
The majority of the activity on these sites is legal and can be positive. Young people who are curious connect with friends and seek like-minded individuals. However, many teens are not aware they are putting themselves in danger by giving out too much personal information and communicating with people they’ve only met online.
The unprecedented amount of personal information available on blogs and social networking sites makes them a perfect place for people who would harm children to identify their victims and gain their trust. This trust can be used to lure teens into a false sense of security, making them vulnerable to “grooming” and enticement to meet in person, which could have very serious consequences.
Other dangers include exposure to inappropriate content, cyberbullying, or identity theft.
Teens are often not aware that their words — which may have been intended for a small audience — sometimes find their way to a larger one, especially if they are controversial. Some students who have posted threatening words against their school or classmates have attracted the attention of law enforcement, while those who have posted inappropriate comments about school personnel have also been disciplined. Some universities and employers are even reviewing online postings when considering potential candidates.
Never post your personal information, such as cell phone number, address, or the name of your school, or school team.
Be aware that information you give out in blogs could also put you at risk of victimization. People looking to harm you could use the information you post to gain your trust. They can also deceive you by pretending they know you.
Never give out your password to anyone other than your parent or guardian.
Only add people as friends to your site if you know them in real life.
Never meet in person with anyone you first “met” on a social networking site. Some people may not be who they say they are.
Think before posting your photos. Personal photos should not have revealing information, such as school names or locations. Look at the backgrounds of the pictures to make sure you are not giving out any identifying information without realizing it. The name of a mall, the license plate of your car, signs, or the name of your sports team on your jersey or clothing all contain information that can give your location away.
Never respond to harassing or rude comments posted on your profile. Delete any unwanted messages or friends who continuously leave inappropriate comments. Report these comments to the networking site if they violate that site’s terms of service.
Check the privacy settings of the social networking sites that you use:
Set it so that people can only be added as your friend if you approve it.
Set it so that people can only view your profile if you have approved them as a friend.
Remember that posting information about your friends could put them at risk. Protect your friends by not posting any names, passwords, ages, phone numbers, school names, or locations. Refrain from making or posting plans and activities on your site.
Consider going through your blog and profile and removing information that could put you at risk. Remember, anyone has access to your blog and profile, not just people you know.