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Student Name Instructor Name Course Name 30 October 2011 Online and Responsible Technology often carries a measure of responsibility when it is used. Manufacturers, service providers, and end users all share a portion of this responsibility. The extent of the responsibility borne by each of these parties is debatable, as MySpace learned a few years ago when the company came under fire for a lack of diligence around profiles and sexual predators.
Sullivan discusses the fallout of the seemingly innocuous experiment run by Wired News reporter Kevin Poulsen, in which Poulsen matched registered sex offenders against MySpace profiles and discovered hundreds of matches (116). MySpace’s response was to hire a third party vendor to compare member profiles to registered sex offender rolls and “root out sex criminals from the site” (117). Debate arose, however, regarding the amount of time associated with the action that MySpace took. MySpace identified 7,000 profiles of members who were potentially on the registered sex offender rolls, but this action took several months. MySpace promptly deleted the profiles, but did not notify authorities at the same time (117). Sullivan states that “the presence of 7,000 registered offenders on the site—and the time span required to remove them, raises inevitable questions about MySpace’s ability to keep its neighborhood safe” (119). Conversely, Texas A & M student Kevin Alexander wrote “MySpace Not Responsible for Predators”, an article discussing the experience of a 14-year old girl who met and was allegedly raped by a 19-year old man she befriended on MySpace (119). ...
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