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Weekly briefing: 2-9 November 2018

Home secretary calls for investigation into online ads and child exploitation

Home secretary Sajid Javid has asked the anti-abuse charity Internet Watch Foundation to launch an investigation into how online advertising is contributing to sexual exploitation of children on the internet. The charity has been asked to determine the scale of the problem and recommend how the government should respond to combat it, according to The Guardian.

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Children "datafied" from birth according to children's commissioner

The Children’s Commissioner for England Anne Longfield has published a report which says that children are being “datafied” from birth and calls for more transparency from tech companies about the type of data they collect on children, according to the BBC. The report bases itself on research led by Sonia Livingstone, a professor from the London School of Economics.

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World Wide Web inventor launches 'Magna Carta of the web' to combat online abuse

The inventor of the World Wide Web, Sir Tim Berners-Lee, has launched what he is calling the ‘Magna Carta of the web’ demanding that tech giants are held more accountable for the problems caused by their technology. He said he wanted to eradicate online abuse and combat phenomena such as fake news and political polarisation, according to the Telegraph.

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Tech giants may be forced to accept duty of care to protect children

Tech giants such as Facebook and Google might be forced to accept a duty of care to protect children and young people from online harms, Home Secretary Sajid Javid told The Telegraph. Javid, who has just been addressing tech giants in the US about tackling child sexual exploitation online, said that “good progress” had already been made but that “more needs to be done”.

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New study claims screen time does not impact sleep

A new study from Oxford University suggests that the amount of time children spend on screens does not impact the quality or duration of their sleep, according to the BBC. It concluded that the correlation between screen time and sleep was “extremely modest”, contradicting previous research which claimed that excessive screen time was causing children to not get enough rest.

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'Discovering the magic of coding'

The Finnish author Linda Liukas talks to the BBC about her ‘Hello Ruby’ children’s books and how she wants to show children how fun coding and computers can be. Liukas wants to inspire children to pursue careers within coding and software design and founded the organisation Rails Girls in 2010 which focused on equipping girls with coding skills.

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