But Think Of The Children… Gambling!

from the evidence-please? dept

It’s good that there’s a group watching out for issues concerning children and technology, but it would be nice, for once, if they could stop with their fear-mongering misleading announcements. Children’s charity NCH in the UK, which is good at getting publicity for their causes, never seems to get questioned at all by the press. This is the group that put out a ridiculously misleading story blaming the internet for child porn and then produced a very carefully worded study to misleadingly suggest that 3G phones were a threat to children. Their latest piece of artwork is a report suggesting that 11-year-olds are gambling online in the UK, but which gives no evidence to support that at all. What they did was convince one 16-year-old girl to sign up for a variety of gambling sites with a debit card and to lie about her age. She apparently got into many of them. From this, they point out that many banks will give out debit cards to people as young as 11, and thus, 11-year-olds can now gamble online. Of course, beyond convincing an underage girl to lie, the group also gives everyone the full list of online casinos where (apparently) 11-year-olds can gamble. Now, they’re completely right that these sites need better age verification measures. However, stories about 11-year-olds gambling online should have a little more factual basis than a 16-year-old told to lie. Update: Even more interesting, tucked in the middle of this BBC report is the small detail that the “research” was done by a company selling age verification systems. Bias? Nah…

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