Sunday, August 31, 2008

[The Chosun Ilbo, August 4 2008] Teaching Online Manners Early Is a Wise Move

The Ministry of Education, Science and Technology has decided to start teaching Internet etiquette and ethics starting in the second grade. They now begin in the fourth grade. And an elementary school text on the Internet will be expanded to 62 pages by 2010, from the present seven.

There is probably no country that is experiencing the negative side of the Internet quite as we are. Most of all, the Internet has become an open market for the dissemination and amplification of groundless rumors. In this nation, a scurrilous rumor started by a jobless person with aspirations of grandeur that a female college student was beaten to death by riot police motivates a large group of people to take out an ad on the front page of a daily newspaper calling for witnesses. This phenomenon cannot be explained just by saying that Korea has one of the highest per-capita Internet use rates and the highest rate of high-speed Internet connections in the world.

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