Title: *Special Guest* Peter Cummings
Time: 09/02/2009 09:30 PM EDT
Episode Notes: Please join us SEPT 2ND, as we here at American's Reality Check (ARC) welcome Special Guest Peter Cummings. Peter E. Cumming is an Associate Professor of Children's Literature and Culture in the Department of Humanities at York University, Toronto, Canada. Below is information from Peter's faculty Website (www.yorku.ca/laps/) in relation to a conference paper he presented about teen "sexting" and the response it has generated. Conference Paper About Teen "Sexting" (May 26, 2009)
On May 26, 2009, as part of a panel on Youth, Sexuality, and Technology, a joint session by the Association for Research in Cultures of Young People (ARCYP) and the Association of Canadian College and University Teachers of English (ACCUTE), at the 78th Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences at Carleton University in Ottawa, I delivered a paper, "Children's Rights, Children's Voices, Children's Technology, Children's Sexuality." The paper has received considerable legitimate media attention, but it has also "gone viral" around the Internet and so around the world. Unfortunately, in doing so, many of my ideas have been taken out of context and misrepresented .
A conference paper, in my opinion, is a "test drive" of ideas, an opportunity to encourage public discussion, debate, and even disagreement. It is in that spirit I presented this paper. While I have met many wonderful, caring, thoughtful people from various walks of life--lawyers and workers in children's justice and rights, law enforcement officers, social networking workers, activists working on behalf of children--through the rapid spreading of my arguments through various media (newspapers, radio, and television) and the Internet, selective readings of parts of my conference paper have led to violent and abusive reactions from some quarters. This has ranged from a questioning of my motivations to ridiculing of the name my parents gave me to personal attacks. Rather than engage in civil discourse, some parties have chosen to make public and private ad hominem attacks.
For people interested in vital issues related to youth, sexuality, and technology, I am making available here the complete conference paper as presented in Ottawa--so that people can respond based on more complete knowledge than is available in press releases, interviews, and wire copy. Although I prefaced my presentation by indicating that "children's voices" were not in the presentation as I had originally planned and hoped, the written copy of the paper below is a full and accurate reflection of the presentation I made.
All I would ask of anyone downloading this paper is that they leave it complete, including my name, and that they link to the article here if wanting to refer the article to others. (I would like, for example, to post a complete bibliography with the paper as soon as possible.) Download "Children's Rights, Children's Technology, Children's Sexuality."
"The mood and temper of the public in regard to the treatment of crime and criminals is one of the most unfailing tests of a civilization. We must have a desire to rehabilitate into the world of industry, all those who have paid their dues in the hard coinage of punishment." - Winston Churchill (United States Constitution)
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