Internet on kids' phones worries parents

April 11, 2011 at 6:30 PM
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LONDON, April 11 (UPI) -- Parents' efforts to monitor their children's Internet use are hampered by smartphones offering quicker online access than many computers, a British study says.

A study commissioned by U.K Children's Minister Sarah Teather found that parents who want their children to have a mobile phone for safety and social reasons are discovering they are left powerless to stop access to inappropriate Internet sites including pornography, The Daily Telegraph reported Sunday.

Parents also say they're concerned that Internet-enabled cellphones expose their children to direct and inappropriate advertising.

The review, conducted by Mothers' Union, a Christian charity, found that nine out of 10 parents think children are growing up too fast because of increasing sexualization and commercial pressures, mainly from the Internet and television.

"Parents are telling us in no uncertain terms that they are worried about the pressures on children to grow up too quickly," Mothers' Union chief executive Reg Baily said. "It is clear that their concerns have not been created out of a moral panic but from their everyday experience."

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