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He opened the attic door and saw an ugly, green face with HUGE TEETH.
“Who are you?” he cried. “And what do you want?”
“I am Bumburumbum and I am going to eat you!”

…while the scourge of excessive political correctness must be opposed, common sense cuts both ways.

Even a cursory visit to a toy shop shows that toys are not simply organised in a reasonable fashion to appeal to boys and girls. They are so aggressively differentiated that it amounts to a form of gender fascism.

The entire girls’ area will be almost exclusively pink, and almost exclusively concerned with a) looking like a princess-whore and b) looking after a baby and a home. The boys’ section, meanwhile, will include the action toys, the science toys, and all of the miscellaneous toys.

Does “common sense” really dictate that this is right?

This is a relatively new development, driven by the greed of modern toy manufacturers and their desire to increase profits by creating micro-demographics amongst the young. It is part of the relentless commercialisation and sexualisation of childhood, particularly girlhood, which lies at the root of many of society’s concerns.

http://marketplace.org/sites/default/iframes/learningcurve/studentdatainfographic.html

“We have five orders of magnitude more data about you than Google has,” he says in the video. “We literally have more data about our students than any company has about anybody else about anything, and it’s not even close.” Five orders of magnitude more data than Google is a whole lot of data. The promise is that all that data can be used to tailor lessons to individual kids, to their strengths and weaknesses. They will become better learners, and that will lead to higher grades and better graduation rates. Ferreira imagines a day when “you tell us what you had for breakfast every morning at the beginning of the semester, by the end of the semester, we should be able to tell you what you had for breakfast. Because you always did better on the days you had scrambled eggs.” (via A day in the life of a data mined kid | Marketplace.org)

Policy makers rely on high quality research to underpin evidence-based governance decisions. But just how this evidence is to be obtained – the research agenda of key concepts and questions, the quality or ethical requirements for methods, the challenges of implementation, evaluation and interpretation – all of this is rarely discussed publicly between researchers and research users. Such matters are particularly important in relation to children’s rights in a global, digital age, with a host of associated practical, ethical and political issues attached.

Facebook has over ten million user accounts in Australia – it has a presence in the lives and lounge rooms and bedrooms of Australian adults and children as substantial as that of traditional media such as television and newspapers. “Yet it is clear that Facebook is less responsive to Australian police, regulators and law than traditional media outlets. Many parents, teachers and even police around Australia have told us of their concerns that it is difficult to find a person to speak to at Facebook, and often difficult to get objectionable material taken down speedily. Our consultations lead us to the view that the community expects more. “It is hard to avoid the conclusion that social media outlets like Facebook have undergone explosive growth in user numbers but have not yet adopted the standards of corporate social responsibility which longer-established media and communications companies meet – based on such indicators as the number of employees who are dedicated to engaging with law enforcement agencies or ensuring that content does not breach laws governing defamation and other matters.