An analysis of the representation of internet child luring and the fear of cyberspace in four Canadian newspapers

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Due to the popularization of Internet technologies in the last two decades, public attention has been directed to issues surrounding online sexual exploitation of minors in Canadian Newspapers. Specifically, newspaper articles have assisted in shaping public perceptions of the nature and scope of Internet child luring. A mixed quantitative/qualitative content analysis methodology is applied to the study’s four Canadian-based newspapers to examine how Internet child luring is constructed between the 1st of January, 2002 and December 31st, 2010. The study highlights the possible influences Canadian print media might have on the perceptions of parents and legal guardians regarding crime prevention and the dangers associated with Internet use by minors. Canadian print media has been instrumental in constructing the perception of Internet technology and its use by minors as harmful, intrusive, and unavoidable while designating parents and legal guardians as primary watchdogs of their children’s online behaviours.
Internet child luring, Media representation, Crime prevention, Minors, Online sexual exploitation