Frequently Asked Questions
Q. What is GetNetWise?
A. GetNetWise is a user-friendly, easy-to-find, online resource that can be found on the most popular entry points to the Internet, as well as on many of the most popular Web sites. GetNetWise is an unprecedented effort by a broad group of companies and associations to aggregate content into four, well-organized and easy-to-use areas:
Q. Why have so many companies and associations joined together to create GetNetWise?
A.In 1999, Industry leaders recognized the need for a central, easy-to-find and use resource available across the Web to provide information and tools to parents. They wanted to ensure that children were able to utilize the Internet in a constructive manner and that their experiences online were both safe and positive. They created GetNetWise -- a campaign to bring together diverse but often uncoordinated consumer education efforts under a strong, unified public message that would encourage users to 'GetNetWise '.
GetNetWise fulfilled its promise to become a ubiquitous source of information on children's online safety. At the same time, however, the world -- and, thus, the Internet -- continued to develop into a more challenging place. The GetNetWise coalition decided that it could apply its collaborative approach to address the concerns of online security, privacy and spam as well as child safety. The particpating organizations worked to bring together a broader set of Industry partners, all of whom lent their expertise to expand the set of resources on GetNetWise. These organization continue to work together towards a safe and secure online world. The participation of so many companies and organizations is what makes GetNetWise the comprehensive, easy-to-find resource that it is today.
Q. Why was GetNetWise created?
A. GetNetWise was created in response to the recognition by the private sector that people raising kids needed information and assistance in guiding children online. The resource evolved from briefings with Hill leaders, and grew out of the 1997 Internet Online Summit: Focus on Children, and the 1998 America Links Up campaign. Industry leaders began exploring the feasibility of creating a collection of digital resources that would be accessible from virtually all entry points to the Internet and that would provide families with information on how to guide their kids online. In 2003, discussions ensued on expanding the resource to address the issues of online privacy, security and spam as well as child safety. The result of these ongoing discussions, considerable research, broad industry cooperation and consultations with some of the nation's leading non-profit groups and independent experts is GetNetWise.
Q. Who should use GetNetWise?
A. GetNetWise is designed to help anyone using the Internet -- everyone concerned with the routine responsibilities of raising children in the digital age, with maintaining the security of our communications and computers, with controlling the amount of personal information shared online and with avoiding spam.
Q. What companies are the organizing partners of GetNetWise?
A. The coalition of companies that first came together to create GetNetWise as organizing partners include: AOL Time Warner, AT&T, Verizon, Bellsouth, Disney Online/Buena Vista Internet Group, Lycos, Inc., WorldCom, Microsoft Corporation, MindSpring Enterprises, Inc., VeriSign, Yahoo! Inc., and Zeeks.com.
They were joined by others in the initiative, including: AltaVista, Ameritech, Association of American Publishers, SurfCOntrol, Dell, IBM Corporation, Information Technology Association of America, Internet Alliance,Internet Content Coalition, Internet Content Rating Association, N2H2, Inc., Net Nanny Software, Inc., Surfwatch Software, United States Chamber of Commerce, United States Internet Council.
These companies are responding to the needs of their customers and other Internet users for assistance in finding the information, tools and resources to educate themselves about the Internet and how to safeguard children, maintain online privacy and security, and reduce spam. The involvement of so many popular Web sites and portals, representing 95 percent of Web traffic, assures that the resource will be easy-to-find for anyone who needs fast, reliable and complete information.
Q. Besides the companies, who else has been involved in creating GetNetWise?
A. GetNetWise was fortunate to have a wide variety of individuals and organizations with broad expertise involved in advising on the creation of the content. These advisors included: Parry Aftab, American Library Association, Center for Democracy and Technology, Center for Media Education, The Children's Partnership, Consortium for School Networking, Cyberangels, Enough is Enough, International Society for Technology in Education, Larry Magid, National Center for Missing & Exploited Children, National Urban League, NetFamilyNews, People for the American Way Foundation, Jean Armour Polly, Progress & Freedom Foundation, Rick White.
Q. Lots of tools and resources already exist online. What makes this one different?
A. Several things distinguish GetNetWise from anything that has been done before. GetNetWise is, of course, a Web site. But it is also a Web-wide resource available across the Net that provides aggregated, integrated and inclusive tips, tools and information for Internet users. It takes much of the work that has gone before and makes it more available, more immediately useful and more complete. In addition, GetNetWise is updated and maintained by the companies, associations and non-profits involved in creating it.
Q. How does a computer user find GetNetWise?
A. From a favorite portal or Web site, look for the distinctive blue-and-white logo. Just click on it to reach the GetNetWise resource. Users who do not see the logo should ask their Web site to get it.
To learn more about GetNetWise, contact GetNetWise Staff.