Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland Coláiste Ríoga na Máinleá in Éirinn

Director of RCSI CyberPsychology Research Centre appointed to government Internet Content Governance Advisory Forum

06 December 2013

Ms Mary Aiken, Director of the RCSI CyberPsychology Research Centre based in the RCSI Institute of Leadership has been appointed to the government Internet Content Governance Advisory Forum.

Mary Aiken Ms Mary Aiken, Director of the RCSI CyberPsychology Research Centre

The Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources, Pat Rabbitte TD, announced the formation of an Internet Content Governance Advisory Group. This specialist working group, consisting of experts in the fields of child safety and online behaviour as well as technical and industry experts, will consider the emerging issues in the area of online content and its general impact on the lives of children and young people.

This Advisory Group will take submissions from the public and interested groups, and will produce a report for the Minister by the end of May 2014. The group will cover a number of issues arising for society. Specifically, it will deal with bullying and harassment online and issues around age inappropriate viewing of content. Minister Rabbitte stressed that "Fundamental to their work is the question of striking an appropriate balance in policy terms that ensures the protection of children and young people but does not limit their opportunities and rights online".

The Advisory Group, which will be chaired by Dr Brian O'Neill of the Dublin Institute of Technology, will have regard to international best practice, including recent European Commission Reports and Council Conclusions in this area, and will also be asked to comment specifically on the recent report of the Joint Oireachtas Committee titled ‘Addressing the Growth of Social Media and tackling Cyberbullying'. Other members of the group include Director of the UCD Centre for Cyber Security, CEO of the National Parents Council Aine Lynch, UPC's head of regulatory and public policy Kate O'Sullivan and telecoms law barrister Ronan Lupton.

The Group will be asked to produce specific recommendations on the appropriateness of existing regulatory and legislative frameworks around electronic communications, internet governance and the sharing of material online and as to the most appropriate relationship should be between ISPs, online service providers, the State and citizens in relation to access to legal material and bullying and harassment online.

Further details and terms of reference: