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Child Location Tracking in the US and the UK: Same Technology, Different Social Implications

Van Den Besselaar, P; Vasalou, A; Oostveen, A; Brown, I; (2014) Child Location Tracking in the US and the UK: Same Technology, Different Social Implications. Surveillance and Society , 12 (4) pp. 581-593. Green open access

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Abstract

Real-time location tracking of individuals has become relatively easy with the widespread availability of commercial wearable devices that use geographical positioning information to provide location-based services. One application of this technology is to allow parents to monitor the location of their children. This paper investigates child location tracking technology in the US and the UK and compares its privacy implications. Although overall the price levels and the technical capabilities are the same, we find that the features of the technology are different depending on the social context. This can be attributed to national regulations and law that shape how a technology can be used. These laws and regulations, influenced by cultural frameworks, values, and morality, differ considerably between the countries. Clarifying the expected impacts of technology on the lives of users and other stakeholders in terms of these contextual factors will help to inform public debate about technical possibilities and societal needs.

Type: Article
Title: Child Location Tracking in the US and the UK: Same Technology, Different Social Implications
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Publisher version: http://ojs.library.queensu.ca/index.php/surveillan...
Language: English
Additional information: © The author(s), 2014 | Licensed to the Surveillance Studies Network under a Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial No Derivatives license.
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education > UCL Institute of Education
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education > UCL Institute of Education > IOE - Culture, Communication and Media
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1542241
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