Feeds

Name that antipiracy weasel, BSA asks kids

Blackbeard the Ferret? Maybe not

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Security for virtualized datacentres

US schoolchildren, already enrolled into classes on the evils of copyright violation next term, are to be invited to name the Business Software Alliance's new mascot.

The BSA explains: "Elementary school students heading back to school in September will be invited to name the 'Play It Safe in Cyber Space' mascot, a 'copyright-crusading' ferret who teaches tech-savvy kids about cyber ethics." To limit the scope for mischief, pre-teens will be limited to voting for one of five ferret pre-approved names (doubtless Weasel, Judas or Piggy will not be on the approved list). The poll will last a month.

The BSA's 'copyright-crusading' ferret will appear in a four-page comic book out in January with a storyline designed to "educate children about the importance of protecting and respecting copyrighted works such as software, music, games and movies". The comic book and companion teacher’s guide will be mailed across the US to fourth grade teachers who subscribe to Weekly Reader and will be available for free download at the Play It Cyber Safe website. The BSA wants teachers to incorporate this material in their lesson plans.

According to the BSA, its cyber ethics curriculum has reached more than 13m kids, parents and teachers since its initial distribution in 2002. Like the Jesuits, the BSA believes in moulding new minds when they are young. Results of a Harris Interactive poll, commissioned by BSA, show that young people aged between eight and 18 "understand the meaning of copyright, yet still illegally download and copy software and other digital materials".

Schoolchildren across the world have enjoyed the adventures of Ratty and Mole in The Wind in the Willows for decades. Perhaps the BSA's ferret is the beginning of a whole new literary eco-system. We look forward to meeting a bulldog that fights against consumer rip-offs in the music biz and an eagle that campaigns for a fair deal for artists, though we fear neither will appear in a comic book approved by the BSA. ®

Related stories

UK's youth boards pirate ship to bootleg island
UK gov moves to bust bootleggers
'Stealing songs is wrong' lessons head for UK schools
Software pirates cost $9.7bn in Europe - BSA

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

More from The Register

next story
Are you a fat boy? Get to university NOW, you PENNILESS SLACKER
Rotund types paid nearly 20% less than people who didn't eat all the pies
Emma Watson should SHUT UP, all this abuse is HER OWN FAULT
... said an anon coward who we really wish hadn't posted on our website
Japan develops robot CHEERLEADERS which RIDE on BALLS
'Will put smiles on faces worldwide', predicts corporate PR chief
Bruges Booze tubes to pump LOVELY BEER underneath city
Belgian booze pumped from underground
Let it go, Steve: Ballmer bans iPads from his LA Clippers b-ball team
Can you imagine the scene? 'Hey guys, it's your new owner – WTF is that on your desk?'
Amazon: Wish in one hand, Twit in the other – see which one fills first
#AmazonWishList A year's supply of Arran scotch, ta
SLOSH! Cops dethrone suspect - by tipping over portaloo with him inside
Talk about raising a stink and soiling your career
Ingredient found in TASTY BEER is GOOD for your BRAIN
You only have to drink 2k litres a day to see the effect...
Oz carrier Tiger Air takes terror alerts to new heights
Don't doodle, it might cost you your flight
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
The next step in data security
With recent increased privacy concerns and computers becoming more powerful, the chance of hackers being able to crack smaller-sized RSA keys increases.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.