Responds To Web Risks responds to questions posed by CBS News in light of recent crimes involving online predators.

  • Authorities in a number of states are investigating serious crimes -- sexual assaults and murders of teenagers -- in which the criminals allegedly met their victims through MySpace. In light of these investigations, is MySpace a safe place to be for teenagers?

    First and foremost, it's important to note that MySpace holds the safety and privacy of its more than 52 million users of paramount importance and the company continues to engage with parents, law enforcement and safety groups to deepen and enrich our understanding of user safety. Since its inception, MySpace has developed a series of initiatives designed to protect our users against inappropriate conduct and content, including specific measures to protect our younger users. We dedicate a third of our workforce to policing and monitoring our site on a 24 hour, seven day-a-week basis to make sure our Terms of Use are met. While MySpace continues to develop additional measures to enhance site safety, it is important to note that MySpace is a modern communication tool like a cell phone, email or instant messenger and we encourage all members to recognize the public nature of the Internet.

    There are a number of specific procedures and policies in place to ensure users of all ages are having a safe and meaningful experience. These include limiting use of the site to users who are at least 14 years of age and providing special protections to users who are under 16 so that their personal information cannot be accessed by persons they do not know. In addition, MySpace has partnered with, the world's largest online safety and help group to improve the safety of our site. MySpace posts a link to a set of safety tips prepared by WiredSafety on every page of our site.

  • What is MySpace's policy regarding nudity and profanity on profiles?

    MySpace's terms of use agreement specifically prohibits posting any pictures and or content that displays nudity, hate speech and/or obscene content. We review every image hosted by our site – more than 1.5 million every day – using our dedicated customer care team as well as algorithms and search engines to identify and purge inappropriate material. Our users often link to images hosted on other sites and we are working with two of the largest image hosting companies to ensure that they are monitoring the photos posted to their sites and adhering to our best practices. The accounts of users who violate these policies are closed. In addition, we provide mechanisms so our users can report inappropriate content to us. Once we are alerted, we take prompt action that ranges from involving law enforcement officials to deleting a user from the system.