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Reinforcing Prevention of Improper Information, Raising the Quality of Academic Networks

Reinforcing Prevention of Improper Information, Raising the Quality of Academic Networks
TANet is a national computer network established in 1990 for teaching and research purposes. Its key objective is to support the teaching and research activities between schools of all levels and research institutions across the nation in an effort to share resources and provide cooperation opportunities. For over a decade, TANet's rapid development has improved the information network environments in primary and secondary schools, boosting the competitiveness of children living in remote areas.

For over a decade, network technology has been progressing rapidly. Today, the infrastructure of TANet has become more complete, with information flowing rapidly and smoothly. Nevertheless, due to the open, convenient, and private nature of the web, it is rife with improper information that pose dangers to the physical and psychological health of minors. Therefore, how to go about reducing the damage sustained by students as a result of coming into contact with improper information has become one of the focal points of supervision of web use.

Minister of Education, Tu Cheng-sheng notes that in order to protect students from being influenced by improper information on the web and cultivate proper web use ethics and conduct amongst them, adequate education is being conducted through campus web environments. MOE hopes to create a web use environment that combines web applications, supervision and high quality service content. Through reinforcing the prevention of improper web information, MOE hopes to raise the quality of TANet's service. As for policy results, Minister Tu says that in the three years since June 2003, the MOE has established a maintenance and operation plan for the system of preventing improper information from TANet's county/city web centers in Northern, Central, and Southern Taiwan. In the future, this mechanism will continue to be upgraded in order to prevent senior high, vocational, junior high, and primary school students from coming into contact with improper information through campus networks.

Minister Tu notes that in order to enforce these measures, MOE has established Rules Governing Connections to TANet's New-Generation Backbone Network. When connecting to TANet, schools shall establish a mechanism to oversee the improper use of campus networks and manage web flow in order to prevent academic resources from being abused. At the same time, to ensure that school children are not influenced by improper information, the MOE has also developed a personal web browser filtering software which will be introduced to primary, secondary schools for them to use at home.

In terms of campus network use in public and private colleges, Minister Tu says that based on the principles of web flow management and reasonable use, MOE has demanded that when applying for connection to TANet at high speed ( 100M bp and over) bandwidths, colleges have to put forth plans to establish a mechanism to oversee improper use of campus networks, to be reviewed and approved by LAN Centers, before connection is permitted.

Minister Tu says that for ISPs that connect to TANet such as HiNet and SeedNet, MOE has established Principles Governing Interconnection between ISPs and TANet. ISPs shall ensure that the various kinds of information that they provide are positive and complete so as to keep improper information from flowing into TANet.

As far as promotional activities for the identification of improper information on the web, Minister Tu notes that MOE has joined forces with public welfare organizations to educate students, teachers, and parents with topics drawn up to promote public awareness of related issues. At the same time, education on the subject has been promoted with events on identifying improper information on the web held periodically. In addition, major portal sites and public welfare groups are encouraged to periodically post lists of quality websites on different subjects. They are also helped to handle, sort, and prevent improper information.

In order to improve the use of campus web resources, cultivate outstanding web information professionals and build a quality information education environment in the future, Minister Tu notes that MOE will pay attention to the balanced development of web infrastructure, the development of application content, and the establishment of a supervision mechanism. From the standpoint of education, the MOE will guide the web use of students. In conjunction with the guidelines for national web development, MOE will publicize and promote the enforcement of intellectual property rights and prevent web crimes from happening.

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