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NBC Dateline and MSNBC Commended by World Observer for Public Service to the Common Good

Internet Dangers to Families and Children Exposed

Pornography and Online "Communities" Place Children at Risk

NBC Dateline Series "To Catch a Predator" Focuses National Attention on a Deadly Serious Threat to American Society



World Observer commends NBC Dateline and MSNBC for airing a series of programs and providing information on the internet concerning a growing national epidemic of children at risk from child sex predators.  The host of this series, Chris Hansen, is particularly commended for his sustained and committed effort to alert the public to the alarming prevalence of internet predators, protect children and their families, and put the predators on notice that their criminal behavior will not be tolerated.  While some organizations, parents, and individuals have addressed the issue of dangers to families and children present on the internet, NBC is the first major media outlet to focus attention on the widespread nature of this serious social problem.  Extensive, pervasive, and shockingly extreme pornography on the internet is not news; the risks of participating in online "communities" and chat rooms is not news. 

But NBC Dateline's series "To Catch a Predator" leads the way in making it abundantly clear that America is not beleaguered by a handful of perverts and a few unfortunate victims.  We are not confronted with a limited number of predators lurking around parks and schools in search of the occasional victim that may be hard to reach due to parental or teacher supervision.  In the past, supervision of children and the fear of being caught, among other factors,  prevented many from acting on deviate and perverse urges to pursue children. 

Now the internet makes it possible for those who would not otherwise engage in this behavior to do so with a sense of privacy and anonymity.  Parents and children may have felt that the dangers of the internet were limited to receiving or viewing unsolicited and unwanted material, not that an actual predator could be in physical proximity. 

NBC Dateline with "To Catch a Predator" will make some of the potential predators realize that they do not enjoy secrecy and they had best control those inclinations to pursue children.  Parents and children will hopefully realize that some aspects of the internet are just as dangerous as "don't go there" zones in their community.  Children are not safe and sound in their bedroom on a computer with a firewall and other software to protect them; the predators are lurking in cyberspace and can find their victims in their physical space. 

Perhaps the most important contribution to public service and the common good made by NBC and MSNBC with their TV and web site coverage of child predators is making the public and hopefully our legislators aware that the "clear and present danger" is not limited in scope.  Again thanks to the internet, the number of potential child predators reaches into the hundreds of thousands and the number of potential victims soars into the millions.   Chris Hansen rightly calls it an epidemic.  America's children need an effective treatment immediately. 


News Items, Program Transcripts, Online Videos, Blogs, Feedback, and Parent Resources on

New Dateline specials: Wednesdays, 9 p.m. on NBC.  Go to  Wednesdays, 9 p.m. on NBC to get an email reminder to watch the next installments of "Predator" on Dateline.

"To Catch a Predator" I:  Outside NYC-area

"To Catch a Predator" II:  The dangers of chatting

'To Catch a Predator' III:  A new investigation 

"To Catch a Predator" IV:  Predator hunt moves to the Heartland (Ohio Investigation Part 1)

Ohio Investigation Part 2

A list of the men featured in this (Ohio) report

Watch as men, trolling for underage teens online, get an unexpected date with Dateline! Next Wednesday (10 May), an all-new investigation in Florida. All-new “To Catch a Predator” episodes air Wednesdays, 9 p.m. on NBC.  During the last segment of Wednesday's report, Dateline featured the upcoming Florida investigation. One man shows up naked, while another... shows up with his 5-year-old son. 

A cyber twilight zone in Ft. Myers, Fla. - Dateline NBC - (transcript of 10 May episode on Florida predators)

Caught on camera, but not surprised (Fla. investigation continued)

For tapes and transcripts:  Viewers can call 1-866-NBC-TAPE for NBC News transcripts and tapes of selected Dateline segments.


Related Stories on

Feedback about this series

Inside Dateline- Predators in big cites and small towns

Chris Hansen's blog page

Most teens say they've met strangers online

Predators in the headlines  | Full section

1,102 sex predators caught in a week

Forget the playgrounds; pedophiles turn to Web - Nightly News with ...

Inside Dateline- MySpace invader - Dateline NBC -

Group gets 100 sex predators arrested

Practical Futurist- The end of online anonymity - The Practical ...

Web prank results in sex crime arrest - Security -

Police probe alleged MySpace-linked sex crimes - Security -

Two arrested on MySpace-linked sex charges - Security -


Inside Dateline- The clarity in the 'predator' report - Dateline NBC


Safety Links on

Why are kids still surfing in the bedroom?

For parents: Tips for kids of different ages

Online safety contracts for parents and kids

What you don't know can hurt your kids

Full section on MySpace safety

Why parents must mind MySpace

MySpace step-by-step guide

Q&A- How to Keep Teens Safe on - Newsweek National News ...

For kids, danger lurks a click away - Parenting -



Download Missing Kids Online Alerts software to stay informed! It's FREE!

National Center for Missing & Exploited Children

National Coalition for the Protection of Children and Families

Perverted-Justice Online Predator Watchdog

Child Seek Network

National Sex Offender Public Registry

Why are kids still surfing in the bedroom?

For parents- Tips for kids of different ages

Online safety contracts for parents and kids

What you don't know can hurt your kids




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