danah boyd sez, "Researchers who focus on technology's role in human trafficking and the commercial sexual exploitation of minors teamed up to create a short primer for technologists who are trying to do the right thing. This high-level overview is intended to shed light on some of the most salient misconceptions about human trafficking and provide some key insights that will be useful for anyone who is trying to build tools to intervene. This document is to help those who are trying to create innovative solutions recognize pitfalls that they can address in the design of their systems."
Curbing commercial sexual exploitation of children and promoting the rights and safety of children should be a top priority for all members of society. Yet, all too often, myths and public misunderstandings – particularly about technology’s role in CSEC – and a lack of empirical data about the scope of the problem drive political and legal agendas, however well intentioned. These same myths and misunderstandings have the potential to inadvertently affect how technologists approach the problem. As researchers, we feel it’s important to take an evidence based and data-driven approach toward technological interventions so that they are effective, efficient, and limit the additional harm done to victims. With this goal in mind, we offer a series of key findings that should be a part of any serious discussion about using technology to address CSEC in a networked world. We hope that this information is useful for technologists seeking to build innovative solutions. We would be happy to offer more detailed information and data to any technologist seeking to learn more.