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Online social networks, games can be good for kids on the San Francisco Chronicle reports some positivity about games from a new study sponsored by the MacArthur Foundation: "Rather than wasting their time, children who gab on Facebook or play online games are gaining valuable social skills and learning some technology basics, according to a study released Thursday. The report, sponsored by the MacArthur Foundation, contradicts the idea held by many educators, parents and policymakers that children should be blocked from online social networks and video games like Halo, which allow users in different locations to play together. Instead, children should be encouraged to use the technologies to gain a certain level of digital literacy, the study said. Mizuko Ito, a research scientist in UC Irvine's department of informatics and who led the study, said that children who don't have access to some of today's most popular online diversions risk being social outsiders lacking some of the basic skills necessary to function in the Internet age."
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