Allways nice when a voice of sense gets in first to give the debate a sensible direction!
Hmmm...I had open access to the internet on a private computer when I was much younger. However, apart from some incredibly crafty searching to find topless pics of Geri Halliwell I don't beleive anything worse occurred. Why did it have to be crafty searching? Coz i knew my Dad couold axctively monitor all of my usage. (You try finding topless pics while avoiding terms or sights which include 'nude', 'topless' or 'adult'. Heh. Wonderful lessons in search engines that)
I now several families with young children (well...youngish) and their computer access is through as computer in the lounge. Easy to moinitor, but not in an overly direct way - hey, it can even be a conversation starter between parent and child! i really don't understand parents who slavishly provide their childrens technical whims without any form or copntrol. The car metaphor is perfect.
Oh, btw... to however said 'How could i ever stop my child owning a webcam' or words to that effect....they don't tend to be useful without a computer to go with it!
PS...All my experiences with hardcore porn at that age was from school computers...or the school environment anyhoo. And my school really did try to stop this happening...but couldnt 100% of the time.