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04 Apr

This crime has been proscribed in various ways since the International Convention for the Suppression of the Traffic in Women and Children, which was agreed in 1921 as a multilateral treaty of the League of Nations that addressed the problem of international trafficking of women and children for nefarious purposes.

The proscribed traffic was international in nature at that time.

A late arrival into the world of social media, I nevertheless embraced it as a kind of escape.

While my husband spent most evenings catching up on the horse racing he'd recorded over the weekend, I began perusing chatrooms – not in pursuit of cybersex necessarily, but initially more for harmless flirtation, a little virtual attention.

I met all sorts of people, from all over the world, older and younger, and each seemingly as desperate for a true connection as I. Should I be blaming my mother, or my – mostly absent – father for feeling that something was eternally missing? I was born to a woman that didn't much want children, and who fell foul to postnatal depression a good couple of decades before the term was even coined.

And for a while at least, it all felt harmless and innocent, and fun. My father leaving didn't help, and for the first six months of my life I was placed with a notional "auntie", a family friend who became my surrogate mother throughout my childhood.

Since chat rooms can be used for anti–social purposes, the type and extent of the information posted in chat room profiles seems likely to be different from that in online profiles for social networking sites, which may be more closely tied to offline identities.

This investigation of information in 324 profiles from two chat rooms for adults found that most users include a picture of themselves on their profile, hence apparently tying themselves to their offline identity.

And I did, pretty much, and I was perfectly fine - until suddenly I wasn't.Soon, I was spending hours in the parallel universe of cyberspace, often through wonderfully wide-awake nights, uninhibited in a way I never could be in reality.I told no one, immersed and isolated in my secret life. In moments of fleeting clarity, I wanted to understand what was happening to me. Was it just my marriage problems, or was there something deeper causing me to behave that way? page=15894 University of Wolverhampton United Kingdom Chris Fullwood is a senior lecturer in the Psychology Department of the University of Wolverhampton, U. and is a member of the Wolverhampton Internet and Technology Society (WITS) research group.University of Wolverhampton United Kingdom Mike Thelwall is Professor of Information Science and leader of the Statistical Cybermetrics Research Group at the University of Wolverhampton, U. He is also visiting fellow of the Amsterdam Virtual Knowledge Studio, a Docent at Åbo Akademi University Department of Information Studies, and a research associate at the Oxford Internet Institute.