— Posted by Alina Radu, DG INFSO, Project Officer Safer Internet, Workshop organiser at the Digital Agenda Assembly
One out of three youngsters gets connected via their mobile phones and one in four via game consoles, according to EUKidsOnline, a pan-European survey funded by the Safer Internet Programme. 77% of 13-16 year olds and 38% of 9-12 year olds in the EU have a profile on a social networking site. At the same time, the survey shows that half of younger children lack basic safety skills such as knowing how to set privacy settings or block unwanted contacts.
In response to changing patterns of technology used by youngsters, the Commission, through the Digital Agenda for Europe, committed to launch a review of the current self-regulatory agreements it brokered in the field of online child safety (the Safer Social Networking Principles for the EU and the European Framework for safe mobile use by younger teenagers and children) and foster multi-stakeholder dialogue.
At the Digital Agenda Assembly (#daa11eu), the workshop "Every European child safe online" is part of this multi-stakeholder dialogue that aims at creating a collaborative platform where all interested parties can share their views on what they see as new developments and challenges in the field and on how these could be best responded to in order to ensure the empowerment and protection of minors when using new technologies.
Manufacturers of mobile devices and game consoles, Internet service providers, social networking companies, mobile applications and content providers, consumer organisations, researchers and childrens' organisations, youth, parents and teachers were invited to join and participate in discussions. All input received during the workshop is expected to feed into the development of new industry initiatives in self-regulation.
This workshop is expected to support the delivery of action 37 of the Digital Agenda.
At the same time, the EUKidsOnline survey showed that while children in Europe are on average starting to use the Internet at the age of 7 but only one in three 9-12 year olds feel that there are enough "good things for kids" of their age online. This is why the Commission and Safer Internet Centres in 14 countries (Belgium, the Czech Republic, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, The Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Slovenia and Spain) run a competition for the European Award for Best Children's Online Content.
You can have a look at the national nominees who compete for the European Award that will be handed on 17 June, during the coffee break of the workshop "Every European child safe online".
You can follow discussions and share your ideas on Twitter using the #daa11safeonline hashtag!