Digital Agenda for Europe
A Europe 2020 Initiative

Making the internet a better place for kids

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A review of progress since we launched a coalition to coordinate action on this point.
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- Posted by Robert Madelin, Director General of DG Communications Networks, Content and Technology

I have enjoyed chairing on 11.07.2012 a full day's discussion with a broad range of stakeholders. We have reviewed progress since Neelie launched with key CEOs a coalition to deliver urgent coordinated action on this point.

There were 5 key action points:

  1. Simple and robust reporting tools: easy-to-find and recognisable features on all devices to enable effective reporting and responses to content and contacts that seem harmful to kids;
  2. Age-appropriate privacy settings: settings which take account of the needs of different age groups (such settings determine how widely available a user's information is; for example whether contact details or photos are available only to close contacts rather than to the general public);
  3. Wider use of content classification: to develop a generally valid approach to age-rating, which could be used across sectors and provide parents with understandable age categories;
  4. Wider availability and use of parental control: user-friendly tools actively promoted to achieve the widest possible take-up;
  5. Effective takedown of child abuse material: to improve cooperation with law enforcement and hotlines, to take proactive steps to remove child sexual abuse material from the internet.

We have made pretty good progress in multi-stakeholder working groups in the last few months. Progress does not mean success, and in some areas (notably content classification and to my surprise the take-down of Child Abuse Material ) we need to work harder. But I am confident that CEOs will by year-end have some new "best practice" tools that can be used to improve the younger EU citizen's Internet experience, and build the trust of kids and grown-ups alike in the growing possibilities of our online world.

 

A report on progress towards delivering the 5 actions and a report of the meeting on 11.07.2012 will be available online on 19th July on the following site: http://ec.europa.eu/information_society/activities/sip/self_reg/index_en.htm

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