Youth Pledge for a Better Internet on Safer Internet Day 2020
- BIK Team
In celebration of Safer Internet Day (SID) 2020, a group of Better Internet for Kids (BIK) Youth Ambassadors prepared a Youth Pledge for a Better Internet on how to make the information on the apps and services they use on the internet more age appropriate for children and young people.
After an initial mapping of recent research and youth consultation work carried out by Safer Internet Centres (SICs) in the Insafe network, the BIK Youth Ambassadors – Matej from the Czech Republic, Kathrin from Germany, Charalampos from Greece, Eiman from Ireland, Algirdas from Lithuania, and Sina from Luxembourg – collectively reflected on which priorities should be set in order to ensure that online platforms and services are designed in an age appropriate way that truly meets the developmental needs of children and young people.
Encouraging online platforms and services to meet the information and transparency requirements of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is a key objective in that regard. Every citizen of the EU – including children – has the right to obtain information about what happens to their personal data "in a concise, transparent, intelligible and easily accessible form, using clear and plain language". Article 12 of the GDPR emphasises that this should be particularly the case for information addressed specifically to a child. Moreover, Article 12 of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) states that, in order to come up with truly informative, effective and appealing privacy or data policies, children should be involved in the information design and evaluation processes.
Therefore, the BIK Youth Ambassadors have been working a Youth Pledge for a Better Internet, which they presented on Tuesday, 11 February 2020, at a high-level SID meeting in the European Commission involving members of the Alliance to better protect minors online. The companies represented were Deutsche Telekom, Disney, Facebook, Google, Lego, Liberty Global, RTL, Samsung, Snap, Sulake, and Twitter. Industry associations were also present: ICT Coalition and Toy Industries of Europe. Civil society was represented by COFACE-Families Europe. The BIK Youth Ambassadors started their session - hosted by June Lowery-Kingston and Claire Bury from the European Commission's Directorate-General Communications Network, Content and Technology (DG CONNECT) - with an interactive exercise involving the entire audience, aiming to highlight some of the issues and concerns everyone - children and adults alike - encounters on the internet.
They then introduced their Youth Pledge for a Better Internet to the audience, making several suggestions to companies to help them make their online platforms and services' privacy policies more appropriate to children and young people. Indeed, recent studies have shown that one needs, on average, a university degree to properly comprehend the privacy policies of social media, websites and apps. The BIK Youth Ambassadors came up with several concrete ideas in order to solve this problem, such as simplifying the language employed, using infographics, providing users with an incentive to read the privacy policies, and more. The presentation was followed by a moment of exchange during which the BIK Youth Ambassadors challenged the industry representatives on their policies and practices and on how these could be improved.
In an ongoing dialogue with industry, the BIK Youth Ambassadors will continue with this line of work throughout 2020. In the spring of 2020, they will participate in a co-design workshop in Brussels where they will exchange ideas and best practices. The companies involved can then reflect on these discussions internally regarding the age-appropriateness of the policies they have in place. The BIK Youth Ambassadors will then, in November 2020, present the results of their activities at the Safer Internet Forum (SIF).
- Kathrin Morasch, BIK Youth Ambassador
In February 2020, Better Internet for Kids (BIK) Youth Ambassador Kathrin Morasch participated in Safer Internet Day (SID) celebrations at the European Commission (EC) to introduce the Youth Pledge for a Better Internet, along with five fellow youth panellists. Below, she looks back on her experience.
- Matěj Bednář, BIK Youth Ambassador
In February 2020, on the occasion of Safer Internet Day (SID), a group of Better Internet for Kids (BIK) Youth Ambassadors prepared a Youth Pledge for a Better Internet on how to make the information on the apps and services they use on the internet more age appropriate for children and young people, and presented it to a panel of industry representatives at the European Commission. Matěj, BIK Youth Ambassador from Czechia, reflects on his experience below.
- Safer Internet Centre Fiji, the Fiji Safer Internet Day Committee
For the very first time, Safer Internet Centre Fiji hosted the 17th edition of Safer Internet Day (SID) on Tuesday, 11 February 2020, together with over 170 countries across the globe.
- Belgian Safer Internet Centre
On Tuesday, 11 February 2020, the world celebrated Safer Internet Day (SID) with the theme "Together for a better internet!". Belgian young people, just like their European peers, have a real passion for the internet, but don't always use it safely. Therefore, the goal of SID is to promote a rich, creative, but also safe digital experience among young people.
- Lithuanian Safer Internet Centre
In 2020, the international Safer Internet Day (SID) was celebrated differently in Lithuania. More than 200 pupils, teachers and experts became active creators of solutions for a safer and better internet in a one-day hackathon CYBERteens.
- Luxembourgish Safer Internet Centre
On Tuesday, 11 February 2020, Safer Internet Day (SID) was celebrated worldwide. Initiated by the European Union (EU), SID is organised every year with the aim of promoting a safer and better internet. This year again, the motto was "Together for a better internet". In this context, many events and activities were organised in Luxembourg.
- BIK Team
On Tuesday, 11 February 2020, we celebrated the 17th edition of Safer Internet Day (SID), with events and activities taking place right across the globe in over 170 countries, and with many organisational supporters too.
- BIK Team
Safer Internet Day (SID) 2020 is fast approaching. On Tuesday, 11 February 2020, we will be millions around the globe, united to inspire positive change online. The campaign's slogan, "Together for a better internet", is a call to action for all stakeholders to join together and play their part in creating a better internet for everyone.