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Do you know the potential of social work on children's and youths' Internet safety? - SocialWeb - SocialWork at the Safer Internet Forum 2013

by C.Bretl, J. Croll, Stiftung Digitale Chancen
Published on: 18.10.13

SocialWeb - SocialWork was invited to run a session called "A better Internet: the role of intermediaries in managing risks for vulnerable users" at the 2013 edition of the Safer Internet Forum which took place on 17th-18th of October in Brussels.

In this panel, the project coordinator Stiftung Digitale Chancen took a look into the future, together with experts and participants. Forward-looking the workshop tried to find out the existing strengths, potential and the positive aspects of social work on Internet safety. The format of the session, the Appreciative-Inquiry-Approach, intended to involve young and adult experts from the field as well as from research. It followed a multi-perspective approach to identify the positive energy and influence of social work on children's and youths' Internet safety. The session should help to develop a vision for the future with the support of these four steps:

Appreciating “valuing the best of what is'' - in the first step the workshop dealt with the following questions and drew a positive picture: What is best of the current situation, what benefit does social work have to safeguard young people on the Internet?
Envisioning “what might be'' - in the second step the workshop had a close look into the future discovering the challenges and positive impact of the developments regards future technology and Internet services.
Engaging in dialogue about “what should be'' - in the third step the workshop engaged the various stakeholders from different age groups in a dialogue about the potential of a better Internet for children.
Innovating “what will be'' - in the fourth step the workshop envisioned the future of a better Internet for children and discussed how it can be achieved.

The following results for the four different categories were compiled:

  1. Appreciating: instant communication, knowledge/sharing resources, entertainment and creativity
  2. Envisioning: always faster innovation cycles, challenges to privacy, smart devices/wearable interfaces and social networks will become the central point of life
  3. Engaging: education from early age, mutual understanding/peer mentoring, finding the balance between virtual and real (“don’t be social incompetent'') and industry and policy take greater responsibility
  4. Innovating: use of current technology to safeguard young children, start safety education in your closest context and expand - do it intergenerational, E-Safety label for schools and appreciate your real life relationships

The SocialWeb - SocialWork session was supported by experts from the projects partner countries: Robertas Povilaitis, Helpline, Lithuania; Virginia Pareja, Fundación Esplai, Spain; Jan Vespermann, Dunkelziffer e.V., Germany; Urko Fernandez, FriendlyScreens, Spain.








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