Only two out of nine social networking sites (Habbo Hotel and Xbox Live) have default settings which make minors' personal profiles accessible only to their approved list of contacts according to a new round of tests undertaken for the European Commission.
However, a majority of sites tested do give youngsters age-appropriate safety information, guidance and/or educational materials specifically targeted at minors and respond to requests for help. Seven sites responded to requests for help, a majority in less than a day.
Neelie Kroes, Vice President of the European Commission for the Digital Agenda said: “Young people enjoy and derive great benefits from social networking online but are often not conscious enough of risks such as grooming. Social networking sites need to take seriously their responsibilities towards these youngsters. I intend to address these issues later this year in a comprehensive strategy on making the internet a safer place for children through a combination of protective and empowerment measures."
The report looks specifically at implementation of the "Safer Social Networking Principles for the EU" by blogging (Skyrock) and gaming (Xbox Live) platforms, photo and video sharing platforms (YouTube, Dailymotion, Flickr), virtual worlds (Habbo Hotel, Stardoll), platforms that have some social networking functionalities (Windows Live) and platforms that allow the creation of personal profiles with the possibility of uploading blog entries, photos and updates (Yahoo! Pulse). The tests were carried out between March and June 2011.
The latest report complements the one published in June 2011 on implementation of the Principles by fourteen dedicated social networking sites (see IP/11/762).
The Commission is reviewing protection of minors online from such risks as grooming and cyber-bullying as part of the objective set by the Digital Agenda for Europe (see IP/10/581, MEMO/10/199 and MEMO/10/200) to enhance trust in the Internet. The results of the two surveys of implementation of the Safer Social Networking Principles will be taken into account by the Commission in a comprehensive initiative to empower and protect children when using new technologies due later this year.
"Safer Social Networking Principles for the EU" are a self-regulatory agreement brokered by the Commission in 2009 to keep children safe online (see IP/09/232).
Twenty one companies have signed the Principles to date: Arto, Bebo, Dailymotion, Facebook, Giovani, Google, Hyves, Microsoft Europe, MySpace, Nasza-klasa, Netlog, One, Rate, Skyrock, VZnet Netzwerke, Stardoll, Sulake, Tuenti, Yahoo! Europe and Zap. Wer-kennt-wen signed-up in November 2010 but was not tested in the current assessment.
The latest report found that:
Only Habbo Hotel and Xbox Live have default settings which make minors' personal and identifiable information visible by default only to their approved list of contacts, regardless of how much information about themselves is posted on their profiles.
In the other seven websites tested results showed that a considerable amount of personal information - including information added by users after registration - was displayed by default to users beyond the minor's approved contacts list. This information did not necessarily lead to immediate identification of minors, but could do so.
In six of the services, minors' profiles could be directly accessed by friends of friends. Unregistered users could get access to minors' profiles via their blog, or a video or picture the minor had posted online. Once a minor’s blog, individual videos, pictures, video channels or photostream are found (e.g. via an external search engine or via a link sent via e-mail, etc.), access to the minor’s profile is granted.
Eight out of the nine sites tested provide safety information, guidance and/or educational materials specifically targeted at minors (all except Windows Live). In Windows Live the information provided was aimed rather at parents or guardians, although it could also be easily understood by young people.
Dailymotion, Flickr, Habbo Hotel, Yahoo! Pulse, Skyrock, Stardoll and YouTube provide safety information for children and parents which is both easy to find and to understand.
By default, only in one of the nine services tested could profiles of minors be found by name searches either via internal or external search engines (e.g. Google, Bing or Yahoo!).
On several of these websites user profiles are not the main point of entry or of interest for users. This is especially true of photo-sharing and video-sharing platforms where users would typically visit a photostream or a video channel, but not necessarily a user’s profile.
The Safer Social Networking Principles for the EU and the assessment of their implementation:
Safer Internet Programme:
Digital Agenda website:
Neelie Kroes' website: http://ec.europa.eu/commission_2010-2014/kroes/
Follow Neelie Kroes on Twitter: http://twitter.com/neeliekroeseu
Using Twitter in university research, teaching and impact activities. A guide for academics and researchers
How can Twitter, which limits users to 140 characters per tweet, have any relevance to universities and academia, where journal articles are 3,000 to 8,000 words long, and where books contain 80,000 words? Can anything of academic value ever be said in just 140 characters? The guide answers these questions, showing new users how to get started on Twitter and hone their tweeting style, as well as offering advice to more experienced users on how to use Twitter for research projects, alongside blogging, and for use in teaching.
The Media & Learning Conference taking place in Brussels on 24 and 25 November 2011 is aimed at practitioners and policy makers who want to find new and effective ways to use media to enhance the learning process. The conference has three main themes; future trends and developments in media-supported learning, digital and media production skills and competences including media literacy, and the use and re-use of existing media resources in education and training at all levels.
The conference programme is now available online (http://www.media-andlearning.eu/programme). Keynote speakers include Flemish Minister for Education and Training Pascal Smet and Belgian child psychiatrist Peter Adriaenssens who argues that creative education is essential for the development of the brain and personality of children. Giving an insight into future developments will be Richard Harper, Principal Researcher at Microsoft Research in Cambridge, UK and Conor Galvin, from UCD in Ireland who has a keen interest in the impact of new and emergent technology on learning and society. Nikos Theodosakis, Canadian author of “The Director in the Classroom: How Filmmaking Inspires Learning" will be joined by Pere Arcas, Head of the department of learning programmes and projects at Television of Catalonia in Spain. Donald Clark, e-learning advisor and sometimes controversial commentator will present his ideas about using media to support learning along with Lizbeth Goodman, Director and Founder of the SMARTlab Digital Media Institute and MAGIC Multimedia and Games Innovation Centre in Ireland.
The programme for the conference includes screening sessions showing excellent examples of media use in education and training from organisations like Thomson Reuters in the UK, TV.Klasse in Belgium and FWU, the Institute for Film and Image in Science and Education in Germany as well as the finalists in the MEDEA Awards 2011.
Media & Learning Circles are discussion sessions that will begin online before the conference, form part of the programme in Brussels and will continue online for several weeks after the conference. This year the discussion topics are:
- What is the best business model for a learning game?
- Can media make a difference in supporting early and special needs education?
- Re-imagining sacred cows: what are the implications of social networking on media and learning?
- What impact does the move from a literacy culture to a media culture have on learning?
- What is the best way to create sustainable, media-rich learning repositories?
Practical workshop topics include schemes that involve students training teachers in setting up and using social media tools and services, run by Bart Verswijvel from TeacherAid, identifying and using video content from YouTube for learning purposes by Paul Ashton from Times Educational Services, and designing and delivering media literacy campaigns by Paul Bottelberghs from Platform for mediawisdom, Belgium.
Presenters will include Daniel Tan Tiong Hok from Nanyang Technological University in Singapore presenting recent developments in lecture recording, Elke Schlote, from Bayerischen Rundfunk in Germany on the current status of educational TV and Mike O’Donoghue from the University of Harnessing the power of Media to support Learning 24 - 25 November 2011 Flemish Ministry of Education Headquarters, Brussels Media & Learning 2011 - Flemish Ministry of Education and Training Headquarters, Brussels – 24 & 25 November 2011 Conference organiser: ATiT, Leuvensesteenweg 132, 3370 Roosbeek, Belgium Manchester in the UK describing how best to design video for teaching and learning. Catharina Bucht from the International Clearinghouse for Children, Youth and Media in Sweden will describe young people in the digital media culture and the need for media literacy while Richard Holliman from the Open University in the UK will talk about teaching media literacy for science communication.
Conference participants are invited to come and play with different devices and software at Media & Learning 2011 in a dedicated Play Area in the dining and networking space where they can try out and use different devices and applications. Companies showing devices, apps and applications for participants to try out in this area include Adobe, Microsoft and Apple. There will also be a quiz on IPR where you can test your knowledge of how copyright operates in the learning sphere.
The MEDEA Awards Ceremony takes place alongside the conference on Thursday 24 November and participants are welcome to join this event where the overall winners of this year’s competition will be announced.
Interaction and exchange are central to what the Media & Learning Conference is about. You can join the online conference community to share knowledge and experience before, during and after the conference and also join the active Media & Learning groups in Facebook and LinkedIn. We also provide Pigeon, the SMS messaging service, during the conference which ensures you can easily get in touch with other participants during the conference without revealing your mobile number.
Registration is now open and includes an opportunity to register for free by taking advantage of the Media & Learning recommendation offer, get a refund on your registration fee by having your friends and colleagues register with your registration code – if 4 or more do this, you attend for free!
In its sixteenth year, MFG Innovation Agency for ICT and Media has produced an annual report that strikes out in new directions in terms of both content and creative execution. The projects showcased in the report illustrate how Baden-Württemberg can make use of the opportunities and potential offered by the digital world and further enhance its position as a leading locationfor media and creativity.
How can the public be supported in their use of new media? Who will provide ways of improving personal media literacy? What is the effect of changing information and communication behaviour on businesses and research institutions? And how can SMEs and young talent reap the benefits of social networks? MFG addresses these and other questions within the context of regional, national and international projects. In doing so, it works closely with universities, businesses, partner institutions and talented young people.
The latest annual report from MFG Innovation Agency for ICT and Media is now available hot off the press. As a learning organisation, MFG teamed up with one of its designers to construct physical creative boxes and photographed them for the annual report, thus connecting the analogue and digital worlds. Making the boxes involved gluing, cutting, painting and even sewing
A video of the creative process can be viewed here. A total of 20 individual works were produced, representing MFG Innovation Agency’s creative partners and projects.
Among those featured is IT graduate Tobias Domhan from Stuttgart, who was able to spend six months working at the Demola creative laboratory in Finland thanks to MFG’s talent funding programme. While there, he developed an educational computer game in which all the action is controlled using a real guitar. Tobias Domhan’s creative box (p. 22) therefore contains an actual guitar head decorated with musical notes and characters from the guitar game.
MFG Innovation Agency also undertakes forward-looking projects in a European context. As part of the Web 2.0 further education project SVEA, MFG worked with Coleg Sir Gâr from Wales and other partners to develop a collaborative online platform and a programme of exercises to instruct trainers and seminar leaders in the use of social media tools. The digitalized blackboard and Twitter bird in Dave Howells’ creative box (p. 24) symbolise the new opportunities offered by blogs, social bookmarks and instant messaging in the vocational education and training sector.
Schule 2.0 – Eine repräsentative Untersuchung zum Einsatz elektronischer Medien an der Schule aus Lehrersicht
Grundlage für die Ergebnisse der rund 40 Seiten umfassenden Publikation bildet eine im Februar 2011 durchgeführte Lehrerbefragung. Die Informationen sind in drei Kapitel, „Lehrer und Technik“, „Einsatz elektronischer Medien im Unterricht“ und „Voraussetzungen an Schulen“ gegliedert und geben die Meinungen von insgesamt 501 Lehrerinnen und Lehrern von Hauptschulen, Realschulen, Gesamtschulen und Gymnasien der Bundesrepublik wider.
Untersuchungsgegenstand der Studie waren, neben dem technischen Wissensstand der Lehrer und deren Einstellung zur Nutzung von elektronischen Medien im Unterricht, der Zweck und die Rahmenbedingungen beim Einsatz von digitalen Medien. Die jeweiligen Fragen wurden in unterschiedlichen Kategorien ausgewertet und als Balkendiagramme dargestellt.
Entries are arriving at the MEDEA Awards Secretariat from practitioners and educational media producers from Europe and further afield and we are looking forward to a receiving a lot more before the 16 September deadline. Sponsors including Adobe are adding their support and plans for the competition are well underway.
Calling out to all creative minds who produce educational media: be sure to participate in the MEDEA Awards! Submit your entry online before 16 September 2011 to have a chance to win in one of the award categories:
The Journal of Media Psychology is committed to publishing original, high-quality papers which cover the broad range of media psychological research, including various media, applications, and user groups. The journal is also open to research from neighboring disciplines as far as this work ties in with psychological concepts of the uses and effects of the media.
De Week van de Mediawijsheid (21-27 november) is een initiatief om meer aandacht te vragen voor het belang van mediawijsheid. Het thema dit jaar is media-opvoeding.
Mediawijzer.net lanceert met grote trots de nieuwe website van de Week van de Mediawijsheid 2011; www.mediamasters2011.nl. Op deze website is informatie te vinden over de campagne en kunnen scholen en bibliotheken zich inschrijven voor deelname.