Given the climate of questionable online activity, today is Safer Internet Day, a campaign with the mission to make the internet safer for all users.
In a world full of misinformation and questionable behaviour online, there are a number of movements stepping forward to combat the situation. As part of making the online world a safer and better place, today is Safer Internet Day 2020.
The campaign works globally to bring people together for a better internet. They have created lots of resources that you can use to join in, including country and supporter sections on their website to help readers find out what is happening everywhere. You can also check out their SID archive and the dedicated section for younger people in their Better Internet for Kids (BIK) portal. Hop over to their Facebook and Twitter profiles to find out more.
Making the internet a safer place
Safer Internet Day aims to spark a national conversation about using technology responsibly, respectfully, critically and creatively. The goal of the 2020 appeal is to inspire young people to manage their online identity and how the internet can affect their perception of themselves and others.
The appeal is setting out to celebrate difference and embrace inclusion by focusing on the integral elements of online identity. The campaign is asking people to consider the facts and characteristics of users, how you are perceived and treated by other users and identification methods used by online services. It also refers to how offline stereotypes and discrimination are questioned or transferred to online activity. The movement asks if the internet currently allows young people to fully express themselves or do they feel hindered so that they can ultimately support each other to be themselves.
What is going on?
Young people live as much online as they do offline. Their online activity can achieve great things. However, there is also a climate of damaging online activity with very real offline consequences. The government has published its Online Harms White Paper amid growing public worry about internet safety. The document includes suggestions for new legislation and an independent regulator along with approaches to fight illegal and damaging content online with extra protection for younger users.
The government recognises Safer Internet Day as the foremost campaigning initiative working towards safer internet for young people. It is also looking at industry and civil society to look for solutions for aspects of the Digital Charter including data ethics, limiting disinformation and tightening cyber security. Safer Internet Day has an important role in raising awareness and creating more positive experiences online for and by young people across the UK.
How it all began
Safer Internet Day (SID) has become a beacon for online safety. It began as an initiative of the EU SafeBorders project in 2004 and was picked up by the Insafe network as an action in 2005. Safer Internet Day has flourished and grown beyond its original framework. The movement continues to thrive and is now observed in around 150 countries around the globe. The spirit of the campaign has been embraced by other movements, including #ReclaimSocial