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Safer Internet Day 2014

What “One Good Thing” Would You Do to Make the Internet Safer?
Created: 11 Feb 2014 • Updated: 11 Feb 2014
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Today is the launch of Safer Internet Day, an annual awareness campaign promoting safer and more responsible use of online technology and mobile phones, especially amongst children and young people across the world. In celebration of Safer Internet Day we are featuring a two-part series discussing the importance of this campaign, ways to get involved, and tips for staying safe online. Our first post is from Anne Collier, Editor of NetFamilyNews.org. On Thursday, we’ll hear from Marian Merritt, Symantec’s Director of Cyber Education and Online Safety Programs featuring tips from students on how to stay safe online. 

Join ConnectSafely.org, Symantec, and a whole host of US nonprofit organizations (see list below) and corporations in celebrating the United States’ largest Safer Internet Day (SID) to date on Tuesday, February 11. Started by the European Commission more than a decade ago and now celebrated in more than 100 countries, SID is an awareness raising campaign to promote safer and more responsible use of online technology and mobile phones, especially amongst children and young people across the world.

The campaign hasn't attained a whole lot of awareness in the US until it got a big boost a little over a year ago, when – under then-Sec. Janet Napolitano – the Department of Homeland Security and the European Commission agreed to work together to make the Internet better for youth. Then the Brussels-based Insafe Network, which coordinates SID activities for the EC, appointed ConnectSafely as the United States’ official SID Committee.

There are a number of ways you can join the celebration, from watching our SID event (streamed live on the Web here) to sharing "One Good Thing" you've seen or done to make the Internet, or the world, a better place by using the Internet. ConnectSafely's One Good Thing campaign is our own U.S. version of Europe's theme for SID 2014 – "Let's create a better Internet together" – an opportunity to illustrate how people all over the country are already making the Internet better, one kind word or deed at a time.

A word about the event: At our SID event in Washington, D.C. we'll have two panel discussions: one made up of student leaders who will talk about all aspects of teen life with digital media – positive, negative and neutral – and one made up of social media executives representing Instagram, Google/YouTube, Xbox Live, Tumbler and Twitter. The youth panel will be moderated by Yahoo tech journalist Dan Tynan, and the social media industry panel will be moderated by high school student leader Aidan McDaniel of Warm Springs, W. Va. From the auditorium's first few rows, more than two dozen students from around the country will be helping moderators and panels keep the discussion lively. US Sen. Charles Schumer will wrap up the event with some remarks.

So do join us. Safer Internet Day is an important reminder that it takes all of us – individuals, families, schools, corporations and governments – to make our global, increasingly social and user-driven Internet better.

SID Non-Profit Partners & Corporate Supporters include: Non-profits (National 4-H Council, National PTA, Committee for Children, Common Sense Media, the Family Online Safety Institute, iKeepSafe, the Internet Education Foundation, the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children, and the National Cyber Security Alliance) Corporate (Facebook, Google, LinkedIn, Microsoft, Sprint, Symantec, Trend Micro and Twitter)

Anne Collier is the Editor of NetFamilyNews.org and Co-Director of ConnectSafely.org.