Social Media HelpLine Launches For Schools

SocialMediaHelpLine#iCANHELP AND NET FAMILY NEWS INC. TEAM UP TO PILOT A SOCIAL MEDIA HELPLINE FOR SCHOOLS DURING 2015-’16 SCHOOL YEAR

With 92% of middle and high school students online daily, 24% of them “almost constantly,”* it’s time schools had some help with social media! The Helpline’s developers – #iCANHELP and Net Family News Inc. – invite you to contribute to a fundraising campaign at Indiegogo.com: http://igg.me/at/icanhelpline. The goal of the campaign is $25,000 to cover “construction costs” for piloting in California next school year – Web site construction, communications tools and staff training.

“The helpline will be the hub of a whole help ecosystem,” said Matt Soeth, co-founder of #iCANHELP, “with real-time, research-based advice, help in reporting and escalating abuse in social media services, a directory of school policy and investigation resources and a growing, searchable database of school social media case studies.”

“Contributions big or small are huge to the helpline,” said Anne Collier, president of San Jose-based Net Family News. “This is about growing the digital literacy and citizenship of all members of school communities.”

Here’s what we’re talking about:

  • A call centerplus: Schools can call during school hours for real-time help, but the Web site – which will include links to sources of specialized help and a directory of resources for prevention, incident response and policymaking – is 24/7/365. To be added as cases come in: an ever-growing searchable database of anonymized school case studies. The Helpline will also be a source of metrics & trends in school online safety issues for educators, researchers, policymakers and parents.
  • Schools not individuals – We’ll refer individuals to other great sources of help, but this helpline’s specifically for schools. If a member of a school community has a problem, we’ll ask him or her to work with us through their school.
  • Working with social media: We’ll help schools navigate sites and apps, report abuse and get content taken down that violates Terms of Service, providing the industry with much-needed local context as a trusted intermediary.
  • Part of a global network of helplines in other countries that help each other and, with a growing collective knowledge base, help users resolve problems in a global medium.
  • Unique among helplines in approaching students as part of the solution and building on established student leadership education and peer-mentoring practices.
  • Deep Internet safety experience: Builds on more than 15 years in the Internet safety space, working with practitioners and researchers and advising Internet companies.

About us: Net Family News is a San Jose, Calif.-based national nonprofit organization founded in 1999 to educate the public and advise the Internet industry about research and developments in technology related to youth. #iCANHELP is a Bay Area-based national nonprofit organization that creates and promotes positive, school-based solutions & interventions to anti-social behavior online.

Please make a donation to the iCanHelpline campaign at http://igg.me/at/icanhelpline

*Pew Research Center’s 2015 “Teens, Social Media & Technology” study

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Social Media Site For All Ages: Frienedy

frienedy-logoFrienedy is the first site of its kind that lets users of all ages manage life in groups. Engineered with parental permissions at the core, the company has created a private online environment that leverages parental engagement for users under 13 to guide the social media experience. Frienedy offers users of all ages a web application that provides private group communication.

Until now, there has been a void in the social networking space both for users under age 13 as well as for managing content and social feeds for groups of all types.

According to Founder and CEO, Janel Patterson, “Kids are getting online much younger than they were when today’s social networking norms were first established, which has led to a rise in cyber bullying and cyber predators. Parents need a tool that enables them to proactively introduce social media to their children when they decide the time is right- and before kids go out and discover it themselves. At Frienedy, our core mission is to prevent cyber bullying before it starts and to eliminate the risk of children becoming victims of cyber predators.”

There is also a market for managing social feeds and content for groups that have members of all ages. According to Jake Giganti, COO for Frienedy, “I grew up on social media. I never saw an easy way to manage all of the events and social feeds and basic information for every group I was part of growing up. Not just my soccer team and classes, but my different groups of friends. And, now as an adult, I have even more social groups I’m part of and need to stay engaged with. Frienedy Groups solves this problem- but more compellingly- for users of all ages.” Groups can communicate privately and maintain practice or meeting schedules, classroom assignments, youth group activities, photos, videos, documents, even trigger last minute notifications. Frienedy is the way to manage all of this – and for younger users, under discreet parental oversight.

Frienedy includes a robust events calendar for managing group events and a shopping list feature called WishList to promote user engagement. Mobile apps are currently in development, and the website is currently mobile responsive for any device. You can sign up for a free account by going to www.frienedy.com.

About Frienedy
Frienedy, LLC (www.frienedy.com) was founded in 2013 as a safe, private group networking community designed for users and groups of all ages. Frienedy complies with COPPA standards for users under 13, enabling a revolutionary new way for people of all ages to connect, share and interact safely and privately in all of life’s Groups.

Contact: Janel Patterson
Frienedy, LLC
Phone: (636) 542-0540
Email: press@frienedy.com
URL: www.frienedy.com

Is Your Teen A Victim Of A Cyberbully? Would You Know?

National Children’s Mental Health Awareness day right around the corner on May 7th, 2015.  Bullying and cyberbullying can cause long term emotional scars.  Many times teens will hide these bruises from their parents – pretending to be brave – as if it isn’t cool to be sad or depressed.

Bullying has changed from the days of taking someone’s lunch money or giving them a swirly in the bathroom. Now, children are much more likely to engage in cyberbullying, or the use of electronic communication to bully a person. In fact, 20-30% of today’s children will be cyberbullied, and 10-20% of students will be cyberbullies.

However, it can be tricky for a parent to figure out if their child is experiencing cyberbullying; more than half of the children who experience cyberbullying do not tell their parents about it. And while around 55% of teens report having observed bullying behavior online, 95% report ignoring the behavior when it was observed.

There are a few tell-tale signs that can give clues that your child might be engaged in cyberbullying. For example long periods and odd hours of internet use, or changes in a child’s patterns of internet use, can signify cyberbullying. A child engaging in cyberbullying behavior might also become upset if their internet usage is confronted or cut off by their parents. Children with excessive social media accounts may be using them to follow and harass others.

Is Your Child A Cyberbully: Facts About Cyberbullying

Attribution – YellowBrick Program

3 Hot Teen Trends in Social Media

Years ago MySpace gave way to Facebook.  Now we have many social networks out there such as Instagram, Twitter, Tumblr and more.

It is important that teens understand how to use their privacy settings in all their social media sites as well as never to give out their passwords.

Common Sense Media reminds parents of the current apps that teens are using today:

Microsoft Making A Difference In Social Media Online Safety

With over 112K followers on Twitter and 1.3M on Facebook, there is cause for celebration!

Parents, teachers, community leaders and people are learning from Safer Online by Microsoft.

I was thrilled and honored to be included as one of their key influencers!

Listed among people I highly respect, I love Microsoft and Safer Online for continuing to reach out and educate people through different mediums.  They offer a variety of resources such as articles, contests, books, quiz’s, video’s and fantastic educational and information websites.

Safer Internet Day 2014

safer-internet-calendar-logo1Safer Internet Day (SID) is organized by Insafe in February of each year to promote safer and more responsible use of online technology and mobile phones, especially amongst children and young people across the world.

Safer Internet Day 2014 will be celebrated on 11 February 2014. The tagline for the campaign is “Let’s create a better internet together”.

What can you do to increase family online safety?

Make it a habit to continually learn something new about your gadgets, about a new app, social media site, your privacy settings, even as simple as remembering to change your passwords frequently.

Most importantly keeping those line of communication open with your kids about technology.  As you know the kids are usually a hundred miles ahead of their parents — it is time to be on equal ground.  Share your knowledge with each other – remember to have those face to face conversations.

Digital Citizenship and You

What is digital citizenship?

From the minute you are given any type of technology you are expected to act appropriately with every keystroke and posting as well as text message you send.

Being an upstanding digital citizenship is not any different than being a respectable person offline.  You are expected to treat your peers, adults, teachers and everyone with kindness and respect — it is the same with virtual citizens or sometimes netizens.

This video can give you some insights to how being a digital citizen can affect you.