Children in the digital age – How to balance their right to freedom and their right to be protected? – WS 04 2019

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19 June 2019 | 14:00-15:30 | YANGTZE 2 | Video recording | Transcription
Consolidated programme 2019 overview

Proposals assigned to this session: ID 6, 43, 100, 179, 194 – list of all proposals as pdf

Session teaser

Nowadays children are growing up in a digital environment that offers huge opportunities to exercise their rights to freedom of expression, access to information, and participation in society. But at the same time they may be exposed to threats online like bullying, grooming, and sexual abuse. Also the digital environment makes it particularly difficult to ensure their right to privacy, since involuntary and deliberate disclosure of private information may lead to harmful encounter and commercial exploitation. In the session, the focus of the discussion with be on a balanced approach between these rights and freedoms with the objective to achieve suitable policy recommendations. Participants will include young people in order to guarantee their voices are heard in any matter affecting their lives.

Session description

When What How and Why Who
14:00 - 14:10 Introduction to the theme
Introduction of speakers and key participants
  • 30 Years anniversary of the UN-CRC – what does this mean in the digital age?
  • How are children’s rights affected by digitisation?
14:10 - 14:20 Theme 1: The Right to Access to Information (Art. 17); Non-discriminination (Art. 2) Debate along the following questions:
  1. Do children know their rights? How do they interpret their rights?
  2. Which challenges to their rights arise from their everyday life?
  3. What opportunities does the digital environment provide for exercising their rights?
  4. What do children expect from policy and other stakeholders?
14:20 - 14:30 Theme 2: Freedom of Expression (Art. 13); Respect for the views of the child] (Art. 12)
14:30 - 14:40 Theme 3: Theme 3: Freedom of association (Art. 15); Leisure, play and culture (Art. 31)
14:40 - 14:50 Theme 4: Right to Privacy (Art.16)
14:50 - 15:00 Theme 5: Right to Protection (Art. 19, Art. 32, Art. 34)
15:00 - 15:25 Drafting of policy recommendations
  • Children’s concrete demands in regard of the digital environment
  • What role should Internet Governance play?
  • Who should do what?
  • Who takes responsibility?
Wrap-up and Credits Moderator


Roundtable / Fishbowl

Further reading

Until .

Links to relevant websites, declarations, books, documents. Please note we cannot offer web space, so only links to external resources are possible. Example for an external link: Website of EuroDIG


Please provide name and institution for all people you list here.

Focal Point

  • Jutta Croll, Stiftung Digitale Chancen
  • Michael Raeder, Stiftung Digitale Chancen

Organising Team (Org Team) List them here as they sign up.

  • Erklina Denja, Magnific shpk Finance Accounting
  • Desara Dushi, SEEDIG Programme Committee
  • Fotjon Kosta, Coordinator of Albania IGF
  • Charalampos Kyritsis, YouthDIG Organiser
  • João Pedro Martins
  • Giacomo Mazzone, EBU-UER European Broadcasting Union
  • Marina Mestres
  • Sabrina Vorbau, European Schoolnet

Key Participants

  • Hildur Halldórsdóttir, Safer Internet Awareness Node, Iceland
  • Eva Lievens, University of Gent
  • Veronica Stefan, Digital Citizens Romania
  • Simone van der Hof, University of Leiden

Youth Participants:

  • Liliane (Austria)
  • João Pedro (Portugal)
  • Haris (Greece)


  • Jutta Croll, Stiftung Digitale Chancen

Remote Moderator

Trained remote moderators will be assigned on the spot by the EuroDIG secretariat to each session.


  • Andrijana Gavrilovic, Geneva Internet Platform

The Reporter takes notes during the session and formulates 3 (max. 5) bullet points at the end of each session that:

  • are summarised on a slide and presented to the audience at the end of each session
  • relate to the particular session and to European Internet governance policy
  • are forward looking and propose goals and activities that can be initiated after EuroDIG (recommendations)
  • are in (rough) consensus with the audience

Current discussion, conference calls, schedules and minutes

See the discussion tab on the upper left side of this page. Please use this page to publish:

  • dates for virtual meetings or coordination calls
  • short summary of calls or email exchange

Please be as open and transparent as possible in order to allow others to get involved and contact you. Use the wiki not only as the place to publish results but also to summarize the discussion process.


  • Policymakers and other stakeholders should give a greater voice to children and hear what they have to say about Internet governance at all levels. Policymakers must take the participation of children more seriously and enable them to take part.
  • There is a need to understand what children are doing in order to engage with them about their online activities.
  • Digital literacy is important for all age groups: children, teachers, and parents. It is necessary to understand the needs of children in order to conceptualise digital literacy in line with those needs, and in line with the complexity and the interests of the digital world. A balanced approach is needed to make children more resilient, but the industry and data controllers must be held accountable as well.
  • We need to ensure Internet access to all children; it is not a given that all children have access to it already.
  • We want SAPA (Smart Active Participation Algorithm) to be top priority discussion in a multistakeholder environment. The purpose of this algorithm is to replace some of the ads we are exposed to, while browsing on the Internet, with information about Council of Europe (CoE) initiatives. SAPA will suggest differentiated opportunities (by CoE) based on the age of the users, in order to empower the engagement of people of all ages towards CoE initiatives through the Internet. (Message from YouthDIG)

Find an independent report of the session from the Geneva Internet Platform Digital Watch Observatory at

Video record


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This text, document, or file is based on live transcription. Communication Access Realtime Translation (CART), captioning, and/or live transcription are provided in order to facilitate communication accessibility and may not be a totally verbatim record of the proceedings. This text, document, or file is not to be distributed or used in any way that may violate copyright law.

>> JUTTA CROLL: Before we start, I would ask you to come forward because we will have a debate. That's why we choose to the roundtable and not an audience.

Hello, everybody. It's the top of the hour but I do think we give other participants a few more minutes to file in the room. So relax two to three minutes and then we will start the session.

So once again, hello, everybody. Good afternoon. Welcome to the session workshop number 4, on children and the digital age, how to balance their right to freedom and their right to be protected. I'm very glad to have all of you here. I do see some familiar faces and faces from the organizing team for this session. But first of all, I would like to introduce you to the people sitting around here like on the panel. And I'm welcoming three participants from YOUthDIG, who have already been working over the weekend on Internet Governance questions and these are Lili from Austria, and then Haris from Greece and Joao Pedro from Portugal and then we have Eva Lievens from the University of Gent and on her left side, Simone van der Hof of University of Leiden and on my right side, that's difficult for me ‑‑ Hildur Halldorsdottir, from the Safer Internet Awareness Node Iceland and Veronica Stefan from Digital Citizens Romania.

So the two young boys are our gender balance somehow, because otherwise, we would have a more or less female panel which is not correct for EuroDIG and Internet Governance but still, we are very happy to have you here.

My name is Jutta Croll, I'm from the Digital Opportunities Foundation, where we are running a project called child protection and digital rights in the digital world. And in this context, I was asked to chair this session and organize it together with the team for the session.

So we have considered a run through and those of you who have been to the wiki have already seen that we will follow through five themes structured by the U.N. Convention on the rights of the child, and that is somehow the focus or nucleus for the session since this year the U.N. Convention on the rights of the child has its 30th anniversary. So 1989, the U.N. Convention was adopted and it's now the most ratified human rights convention ever in the world with 196 states having ratified the convention.

But still that's 30 years ago, and the world has changed in these 30 years. It's a coincidence that in the same year 1989, Tim Berners‑Lee had published the code for the BVV. So everyone since then could have access to the Internet and to its content, but still, those people who wrote the U.N. Convention on the rights of the Child, probably did not imagine 30 years ago that children would use the Internet like they do today. So it's part of their everyday life. And that is the reason why we think it's necessary to discuss about children's rights and what they really do mean in a world where children grow up with digital media, and where cell phones, they use them in their daily life.

First, I would like to turn to you, and if you could give us a short impression, what does digital media and the Internet play in your life. Just from everyday life.

>> HARIS: I think media is our everyday life now. We use it all the time for university, for social things, for work. So I think it's our life now. It's our everyday life.

>> LILIANE: So social media for me is also my everyday life, I guess. I don't leave the house without my phone in my pocket and if I forget it which happens maybe once a year, I feel like I'm missing a big part of my life. And I guess it's just normal for us that we have compared to our offline world, the online world and we act differently on the online world. So I think it's another life we have next to the offline life.

>> JAOA PEDRO: Well, good afternoon, everybody. I will just start by saying that I'm 22. And ‑‑ which means that I'm ‑‑ I'm lucky because I ‑‑ I encountered these transition between what was the online life and the real life, but I have a sister which is 14, and for her the Internet is her life, and it is interesting to see that this distinguish that we real also ‑‑ we continue to try to make between real life and online life is really difficult for them, especially now that every time they are interacting digitally, and within the Internet.

>> JUTTA CROLL: I'm not sure ‑‑ oh, this is working as well. So we can maybe give that over there. Just as we come to you. Thank you.

So the main thing we would like to talk about today is given the case that the Internet is so much and social media is so much interwoven into everyday life, what does it mean to children's rights and are young people aware of the rights that they have and what does it mean to perform these rights with the Internet, with social media, and where do we ‑‑ do you see that probably children's rights could be infringed also by social media? And just to say that I know you are older than 18 years old, still, when ‑‑ when we say children's rights we mean the rights that are enshrined in the U.N. Convention of the Rights of the Child and that means people up to 18 years of age. So that's important to acknowledge.

We have structured a session around five themes related to children's rights and we would like to start with the right to access to information, which is Article 17 of the U.N. Convention and also Article 2, the right to nondiscrimination. So access to digital media, access to information that was in the U.N. Convention on the rights of the child, had nothing to do with the internet, but now access to information more or less is only based on Internet and digital media.

I would like to ask the technicians to put up the slide with the questions. Thank you.

Maybe it's a little bit small. First, we would like to debate along the question, do children know their rights? How do they understand their rights? So especially the right to access to information, around to nondiscrimination. And what challenges may arise from ‑‑ from ‑‑ to their rights if their everyday life? But also what opportunities does the digital environment provide for exercising their rights and then in the end, we would like to come to answer some ‑‑ to get some answers what do children expect from policy and other stakeholders in regard of their rights in the digital environment.

And now that I had heard from the young people, I would like to turn to you, what do you think? Do children know how to understand their rights in the digital environment, especially the right to access to information and to nondiscrimination? May I give that question to you? And then, of course ‑‑

>> We will use the mic?

>> JUTTA CROLL: Yes, it's turned on.

>> VERONICA STEFAN: This is Veronica from digital citizens. I would like to start that in general, I think we have to start from the assumption that young people and children in particular, are not as much aware of rights in general and I think that's our responsibility as adults, first of all in recognizing that and then taking it to the second stage, which is the digital word. And then it's a problem as well because it's not only that they don't understand the rights. It's that this second time, us as adults don't understand very well the digital word. So my problem is that on the one hand, it's very hard to speak about youth participation and youth rights and children's rights in particular, about you then it's even more complicated because the digital world, it's still dominated and shaped by grownups, who grownups are not really the experts on the first users of technologies. And this is the hard reality we are facing nowadays.

And right now, I would like to use a little bit a context of this EuroDIG because I think it's really a pity that we have this debate in a workshop and not in a plenary setting because we have had at least two sessions before where youth voices and children's voices or ideas were not even present, and we are speaking about ideas who shape the future of the Internet and how the future the digital world should look in ten years from now. And then I didn't see any reference or even the question even if that might have been naive from a young person. So we got this tokenism approach that digital rights belong to everyone, particularly young people, except young people and children are not part of that debate.

So I think this debate, it's very important. It just happens in a very small room for this setting even.

And I would ‑‑ this is just to start with, because I think we can continue later as well.

>> JUTTA CROLL: So I take it that we can have already message to policies and other stakeholders to give more room to the voices of children and listen more often to what they have to say about everything and especially about Internet Governance.

What do you think? Have you had the possibility to make your voices heard during the last days?

>> JOAO PEDRO: So I will take the first round. It's interesting to reflect if children do know their rights and then up to a point, do they care about their rights because I had once a discussion and someone told me that they would rather give away their privacy if they were collecting from a service. And these kind of questions and these kind of arguments are difficult to argue with, because young people use technology. They want to use it for the service. And in that sense, it's like has been said, often they don't have the knowledge to know if they are being ‑‑ if their rights are being violated or not.

In terms of participation and discussion, well, there's an amazing initiative called the Safer Internet Forum, which it's children centered. It goes to the point that we are doing it for the children. The children are the reason that people get together to discuss these issues. And this would be a nice idea. I participated my first time when I was 12 years old. It was an amazing experience, despite I had no idea of the impact that the event was making, but still, I got to give my opinion to talk about my difficulties and I think that's something that should be considered and also bring it to the ‑‑ more general Internet Governance perspective.

>> JUTTA CROLL: Can you hand it over?

>> SIMONE VAN DER HOF: Yes, as to this first question, well, I did a small research and I asked my children last night, do you know what rights you have? And my daughter said, well, after thinking for a while. She said, well, I have the right to privacy, but she immediately admitted that that's because I indoctrinated her. It's not fully voluntary. And then I asked my son. They said we have the same rights as adults, we have the freedom of expression, but children have the right to protection. What type of protection do you have or should you have? And that is from bad parenting. And from when you have no parents that take care of you. So it was ‑‑ he gave a bit more of an answer, but it was still quite limited and it was also the idea that I had. So we have not really researched it, but it's ‑‑ it's the general impression that I have.

What he also said was what ‑‑ yeah, well, why do we need them? Because everything is going well. So as long as you don't have any problems also on the Internet, on social media, you may not start wondering about what your rights are or what your legal position is, and that may only become relevant what you do have trouble.

One of the other things that I also got from having this discussion with my children, is that while we that you can in terms of rights, we use very legal language to talk ‑‑ you know, to discuss these matters. And I don't think they would resonate very well with children. They may resonate with you a little bit more, because you are already older but if you want to involve children, you need to speak their language. You need to make sure that you relate everything to the world they are living in.

And to give you an example, there I was looking for an answer to this question on the Internet, as well yesterday, and I found a nice video about ‑‑ from Jamaican children. Very young children who were asked what rights do you have? And interestingly, they came up with interesting rights. They said, well, we have the rights to have friends which in terms of the UNCRC is the right of freedom to association. We have the right to be ourselves. I have the right to be myself, which for me is the right to privacy. It's the right to freedom of expression. It's the right to personal development. We have the right to be different. Which to me is the right to nondiscrimination. The right to go to the beach, to create, to dance, the right to leisure and play. We have the right to eat, the right to life, to basic provisions.

So I think if he with want to have the debate for children, we have to find other language to actually talk about their rights.

>> JUTTA CROLL: Before you hand over to Eva, I would like to ask a question, do you think with digitization and the development that we now see, that would be an opportunity to provide for this broader understanding of children's rights so that people feel more connected to these rights that so far are in a legal language that are difficult to understand, but if we relate them to digitization, which is everyday life for children, would that make it easier for children to understand how to perform their rights?

>> SIMONE VAN DER HOF: Yes. I'm not a communications scientist or in developmental psychology, but I think what might work better is to start from the actual situations that they encounter online and not just the negative ones but also the positive ones to discuss matters in how you deal with each other, how ‑‑ because one of you said, well, offline is different from online. But a lot of things are actually similar. So the way you talk to each other to have respect for each other, it's quite similar in a way. So ‑‑ but you need to ‑‑ it doesn't ‑‑ it shouldn't stay too theoretical. You need to engage with what people do online. And then you ‑‑ well, first you need to know what that is. So I am still sometimes surprised when I see what my ‑‑ especially my daughter is doing online. Trying to get make stories on Instagram and sell her own stuff and make money from that. I only find out from talking to her. So there's a lot that you don't see as an adult very easily, but that's very much a part of the life of teenaged children but also younger children. Yes, first, you need to know what they are doing to engage in discussions with them but then also make the transition to the things that will be relevant from a children's rights perspective.

>> JUTTA CROLL: Thank you, and then Haris wanted to step in.

>> EVA LIEVENS: Yes. We had a recent experience. We organized co‑design workshops with 84 children between the age of 9 and 11 about their data protection rights. But, of course, these children are really still quite young and we felt that it wasn't a good idea to start asking, dupe that you have the right to erase your information and ask for corrections but we did exactly what Simone was suggesting. We started from their everyday practices and by asking them about what they did online, which services that they used and then gradually going through questions about which information they share and how they share information. And in the end, we came to the point where we talked to them about their data protection rights and we told them which rights they had, and even though that's ‑‑ we tried, of course, to make it understandable to avoid as much legal language as possible, once we got to that point, they had such interesting things to say.

So they can really already at that age talk about rights, what they think about these rights and how they ewe these rights differently maybe when it comes to different actors that they engage with, be it schools or the city or companies or their parents or friends. So I think it's crucial what Simone said. What are they doing? And start from that. And in the end, find language to talk to them about their rights. That said, I really do believe that even though the UNCRC is 30 years old this year, I think it's still a very, very solid instrument. It has language that we can apply maybe not talk to children about their rights, but we can reinterpret the articles and the rights included there. So I don't immediately see a need to clang that. But we need to reinterpret and think differently about some. Rights or put them more in this digital perspective, but it's still very, very useful.

>> JUTTA CROLL: Thank you.

>> HARIS: So I think most adults don't know their rights. Even if their parents don't know their rights, who would tell them? The tools in the platform, the language of the terms of service and the rights, it's so complicated and even we adults can't read it. How do we expect the children to read the technical things? There's not the proper text for this.

And also about youth participation. There are initiatives that support the youth participation. Council of Europe, supports youth participation. And there's YOUthDIG, that we are also a part. But we are talking about, like, not 100 people each year. We need more. Because there's a very small number.

>> JUTTA CROLL: I would like to pick up on that, that leads to the Article 12, because I would like to add another question and say, don't you see that with digital media, we can't exactly overcome that situation, that you have the right to participation, but only it's performed by very few young people so far and the Internet provides for opportunities for ‑‑ for ‑‑ regardless where you live, regardless, except that you have your right to access to information and you could take part in any debate via the Internet. Don't you see the Internet could ease to perform that right and what should be done when we come to the questions what do you expect from policy and other stakeholders? What would be necessary that people ‑‑ that young people really can make use of that right? And I see you want to step into the debate.

I can give you the microphone. And could you please introduce yourself?

>> AUDIENCE MEMBER: We only know each other through email. I'm Jessica Petrowski, I'm a professor at the University of Amsterdam. And what I'm hearing, the first thing that comes to mind is this idea of the Internet being a space and place for this participation. I think it is very easy to think about the 44% of kids would tonight have this access rights right now. When we talk about rights, particularly all of us in this room are quite privileged individuals, we are here and we are connected at this moment and that sort of way and it can be very hard for us to constantly reflect back on the number of children who don't have this access point yet. So in terms of these rights, I think we need to keep in mind the necessary for building access points for so many young people across the EU who don't have this year.


>> VERONICA STEFAN: I am here with the support of the youth department, the Council of Europe and I'm aware of different processes that happen. My problem is that they happen in bubbles and so each bubble with its own debate. That was my initial point.

When we talk about rights, it's good that we speak awareness and education for rights but whether we talk about rights, it's about access to rights and that was a very fair point to make. The point here is not to be limited ting assess Internet, because right now, this is a huge issue. I mean we have half the population that is not connected to the Internet. So it will be a problem for the next century, probably. But for those that already use the Internet and we have this feeling that this is a world of opportunities, which is, but it doesn't necessarily mean that Internet and technology already has the mechanism to offer better access to our rights, because expression, freedom of expression and access to information, it's one thing. And we can have even a more technical debate of exactly how it happens in this basically private platforms and they are not that much co‑designed by other people or in place by a lot of other people, it's technology that is deciding the information, the kind of information and the information we are passing as well along. So it's limiting in many ways that we are not aware of.

Second of that, there are all of these rights that I'm not sure that technology is ready to answer to them. Even if you take a look at social media, which is limiting, and you face other hate speech, they are 21st century oriented. So you still have to go to a government body, basically and take through the same mechanism. You have to go to the police, and they apply the same methods that they did before. So I think the technology is there, but it's not really implemented in terms of policies and mechanisms of enforcing the access to these rights. That's why I'm highlighting the access to go rights more than awareness of rights.


>> HARIS: And you talked about we can participate with public debates but the children ‑‑ like they don't know how no use the Internet properly. You have to have literacy for that, in schools and even in the parents of the children, in general so they can use it properly. So they can know how to use it and what is ‑‑ what they are using. What is outcome of.

>> JUTTA CROLL: So you are advocating for more digital education on all levels and are not parents as well.

>> HARIS: Yes.

>> JUTTA CROLL: So that could also be a message that we ‑‑

>> HARIS: Because they have time at school, but the parents give the device to them. This is ‑‑ they provide the access to the Internet.

>> JUTTA CROLL: Okay. Simone also asked for the microphone.

>> SIMONE VAN DER HOF: Well, two remarks about the participation part. One, we did a workshop very recently on online political participation because of a Ph.D. student who is working on that topic. Well, we did it with students and we asked the students, well, to what extent were you, you know, particularly active while you were in high school and so on. Almost none of them were. So I also wonder whether this is about children maybe at that age not being particularly interested or they have other interests that they take the type for, like socialize, gaming. And maybe it's also something that is ‑‑ you know that is of particular interest for certain children because we see very good examples, of course, but not necessarily for all children.

And the other thing is actually what relates to the former ‑‑ the previous speaker. So we know from research that there is a digital divide into terms of concern children for being able to use Internet for certain types of persons and also their own access to get a better job and further their own opportunities. And there's a big group of children that use the Internet for entertainment and socializing. But not necessarily to support of improve their own situation to get better jobs. And that is what ‑‑ it was Dutch research, but it probably applies elsewhere, and that is also something that governments obviously need to take on. And it's, indeed, also a literacy. And sometimes not just digital literacy but literacy issue more generally.

So that is actually a big issue, I think.

>> JUTTA CROLL: Just a question back, when you said the research on participation of young people, when you asked them, don't you think that the Internet provides for lower threshold participation, that it's not only like we had before, institutionalized participation, we have youth parliaments and so on where children had the opportunity to take part there, but it has a higher threshold to even do so. And with the Internet, you probably could take part in debates which is also participation. You could possibly influence the debate. How do you see that? And was it part of the research you did?

>> SIMONE VAN DER HOF: Yes, you are certainly right there. But you ‑‑ I'm ‑‑ and this is ‑‑ I'm not sure this will be part of the research, but what comes to mind immediately when you say that is that people are also ‑‑ not just children are very cautious to get part of debates online. Because the way that people are interacting with each other, you know, can be very abusive, very hateful. Well, you can look on Twitter every day and I actually stopped reading responses to certain tweets because I thought, okay, I already know what will happen there.

So yes, it's more accessible through the technology, but at the same time, because that is ‑‑ that's more a social problem, but partly a technical problem because you don't have social cues of what is happening on the other side, but I think people may be very cautious in getting politically active or debating online for those reasons.

>> JUTTA CROLL: Before you hand over the microphone, I would like to ask the remote moderator, did you get any questions so far? It's the roll this way, Eva and then Joao and Harris again.

>> EVA LIEVENS: I think there can be normative ways of involving youth and children. I think the real problem is that still too often participation is not taken seriously by policymakers. It's just something often that they think, oh, perhaps we should do it or maybe even after the decision has already been taken, but mostly, they just don't do it because you need certain skills. It takes organization. So really be willing to listen to what children and youth have to say. It happens very, very rarely by policymakers.

Only last week I was talking to someone in the field of data protection and data, policymakers who will be writing guidelines and they just say, but that's not something we do talking to children. That's for other people. It's for NGOs but not for policymakers. We are not the ones who do this. In will that way of thinking is actually being reversed, participation will own just mean what it currently means. So I think the real thing that needs to happen, is that participation by children and youth need to be taken seriously by the policymakers at all levels, at the local level and national level and by different actors, by the Data Protection Authorities or other organizations.

>> JUTTA CROLL: Before you start, there was someone at the end of the table. Could you just start passing the microphone to that person and then we continue, and when we are finished, you will have the microphone.

>> JOAO PEDRO: Yes, it was my argument precisely. I mean when you look at the Internet and I think the question was, does it allow for a lower threshold? I think, yes. And that means that you are opening the mic. You are creating more mics and allowing people to participate. But then you ask the question, is someone listening? Who is listening? And how do they interpret these messages that are being tried to be shouted.

It's different, because first we have to translate the messages from young people, they would put it in a raw perspective, and it has to be put into legislation or application of initiatives and then yes, it might get back in a sense that if these messages are not heard, you create frustration within the participation itself and that's what happens in example ‑‑ for example, when you have crisis in the European elections that nobody trusts or you have a low percentage of voters because of these issues of not being heard and interpreting those consequences.

>> JUTTA CROLL: We continue here and then you step in.

>> LILIANE: So I totally agree, because every time I'm attending such events, it's nice to hear from other people, who come from companies, oh, nice, you are attending the YOUthDIG. How about you ask me what I think what I expect from companies. That should be the question to ask. Not just saying that it's cool to do.

You mentioned YouTube and influencers and my cousin who is 9 years old, he has a YouTube channel. It's so much work. He puts so much time in it, but why does he do it? And he does it because it's popular, because you are proud of something and you feel cool. I feel cool as well if I attend such events but my friends don't think it's cool because I do it voluntarily. I just spent time working on something, but does it actually have an output? They don't know that it has, actually. What if we had influences not because they look cool or they do trips but because they do such things as we do so attending the YOUthDIGs or the Internet forum and tell other people, teenagers, kids, that it's ‑‑ we should stand up. We are the future. Like, without us, there won't be I future. We have to work for what we want and what we expect from the companies that right now have all the power.

>> JUTTA CROLL: Thank you.

>> HARIS: I think we are missing creative content online but I think also child are afraid to stand up online because they are afraid it will affect their online life and their offline life too, because there is cyberbullying and there is bullying also still.

>> JUTTA CROLL: We will come to the right to protection in the U.N. Convention, but first the floor is yours.

>> I'm from YC Youth and my research work is focused on the digital competence that also deals with the ability to use the information communication technologies. While the debate has been started from a different angle and now it's going so deep, it's interesting is. I want to make my position and also wanted to talk about my argument. When we talk about technology and, we forget that there are technologies and our generation, they are together. And when you go deep into that, and so there are different scholars that have studied it in the US and also in this part of the world, Pranski, they present the ideas of the Millennial, the X generation and Y, and now we have Z. Maybe many of us would be from generation Z and the other from Next Gen and the other from the generation Y. And also there are Baby Boomers.

But when you see these generations have different attitudes and behaviors to different experiences in their life experiences. And also sympathy there's a continuous change in those behaviors. When we think about the digital rights and the human rights, of course, there's a lot of information available on the involvement of children as a stakeholder in the debates of the Internet Governance, but then if we talk about the children as an apolitical, and then we talk about their literacy, their intellectual acceptance, because ‑‑ and you mentioned the expectations from the ‑‑ from the companies or from the organizations that are working in the digital sphere. First of all, you have to take a position. You have to come into mainstream so that you can expect something and your voice can be heard.

So the main thing that we are actually missing here is that how to engage those children, which are different ‑‑ which have different issues different part of the world. Half the world is not connected to the interacting net, right?

Still, there are different issues for these individuals. So every country, the situation is completely different. So how would we deal with such kind of their worst challenges and when you talk about the children?

>> JUTTA CROLL: So I would like to answer to that on two aspects. On one hand, the U.N. Convention on the Rights of the Child is such a transnational, multi, all around the world, 196 states have ratified the Convention. And also the situation is different in these countries but still they agreed that the children have these universal rights that shall be applied all around the world. And it's not like ‑‑ I agree with what Eva said before, and Simone. We need to understand these rights given to children in the respective way, considering the respective situation in the country.

And the second thing is that, yes, you are right. We still have a digital divide, but on the other hand, we have research evidence that all around the world, is one of ‑‑ one‑third of all Internet users around the world is under the age of 18. So that means the child in the sense of the U.N. Convention and when it comes to the global south, it's 50% of Internet users in these countries that are under the age of 18. So we are not talking about a small minority of people. We are talking of more or less half of the population in these countries and then in addition, we need to take into account that not all of them have access to the Internet.

So we are not talking about specific rights for a minority but rights for everybody.

>> AUDIENCE MEMBER: Just a quick point. You mentioned access to Internet, but when you talk about the U.N. Convention, I mean they have access somewhere. They don't have access somewhere. How do you deal with those type of situations in particular to make focus on, like when you build a consensus on a policy that has to be implemented in every country? Right?

So the policy comes from a ‑‑ from a level that the people decide for everybody, but then we have, like national public policies and rules and regulations as well. Isn't there a difference between those ‑‑ I mean, you talk about the digital divide, but the policy divide I would say?

>> JUTTA CROLL: Of course. Of course, you are right. We have also a policy divide, but I don't think the U.N. Convention is the instrument to solve all problems but it can help us to better understand children's rights and the digital media can hem us to better perform on these rights but I don't want to have a dialogue with you. I would like to include everybody around the table.

And I see Lili and Eva and Simone. So you as well.

>> LILIANE: To your question was like also how can we reach youth? And we actually have a good answer for that. So I think we should start with trying to reach people who have access and that's a lot of youth, and we had the idea of SAPA which is the smart active participation algorithm, which is like everything we see now. We are exposed to so many ads on Facebook, Instagram, and all kinds of platforms, but if one out of ten ads would be ‑‑ would be encouraging to participate in events such as EuroDIG and YOUthDIG. So that was our idea to work together with companies, big companies like Facebook, Google, et cetera, and just encourage other people according to Arthur age.

So if you are ten years old and you are already on Facebook, then you might be the target group for safe Internet forum. That was our idea.

I think if we are at these events to tell you our messages. That's one of our messages. If people from Facebook or other big companies or whatever are here, then just ask us, and we have an answer and we are willing to do something for it.

>> JUTTA CROLL: Thank you.

>> EVA LIEVENS: I think it's an interesting idea and I hope people Tom to your point. There are all of these national policies, but I think what we have been seeing in the past two years is that also at supernational and international level there is a discussion going on about how should states shape their policies around children and the digital environment? I don't know how many of you are aware of this Council of Europe guidelines on the rights of the child in the digital environment. This is really an effort for at least the 47 Member States of the Council of Europe to have a similar approach to these issues. And at the international level, there is currently a process going on to write a general comment about the rights of the child in the digital environment.

So whereas we don't need to change the UNCRC, at least this would be something that will give many, many countries all around the world to talk about these issues and to have some more information and understanding about how policies can be shaped and can be concerted.

So I think slowly we are getting there. That's aside from the national policies, there is some kind of international consensus as well.

>> JUTTA CROLL: And we will put the link to these guidelines into the report from the session and we have some copies printed copied but only in German language here around in the room, if someone wants to get one.

Yes, please, Simone.

>> SIMONE VAN DER HOF: Just picking up on the topic of differences, it's a slightly different remark but I think it's still important to maybe get it on the table here is that not just between countries, but also within countries, because we are now talking about children, like they are sort of one homogenous group of people of which, of course, they are not. We have different ages, but besides that, we have also children with different kinds of problems, vulnerable. We basically call them vulnerable children, which is also another homogenous group but a group of very different children that are sometimes very difficult to take into account when developing policy making initiatives.

So I'm thinking of children that have social emotional problems and have different problems on the Internet than most other children. I think refugee children, children that are living in poverty, also in the western world, all of these children may have different needs to use the Internet, different needs for protection, and it's very difficult to actually take them into account sometimes because it's also difficult to study them.

So most of the stud that's we have, the empirical research are about the average child. So to say we have different ages but it's the average child. And I know from researchers who are doing that kind of research, it is very difficult to also take them into account. But I just wanted to raise this here as something that we shouldn't forget also when we want to focus on policy making for the digital world, because the digital world can be very important for them, but sometimes in different ways.

>> JUTTA CROLL: Thank you.

>> HILDUR HALLDORSDOTTIR: I wanted to highlight those vulnerable children as well. In Iceland, there's a lot of debate around this. The children that are participating in the safer Internet forum, where I work, and they seem to be participating elsewhere too. These are very capable and strong and fabulous young people, but those kids that we cannot reach, I worry a little bit about them. They have maybe social and emotional problems and we can't reach them. So policymakers have to find a way to also recognize those children.

Maybe it's in Iceland those are very much children that live in rural areas, or ‑‑ yeah. So we have to take them into account as well. I agree on that.

>> JUTTA CROLL: Veronica.

>> VERONICA STEFAN: I will go back to participation as well, but I would also like to address the point you made and that is related to access to Internet. It's worth mentioning that any human right charter or document that has been formally adopted by Member States doesn't include the digital world or Internet in anyway. So access to Internet, it's not a universal right. Free access to Internet is not even a discussion, even in the civilized world right now. So this is the challenge we still have to face. There's Internet and technology. And while I don't have a long experience of working with Africa, for example, I do know that mobile finds, as it was mention, not smart mobile phones but mobile phones are very much used, and they are used earn in creating new currencies like the bit coin, except without Internet access or giving loans to people living in underprivileged. So they can bridge the gap. I don't know all the solutions out there, but we should look a little bit more in the underdeveloped regions as well. It's not like all in the west have the right answers to everything.

But then, second, to participation, I think with have to change a little bit the debate. Too much goes around participation around social media and this is a reactive approach. Social media was at our hands. It was entertainment. It's communication. Now it's also very powerful tool for campaigning and advocacy as well with the influencers and YouTubers and Instagram and everything around it. We need a more structured approach to participation in the digital era because in real life, participation doesn't happen when we meet and talk. This is not real participation. It has to be followed out of policies, meetings with decision makers, associations, during the policies and legislation.

Something similar, of course in a much different way needs to be done with technology and we have to speak about e‑participation in a different context. So social media is a small part of the world we are living in and we are referring to when we say technology and digital world. We are hanging on that. You know, social media is our universe and probably it's not always the best approach to it.

>> JUTTA CROLL: Thank you for reminding us that digital world is more than social media, but it's an important part of the digital world.

I think we have more or less addressed theme three, freedom of leisure, play and culture, it was mentioned by Simone. I think we also need to talk about the rights to protection and that means the right to privacy that we have addressed so far and also the right to be protected from commercial exploitation from sexual exploitation. So the children's rights are rights to freedom, but also rights to be protected from certain risks and threats and I turn again to Hildur because you are coming from a safer Internet Awareness node.

>> HILDUR HALLDORSDOTTIR: A little disclaimer. I work with mostly younger kids, like 11 to 12‑year‑olds and they think a lot about social media. I'm sorry. At least the ones I talk to. And they ‑‑ unfortunately they don't talk a lot about protection online. They know about their right to free speech and the right to privacy. But the right to protection and especially online, they don't know about it. And I'm quite saddened by this, and, yes.

>> JUTTA CROLL: What do you think how can we raise their awareness hand and how can we empower them to make use of that right and how can this protection be balanced with when they are aware of their freedom of expression rights? How can it be balanced and do they themselves think their rights would be infringed if this for more protected?

>> HILDUR HALLDORSDOTTIR: No, I don't think it would be infringed, but it's important to enhance the digital literacy in youth and also ‑‑ also teaching them about ethics and empathy online, and did, because like you guys said, and with the younger children, online is not a separate part of reality. That's very real reality for them. So they have to know ethics that apply in real life apply online. I think it's important to step up our game there and educating the parents and teaching them to educate their kids like what ‑‑ what is their right to protection.

>> JUTTA CROLL: So more comments on these questions?

>> SIMONE VAN DER HOF: Just this week, I came across a Ph.D. study from Holly Powell Jones. I don't know her personally, from the City University of London and what she did in her Ph.D. it, it was children 11 to 18 and she showed them messages online and to what extent they were legally relevant. Were they abusive? Were they sexually explicit, and indecent, discrimination and so on and so forth.

And one of the things you said, well, okay it's not really clear ‑‑ you know, some of the things that she came up with as a sort of reason why children have problems in that way, is that ‑‑ so there are three things I got from the research and I saw it this week, so I haven't read the whole Ph.D., just the conclusions.

So first of all, children are confused about what the law says. So for instance, when it comes to sexting, sexually explicit images and things I can like that, the fact that it could be a legal issue might be news to a lot of people. It's very much child pornography, especially when it's showing children.

One the other things she got when it comes to research is that children think that harm something physical, and not emotional or psychological. So when you post something, it's just words, it's not something that hurts others, which, of course is not true. We also know from other research.

And one of the other things ‑‑ so confusion about the law, it's something that the policymakers can pick up on, but one of the other things that they can pick up on as well, there seems to be a normalization when it comes to abusive content in the sense that what the children say, well, there's no policing. There are no consequences when you say something abusive, when you post abusive content online, no consequences for the other, but also perhaps not for yourself. So it's becoming sort of a murky, gray area, where it's probably seen as okay to say certain things and that is something that policymakers can pick up on very well, as well, I think.

So I found very interesting.

And one more general remark, because we are talking about rights all the time. But obviously these rights need to be implemented into laws, into policies. So we are ‑‑ you know, we shouldn't only educate them on their rights, but also the more broader domain of what these rights mean in society, in more concrete cases.

So then we have someone else from the floor.

>> EVA LIEVENS: Yes, I would like to make two short points. First one relates to something that Simone was saying. For instance, about sexting and how this is implemented in the law. One of my Ph.D. students has done research on how the provisions on child sexual abuse material in the '47 council of you're roam states might cover sexting images that are shared between children of certain ages.

This has proven to be one of the most complex things to research ever. It's so unclear. It's not even unclear from the legislative texts themselves but it's also unclear because in certain countries, when you ask people, there was a consultation from a committee. And so the Member States themselves had to say, do you criminalize this when it happens between children? And they said, well, actually, if you look at the law, it's a criminal offense, but, of course we never prosecute in practice.

This is causing a huge legal uncertainty, and this gives real problems for, for instance, civil society organizations, who want to raise awareness about sexting and who just don't know what to say to children. Is it legal? Is it illegal? Should you do it? Should you not do it? Should you make sure that your face is not on the image? So definitely there, it's a real task for policymakers to be clear about this, to make sure that the law is clear and that the law corresponds to the practice. Because if it's unclear for the policymakers themselves, it's unclear for children and parents as well.

That's first point. The second point is it relates again to the literacy argument. Literacy is crucial. It's essential. I think we all agree on, it but for certain practices that children are confronted with online, literacy actually puts quite a heavy burden on shoulders of children of parents.

By teaching them about certain risks, you also put a little bit of responsibility on their shoulders that they should be careful, that they should make sure that they don't engage in those risks; whereas, for certain practices, probably the responsibility should be shifted to other people. And so if I think about data protection, the responsibility clearly should be on data controllers for certain practices that might actually be harmful or intrusive to children's lives.

If you think about how data of children is being commercially exploited, data of children that is being sold for financial gain for purposes that are not conducive to the well‑being of children, well, even if, yes, children should be aware that this is happening, it should not be their responsibility that this is not happening. It should be the responsibility of the data controllers that they don't do this.

So I think that's very important that when we talk about literacy, yes, it's very important and there's a task for a risk on person practices.

>> JUTTA CROLL: So Joao and then over to you.

>> JOAO PEDRO: Usually if they are presented with a situation, they are not always, no, they don't always know that they ‑‑ their rights are being violated. And as you said, this is a discussion that comes already from 2016, from a safer Internet forum, which brings us to children's resilience to harmful content.

Things get normal and get usual online that are not normal in real offline life, because parents are aware of these situations and were presented once before of those ‑‑ of the situations. And they ‑‑ they were reacting to these situations and they would then be able to, perhaps ‑‑ if their children were presented with the same information, to provide feedback on it.

The problem here is that when a new online situation arises, it's ‑‑ it's difficult for the parents, in one way to present them with solutions, probably if they don't have a suggestion, don't know what mechanisms are there to help them and it's really a question, as you pointed out, who is the responsibility to act in those situations, and do children ‑‑ children need to know who is responsible and what do they have to really think about it when they are presented in those situations.

>> JUTTA CROLL: Thank you. So over to you, please. Could you please introduce yourself. A.

>> AUDIENCE MEMBER: My name is Claudia. And I'm a primary school teacher. I work at a private school, so they are quite rich children, which means they all have SmartPhones. I'm talking Samsung Galaxy S10, way better than most of us have. They are not allowed them at school, but they slip through. I see every day how they are using the Internet. They ask me for my Instagram and they live stream parties and tough. They don't seem to really be bothered by anything. I think most of them have private accounts. I think their parents have put private accounts on their settings, but that's about it.

And also from the parents who I met who are in their late 20s and early 30s, also quite young themselves, they use their SmartPhones in exactly the same way. I guess my question is: As an educator, so where can we come in to make sure that the kids know ‑‑ just to make sure that they are being safe online. The way I see it, they have their YouTube channels and everything. They kind of just do their thing without really thinking about who might be watching.

>> JUTTA CROLL: Okay. Thank you for that question. We have Jessica and we will I have to answer that question as well.

>> AUDIENCE MEMBER: This is a point that connects with both of these. I completely agree with you. Sometimes I worry when it comes to messages of digital literacy that we are putting it on the young people themselves and it worries me quite a bit and I think it's impossible for them to achieve that way.

We talk about public policymakers and stakeholders and playing a role. One thing I have recently been doing is working with digital media companies. And that's an interesting space to work with. Digital companies who are in the youth media space. They are thinking of the financial model. And I have been working with one company in Denmark who is interested in sitting down with me saying we are looking to revise our platforms and think about the messages that we could do. Instead of don't do this, but instead go the reverse, this is a great behavior. This is a healthy digital practice. This looks great. And relying on more positive messaging as well. That's something that we can think about as far as supporting and not putting it on young people themselves.

And then your point in terms of classrooms. I think it's beautiful that you are asking this question and I think teachers rock, just as a side note. You are saying what can we do? And some of the teachers are saying I don't know what the answer to these questions are. I that's a big burden. Hey, teachers can answer these questions. One, we are assuming that they have the information that I'm not sure they do. Two, they on often don't have the support or the time in their classrooms. They are being told, here's so many things they can do. The entire thing happening in young people's lives just go with the flow. So I think it's great that you are raising it.

I have seen some things they EU level that they are think about doing, the digicam framework for teachers. If there are amazing people such as yourself saying, how do we do it, then one of the things we need to do is give you the tools on how do it. I don't think it's fair to assume that you have them.

>> JUTTA CROLL: Thank you. We have now Hildur again and then Lili.

>> HILDUR HALLDORSDOTTIR: I actually wanted to address both of those questions. At least to me, digital literacy means not only how to go online or just take in any material. It's about being critical of the material that you see. And also knowing, like, okay, these are safe spaces. So that's something you can deal with. You can point them in the right direction, and you can talk about, like, what are we sharing? What do we share in real life? Would you go out to the streets and tell everybody about the party you were at? Or would you only want to show that to your friends?

And just talk about how the medias work and how the different platforms work. Yeah. That's ‑‑

>> JUTTA CROLL: You refer to the platforms. Don't you think that what you suggested right now could also be supported by the platforms because so far the platforms don't support the thinking about all ‑‑ what do you share with whom.


>> JUTTA CROLL: It's only in the media literacy part, where no children go when they use platform.


>> JUTTA CROLL: It could be like go where the children are when they use the platform and try to have these media literacy methods just right there when they are about to share something. And we are not ‑‑ we have not come to that point so far.

>> HILDUR HALLDORSDOTTIR: No. And also within the digital literacy to know that if ‑‑ if you know your right, you know your right to be protected against harmful material. So that when you meet that harmful material, that you can know that, okay, this is not my fault. I did not click something. It is not my fault and then you know what to do. You have to keep an open conversation both as a teacher and parent, to your kids so they know that they can come to you. They can look for you. And know where they can report the site online. So they just don't sit alone. They recognize something online and ‑‑

>> JUTTA CROLL: Just a quick comment from Jessica and then we turn to that side of the table and then we need to come to phrase our messages from the session.

>> AUDIENCE MEMBER: What you were saying literally reflects the five key areas in helping kids. It's the idea of the critical thinking and highlighting communication and collaboration and this idea of creative spaces. These are fun great things that kids can be doing. It is safety idea and it's also the ability to learn how to ask questions when they aren't sure. So it's a much broader conversation than just about this, like ‑‑ like this is harmful, but it's all about the opportunities too. I think your point is really well taken. It would be much easier for people with yourself to work with kids with those broader messages.

>> JUTTA CROLL: Okay. Lili, please.

>> LILIANE: So according to your question, which was great, I think the worst thing you could do as a teacher is shut the down conversation because you are afraid of not being the expert at once. If you don't know how to handle maybe the topic sexting, then let the kids be the experts and let them explain what challenges are there and then what risks are there? And then when you know what they think about it, you can do some research and come back to it later.

An example from my work, I'm attending a lot of, like, workshops with younger people as well. And I'm not that much older as they are, but still they think that I'm older and they have to be taught by me. What I do is I kind of like make a topic sexy. So if ‑‑ like, they didn't want really to talk to me about risk and challenges online. So what I said was, like, do you know what sexting is? And had they were like, not really. It was really embarrassing and then I started talking that do you know that Snapchat is saving all images you are sending? They were really shocked and they had no idea about it.

Then the discussion started, okay, maybe it's not that embarrassing anymore, and I can start talking.

Another point I wanted to say because of what you mentioned, we're ‑‑ I'm actually working on a youth panel with ‑‑ focusing on people with migration background. So I was starting to talk to them. Do you need like material in your own language or what should we do so that people from your countries get active. And they were actually saying that they don't need materials in the language. They don't need to be, like, specifically address but their parents, because their parents are usually not allowing phones because they don't know how to handle the situation.

So I think the first thing we have to do is get the ‑‑ get the parents to, like, get into the topic, and help them understand that social media, SmartPhones, the Internet is not something that you can just like shut down or put the phone away, and just never hear from it again. That's not how it works. So I think that's the first thing.

Pear and after that, we can report to a youth with a migration background, which I think is so important. They also have some different points like the average does. So great point. Yeah.

>> May I add something to the commercial side?


>> VERONICA STEFAN: Maybe in terms of using data for commercial use, we might be also aware that we don't know everything at this point because studies that come up show that especially young people, 14 to 18 and plus are more in favor, first of all, sharing their data with private entities like online platforms, and less with government. And secondly, they would be more interested in selling the data they have to other companies are actually blockchain solutions that kind of start proposing that. So the medical data, instead of just giving it freely ‑‑ or you might at some point sell it. At this point, just a point of information, we can get ‑‑ it is bad at this point. But maybe it will turn out to be something different.

>> JUTTA CROLL: To you, Haris.

>> HARIS: I wanted to talk about the companies informing their users on how to use the Internet better. I think it's against their policy. If Facebook and Google educate people, and give less data to them, it's against their business model. Why to do it if there's no regulation in place?

Also I wanted to say about the educational part, the safe alliance, they do educational sessions in schools. So they educate the children and the teachers but many times, they do educational sessions in the afternoons for their parents and the parents don't do so well. Like 10%. So there is the tools to educate the parents but the parents don't want to participate if it's not mandatory. Why to do it.

And Claudia, many times they try to educate their children about it. If something happens online, it transfers to school. Sometimes if they fight on WhatsApp, and then they fight in school. Many times they are judged negatively by the parent. That's what I wanted to say.

>> JUTTA CROLL: Thank you for your question and input. I do think that we will have another session during EuroDIG that is called ‑‑ is now the time that self‑regulation ends and we need more regulation and probably that addresses exactly what you have said, because for the past years, we have seen that more or less this was the area of self‑regulation for the platform providers and for industry, in general was the GDPR for more or less after certain times, but we have seen regulation for privacy that goes a different way, that sets more unregulation, setting rules for platform providers and we will see whether it works or not. So far we have not seen so many companies that have fallen under that regulation buzz they don't comply with it, we will see what happens when it's in force.

[Off microphone comment]

>> JUTTA CROLL: Are underway, but not yet. We haven't seen the outcome yet. So we will see whether that form of regulation will work in future.

And I have to look at my notes. Okay. We have now more or less ten minutes left, and we are supposed to phrase some messages. I have taken notes but first of all, I would like to turn to our rapporteur and ask her what she has taken as messages. I will then ask everybody in the room to compliment your messages and then we can have a look at what we have taken for notes.

I prefer what you have started. Okay.

>> Hello, everyone, my name is Andrijana Gavrilovic, I'm with the Geneva Internet platform. We had one message five minutes in the session that said policymakers and other stakeholders should give more room to the voices of children and listen more often what children have to say about internet governance.

That is okay? No one has any objections? All right. Another message is that there is a need for them to understand what children are doing, in order engage with what children are doing online. That is all right.

I don't know how to format our message on digital literacy. I would like some feedback on that message, if that's possible at all, we need to formulate this very, very nicely and concisely. Thank you.

>> JUTTA CROLL: So I look around to the panel but also to the room. You have something to add? Please take the microphone.

>> SIMONE VAN DER HOF: Yes, maybe we can distinguish it between ‑‑ I think literacy, more generally, and digital literacy, they are very important. But we have so see what children actually need in that respect. And the other part of it being a burden was also very much in line with what Eva said about responsiblization of children, parents, but also teachers.

So putting the burden ‑‑ to take as an example, the social media platforms, not always working as they maybe should when we look from a children's right perspective. Being as the problem of children themselves. And to add something there is because my colleague and right in front of me, Jessica, yes. You talked about an example of a company that really wanted to do it well, that wanted children on their platforms.

But mostly, we see the opposite actually. It's not something that's been mentioned yet. So children are actually banned from platforms because if you allow children, it is a burden on the companies themselves. Sometimes even companies that want to do will ban children. We don't really know and there's about a confusion part. Also we don't really know how to do it well enough, to not be responsible or even liable when something goes bad. So it's not just the companies that want to make a lot of money but it's also the companies would want to do well who say we don't allow children on our platform, because we just don't know how to do it well. It's too much of a burden. It costs a lot of money and it's a business risk.

>> JUTTA CROLL: Haris again.

>> HARIS: We should provide digital literacy and knowledge groups in order to have immunity to digital literacy and these digital problems.

>> SIMONE VAN DER HOF: One remark, digital literacy is not just about coding. Learning children to code. It's in nice to have that as part of the program, but that's something completely different. Digital literacy is also learning children about the complexities of the digital world. So I always make the comparison, we learn children about what democracy is and the political systems are in the same way we should teach what the Internet and the digital skills are. It's different from teaching them to code because this is a constructed world. You can make different choices. So if you know how to code the world, you can code it in ways that are, well, maybe different than some of the social media platforms would code it. So it's a constructed world. It's important but not the same.

>> JOAO PEDRO: And in a more practical way, we would have to address digital literacy from the different levels and the different stakeholders. I think that would be a nice way of putting.

>> JUTTA CROLL: So we have someone there.

>> AUDIENCE MEMBER: I think the whole word here is literacy. And as far as the word goes, I think it should be implied at the policy level to make sure at least it is ‑‑ it is also important and treated as important as other subjects. It's not just about coding, but when kids know how to code, it's as important as also teaching others who are not interested in coding, understand exactly what are the dangers that are behind the decisions of the platforms that they use. So I think it should be at the ministerial level to make sure that schools at the primary level start teaching students formally to understand the implications of the platforms that they are using. Dangers, the importance. Thank you.

>> JUTTA CROLL: Thank you. So to wrap up with regard to the digital literacy issue. I think we also said that we don't need literacy training only for children but also for parents, teachers, educational staff, and we need to highlight that it's two sides of the coin. We need the digital literacy to make the children resilient but we don't rely on digital literacy only. We also need to take and to make industry and data controllers responsible and their responsibility. So it's a balanced approach on the digital literacy and the children and the parents and the digital providers.

We need to ensure access for all children. It's not a given fact that there's access for all children. There was also a message that phrased that policymakers need to take participation more serious so not only enabling, but taking it more seriously. That's related to having their voices heard and it's related to participation and therefore I think it's necessary to stress that.

And then don't you think, Lili, we should phrase a message around the SAPA. Could you phrase it somehow?

>> LILIANE: We have it in our youth messages. I can give you the explanation we have.

>> JUTTA CROLL: That's wonderful.

>> LILIANE: So we want an algorithm built in multipurpose algorithm of SAPA. It's to replace some of the ads we are exposed to while browsing on the Internet with information about COA initiatives. SAPA will suggest different opportunities based on the age of the users in order to engage the powerful of all ages through initiatives through the Internet.

>> JUTTA CROLL: That's really well phrased and feeds directly into the participation aspect. And so it's well related to each other. Thank you so much.

I think we are nearly finalized. I would like to thank for organizing the session and the panelists and the key persons for your engagement in the debate, and I do think that we have lots of things to ‑‑ to put into the messages and I hope that we ‑‑ next year at EuroDIG, wherever it will take place, we will have a plenary session on children's ideas. Thank you so much.


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