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Facebook tells kids how to surf the social network safely

The social network launches Safety Youth, a portal-guide in 60 languages with information on how to move around on the platform (including privacy and publications).

A portal dedicated to young people, offering a guide on how to navigate on the social network, on how to protect themselves and also helping to understand how data are used. The space is called Safety Youth and it was launched by Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg‘s social network, which is at the centre of a colossal data scandal (see Cambridge Analytica). In Menlo Park, they are going on the counter-attack, despite the fact that the datagate scandal has not been completely archived (and perhaps never will be) and that the GDPR is coming on 25 May. But let’s take a closer look at how Safety Youth is structured and how it works. The youth portal goes live today in 60 languages.

Think before you publish

“General tips, expert advice, information on privacy and security and anything else that can help you have a great experience on Facebook. It’s also a space where you can find out what your peers actually think about the issues that are important to them online.” The portal looks like this.

Basics and tips

There are two main sections: Facebook Basics and Tips and Resources. Inside, many of the spaces are dedicated to basic topics, such as how to publish, how to block a user, how to defend oneself. In the Guiding Principles, there are tips structured as advice from everyday life: such as, ‘Before posting, pause and ask yourself: Would I feel comfortable reading this out loud to my parents and grandparents? There will always be people in your school who are overloaded with social media (and adults in your life who are too). Resist the urge, ignore them and reserve the details for your close friends only.” These are some of the tips you read. But one of the most interesting aspects of Safety Youth is the information about Facebook’s data policy, which is organised in a more accessible way.

A page of information

At the end of the day, it’s an information page. Admittedly, the portal will not solve the problems of cyberbullying or abuse on the platform, but it is a good resource for targeting younger users and is more likely to be looked at than the Terms of Service (which generally contain the same information).


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