Antananarivo, February 10th, 2020 -
On the occasion of the Safer Internet Day, UNICEF Madagascar has launched its first Facebook instant game to promote child rights.
For this first launch, two mini-games are available including a quizz about online security. No installation is required as the game is available through the Facebook application or using a web browser like Google Chrome, Opera Mini or Firefox. Everyone with an internet access can play. Other modules, concerning other aspects of child's rights will be developed in the future and according to the requests of young users.
In addition to the Facebook game, UNICEF also conducted a social experiment in collaboration with the NGO Youth First. A group of young social media users were invited for a surprise game where each of them was to give a press conference in front of a camera and a small group of strangers. What they did not know is that the questions would be about their public posts on social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, or Snapchat. The objective was to remind the participants that social media posts are accessible to everyone and for a very long time: to parents, to future recruiters, but also to strangers or possible threats. "I felt very weird talking about my life in front of the camera and these strangers. I hadn't realized how embarrassing what I posted on Facebook could be," said Antoniaina, 15.
Safer Internet Day is marked around the world every Tuesday in the second week of February to promote the safe and positive use of digital technology, especially among children and young people. It aims to reach children and young people, parents and guardians, teachers, as well as industry, decision-makers and politicians, to encourage everyone to play their part in creating better internet. The most serious threat remains sexual exploitation, however other challenges exist: online harassment is becoming more frequent and can be deeply troubling for social media users, especially young ones.
UNICEF is the United Nations agency mandated to advocate for the promotion of child's rights. These rights have not changed since their adoptions 30 years ago, however the world is evolving and today's children face new challenges that did not exist 30 years ago. It is estimated that more than one in three children around the world connect regularly.
In Madagascar, 13% of households (31% in urban areas) connect to the internet (MICS, 2018), with more than half of all internet users (6 out of 10) being adolescents (ITU, 2017).
The first Safer Internet campaign launched by UNICEF Madagascar in 2019 has prompted actors cross a range of field to take action. "UNICEF welcomes the initiatives that are taking place, proving that there is a will to act to ensure that our children grow up in a safer world, both physically and virtually," explained Michel Saint -Lot, representative of UNICEF in Madagascar
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The State of the World’s Children 2017: Children in a Digital World
Digital technology has transformed the world we live in – disrupting entire industries and changing the social landscape.
Childhood is no exception. One in three internet users worldwide is a child, and young people are now the most connected of all age groups.
UNICEF promotes the rights and wellbeing of every child, in everything we do. Together with our partners, we work in 190 countries and territories to translate that commitment into practical action, focusing special effort on reaching the most vulnerable and excluded children, to the benefit of all children, everywhere.