Press release - 093(2009)

Safer Internet Day 2009

Council of Europe handbook teaches safety for online social networking

Strasbourg, 09.02.2009 – On the eve of Safer Internet Day 2009, the Council of Europe is launching a new edition of The Internet Literacy Handbook, which offers teachers, parents and students a full guide on getting the most out of the Internet while being protected from its risks.

This edition incorporates specific tips on how to participate in online social networks, such as MySpace, Facebook or Friendster, and web 2.0. Thousands of young people and children are today interacting with their friends, classmates and people with common hobbies or interests, frequently publishing personal data and photographs. Sharing this information is a great opportunity for communication with others, but implies risks that users must know how to avoid.

The Internet Literacy Handbook contains 25 fact sheets that offer technical knowledge on how to use the internet, points out ethical issues and provides advice on how best to use the Internet for educational purposes. It also provides ideas for practical activities in class or at home and best practices.

The fact sheets include tips and exercises on how to search for information, participate in chats or blogs, learn or play online, and protect privacy and security. They also contain information on how to avoid bullying or harassment, become an active e-citizen, shop online or report online illegal activities.

“As technologies evolve, the educational needs of Internet users change too. This handbook can help teachers and parents to teach students to use the Internet efficiently and be aware of its risks. It also invites users to contribute to making the Internet a user-friendly environment fully respectful of human rights”, declared Janice Richardson, the editor of the handbook.

Safer Internet Day takes place in February every year to promote safer and more responsible use of online technology and mobile phones, especially among children and young people across the world.

Council of Europe - Children and the Internet

Contact: Jaime Rodríguez, Press Officer, Tel. +33 (0) 689 99 50 42;

Council of Europe Directorate of Communication
Tel: +33 (0)3 88 41 25 60
Fax:+33 (0)3 88 41 39 11