Every February since 2004, Safer Internet Day – organised by the Insafe/INHOPE network of European Safer Internet Centres (SICs) with the support of the European Commission* – is a global, community-led observance which provides a space for all stakeholders to reflect on how together we can promote a responsible, respectful, critical and creative use of digital technologies, with the ultimate goal of fostering a better internet for all. Having grown in scope over the years, Safer Internet Day is now celebrated by children, young people, parents and carers, teachers, educators and social workers, industry, decision makers and politicians from over 200 countries and territories.
Once again, the celebrations will look a little different this year as COVID-19 constraints are still in place, but we know that SID 2022 will be as vibrant and engaging as ever, thanks to the resourcefulness and creativity of the wide network of SID supporters, thus allowing us all to reflect on how we can promote, protect, respect and fulfil the rights of all children and young people when they go online.
2022 has been designated the European Year of Youth: in the last two years, the pandemic has heavily impacted on the mental health and ambitions of many young people, but it has equally shown that youth remain the first source of hope for a better future. For this edition of Safer Internet Day, we will be reflecting on the outcomes of the recent #DigitalDecade4YOUth consultation work which heard directly from Europe’s children and young people (and those that support them) on How to make Europe’s Digital Decade fit for children and young people?.
There are other things to look forward to in 2022, a year that will be packed with initiatives and plans aimed at including youth priorities in relevant EU policy areas. For example, just last month, the European Commission put forward a draft declaration on digital rights and principles for everyone in the EU which will help to develop projected trajectories for each target of the path to the Digital Decade, together with Member States. It will place a spotlight on areas such as access, education, inclusion, safe online spaces, and empowerment and privacy within them, which are all key to providing positive online experiences. Additionally, the launch of an updated European Strategy for a Better Internet for Children (commonly known as the BIK Strategy) is imminent. This important policy framework will lay the foundations for creating safer, better and empowering online experiences for children and youth for years to come.
In the meantime, be sure to:
- visit www.saferinternetday.org to get an idea of how our SID committees and supporters are celebrating Safer Internet Day 2022, and to find a variety of resources and inspiration for your own plans.
- discover more about the event in the Safer Internet Day 2022 infographic.
- keep an eye on the official Safer Internet Day Twitter and Facebook pages and follow the activities on social media with the hashtags #SaferInternetDay and #SID2022. This year, for the first time, we will also celebrate SID2022 on the Better Internet for Kids’ LinkedIn and TikTok accounts.
* Safer Internet Day would not be possible without the support of the European Commission. Currently the funding is provided by the Connecting Europe Facility programme (CEF). In the future, actions will be funded through the Digital Europe Programme.