Front cover of the new parental guide “CHILDREN ARE GAMING!”
92 per cent of the 1-15-year-olds have played a digital game, and approximately one in every two plays on a daily basis. These are some of the key findings of a national survey on the gaming habits of Danish children and young people*. The many findings supported the thesis and ideas that the Danish Safer Internet Day working group had been developing and so, on Tuesday, 9 February 2021, the survey and a range of materials saw the light of the day.
Gaming is entertainment, play, learning and social communities
Safer Internet Day 2021 was organised by The Danish Media Council for Children and Young People in collaboration with the other Danish Safer Internet Centre partners; Save the Children and Centre for Digital Youth Care. The primary goal for the Safer Internet Day campaign and for our work in general is to promote and support a positive gaming culture among children and young people. At the same time, we acknowledge that adults – parents as well as professionals in, for instance, youth centres and schools – need more information, guidance and knowledge to be able to understand and support children and young people that love gaming.
Playing digital games is first and foremost entertaining, but it is also involves playing, learning and being a part of a social community – like a lot of other hobbies. To be able to have a constructive dialogue about gaming and playing time, it is important that grown-ups understand what gaming is all about and have knowledge on specific titles or genres. All these topics are on the agenda in the range of materials we are releasing today. We hope parents, youth centre workers and others will find them useful.
Quote from newsletter, 9 February 2021, Stine Liv Johansen, chairman of the Media Council for Children and Young people.
Screenshot from the webinar for parents with the two experts, Morten Saxtorff and Christian Mogensen
Big live event on Safer Internet Day
Three weeks before Safer Internet Day, we announced a live webinar for parents, taking place on Facebook. The event achieved great interest with a total reach of 229,000, and 2,100 unique viewers during the live streaming. The hour-long programme included a panel discussion where two experts discussed different family situations related to gaming and took questions from the audience. Furthermore, the webinar included a visit from 12-year-old Fortnite gamer Daniel and his dad, Peter. Peter has become a gamer and Twitch-streamer with 10,000 followers after having previously participated in a TV series where parents had to battle their children in Fortnite. Daniel and Peter provided insight into the everyday life of a “gamer family”.
Guide for the parents, tutorials for the professionals, and t-shirts for the children
"CHILDREN ARE GAMING!" (Danish: "BØRN GAMER!") is a new parental guide with insights, specific areas in need of attention, and guidelines on how to talk to your child about, for example, time spent online, tone of voice and in-game purchases. The guide is available in print and online.
Different kinds of tools are available for professionals. New tutorials shed light on good elements as well as critical points of attention in the most popular digital games. The activities of digital games turned into physical play is a fun way of working with the most loved games like Among Us and Fortnite – for instance in the school yard. The physical versions are developed and tested by youth centre workers.
SID 2021 children’s t-shirt with references to some of the most popular games
As a fun gimmick, we had special edition SID 2021 children’s t-shirts produced. Some were distributed through a Facebook competition and the rest will be going out to youth centres across the country to be used in local gaming competitions.
The campaign has been very well received by the public, while feedback from the professionals has also been positive. The COVID-19 situation has unfortunately limited the use of the materials to an extent, but hopefully that will change when schools open again. The webinar is still available online and has received a further 1,000 views to date since Safer Internet Day.
*The survey was carried out by research institute Epinion on behalf of the Media Council for Children and Young People, the Danish Film Institute and the national broadcasting company, Denmark’s Radio.
Find out more about Safer Internet Day in Denmark. Alternatively, find out more about the work of the Danish Safer Internet Centre, including its awareness raising, helpline, hotline and youth participation services – or find similar information for Safer Internet Centres throughout Europe.