Last week I attended the regional eResponsibility Forum meeting which was held at the City Learning Centre in South Shields. The forum is attended by representatives from schools, colleges, local authorities and councils and other agencies such as Northern Grid for Learning and the Police.
Merv Stapleton from JISC RSC Northern gave an interesting presentation about Managing your Digital Footprint and there were some activities about using the different social networking tools and how they link people together.
One activity was about donuts
Another activity was snippets of information about people and you had to work out how they were connected and also how their information could be accessed by other people who were connected to someone connected to them!
Then there was a talk by from Mick Young from NGfL showing the latest esafety resources that can be used in schools and colleges and some CEOP resources that can be used.
The video resources are useful especially for schools showing how to use Facebook and other social media platforms safely but also trying to explain to young people that once you have put a photo online then you have no control over it and no control over who sees it.
I think eSafety is very important but it is a matter of being eResponsible - you are not going to stop young people from using social networking and indeed you shouldn't, but it is important to interact in the same way as you would in real life. You wouldn't pass round unsuitable photos of yourself to friends or friends of friends or strangers so why would you post one online.
I think it's important to be positive about using the Internet and highlight the benefits aswell as the pitfalls.