COE EMPOWERS CHILDREN TO DEAL WITH BOTH POSITIVE AND NEGATIVE SIDES OF THE INTERNET AND OTHER NEW TECHNOLOGIES

Council of Europe
http://www.coe.int/
Sept 29 2006

/noticias.info/ The Council of Europe's Committee of Ministers has
called on member states to make information technology an integral
part of school education from an early age, to help children maximise
benefits and avoid pitfalls of the Internet and other new technologies.

The 46-member Council of Europe is taking a positive approach to deal
with harmful content on the Web, partly in response to the dangers
posed by the Internet.

Measures approved in a new Committee of Ministers' Recommendation
include giving children the skills to create, produce and distribute
content in new technologies, respecting the rights and freedoms of
others while also promoting their own right to freedom of expression.

The recommendation calls for member states to ensure that these
skills enable children to better understand and deal with questionable
content, including violence, pornography, discrimination and racism.

In addition, the forthcoming Council of Europe Pan-European Forum
in Yerevan, Armenia, on 5 and 6 October 2006 will bring together
representatives of Council of Europe member states, civil society,
the private sector, academia and the media, and other interested
organisations.

"Empowering children to use the Internet is the best filter," said
Maud de Boer-Buquicchio, Council of Europe Deputy Secretary General,
several days ahead of the forum.

The forum will stress that filtering and labelling Internet content
is not enough to ensure that children and young people can surf the
web safely - in the exercise of their rights and freedoms, including
the freedom to hold opinions and to receive and impart information
and ideas.

Children and young people need to be, and to feel, empowered when using
the Internet, so they can competently use its tools and services and
critically analyse Internet content and communications.

By equipping them and their educators with appropriate skills and
knowledge, they will be able to exercise their rights and freedoms
fully and responsibly, to improve their development and well-being
online.

On the web: http://www.coe.int/T/E/Human_Rights/media .