Facebook Touts Launch Of A Platform For Good

By David Cohen 

A Platform for Good, a new online resource from the Family Online Safety Institute aimed at parents, teachers, and teens, launched Wednesday after being initially announced in February, and FOSI member Facebook plugged the launch in a note on the Facebook Safety page.

Some of the features offered by A Platform for Good include:

  • For parents: A “Teach Parents Tech” section that will allow teens to educate their parents about technology, as well as polls for parents to choose which topics they want to learn more about, with the interactive feature to debut in November.
  • For teachers: Short videos for classroom use to foster discussion about the online world in the “Teach Teachers Tech” section.
  • For teens: The “What I Wish My Parents Knew” sweepstakes, which allows teens to submit videos or essays detailing what they wish their parents knew about technology.

Facebook said in the note on the Facebook Safety page:

At Facebook, nothing is more important than the safety of the people who use our service. We believe that helping families teach teens digital citizenship skills is a critical and essential part of providing a safe and secure experience online. That is why we are excited to participate in launch of A Platform for Good, a new resource from the Family Online Safety Institute.

A Platform for Good will leverage the distribution of sponsors and partners to ensure that FOSI’s digital citizenship messages reach the audience. For example, FOSI is using Facebook’s open graph so that when people read digital citizenship articles, they can share with friends on Facebook and have the content appear in their Facebook timeline.

Facebook Vice President for Global Public Policy Marne Levine added:

Kids are growing up in an increasingly digital world, which has had a profoundly positive impact on the way they connect with the world around them and learn new skills. FOSI’s approach to digital citizenship is unique and innovative: It is leveraging technology to help parents and educators teach teens how to make safe, smart choices online. We’re thrilled to join A Platform for Good.

And FOSI CEO Stephen Balkam said:

Research shows that the majority of online interactions are positive. By giving parents, teens, and teachers opportunities to engage with one another both online and offline, we can help change the current conversation about digital technologies — moving the needle from fear to opportunity.

FOSI’s members are: AOL, AT&T, BAE Systems Detica, BT Retail, Comcast, Disney, Entertainment Software Association, Facebook, France Telecom, Google, GSM Association, Microsoft, Motion Picture Association of America, NCTA, Nominum, Optenet, RuleSpace, Sprint, Symantec, Time Warner Cable, Telecom Italia, Telefónica, Telmex, USTelecom, The Wireless Foundation, Verizon, and Yahoo.

Readers: Do you think A Platform for Good will be a useful tool for parents, teachers, and teens?