Cy­ber quiz launched for safety

Auckland City Harbour News - - YOUR PA­PER, YOUR PLACE - JAMES PASLEY

An on­line quiz has been launched to arm New Zealand stu­dents with the dig­i­tal skills they need to be safe and smart on­line.

The in­ter­ac­tive on­line quiz called Dig­i­tal Li­cence will teach stu­dents how to re­act if they are ex­posed to in­ap­pro­pri­ate and of­fen­sive con­tent on­line or en­counter cy­ber bul­ly­ing.

It also high­lights the con­se­quences of shar­ing pri­vate in­for­ma­tion on­line.

It ex­plored the ef­fects of racist com­ments, how long pho­tos stay on­line once posted, what do with ‘‘nasty gos­sip’’ and delet­ing past posts.

The pro­gramme was launched on Tues­day at an X Fac­tor-like game show at Point Eng­land school hosted by New Zealand re­al­ity show host Do­minic Bow­den.

The soft­ware was de­vel­oped by the Alan­nah and Made­line Foun­da­tion, a not-for-profit ded­i­cated to keep­ing chil­dren safe from vi­o­lence and bul­ly­ing.

The foun­da­tion part­nered with Google New Zealand to make the li­cence freely avail­able to year eight and nine stu­dents around the coun­try.

Alan­nah and Made­line Foun­da­tion chief ex­ec­u­tive Les­ley Podesta said with chil­dren spend­ing more time on­line it made sense for them to learn how to be safe and smart.

She said it was like learn­ing to swim.

Just as swimming teach­ers don’t throw chil­dren off the cliff and tell them ‘drown or swim’, stu­dents us­ing the in­ter­net had to be guided, she said.

‘‘The quiz steps you through all the risks so that you can swim safely on the waters of the in­ter­net.’’

Podesta said the quiz would be­gin with year eight and nines in New Zealand be­cause this ver­sion of the quiz ex­plored con­tro­ver­sial ma­te­rial and ex­plicit images.

‘‘We want most fam­i­lies to feel pos­i­tive about kids do­ing the quiz,’’ Podesta said.

Point Eng­land School prin­ci­pal Russell Burt said the Dig­i­tal Li­cence would be a valu­able ad­di­tion to the skills his stu­dents were be­ing taught.

The li­cense is cur­rently used by more than 200,000 stu­dents in Aus­tralia.

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