Real Rights are needed in the Virtual Universe
7 Febbraio 2022 | Milano
9.00 – 11.00 | Digital ecosystem for the future generations
Chair: Federico Ferrazza (Director Wired Italy), and Martina Pennisi, (Journalist Corriere della Sera). Institutional greetings Prof. Gianmario Verona, Dean of Bocconi University in Milan Min. Elena Bonetti, Minister Minister for Equal Opportunities and Family Anna Scavuzzo, Deputy mayor of the Milan Keynote speeches by:
- Prof. Ernesto Caffo, President SOS – il Telefono Azzurro Onlus
- Prof. Oreste Pollicino, (Professor of Constitutional Law and Director of LL.M. in Law of Internet Technology)
- Prof. Maurizio Ferraris, Professor of Theoretic Phylosophy, University of Turin
- Prof. Michele Colajanni, Professor, Bologna University
- Agostino Santoni, President Confindustria Digitale
- Francesco Profumo, President of Compagnia di San Paolo Foundation
- Cristina Liverani, Research Manager Doxa
- Laura Bononcini, Director Public Policy, Southern Europe, Meta
- Diego Ciulli, Head of Government Affairs and Public Policy, Google Italy
Matteo Mille, Chief Marketing and operations officer di Microsoft Italia
11.00 – 12.00 | Artificial intelligence, big data and gaming in the future of the economy and social development
Chair: Emilio Puccio, European Parliament Intergroup on Children’s Rights Speakers: Prof. Giuseppe Riva (Professor of General Psychology, Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore di Milano), Alessandro Bogliolo (Coordinator Europe code week, Creator of CodyTrip), Guido Scorza (Member of Italian Authority for Data Protection), On. Brando Benifei (Head of the Italian S&D Delegation), Prof. Alfio Ferrara (Professor of IT, Università degli Studi di Milano, La Statale).
12.00-13.00 | The new generation and digital communication
Chair: Daniele Chieffi, Journalist and University teacher Speakers: Martina Pennisi (Journalist Corriere della Sera) Federico Ferrazza (Director Wired Italy) Prof. Giovanni Ziccardi (Associate Professor of Philosophy of Law – Università degli Studi di Milano), Francesco Cancellato (Direttore Fanpage.it), Luigi Rancilio (Desk Centrale e Social Manager of Avvenire), Carlo Bartoli (President Order of Journalists, Giuseppe de Bellis (Director Sky Tg24), Luca Milano (Director Rai Ragazzi), Paolo Biondolillo (Vice President Havas Milan) Conclusion remarks by Prof. Paolo Benanti, Associate Professor, Pontifical Gregorian University
15.00 – 17.00 | Ethics and responsibility of communities, institutions, and companies in the digital ecosystem
Chair: Mario Calvo-Platero, Columnist La Repubblica Speakers: Anna Maria Corazza Bildt (Child Dignity Alliance), Prof. Elio Borgonovi, Professor of Economics and Management of Public Administration – Università Bocconi di Milano), Rocco Nardulli (Vice Questore – Postal and Telecommunication Police for Lombardy), Magda Bianco (Director of Customer Safety and Financial Education – Banca d’Italia), Igor Lazzaroni (Responsable Press release and Editorial Projects – FEDUF), Prof. Tiziana Andina (Professor of Theoretical Philosophy – Università degli Studi di Torino), Prof. Laura Montanaro (Deputy Dean – Politecnico di Torino), Prof. Giovanni Durbiano (Professore of Architectural Projectation – Politecnico di Torino), Cesare D’Angelo (General Manager Italy & Mediterranean – Kaspersky), Luca Montagnino (Territory Manager – Italy and Israel, NGO – Salesforce.org), Laura Morgagni (Director Foundation TorinoWireless).
8 febbraio 2022 | Roma
The new landscape of online safety
Scuderie di Palazzo Altieri, Via di Santo Stefano del Cacco 1, Roma
9.00 – 10.30 | Institutional greetings
Chair Chiara Del Gaudio, journalist Rai and Luca De Biase, journalist Il Sole 24Ore
- Min. Elena Bonetti (Minister for Equal Opportunities and Family)
- Min. Erika Stefani (Minister of Disabilities)
- On. Licia Ronzulli (President of the Commission for Childhood and Adolescence
- On. Assuntela Messina (Undersecretary of State at the Minister of Technological Innovation)
- On. Benedetto della Vedova (Undersecretary of State at the Minister of Foreign Affair and International Cooperation
- On. Anna Macina (Undersecretary of State at the Minister of Justice)
- On. Barbara Floridia (Undersecretary of State at the Minister of Education)
- Pref.Paolo Formicola (Deputy Head of Gabinet Vicar of the Ministry of the Interior)
- On. Caterina Chinnici (Deputy at European Parliament and co-chair of the Intergroup of children’s Rights)
- Carla Garlatti (Italian Authority for Childhood and Adolescence)
- Guido Scorza (Member of the Italian Authority for Data Protection)
- Antonello Giannelli (President Associazione Nazionale Presidi)
- On. Sandra Cioffi (President Consiglio Nazionale degli Utenti)
- Jacopo Marzetti (President Comitato Media e Minori)
- Luigi Di Marco (Coordinator ASviS)
Keynote speech by Prof. Ernesto Caffo (President of SOS – Il Telefono Azzurro Onlus) Daniele Chieffi, Journalist and University teacher Anna Maria Corazza Bildt, Child Dignity Alliance
10.30 – 11.30 | Remote connection with schools that participated to the national project “Innovamenti” from the Minister of Education
Chair Chiara Del Gaudio (Journalist Rai) e Prof. Salvatore Giuliano (Head Mastern Istituto Istruzione superiore Majorana di Brindisi) Keynote speech by:
- Andrea Bollini (Director Ufficio VI -DGEFID – Minister of Education)
- Gabriele Benassi (Coordinator Equipe Formativa Territoriale USR Emilia-Romagna)
- Stefania Bassi (National Coordination Équipe Formative Territoriali – Minister of Education)
11.30 – 13.00 | Children, technology and digital well-being
Chair Daniele Chieffi, Journalist and University Professor Speakers: Ivano Gabrielli (Director Service Postal and Telecommunication Police), Thalita Malagò (Director General Italian Interactive Digital Entertainment Association), Prof. Davide Bennato (Associate Professor of Sociology – Università degli Studi di Catania) , Angelo Mazzetti (Head of Public Policy, Italy, Greece, Malta and Cyprus-Meta), Giacomo Mannheimer (Head of Government Affairs and Public Policy, Southern Europe – Tik Tok), Stefano Ciullo (Director Public Policy, Netflix), Eugenio Damasio (General Manager di No Panic Agency), Matteo Flora (President Permesso negato), Martina Colasante (Government Affairs and Public Policy – Google), Prof. Alberto Siracusano (Professor of Psychiatry – Università degli Studi Tor Vergata), Paola Pisano (Professor of Innovation – Università di Torino – former Minister for Innovation and Digitalization), Giuseppe Iacono (Coordinator Repubblica Digitale), Sandra Cortesi (Fellow at the Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society at Harvard University), Daniele Barca (Head Master IC 3 di Modena) Pierluigi Lanzarini (Ceo and Founder CampuStore), Prof. Fabio Lucidi (Professor in the department of Psychology of Processes and and Socialization – Università La Sapienza di Roma), On. Beatrice Lorenzin (Member of the Commission Bilancio della Camera dei Deputati), Giovanni Rezza (General Director of Sanitary Prevention – Minister of Health), Simona Maurino (SOS-Il Telefono Azzurro Onlus)
14.00 – 15.00 | What institution do and what they could do to make the digital environment safer for children
Moderatore: Emilio Puccio (Segretario Generale Intergruppo per I Diritti dei minori) Relatori: Stefania Giannini (Deputy General Director UNESCO), Guido Scorza (Member of Italian Authority for Data Protection), Laura Arìa (Authority for Communication Guarantees AGCOM), On. Brando Benifei (Head of the Italian S&D Delegation), Leanda Barrington-Leach (Director of International Advocacy, 5Rights) John Carr OBE (Senior Adviser ECPAT International), Julie Dawson (Director of Regulatory & Policy – Yoti)
15.00 – 17.00 | A “Safer Internet” environment: enacting a more holistic and global response to protect children from online harms
Chair : Mario Calvo-Platero (Columnist La Repubblica) Speakers: H.E. Marie-Louise Coleiro Preca (President Eurochild), Jean-Christophe Le Toquin (President INHOPE), Maud de Boer-Buquicchio (President Missing Children Europe), Ernie Allen OBE (Chair of WeProtect Global Alliance), Guillermo Galarza (Vice President, Partnerships & Training – ICMEC), Olivier Onidi (Deputy director General for Home Affairs and Migration), Serena Tommasino (Safe Online Specialist at End Violence Global Partnership and Fund), Antigone Davis (Global Head of Safety – Meta), Charlotte Yarrow (Europe Child Safety Counsel – Apple), Pier Luigi Dal Pino (Government Affairs Director Western Europe – Microsoft), Lara Almudena (Child Safety Senior Manager – Google), Laura Higgins (Director of Community Safety & Digital Civility – Roblox)
17.00 – 18.00 | Interreligious dialogue for children’s dignity in the digital environment
Chair: Amb. Pietro Sebastiani (Former Ambassador of Italy to the Holy See) Speakers: Dana Humaid (CEO Interfaith Alliance for Safer Communities), Mons. Marcelo Sanchez Sorondo (Chair of the Pontifical Academy of Social Science) Ernie Allen OBE (Board of Child Dignity Alliance), Rabbi Riccardo di Segni (Chief Rabbi of Jewish Community of Rome), On. David Lega (Co-Chair of the Intergroup on Children’s Rights)
18.00 – 18.30 | Conclusion remarks by Prof. Ernesto Caffo
(President of SOS – Il Telefono Azzurro Onlus and Member of the Pontifical Commission for the safeguard of children) and Anna Maria Corazza Bildt (Child Dignity Alliance)
Safer Internet Day – from Telefono Azzurro experience research on new opportunities and new risks
For young people and parents in the context of digital transformation are born
Conducted by DOXA Kids, the research offers a cross-section of the perceptions of 12-18 year olds and their parents, while also covering emerging issues such as gaming, online money use and the Metaverse.
Responses revealed a somewhat unexpected awareness of youth toward online security. The results of the research will be discussed during the conference “Real rights are needed in the Virtual Universe” organized by Telefono Azzurro on February 7th and 8th.
February 5th, 2022 – During 2021, the Listening and Counselling Centre 19696 of Telefono Azzurro managed 192 cases with problems related to the Internet area, with an average of 16 cases per month, with a prevalence of causes related to situations of cyberbullying (28%) and sexting (17%). In more than 2 out of 10 cases, mental health issues were also reported, primarily suicidal ideation (28%), fears, anxiety and phobias (26%), self-harming acts (23%), and depression (19%). In 2021, the 19696 helpline helped 211 children and adolescents in need: almost one in two (46%) in the 11-14 age group and 38% in the 15-17 age group.
Also in 2021, the 114 Emergency Childhood Service, promoted by the Department for Family Policies and managed by Telefono Azzurro, came into contact with 320 cases with problems related to the Internet area, with an average of 26 cases per month (about 1 case per day), more than double the number of the previous year, when there were 132. The hyper connection that characterized the first pandemic period and the potential related risks may have probably affected this figure. Numerous cases of sextortion were handled by the 114 Service. In more than 25% of cases, the 114 Service involved the territorial services, mainly the Police and the Judicial Authority, testifying the emergency characterization of the requests for help made to the Service.
“From this vast experience in the field, arise the questions that Telefono Azzurro wanted to address to young people with a research commissioned to DOXA Kids and presented on the occasion of Safer Internet Day,” explains Professor Ernesto Caffo, professor of child neuropsychiatry and president of Telefono Azzurro. “Because today’s great challenge is to be close to young people, parents and educators to promote and teach a correct approach to digital, involving also institutions and companies, called to rethink rules and approaches to the online world, as an integral part of the educational and socialization process of minors. Thanks to its 33 years of experience in listening to children and adolescents and in the continuous monitoring of the scenario, Telefono Azzurro intends to be an expert interlocutor in the ongoing change“.
Telefono Azzurro’s research was conducted on a sample of 855 parents and 815 young people between the ages of 12 and 18. The questionnaire was administered between January 25 and February 1, 2022.
Overall, what immediately jumps to the eye from the analysis of the data is an awareness of the risks on the part of young people that perhaps we did not expect and that is often greater than that of their parents. What is also striking is the active role that young people ask to be able to usefully play with institutions and companies to help them make the Internet a safer place.
Below is a summary of the results (the questions in some cases allowed multiple responses).
An emerging issue to which it is necessary to pay much attention is the so-called ‘binge-gaming’, that is the compulsive use of video games. From Telefono Azzurro research, it emerges that more than half of young people (53%) play online from 1 to 3 hours a day. Another very relevant fact is that 35% of young people interviewed made purchases while playing, mainly buying skins, features, customization tools to collect and exchange with friends, or lives and levels to continue playing.
While playing online, 30% of the global sample happened to meet new people (32% of young people aged 12 to 14 and 29% of those aged 15 to 18). Importantly, online gaming can also be a cause of frustration: 13% were excluded from the game because they didn’t reach their goals, while 10% were teased and 7% made fun of someone else. Another worrying fact: as many as 38% of young people said they knew someone who played online despite being under the recommended age.
Playing online can also be good. When asked what skills young people think they have acquired by playing online, the most popular answers were: speed of reflexes (39%), logical reasoning (28%), and action planning (18%). Parents also agreed on the first two skills, with similar percentages of responses (41% and 31%), but in third place they placed the ability to relate to others (24%).
ONLINE RISKS, SOCIAL MEDIA AND GAMING: PARENTS’ PERCEPTIONS AND FEARS
At the top of parents’ fears is the risk that their children may be lured online by adults for sexual purposes (63%), followed by the risk of their children being insulted or bullied (38%), participating in dangerous challenges (29%), being asked to send provocative photos by peers (25%), access pornographic content (24%), are exposed to content that glorifies anorexia, self-harm or suicide (22%), share personal information (21%), see violent or dramatic images (14%), post something impulsive only to regret it later (13%), access materials that glorify racism or sexism (12%), share a photo of themselves without permission (12%). To a lesser extent, parents are concerned that their children will gamble money, shop too much, or post photos when they are drunk.
USE OF MONEY AND FINANCIAL EDUCATION
In this area, the figure is striking, according to which as many as 43% of the young people surveyed have made/do online purchases independently, 25% using their parents’ credit card with their authorization (something acknowledged by 28% of parents). Only 4% used it without their parents’ knowledge.
41% of parents said they often shopped online with their children, 52% said they rarely did so. Only 6% said they never do.
Most of the children interviewed (25.3%) think that we should start talking about money and its use from the age of 11, while 23% believe that the right age is 13 and 19% that we should address the issue from the age of 9. It is interesting to note that the younger the children are, the more they believe it is important to talk about it from a younger age.
On the other hand, 43% of parents believe that the right age to start talking about money online with their children is between the ages of 6 and 9. For 38% between the ages of 11 and 13. 53% of parents say they often talk about money use with their children, 43% only sometimes.
Metaverse refers to a virtual reality in which you can connect through a hologram/avatar of yourself. Through this hologram you can interact with others, even in places other than where you live and with people who live far away. The experiences made in this virtual reality can be very realistic.
There’s a lot of talk about it lately, but do young people and their parents know what it’s really about? Do they perceive the risks and opportunities? From the responses, knowledge of the new reality would seem low.
When asked “Do you know what the Metaverse is?” 57% of the youth sample said no, 33% had a general knowledge of it and only 10% said they knew what it was about. 55% stated they were interested in learning more.
Only 17% of parents said they knew what the Metaverse was, 37% had only general knowledge of it, and as many as 46% did not know what it was. Of the total parents surveyed, 59% are interested in learning more.
More than half of young people (52%) believe the Metaverse will not have a significant impact on people’s lives; 25% believe it will make life worse and 19% believe it will make life better.
Only 15% of parents believe the Metaverse will improve people’s lives, 42% believe it will have no impact, and 43% believe it will make life worse.
The total youth sample was asked in what areas they believe the Metaverse will benefit people the most. The top responses cited were, in order: gaming (23%), recreation (13%), friend interactions (12%), learning and studying (11%), work (8%), health (7%), and romantic relationships (3%).
For parents, in first place is leisure (18%), followed by gaming (16%), learning and study (13%), friendly interactions (9%), work (9%), health (7%), romantic relationships (3%).
The percentage of those who believe that the Metaverse serves no purpose is interesting: 23% of responses (young people) and 26% (parents).
Looking further into the perception of the opportunities offered by the Metaverse, we see that in first place – in the responses of young people – is the fact that it would allow them to live many different experiences (32%), followed by the fact that it could guarantee social interaction and encounters even if people are in geographically distant areas, it is accessible at any time (23%), it would make it easy to shape something that does not yet exist in reality (22%), it would help them feel less isolated (20%), it would guarantee equality and equal opportunities (participation, learning, etc.) regardless of economic level (17%). It would guarantee equality and equal opportunities (participation, learning, etc.) regardless of economic level (17%), and it would allow the unlimited expression of one’s own inclinations (13%). In the same order and with similar percentages are the responses of parents. A 25% of young people and an equal percentage of parents, however, believe that there are no opportunities linked to the metaverse.
So far, so good. But what are the perceptions of risks instead? Young people responded as follows: neglecting the real world (40%), hiding in the Metaverse to escape from reality (36%), spending more time in the Metaverse than in reality (33%), living a life that does not correspond to the real one, more desirable, richer… (33%), losing sight of certain life goals (school, sports, social relations (28%), coming into contact with strangers (25%), sharing a lot of personal information (only 20% of the sample, however, perceived this as a risk), not guaranteeing equal opportunities to people with different economic resources (10%). Parents’ responses show the same ranking of problems, with percentages similar to those of their children. There are also 9% of young people and 3% of parents who do not believe there is any risk in the Metaverse.
TIME SPENT ONLINE BY YOUNG PEOPLE
As many as 71% of the young people interviewed believe they have increased the amount of time spent online in the last two years (an opinion shared by 70% of parents, who in 63% of cases often wonder whether the time their children spend online is excessive). Despite the fact that school has returned to presence and boys and girls want to regain possession of the face-to-face aspects of relationships after this massive “forced” use, the Internet remains one of the privileged contexts for communicating and sharing things done daily with friends (virtual and otherwise).
Almost half of young people interviewed (47%) say they are connected 2-3 hours a day and there are 12% of young people who say they are connected from 4 to 6 hours a day, 4% who say they are always connected and 3% who are connected for more than 6 hours. Only 24% of the sample state that they are online for no more than one hour per day. Parents’ perceptions match their children’s statements.
54% of children only sometimes perceive that they spend too much time in front of a screen, while only 13% are aware (often or always) that they spend too many hours online. Interestingly, however, there is also a large percentage (79%) who feel that features to limit time spent online are useful, while 34% feel they are not needed. A higher percentage of parents believe they are useful (91%).
But what do these young people do online? They chat, above all (58%), listen to music (53%), play games (48%), take distance learning lessons (39%), watch films or TV series (38%), send vocals on Whatsapp (29%), watch video tutorials (27%), videos of game players (26%) or videos for information and study (25%), post photos/videos/stories on Tik Tok, Instagram and other social networks (23%), watch comedy videos (23%). In a smaller percentage, in that order, they record photos/videos/stories from social, use email, shop online, read books, look for new friends, read/write in forums or blogs, read newspapers online (only 4%!), search for information about health and illness, use dating apps (only 18 year olds).
As for the main online social and messaging apps, young people use Whatsapp and Facebook mostly to be with others, YouTube, Instagram, TikTok, Twitch and Discord for fun.
Which of these activities are shared between children and parents? 82% watch TV series with their children, 54% share content, and 44% play online video games/games with their children, 35% record videos with them.
The approach to the credibility of online news sees 47% of the young sample making sure it is reliable/searching and verifying the source before sharing it, but 20% do not know how to judge its truthfulness and 13% trust only news that has a high number of likes and shares; 20% of young people read only the headlines and 14% feel overwhelmed by too much news on the Internet and the same percentage do not read news online. According to 63% of parents, the Internet is a reliable source of information.
But what is the influence of online life on real life? For as many as 67% of young people, the Internet has a fairly, very or very significant influence on friendships, reputation (58%), way of being (61%), and romantic relationships (72%). For 70% of parents, time spent online has a fairly to very significant influence on their children’s friendships, reputation (73%), way of being (53%) and romantic relationships (48%).
Finally, according to young people, social networks primarily foster relationships (40%), create a sense of community (38%), allow them to learn new things (33%) and express their emotions (27%) and inclinations (18%), and allow them to ask for help when they are in trouble (16%). All positive things. And the negative ones? For 15% of young people, social media generate a sense of loneliness and pressure with respect to social expectations (14%), also promoting inequality (7%).
And what do parents think? While many cite in first place the negative aspects – social networks would promote a sense of loneliness (34%) and pressure with respect to social expectations (29%) and inequality (13%) – for 29%, however, they would promote a sense of community, learning new things (27%), relationships (26%), expression of their emotions (20%) and inclinations (17%), the ability to ask for help when in difficulty (10%), equality (5%)
Young people were asked if they feel that information about privacy and data use in the online and social world is clear and written in understandable language. The responses are food for thought, with 61% of respondents believing that they are never or most of the time. Young people, perhaps somewhat surprisingly, are aware of the risks of unauthorized use of data by platforms (85% are quite, very or very much so), Nevertheless, 44% accept cookies for convenience.
But how much do parents know about their children’s online lives? 72% say they’re confident they know from fairly to very much. And how much do they intervene in their child’s online activities? 27% say they know their child’s passwords, 22% check which contacts they make friends with on social networks, 21% just trust them not to invade their children’s privacy, 21% are followers of their children and follow them on social networks, and 21% have activated security filters that block content by age. As many as 44% of parents don’t check their child’s downloaded apps because they trust them or because their child won’t let them.
INTERNET AND MENTAL AND PHYSICAL HEALTH
According to 72% of teens, the Internet is a trusted source for health and wellness information and provides useful information. 63% of parents think the same.
But how much does what young people see on social affect their daily mood? Little or not at all for 57% of teens, from fairly to very much for 45%.
AWARENESS OF ONLINE RISKS
94% of young people believe that the solution to making the Internet a safe place is education from parents and schools. Technological tools for reporting risks and dangers are also considered important, as well as greater awareness on the part of young people. 35% believe that hi-tech companies should create sections on the Internet suitable for young people.
96% of teens believe that their participation and opinion should be taken into account in the creation of a safe network. Those who think so, are convinced that, for this to happen, specific meetings held by experts at school should be organized (47%), space should be dedicated during school hours to formulate concrete proposals to be addressed then to companies and experts (38%), the issues could affect school-work alternation projects (31%), meetings with hi-tech companies should be organized (31%), professionals should talk to young people in international forums (26%), meetings with institutions should be promoted (25%).