On the occasion of the No to Harassment Day which takes place on November 5, Facebook and Instagram are launching the Connected Parents’ Club with various educational experts. A group to support parents in the face of new digital issues and cyberbullying issues in particular.
“Great powers imply great responsibilities”. Contrary to recent belief, we owe this maxim not to Spider-Man, Theodore Roosevelt or even RuPaul, but to the French Revolution. We could nevertheless apply it nowadays to Facebook. In any case, this is how we also know how to take our role to heart within the giant of social networks while this Thursday, November 5 is placed under the sign of the Day No to harassment.
“We are aware of our role in reaching so many people”, says Michelle Gilbert, communications director of Facebook France. ” This is why it is important to support and help parents who often do not know what to do with new digital tools and the challenges they involve. ”
Digital parenting, a vast topic of the moment as children are often much more connected than their parents and especially increasingly earlier (89% of 7-12 year olds have access to a mobile device, according to a 2019 Ipsos survey) . Enough to create another type of digital divide for parents who are 83% wanting to better control and support their children online, especially at a time of cyberstalking.
The Connected Parents Club
“Digital must be part of education today, but it requires adaptation. And for this, we need discussion spaces between parents to support each other, resources and guides ”, explains Michelle Gilbert. So Facebook decided to use its strength and its assets to make them available. But no question of going solo. The e-Enfance, Génération Numérique and even UNAF associations have joined forces with the Facebook project to give birth to the Connected Parents Club, a 100% French initiative.
In the form of a group on the platform, it will provide a place for meetings and exchanges with tutorial videos, live meetings with experts in the form of virtual cafes through Facebook Live or Rooms. “There are currently two million parents registered in groups related to parenting themes ”, we remind us at Facebook France.“There was a boom during the first confinement (more than 700,000 new registrants in two months, editor’s note). We felt that there was a real need for a place to answer all questions, also to give the floor to experts in the sector. “
Facebook is taking the opportunity to deploy a new group format called “Education / Parent” to better identify communities for parents wishing to learn and share. Among the features that will be available, we find in particular the possibility of sharing a publication anonymously, the appearance of badges to identify oneself within a group (parent of a teenager, young child, etc.), as well as the mentoring function. to offer or seek help.
Videos from experts against cyberbullying
Facebook does not want to put itself forward in this initiative and it is the partners who will administer and moderate the group. This one wants to be a place “direct and taboo-free exchanges between parents and experts », A place to share experiences and take advice. “Parents do not always have the keys to support their children and express the need to better understand their practices and the issues ”,underlines Justine Atlan, responsible for e-Enfance, who recorded a 30% increase in calls to her toll-free number Net Ecoute during the first confinement.
Associations like e-Enfance, the National Union of Family Associations or the Je suis Papa community will notably intervene this Thursday, November 5 in a first meeting dedicated to online harassment. Many explanatory videos will be available for parents.
Tools and resources for parents
At the same time as the launch in France of this Connected Parents’ Club, Facebook is launching a platform bringing together educational tools. Baptized Online and secure, the website will make available both content provided by Facebook (correctly setting up an account, reporting a problem, digital well-being, etc.) as well as resources from partners and experts in dedicated areas.
Unlike the parent group, there is no need for a Facebook account to access the information portal. And it will be available in several languages around the world. A project carried by the Californian firm this time. And when we ask if Facebook is not worried that it is counterproductive for the initiative with the image and the business that the company sometimes drains, Michelle Gilbert admits that it is not always easy to manage. “It is often the same thing: we are wrong if we do it and we are wrong if we do not. What should we do then?She wonders.
« The French version will rely more on its partners who are highlighted in all these projects. But we could not do without Facebook’s infrastructure which makes its tools and security available free of charge.», Admits the head of communication. “I am convinced that it is our role as the first platform in France to provide education and pedagogy. And if we don’t, we will be blamed. Well Named. »