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Thursday, May 28, 2015

Summer 2015: GeckoLife For Your Family Memories

Most people, especially parents and teens, will be oversharing their summer experiences on social media.

We have become almost immune to people telling us what they are eating or even when they decide to go to the park.  Things we used to do without broadcasting to the world wide web.  Sure, we assume our privacy controls and filters are all in place - but are they truly working the way we believe they are?

Hopefully they are, but how many times have people been caught with their hand in the cookie jar (hypothetically speaking) or literally with their pants down?

We all need to be aware that your digital image today is usually the first impression people will have of you.  You never get a second chance to make a first impression.

Learn more about GeckoLife - an opportunity to share safely and privately.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

The Average Text Is Only Five Seconds: Distracted Driving Kills

Summer break is around the corner - Memorial Weekend, July 4th and many other fun times that young drivers will be taking to the road.  However it is not only our youth that can be guilty of distracted driving.

Parents and adults can believe that quick glance at their phone or text and it will be okay.

Sometimes it is - and other times - it simply isn't.

Pass this video to your friends and family.  Think before you get into your car with your cell phone by your side.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Social Media Helpline for Kids Launching In Schools

With 92% of middle and high school students online daily, 24% of them "almost constantly,"* it's time schools had some help with social media! The Helpline's developers – #iCANHELP and Net Family News Inc. – invite you to contribute to a fundraising campaign at Indiegogo.com: http://igg.me/at/icanhelpline. The goal of the campaign is $25,000 to cover "construction costs" for piloting in California next school year – Web site construction, communications tools and staff training.
"The helpline will be the hub of a whole help ecosystem," said Matt Soeth, co-founder of #iCANHELP, "with real-time, research-based advice, help in reporting and escalating abuse in social media services, a directory of school policy and investigation resources and a growing, searchable database of school social media case studies."
"Contributions big or small are huge to the helpline," said Anne Collier, president of San Jose-based Net Family News. "This is about growing the digital literacy and citizenship of all members of school communities.”
Here's what we're talking about:
  • A call center-plus: Schools can call during school hours for real-time help, but the Web site – which will include links to sources of specialized help and a directory of resources for prevention, incident response and policymaking – is 24/7/365. To be added as cases come in: an ever-growing searchable database of anonymized school case studies. The Helpline will also be a source of metrics & trends in school online safety issues for educators, researchers, policymakers and parents.
  • Schools not individuals – We'll refer individuals to other great sources of help, but this helpline's specifically for schools. If a member of a school community has a problem, we'll ask him or her to work with us through their school.
  • Working with social media: We'll help schools navigate sites and apps, report abuse and get content taken down that violates Terms of Service, providing the industry with much-needed local context as a trusted intermediary.
  • Part of a global network of helplines in other countries that help each other and, with a growing collective knowledge base, help users resolve problems in a global medium.
  • Unique among helplines in approaching students as part of the solution and building on established student leadership education and peer-mentoring practices.
  • Deep Internet safety experience: Builds on more than 15 years in the Internet safety space, working with practitioners and researchers and advising Internet companies.
About us: Net Family News is a San Jose, Calif.-based national nonprofit organization founded in 1999 to educate the public and advise the Internet industry about research and developments in technology related to youth. #iCANHELP is a Bay Area-based national nonprofit organization that creates and promotes positive, school-based solutions & interventions to anti-social behavior online.

Please make a donation to the iCanHelpline campaign at http://igg.me/at/icanhelpline
*Pew Research Center's 2015 "Teens, Social Media & Technology" study

Saturday, May 2, 2015

Frienedy: A Social Media Site for All Ages

Frienedy is the first site of its kind that lets users of all ages manage life in groups. Engineered with parental permissions at the core, the company has created a private online environment that leverages parental engagement for users under 13 to guide the social media experience. Frienedy offers users of all ages a web application that provides private group communication.
Until now, there has been a void in the social networking space both for users under age 13 as well as for managing content and social feeds for groups of all types.  
According to Founder and CEO, Janel Patterson, "Kids are getting online much younger than they were when today's social networking norms were first established, which has led to a rise in cyber bullying and cyber predators. Parents need a tool that enables them to proactively introduce social media to their children when they decide the time is right- and before kids go out and discover it themselves. At Frienedy, our core mission is to prevent cyber bullying before it starts and to eliminate the risk of children becoming victims of cyber predators."
There is also a market for managing social feeds and content for groups that have members of all ages. According to Jake Giganti, COO for Frienedy, "I grew up on social media. I never saw an easy way to manage all of the events and social feeds and basic information for every group I was part of growing up. Not just my soccer team and classes, but my different groups of friends. And, now as an adult, I have even more social groups I'm part of and need to stay engaged with. Frienedy Groups solves this problem- but more compellingly- for users of all ages." Groups can communicate privately and maintain practice or meeting schedules, classroom assignments, youth group activities, photos, videos, documents, even trigger last minute notifications. Frienedy is the way to manage all of this - and for younger users, under discreet parental oversight.  
Frienedy includes a robust events calendar for managing group events and a shopping list feature called WishList to promote user engagement. Mobile apps are currently in development, and the website is currently mobile responsive for any device. You can sign up for a free account by going to www.frienedy.com.
About Frienedy
Frienedy, LLC (www.frienedy.com) was founded in 2013 as a safe, private group networking community designed for users and groups of all ages. Frienedy complies with COPPA standards for users under 13, enabling a revolutionary new way for people of all ages to connect, share and interact safely and privately in all of life's Groups.
Contact: Janel Patterson
Frienedy, LLC
Phone: (636) 542-0540
Email: press@frienedy.com
URL: www.frienedy.com