Initial Google Web Rangers Summit to take place in Kenya

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The first Google Web Rangers Summit will be hosted by Google Kenya. Google Web Rangers is a digital literacy programme led by Google, aiming to spread awareness about internet safety and promoting responsible digital citizenship in Africa.

In attendance will be 26 Web Rangers from Kenya, Nigeria, and South Africa. They will discuss strategies to make the Internet a safer place for young Internet users in their respective countries.

Fatuma Hirsi, the Principal Secretary Broadcasting and Telecommunication, said in a speech delivered via proxy, ”Programmes such as Web Rangers are a very welcome complement to the work that parents, teachers, guardians, and governments do in building a better world for our children,” the speech continues, “I congratulate Google in conceptualizing the programme and scaling it to many countries in such a short time, and also for your work in building into your products and services tools and resources that help families to use the Internet safely and responsibly. I thank you too for your choice of our beautiful country Kenya as the host of your Summit.”

Google’s Public Policy and Government Relations Director, EMEA Emerging Markets and founder of Webrangers, Mr Doron Avni “At Google, we are deeply committed to protecting children on the Internet and providing all of our users with a safe experience because protecting kids is a responsibility we all share, and our business depends on people being online — and we need it to be a safe space,” he said, adding that, the internet is a useful resource which children can use for school work, to connect with their friends and express their creativity.

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“At the same time, children have been exposed to some of the worst forms of exploitation, violence, and abuse online. It is therefore important that we all work closely together in order to mitigate the unintended negative aspects of this medium on children, while at the same time maximizing the benefits they can accrue from it,” explains Mr Avni.

The main highlights of the Summit programme will include a boot camp on ‘making effective campaign videos for online audiences’, which discuss topics such as diversity and inclusion, trust, tolerance, and responsibility. Participants will also be taught how to tackle real-life policy issues, especially cyberbullying, sexting, catfishing and sharing personal information.