Kenya Film Classification Board (KFCB) in partnership with Google Friday launched ‘Google for Families’ aimed at ensuring a safe internet space.
The launch brought together web students from Kenya, Nigeria and South Africa and 30 online safety partners to discuss plans for making online safety education content easily accessible for schools and families.
KFCB Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Dr. Ezekiel Mutua said that the transition to newer media has revolutionized broadcasting, consumption and monitoring of film content.
“Being the board’s mandate to ensure film content is in tune with our moral values and national aspirations, we are constantly monitoring the internet since it has been characterized with compromised content,” said Mutua.
Mutua stated that child protection from harmful media content is most humane and calls for combined efforts.
He added that the media being a double edged sword it is obligatory on parents, policy makers and all conscionable citizens to ensure the right use of media especially online platforms.
“With the ease of broadcasting content that we are experiencing, content creators have turned to online platforms and this increase use of internet platforms especially social network sites calls for all of us to ensure children are protected from injurious content,” said the CEO.
Mutua said that initiatives such as Web Rangers must be embraced in the fight for clean content, insisting that the youth will be empowered by involving them in initiatives that seek to protect them.
“As adults we should appreciate the fact that learning is best impressed upon children through involving them and we must appear to pass on critical knowledge and skills on online safety by having young people involved in the process,” he said during the launch.
Mutua added that parents are key players in the fight for creditable film and broadcast content especially during the holidays.
The CEO said that KFCB regulatory mandate is tied to protecting children and other segments of society from wanting content and it is only through the support of stakeholders such as Google that potentially harmful content can be curbed.
Google East Africa Policy and Government Relation Lead Michael Murungi mentioned that Google will be collaborating with KFCB and Nigeria’s National orientation Agency in the digital parenting programme.
“This programme will educate parents, teachers and families on online tools that bring families together to learn, have fun and be safe online,” said Murungi.
Murungi added that Google is committed to improving online safety for children and educating them on how to be safer and wiser online, insisting that online safety is a shared responsibility between them, the government, non-profit organizations, educational community and other stakeholders.
By Rosebell Njega and Judy Wasonga