Pokemon Go

Amanda RowenOnline safety

Say what?!

Pokémon Go is a free-to-play location-based augmented reality (AR) mobile game developed by Niantic. It was released in July 2016. The game allows players to capture, battle, and train virtual Pokémon who appear throughout the real world. It makes use of GPS and the camera of compatible devices.

Ok, is it safe?

Physical safety

An American teen found a dead body while playing the game and another group of teens were robbed by armed assailants while playing. Due to the nature of the game, i.e. that it is played outside it is important to consider your physical safety while playing the game. While these cases may sound extreme, there are also the dangers of ‘distracted walking’ which can put you at risk of injury or worse.

Obviously it is important to remain aware of your surroundings while playing. Don’t go to unfamiliar places alone. Tell a trusted adult that you’re playing and where you are going. Remember, your safety is not worth a Pokémon, no matter how rare.

For further reading:

Online and data safety

The game, like many apps requires permissions to access other data on your device. It requests permission for full access to a users’ Google account when you sign up to play.

There have been concerns raised over what data the app can access and how to prevent it from doing so. Because of the extensive permissions required to play an AR game, you may want to double check your privacy settings in the game and perhaps even consider what devices you use to play.

See the following for more information:

 

Two Web Rangers off to the US!

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Nondumiso Shange and Keenan Adams, START PACKING THOSE BAGS! YOU GUYS ARE GOING TO San Francisco!

Congratulations! You have been  selected to represent the 2016 South African Web Rangers at the Google Global Summit taking place in USA, Mountain View San Francisco. You TWO have been chosen because of the outstanding leadership potential you have demonstrated in the written motivation given to us as part of the competition. The International Web Rangers Summit will take place on 30 September 2016.You will traveling from the 29 September 2016 and returning on the 01 October 2016. With the gracious financial support of Google, this is offered to you as a fully paid for trip including flights, accommodation and all meals while in San Francisco. During the trip, you will join other Web Rangers from across the world to enjoy a unique learning experience.

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The Google Global Summit took place on 30 September 2016. Here is an update on all the exciting things that happened:

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The Web Rangers together with chaperones (Phakamile Khumalo from MMA and Takalani Muvhali from FPB) at the O.R Tambo Airport just before boarding!

Web Rangers arrived at the Google offices in California to meet other Web Rangers from 14 countries across the world. The day was filled with excitement as Web Rangers got to interact with each other and discuss issues of Digital Literacy from across the world, drawing from each country’s experiences!

The day started with an awesome intro by the Vice President of Global Policy at Google, Caroline Alkinson. She spoke about the importance of digital literacy in the 21st century and the role that Web Rangers play in bringing awareness around issues of internet safety.

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The panel and  question and answer by student voice: Merit Jones, director of Partnerships, Andrew Brennen, national field director, Mohammed Mduko, student voice.  The discussion highlighted the different of using the internet to be the voice of change among the youth globally. The discussion is facilitated by Anne Collier, founder of iCanhelpline.org and Executive Director, The Net Safety Collaborative.

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Storytelling session: Web Rangers tell their inspiring journeys as digital literacy ambassadors!

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The Web Rangers ended the day with a mini tour at the Google offices!

 

 

 

 

A logo is born

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Children from Park Senior, McCauley House and Kenilworth schools took part in various activities on Safer Internet Day, 9 Feb 2016. One of the activities was to design a concept that would become the Web Rangers South Africa logo.
Each group produced amazing pieces of art that our designers turned into the Web Rangers logo you see below. It was exciting and encouraging to see the innovation and creativity shown by these young people and if this is an indication of things to come from the Web Rangers, we can look forward to seeing some very innovative campaigns from the South African programme.

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Introducing Web Rangers South Africa!

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To celebrate  the 2016 Safer Internet Day, MMA together with programme partners successfully launched and piloted the Web Rangers programme in South Africa, with the aim to promote online safety, digital literacy and cyber-security for 150 young people in 13 schools around Gauteng. 

Web Rangers unpacked

The potential of the internet is endless and presents many opportunities for interactions and communication that transcends both time and space. It also allows for a platform for children to be informed and voice their opinions on issues that affect them, provides room  for learning and addressing inequality, creates an opportunity for enormous creativity to spread!

However, the internet poses some real dangers, especially for young people….. these include

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Cyber bullying, sexual and emotional abuse online  are some of the risks faced by young people in the country EVERY TIME they access the internet WHICH may inhibit them from taking  full advantage of the internet to better their lives and that of others!

Web Rangers is the solution to the many ills faced by young people!   to the development of digital literacy and digital citizenship skills. Web Rangers is a digital literacy programme that focuses on the participation of children who will champion the right to access the internet and online safety.

 

Below are quotes from programme partners talking about the importance of online safety!

“The safety of children is of utmost importance especially with the growth of digital technology. As an organisation, the FPB also seeks to protect children from exposure to harmful materials,” says FPB spokesperson Janine Raftopoulos.

“In South Africa, we know that rangers traditionally guard parks and other areas of natural beauty. At Google, we also want to recognise modern day rangers – we call them Web Rangers – and their aim instead will be to keep the Internet safe for themselves and other young users,” says Fortune Mgwili-Sibanda, Public Policy for Google South Africa.