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Video: Salford-based BBC Children’s launches Own It internet safety website

Categories: Broadcast and Media

Development of a major new BBC website aimed at giving young people the confidence and resilience they need to tackle the challenges they face online is being led by Salford-based BBC Children’s.

Own It is part of a £30m-plus package of initiatives aimed at supporting young people in the digital space.

The website is overseen by the Salford-based BBC Children’s management team, led by director of BBC Children’s and BBC North, Alice Webb.  The BBC’s Salford-based User Experience and Design teams worked on technical aspects of the site.

Speaking to MIDAS – Manchester’s inward investment agency – at the Children’s Global Media Summit, Own It Senior Producer Dave Howard said: “The idea is to be a platform with lots of resources – stories, tips, advice – to help 9 to 12-year-olds be healthy, happy and confident online, on the internet and in digital spaces.”

Own It is the first product to launch from the BBC’s biggest investment in children’s services in a generation, with an additional £34m being spent over three years.

It will be joined by other longer term projects from this investment over the coming years, including new apps, games and personal and participatory experiences for children of all ages.

Announced by BBC Director General Tony Hall at the Children’s Global Media Summit in Manchester, Own It covers everything from online privacy and avoiding malware, through to dealing with everyday dilemmas children face online, as well as having fun.

Quick links to charities and organisations like Childline, whose phone lines and online chat can provide urgent support should children need it, will also be available.

At launch there is range of content giving a taste of what’s to come. Own It will ramp up with new ideas and features over the coming months, as well as a big focus on events like Safer Internet Week in February.

Alice Webb, Director, BBC Children's, said: “The internet is full of exciting opportunities for young people, but it also throws up complex emotional and practical challenges that they are not always equipped to deal with. Parents trust us to help children through these challenges and we’re working with exciting talent, as well as a hugely important network of partners, to help children feel empowered, informed and confident online.”

Own It will work with an advisory network of partners to help ensure it covers the wide range of topics and issues affecting children online. This includes academic institutions and charities like Childline, Childnet, The Child Exploitation and Online Protection Command, The Diana Award, Dr Sonia Livingstone OBE, Internet Matters, The Royal Foundation and Young Minds. Own It is also working with BBC Children in Need to speak to children directly about the issues they face and make sure the site can help children in a positive, proactive way.

Marketing Manchester, BBC Children’s and Conference Partners International created the successful bid to host the Children’s Global Media Summit in Manchester.

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