Monday, January 9, 2012 | 1:55 AM
Rangers traditionally guard parks and other areas of natural beauty. In Israel, some modern day rangers - call them Web-Rangers - aim instead to keep the Internet safe. Since last July when Google Israel launched its Family Safety Centre, we have encouraged some 200 Israeli teenage Web-Rangers between the age of 15 and 18 to promote online child protection.
The results have been remarkable. More than 80 innovative and creative social campaigns have been launched, ranging from educational videos to tv-style quiz shows. Some Web-Rangers produced creative videos and posted them on a dedicated YouTube channel. Others have cooperated with schools, youth movements, and local municipalities to hold seminars for teenagers about online safety.
Our “Web-Rangers” project is run in partnership with two NGOs working for online safety, the Israel Internet Association and Eran. All the Web-Rangers also have participated in seminars held at Google Israel offices. These included lectures by Google representatives and our partners on digital citizenship, free speech on the net, Google online safety tools and YouTube content policies.
We recently held the graduation for our inaugural Web-Rangers "class." The Israel Ministry of Education’s Head of the Online Child Safety Division participated. She invited the Web-Rangers to take part in the Ministry’s “National Safe Internet Day” and present their projects in schools around the country.
While the Web Rangers started as a Google initiative, the young adults brought the project to life, developed it, and made it their own. The two Web-Rangers who presented the best work, Elad Yam and Yosi Klein, (both from 11th grade) will soon travel to Google’s offices in London to present their work. We look forward to continuing to learn from these creative teenagers about how to create a safe Internet.