Social media partners help combat cyberbullying

Social media partners participating in the cyberbullying complaint handling scheme operated by the Office of the Children’s eSafety Commissioner, were announced today by Senator the Hon. Mitch Fifield, Minister for Communications, at Merri Creek Primary School, Melbourne.

These partners include Tier 1 services—Ask.fm, Flickr, Twitter, Yahoo!7 Answers and Yahoo!7 Groups, and Tier 2 services—Facebook, Google+, Instagram, and YouTube, all of whom work with the Office to remove cyberbullying material targeted toward an Australian child. 

'In August 1.6 million Australian children and young people aged 2–17 years accessed one or more of our partner services . We welcome the willingness of these services to work cooperatively with the Office, to help address cyberbullying and to change online behaviour in the longer term,' said Commissioner MacGibbon.

The Office also published its first quarter figures, revealing it has referred 624 children to Kids Helpline (July and August only), completed 2,057 investigations into illegal online material (mostly child sexual abuse material), had over 5,200 students across Australia participate in Virtual Classrooms, and completed 40 cyberbullying complaints, with content referred to social media sites removed in less than 12 hours.

'We have achieved a great deal in a short amount of time and I look forward to our next quarter as we continue to learn, evolve and grow,' said MacGibbon.

Voluntary Certification Guidelines were also released today, allowing the Office to certify eligible providers of schools-based online safety programs for children.

These trainers will be accessible to schools through a $7.5 million financial assistance program, administered by each State and Territory education department, and independent and Catholic counterparts. 

'Providing certification for online safety providers gives primary and secondary schools across Australia access to high quality online safety education and resources,' said MacGibbon. 

Interested providers can apply for certification by visiting: https://www.esafety.gov.au/educators/trusted-providers

For other online safety information and resources, or to make a complaint about cyberbullying material or illegal online content, visit www.esafety.gov.au

For more information / arrange an interview, please see contact below.