chapter  54
9 Pages

International initiatives concerning children and media: networks, associations, organisations, institutions, forums …

ByCecilia von Feilitzen

This chapter gives a few glimpses of existing international and world regional initiatives outside the single media themselves – networks, associations, organisations, institutions, forums, etc. – devoted to children and media. Some initiatives are long-standing. During the past two decades, however, the increasing flow of satellite TV, formatted series, computerised games, the internet, social media, smart phones, new forms of advertising/consumption – and the consecutive awareness of these media’s possibilities and risks – has also given rise to more recent initiatives, which in the main aim at defending children’s interests that the media often ignore. A vital support for many initiatives is the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (UN CRC) from 1989, valid for the third of the world’s population who are children (under 18 years of age). The chapter makes no claims to be an exhaustive account. More tips are available at The

International Clearinghouse on Children, Youth and Media, at Nordicom (2012). It is also important to bear in mind that many more children and media initiatives are of a national/local than international character. The international initiatives are highly different. For example, are they focusing on

“children” and their relations to the media – or on “media” for children? Are they focusing on “children and media” – or is children and media part of a wider engagement, such as children’s rights, health issues, communication for social change, or areas relevant to both children and adults? Is the initiative focusing on protection from harmful media content – or rather on supporting children’s media literacy? And which is the form of the initiative: an NGO/voluntary/ civil/activist one, a public/intergovernmental/UN agency one, a professional media one, a business/private one, a research/information one, or a network of several initiatives?