Meet Family Online Safety Institute

Elena Haidukova on Apr 21, 2016

FOSI logoHere at Familoop, we’re of the firm belief that “it takes a village” – a community, to raise healthy and happy kids. Hence, we’re always on the lookout for enlightening new efforts from non-profits, policy makers, and parents around the globe. One such organization that recently piqued our radar is, Family Online Safety Institute (FOSI).

FOSI’s motto is a “safer Internet for all.” We couldn’t agree more! That’s why we want to spread the word about FOSI’s exciting efforts, including participating in family-driven public policy for technology, creating industry “best practices,” and advising on good digital parenting.

Parents, Privacy & Technology Use Report

The website is a treasure-trove of excellent information, sound advice, and well-researched statistics that would capture any parent’s interest. One such FOSI effort that’s enthralled us is the research gathered in fall, 2015 from three focus groups consisting of parents whose children had access to the Internet. Parents, Privacy & Technology Use Report is available on the FOSI website and paints an overall positive portrait of how parents see technology’s role in their kids’ lives. The report yields novel parenting skills. For example, over 55% of parents go online with their children often and 87% of parents have established rules overseeing their child’s technology use. The report also suggests parents wish to improve on their own online behavior;19% of parents say that they have posted something online about their child that the child found embarrassing, and requested it to be removed.

Family Online Safety Contract by FOSI

Safety contract Since we’re all about online safety, one of the standouts on their website for us is the Family Online Safety Contract. The Family Online Safety Institute created two thoughtful “contracts,” one for parents and one for kids, outlining twelve safety rules to be agreed between the parent and child. These two contracts represent both parental and child interests; we suspect neither party would hesitate in signing. Just some of the insightful details on the “Parent’s Contract” include:

  • “I know that the Internet is an important resource for my children and that being familiar with it is a necessary skill. It can also be a wonderful place to visit, but I know that I must do my part to help keep my kids safe online.”
  • “I will not overreact if my child tells me about something ‘bad’ he or she finds or does on the Internet.”
Here are two points on the “Child’s Contract”:
  • “I will tell my parents about the people I meet online, even if they don’t ask. I won’t answer emails, IMs, messages, or friend requests from people I don’t know and my parents haven’t approved.
  • ”I know that if I break this contract or the Internet rules that my parents and I have discussed they can take away my access to the Internet including my computer and phone until my behavior changes.”

Common ground? The Family Online Safety Contract from FOSI have common ground in spades. Parents who have been looking for ways to complement parental control software for filtering or blocking their child’s online activity may find it in these two simple contracts, available for print at

Check out the Family Online Safety Institute and continue reading the Familoop blog for more ways to protect your kids online. Feel free to follow us on Twitter or Facebook.

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