Instagram launches a Parents Guide

Ahead of Safer Internet Day, and aligned with the global theme of 2021 - ‘Together For a Better Internet’ - Instagram today launched a Parents Guide for India. The Guide is aimed at helping young people be safe, by informing parents about all the safety features that exist on the platform. 

The Parents Guide is a resource from Instagram, available across many countries, to provide parents with a better understanding of the changing digital landscape. It acts as a conversation starter with their children, as it provides information about tools that exist to keep their child safe on Instagram. The 2021 version of the Guide has inputs from key organisations working actively on the rights and safety of children - Center for Social Research, Cyber Peace Foundation, Aarambh India Initiative, Young Leaders for Activity Citizenship, It’s Ok To Talk and Suicide Prevention India Foundation.  

The Guide takes into account all the new updates on Instagram, such as ‘DM reachability controls’, which gives creator and business accounts  the control to choose who can message them on Instagram and who can add them to groups on Instagram Direct. Another example is ‘Bulk comment management’, which gives people the option to delete comments in bulk, as well as block or restrict multiple accounts that post negative comments. There are others too like ‘Support Requests’ and ‘Emails from Instagram’.

Tara Bedi, Public Policy and Community Outreach Manager for Instagram in India, said, “As the internet permeates into our lives, especially the lives of young people, parents want to be adequately equipped with the evolving digital landscape. They want to understand how a platform works and feel comfortable with their children leveraging its opportunities for creative expression while knowing the safety tools available to them that enable that expression in a supportive environment. This is what we’re aiming to provide with the 2021 version of the Parents Guide.”

Commenting on the Guide, Dr. Rajana Kumari, Director of the Center for Social Research, said, “Our Children are living a very active life online today, and it seems to come naturally to them. Firstly, parents need to accept their child’s online presence. Secondly, they need to provide a safe space where the child feels comfortable enough to share his/her struggles and ask for help/support. Finally, parents need to update themselves in ways they can actually be of help to their children. The updated Instagram Guide for Parents is a very responsible step towards this direction, and we really appreciate it.” 

This Guide from Instagram is another step towards fostering a safe and supportive environment on the platform. Last year, Instagram partnered with Yuvaa, a youth media, community engagement and insights company, to launch an initiative called ‘#366daysofkindness’, which engaged young people in the country through workshops and hosting critical conversations with key psychologists and influencers on nurturing a safer online environment. 


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