Gooseberry Planet goes to Luxembourg

Stella James is very excited to have the opportunity to deliver at workshop at the ECIS Conference in November in Luxembourg.

This is a 3-day conference kicking off with a 1.5 day programme of Deep Dive sessions which you can select as part of your registration. Deep Dive sessions commence on Friday morning and conclude before lunchtime on Saturday morning.


The remainder of the conference will comprise mixed format workshops of 90-mins, 60-mins and short lightning talks. We have a fantastic line-up of keynote talks and exhibitors, plus plenty of networking opportunities in our social programme.




Keeping Children Safe In Education – Online Safety Update

Keeping Children Safe In Education – Online Safety Update

Keeping Children Safe In Education has been updated and comes into force in September 2018. Have you seen the changes?  This webinar will go over the changes that have happened which are connected to e-safety or online safety.  If you cannot make the webinar please follow the link here. 

Click Here to register

6th September at 2pm (UK Time)

Webinar language: English

Participants can use their telephone or computer mic & speakers (VoIP).

United Kingdom: +44 330 221 9922
Audio PIN: Shown after joining the webinar

Organizer – unmuted
Access Code: 866-212-692

Panelist – unmuted
Access Code: 992-503-017

Attendee – muted
Access Code: 475-119-285

Invite Your Attendees

Webinar ID: 172-788-859


What’s going on with Instagram

Instagram, one of the fastest growing social media platforms is a lot of fun for kids. It allows them to share photos of things they find interesting, and add filters and captions to those photos. Like a micro-blogging site, with pictures, Instagram’s popularity with teens has exploded in the last three years. With that being said, Instagram is also constantly evolving, and while it can be ‘good clean fun’, there are some dangers that lurk on the social media app.

Throughout the past few years, Instagram has experienced some major changes that you might not be aware of. We’ve collected a few of these more recent changes and feature additions, and have assessed how they may affect your child’s Instagram safety.

Picture Map

In 2012, Instagram rolled out their “photo map” feature. The photo map, which is now being used by millions of Instagram users, tracks were pictures have been taken, and, in some cases uploaded. This location sharing feature, which is meant to help individuals keep track of their travels, can be dangerous especially for young children.

The map, literally, pulls the pictures up on a map. Other users, if the profile is not private, can see where pictures are taken and uploaded, and, in some instances, zoom in on the exact location. It doesn’t take much digging to get a general idea of where a user might live, or regularly frequent, which is a huge Instagram safety issue, in our opinion.

Staying Safe With Instagram’s Picture Map: To keep Instagram safety intact, make sure your child’s location services are turned off in their phone. Without location services, the map cannot generate where the pictures were taken. You can also turn the map off in Instagram, but disabling location services for pictures is a good idea, especially for a child who uses multiple social media services. Be sure to discuss this issue with your child, and how this feature puts their Instagram safety at risk.

Tagged Photos

In May of 2013, Instagram rolled out a “tag” feature. The tag feature, similar to tagged photos on Facebook, allows users to tag other friends and users in their pictures. This feeds directly into a “tagged” tab on the Instagram app. These pictures can be seen by others, but they do not require the tagged user to accept the tag, automatically. This could potentially be problematic, especially if your child is being bullied.

Staying Safe In Instagram’s Tagging Feature: To keep better tabs on your child’s Instagram life, be sure to check what photos they are tagged in. The “tagged” tab is separate from their picture feed, and is available on their main profile. It is the furthest tab to the right of the profile, next to the “map” tab. You can also change the settings to manually add tagged photos. Click the settings, and check “add manually”. This will ensure all tagged photos have to be approved before being added to the profile of the tagged user.

Instagram Direct

Instagram Direct, a feature that was released just last year, may seem innocuous. It is an easy way for individuals you do not know to privately contact a user, especially if they are sharing photos through the Explore feature using hashtagsHashtags allow users to search for pictures that have been posted using specific hashtags, like #dogsofinstagram. The searching user can choose to send a picture directly to any user they find, along with a caption.

Staying Safe in Instagram Direct: These direct messages are much like messages on Facebook or private e-mails. To keep kids safe by keeping an eye on their direct messages. You should also regularly check to ensure their profile is private. While general profile information can be seen by anyone with Instagram, a private profile won’t share any photos with individuals who are not already approved.

The “photo map” and “tagged” tabs can’t be seen with a private profile either. If your child gets an inappropriate direct message, simply report the inappropriate content and block the offending Instagram user. Instagram will deal with all appropriate content.

The Bottom Line

Instagram can be a fun, engaging and interesting way for kids to interact with friends and family, but Instagram can also be used for nefarious purposes. To ensure your child is safe on social media, whether it is Instagram or Twitter, you should first speak with your child about the associated dangers of these social media sites. You should also have a discussion about appropriate and inappropriate content.

Parents Must Get Involved In Mobile and Internet Child Safety

Even though many parents understand that they should use parental controls on their home computer, many never establish a means for getting the job done.  According to a McAfee survey, most parents left their kids alone while surfing the internet and over half the parents surveyed didn’t know if their kids had a social networking account, like Facebook. Another study indicated that approximately 72 percent of teens do have social networking profiles and almost half of them are public profiles viewable by anyone.

Parents must realize that Internet security is needed across multiple devices. With the advancements in technology, children have Internet access on smartphones, iPads, tablets and other mobile devices. Mobile technology can expose children to not only the good, but also all of the bad on the Internet.  We must look at privacy settings and how all of these devices are set up.

Personal monitoring of mobile devices isn’t always possible since, kids use them on the way to school and even while school is in session.  We really do need to educate our children rather than being helicopter parents. It is all very well putting in software to monitor, but this is the same principle as putting a camera on their head when they are out with friends.

Turning the Tide

The best way to protect your children is to keep an open line of communication in which both you and your children clearly understand some of the very dangerous situations that could be presented online. By downloading Gooseberry Planet this will help your child be educated on online safety issues.

They also need to know what kind of personal information is being published publicly online. Children need to know that telling parents about inappropriate contact with someone on the Internet is appreciated and will not result in a restriction of their cell phone usage.