Screen Smart Brussels: Bringing Together Parents & Experts to Improve Online Experiences for Young People


  • We invited parents, and safety experts to Screen Smart Brussels to discuss how to support teens and their families online. 
  • The event included an expert panel discussion and an interactive Design Jam, our global co-design program that invites young people, parents and experts to share their experiences and perspectives, and contribute to our product design process.
  • Parents said they wanted to know more about the safety tools available, and to understand how they can become more involved in their teens’ online experiences. 

Last month, Meta brought together parents and safety experts to our first Screen Smart event in Brussels. The event was designed to help parents better understand the tools available to support them and their teens across Meta apps, and to hear directly from them about the challenges of parenting teens online, and what they’d like to see more of from companies like Meta. 

At Meta, we regularly consult with experts from around the world to develop policies and products to help create safe, positive and age-appropriate experiences for our community – and we believe that among the most important experts are parents and teens themselves. 

That’s why, as part of this Screen Smart event in Brussels, we hosted a Design Jam to ask parents for their perspectives on age assurance and parental supervision – two key areas in the context of age-appropriate online experiences. Empowering parents to get involved in teens’ online experiences is critical. This includes exploring ways to establish the age of their teen as they access digital apps, as well as offering ways to give parents oversight through parental supervision tools. 

This Parent Design Jam built on the success of the Youth Design Jam we held in Brussels earlier this year in partnership with NGO ThinkYoung, where we heard directly from students and explored potential new transparency, control and education tools.

Consulting with Experts, Young People and Parents is Key to Our Approach

At the Screen Smart event, Instagram’s Global Head of Public Policy Tara Hopkins also led a panel discussion with Niels Van Paemel from ChildFocus, Karen Linten from MediaWijs, Loulou João from Meta and ThinkYoung’s Youth Network, and Leo Cendrowicz from the Brussels Times. Our expert panellists discussed the opportunities and challenges of social media, and shared helpful tips for parents navigating the digital world with their families. 

“The most important thing is to really talk. To have a conversation. Because conversation is really key. We often ask, how was your day at school? But we do not tend to ask them, how was your day online?”

– Karen Linten, MediaWijs


“Events like this are amazing. They are very powerful in terms of bringing people together who wouldn’t normally be in contact.”

– Niels van Paemel, ChildFocus


“I think it’s a great idea to come together, discuss the tools that are available and see how they can impact our lives online.”

– Loulou João, member of Meta and Think Young’s Youth Network

These events are well aligned with the European Union’s Better Internet for Kids Strategy, which calls on industry to actively involve young people and families in the development of their digital products and services, empowering them to influence the co-creation of their digital environment. We’re committed to continuing our work to building an environment where young people feel safe online.

Visit our Family Center to learn more about our supervision tools and access resources from leading experts.

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