Author Archives: Natalia Cano

When should you talk to kids about online safety?

Parenting today involves raising kids who are surrounded by technology and smartphones. As a mother of two young kids, making sure they understand online safety is a top priority of mine. Children are spending more time than ever looking at screens, and at younger ages. Finding that balance of online and offline, setting boundaries, and having those conversations are critical for creating a healthy and safer experience online.

A few clicks in the right direction...

Over the past two years, we’ve checked in with parents across the Asia Pacific region to see how they handle their kids’ technology usage. The survey results are encouraging: most parents (80%) are confident that their child would come to them with any problems online, and have already had conversations with them about online safety (73%).

Screentime has been steadily rising - and unsurprisingly, more than 60% of parents allowed increased screen time for kids, which has been essential for online classes (52%), learning new languages (33%) or even reading a book (31%).

… but not all compute.

Despite the optimism, one in three parents still worry their children might not be sufficiently informed about online safety. We also found that while children get their first mobile phone at an average age of 10, parents don’t talk to them about online safety until an average age of 13. This three-year gap could be why kids aren’t as informed as they could be— particularly at an age when they are most vulnerable to pitfalls and hard-to-break habits.

Never too early to learn

Parents believed having a casual conversation with their child (42%) was the most effective way to engage them on online safety, followed by establishing rules by using parental control features (30%). We also asked parents at Google about their own parenting tips.

Help kids be safer and confident online

As technology rapidly evolves, it can be difficult for parents to find the most up-to-date information on online safety. Close to half said they don’t know what tools to use to monitor their kids’ online activity, or haven’t been able to find any easy-to-understand online safety examples.

Here are some handy tools and free resources that parents can use:

  • Be Internet Awesome provides tools and interactive games that teaches kids the fundamentals of digital citizenship and online safety .
  • Google’s Family Link helps set digital ground rules to guide your children as they learn, play, and explore online, and make the right screentime choices for them.
  • SafeSearch on Google helps filter out explicit content in Google’s search results including images, videos and websites.
  • YouTube Kids allows you to create profiles for your kids to surface relevant family-friendly content and manage screen time.
  • Supervised experience on YouTube is a parent-managed version of regular YouTube. It comes with tailored content settings, adjusted features and digital wellbeing protections for younger viewers.

There is no one right way to have these important conversations with kids, but starting earlier and using these digital tools can put them on the path to establishing long-term healthy habits with technology.

How YouTube can help people develop their careers and grow their businesses

As new technologies change the way people do their jobs or run their businesses, YouTube can help them acquire new skills to take advantage of the opportunities ahead.

Video is much more than just a source of entertainment, it’s also a powerful medium for learning.  YouTube has a wealth of resources to help people advance their careers, prepare for new jobs or grow their businesses. More than 500 million learning-related videos are viewed on the platform every day. These videos are made and shared by a highly-motivated group of creators, such as Linda Raynier, whose videos teach job seekers how to nail aninterview or write a resume that gets noticed; or Vanessa Van Edwards, who helps people master soft skills like how to use body language in an interview or communicate a great elevator pitch. Thanks to creators like Linda and Vanessa, people can learn new skills for free and engage with a YouTube community of experts for valuable support.

Finding out the facts

Together with brand consultancy Flamingo, we recently surveyed internet users to discover what they think of YouTube and and how it helps them learn new skills.

In the ten European countries covered in the research, 64 percent of respondents felt that YouTube helps them learn new skills that enable personal or professional advancement, making it the highest-rated channel of those included in the survey. YouTube scores highly on this measure for both men (62 percent) and women (66 percent), and across all age groups, at least 50 percent of respondents agreed with the statement.


As part of the research, we ran interviews with people who note that YouTube is a key resource for learning and building their career. One respondent in Saudi Arabia observed that: “YouTube makes me feel like I have a teacher—a teacher that’s available at any moment.” Likewise, a teenager  from France, said, “I decided I wanted to work in fashion thanks to YouTube. I learned how to apply makeup and spot fashion trends thanks to what I learned from YouTubers.”

No matter if you want to launch your business or find tips to get a new job, YouTube is a resource that’s always there to help you grow. What will you learn next?

Helping young women overcome hurdles to learning computer science

Sophie Charlotte Kuenecke never thought she’d be able to program a robot. But after she managed to do it by age 12, she found a passion for robotics and didn’t look back—and focused her studies, and ultimately her career, on that passion. At university, Sophie Charlotte discovered Open Roberta, an online platform developed by German research institution Fraunhofer IAIS that helps people learn to program by explaining complex concepts in simple ways. Open Roberta is supported by our Grow with Google initiative, which trains people and businesses on important digital skills so that they can embrace new opportunities ahead. Sophie Charlotte now uses Open Roberta to teach female students about robotics, hoping to inspire them to follow a career path in programming. “It doesn’t matter if you are a boy or a girl, what matters is what you want to achieve and what you are willing to do to get there,” she says.

Sophie Charlotte - Inspiring young women to follow a career in computer programming

There are still barriers preventing students—especially girls and children from lower-socioeconomic backgrounds—to learn computer science. In the classes that she teachers, Sophie helps her students to overcome these hurdles, and through our support of the Open Roberta initiative, we’re also supporting Sophie’s goal: that one day these hurdles won’t exist.

Danish business embraces digital to create jobs and save lives

During their years in the armed forces, Mark Nilsson and Anders Kjærsgaard used their first response training to save lives. When they left the service, they wanted to transfer those skills to everyday civilian life. So they set up First-8, a company that delivers first aid training to businesses and individuals, with ex-army personnel as instructors.

They knew that the internet was a great way to reach customers, but they also knew they were missing basic skills to market online so they decided to sign up for Google Succes online, a program that taught them how to improve SEO (search engine optimization), use Google AdWords to create online ads, and measure their ad performance with Google Analytics.

After joining the program in 2016, Mark and Andrews have increased the number of people trained from 360 to 3,200. They’ve also grown from two to 30 staff, recruiting many ex-army people, and moved the business from their living rooms to two new offices and three warehouses.
First-8: creating job opportunities and saving lives

First-8: creating job opportunities and saving lives

First-8 is just one example of how Google is helping businesses succeed with digital. Since launching Succes Online in partnership with Dansk Industri, Dansk Erhverv, Erhvervsstyrelsen, FDIH, ITB, Ivækst and PwC og ASE three years ago, we’ve trained more than 30,000 people across 73 Danish municipalities, with 39 percent of small businesses reporting improved business results, revenues or new customers as a result of the training. In Northern Europe alone, the number of jobs requiring digital skills will double in the next 15 years, with an additional 200,000 jobs created. We want to play our part by equipping people and businesses like First-8 with the skills they need to grow their business or career, and take advantage of these new opportunities.

“Succes Online has given us the resources and opportunities we needed to develop our business and take it in a new direction,” says Mark. “We never imagined that our experience in the army would lead to us building a business that can help save people’s lives.”