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CHANCELLOR KLEIN, CHIEF POLICY ADVISOR FEINBLATT, NYC MEDIA AND REEL WORKS ANNOUNCE "CLICKING WITH CAUTION" INTERNET SAFETY CAMPAIGN

-Educational Videos, Created by Kids for Kids, Raise Awareness of Internet Risks and Teach Preventive Measures
-DVDs Will Be Distributed to Over 200,000 Students at City Schools
June 8, 2010 -
Schools Chancellor Joel I. Klein, the Mayor’s Chief Policy Advisor John Feinblatt, NYC Media Chief Operating Officer Todd Asher and Reel Works Executive Director John Williams today announced the release of Clicking with Caution, a four-part internet safety video that will be distributed to all NYC middle-school students this week. Clicking with Caution was created by kids for kids, in partnership with Microsoft and Reel Works Teen Filmmaking—an organization that helps teenagers express themselves through film production. The DVDs were funded by the New York City Criminal Justice Coordinator and Microsoft, and will be airing on NYC life, the flagship station of NYC Media.

Featuring introductions by “Gossip Girl” star Jessica Szohr, the DVDs contain two narrative pieces and two documentaries, covering the following topics:

Online Sexual Predators: Young people must be cautious when using chat rooms or social networking sites. This video shows children how to protect themselves from people they meet on these Web sites who may be dangerous.

Cyber Bullying: Students often do not realize that the Internet—through Web sites, blogs, social networking, e-mail, and instant messaging—can escalate bullying behavior. This video shows students the consequences of cyber bullying and how they should handle these situations.

Maintaining Anonymity: Teenagers tend to reveal personal information online without realizing it. Watching this video will help children avoid accidentally sharing personal information with strangers that could put them at risk.

Online Gaming: Internet gaming has become a popular hobby for students, but it is important to remind kids that excessive gaming can be harmful.

“As our students begin to learn and communicate online more often, we must make sure they are vigilant about internet safety and the consequences of their actions,” said Chancellor Klein. “These videos will be a huge benefit to our middle school students, who can be vulnerable to predators and online bullying.”

“The internet is a powerful tool for both education and communication, but it is important for students and parents to understand online risks and the appropriate way to manage them,” said John Feinblatt, the Mayor’s Chief Policy Advisor.

“Clicking with Caution is an important part of our Internet Week efforts” said NYC Media Chief Operating Officer Todd Asher. “NYC Media delivers key information to New Yorkers using digital media, and we are committed to educating viewers about using the internet safely. We are proud to be partnering with other City agencies to advance this important initiative, and that Clicking with Caution will be available on our website for a long time to come.”

“Twenty young ReelWorks filmmakers drew from their own experiences online and worked with professional directors to create these powerful messages,” said Reel Works Executive Director John C. Williams. “It’s been an incredible honor to be able to use our skills for such an important purpose and serve the city that we love.”

“In today’s digital world, one online mistake can have a dramatic impact on your future,” said Fred Humphries, Microsoft’s Managing Director, U.S. Government Affairs. “These videos help teens understand the real-world consequences of the choices they make while using social networking sites, visiting chat rooms or gaming online.”

The videos are available in English, Spanish and Mandarin Chinese. They can be viewed by going to nyc.gov/vod, or on the NYC life channel on Monday June 7, 2010 at 9:00 pm.

Tune into 'Reel Works with Byron Hurt,' Fridays ar 9pm on NYC Life. To check our listing, find the channel on your cable system and stream episodes, visit www.nyc.gov/media. And for more on ReelWorks, go to www.reelworks.org.