Between 2 Screens: Privacy for the Snapchat Generation

Between 2 screens

Say hello to Between 2 Screens, a resource guide and video contest about privacy and online safety for teens 13-17 years old that helps them to live a happy, drama-free digital life. From managing app downloads to snapping selfies to disabling location-based services, Between 2 Screens helps youth to navigate today’s always-connected mobile life.

Teens 13-17 years old living in the U.S. are eligible to enter the #between2screens video contest for a chance to win up to $6000 in prizes. We’re looking for videos about a funny, awkward, embarrassing, or awesome moment of life #between2screens that shows how teens manage their reputation, relationships, or privacy. The contest runs from June 1, 2016 through June 30, 2016. Learn more about the #between2screens video contest.

A youth-centered approach to privacy and online safety

How do you explain online privacy and safety to the Snapchat generation? It’s a topic that parents and professionals have struggled to discuss in a way that resonates with youth. Far too often young people are told that the Snaps, selfies, and status updates that make up their digital lives leave them open to risk and potential harm. The fear that “young people are in danger” runs through so much of the discourse we have with young people—whether it’s sex, drugs and alcohol, and even online privacy—and campaigns built around the worries of adults, rather than the needs and lived experiences of youth, do a disservice to young people. We can and must do better.

Youth have a complex and nuanced understanding of privacy. Where adults see privacy as matter of black or white—totally public or totally private—youth see a spectrum of privacy. Young people manage their online relationships, reputation, and privacy in a way that changes depending on the digital channel, audience, and desired interaction. A resource about online privacy must take this reality into account, and rather than suppress young people’s digital life, we celebrate it and help them to make better decisions about what they share and who they share it with.

YTH staff, high-school aged interns, and the YTH Youth Advisory Board worked together to develop content for the Between 2 Screens website and craft social media marketing messages to promote the #between2screens video contest. Having them as part of the process from beginning to end truly helped adult staff to understand the needs and experiences of youth.

Special thanks go to…

Youth interns Alicia and Laneka for helping us to brainstorm content and write messages for social media. Tyler, Jackson, and the team at Pound & Grain for developing a beautiful, kick-ass website. Val and Andrew for conducting the research that was central to our understanding of youth privacy and online safety. Iana for producing videos that capture the spirit of living a fun, authentic life #between2screens. And our partners at the Digital Trust Foundation and Vodafone Americas Foundation for supporting this project.


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