Gaming Privacy (or, Privacy: The Game! For Ages 8 and Up)

by David Fono

We are tickled to announce that we here at Atmosphere Industries in partnership with Ryerson’s Experiential Design and Gaming Environments (EDGE) Lab, were one of eight recipients to be awarded a generous grant from the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada’s Contributions Program to create a pervasive/crossmedia game for kids, with kids as co-creators. The goal of the project will be to leverage children’s existing awareness regarding privacy to create a game that develops privacy literacy skills for ages 8 and up. We think this project is unique and critically important in its approach in a time when many efforts to protect children’s privacy are heavy-handed, alienating and ultimately counterproductive. These approaches tend to ignore the knowledge children have about the online world as well as the fact that a child’s privacy can be inadvertently compromised by his or her parents. By working with children as co-creators, we hope to create a respectful, engaging and fun game that teaches privacy literacy in through critical thinking and advocating for oneself. And, as a bonus, we get to help to launch a new generation of game designers!

The project also contains a significant research component which examines conceptions of privacy among young children, which is why we’ve partnered with Ryerson’s EDGE Lab and will be drawing on the lab’s collective expertise in early childhood education, privacy, autonomy and research-based activism. We also have the generous support of the Ryerson DMZ, who are providing a hub for the game development process.

Links
Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada’s Official Press Release
Full List of Funded Contribution Projects
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