Children must learn about hidden advertising on social media

Children's use of social media has exploded in recent years, and their media consumption takes place on smartphones and tablets. This often leaves them alone with a large proportion of the advertising messages to which they are exposed. The Social Star teaching material is therefore intended to teach 5th-7th graders about bidden advertising on social media.

Children are increasingly exposed to hidden advertising on social media, including so-called influencer marketing. Children and young people are not aware that, on social media, the sender may have a commercial purpose, but rather they perceive the sender as a "friend". In collaboration with the Media Council for Children and Young People and the Consumer Ombudsman, the Competition and Consumer Authority has prepared teaching material intended to teach children and young people to be critical of commercial social media content. 

The teaching material is based on extensive interviews, focus groups, analyses and prototype testing. Pupils will learn about and understand the economic cycle behind commercial communication on social media, and the programme culminates in a student production on social media. So far, over 500 classes have completed the programme. 

The content has just been updated to align with the new Danish Marketing Practices Act, which comes into effect on July 1, 2017 and, among other things, introduces up-to-date rules on hidden advertising on social media.

Summary and main conclusions are available for download.
Full article available in Danish.