Philly.com announced on Friday (May 13) that it will launch a new video chat feature, powered by video chat service Yowie, on Monday (May 16) at noon with nationally acclaimed cybersafety speaker Tina Meier. Meier, whose daughter tragically took her own life at age 13 after being cyberbullied, will answer questions live on Philly.com on a range of topics including cyberbullying, sexting and keeping children safe online.
Meier, who has spoken to thousands of parents and students throughout the Greater Philadelphia region as part of Verizon's Cybersafe Philly program, will answer questions submitted by Philly.com readers via webcam. Readers may also participate and ask questions traditionally by typing and posting the question from their laptop or personal computer.
"Philadelphia Media Network's responsibility to the community as parent company of Philly.com, The Philadelphia Inquirer and the Philadelphia Daily News is to provide an important voice to issues of importance like cybersafety," said Mark Block, vice president, external relations for Philly.com. "The opportunity to further explore the cyberbullying issue by applying Philly.com's new video chat technology to the public discussion underscores a commitment we have to our readers for providing informative, engaging resources that can reach our expansive online audience.
"Philly.com's new video chat technology will provide digital audiences the experience of a personal conversation with one of our nation's leading speakers on the topic of cybersafety and cyberbullying, issues first examined for our print and online readers in The Inquirer's ongoing 'Assault on Learning' investigative series on school violence," Block said.
Gale Given, president of Verizon Pennsylvania, said, "According to some studies, more than half of the children in the Greater Philadelphia region will encounter a cyberbullying event at some point in their lives. We know that parents thirst for useful, credible and updated information that teaches them how to protect their kids while still empowering them to embrace the technology that will fuel their futures. We commend Philly.com for providing this special platform for concerned citizens to chat directly with Tina Meier and gather more knowledge."
Meier's 13-year-old daughter, Megan, ended her own life in 2006 after being cyberbullied by an adult and a teenager who lived down the street from the Meier family. Since then, Meier has made it her mission to educate parents, students and organizations across the U.S. about preventing common dangers online and protecting children in a rapidly growing technological environment.
Meier participated in the March 10 Presidential Conference on Bullying Prevention at the personal request of President Obama and first lady Michelle Obama.
To participate in the Philly.com live video chat with Tina Meier, visit Philly.com between 12 p.m. and 1 p.m. on Monday (May 16). For more information about the Verizon Cybersafe Philly program, visit www.cybersafephilly.com.
About Philadelphia Media Network
Philadelphia Media Network, Inc. (PMN) is the owner of Philadelphia Media Network (Newspapers) LLC, the publisher of The Philadelphia Inquirer and the Philadelphia Daily News and Philadelphia Media Network (Digital) LLC, the owner of philly.com. With its multiple brand platforms and integrated print and digital products, PMN is the region's largest media network and the industry's technological leader and innovator. The Philadelphia Media Network reaches an average weekly audience of 2.2 million adults - more than the combination of the three evening television news shows or the combination of those radio stations ranked in the top ten during drive-time programming.
Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE, NASDAQ:VZ), headquartered in New York, is a global leader in delivering broadband and other wireless and wireline communications services to mass market, business, government and wholesale customers. Verizon Wireless operates America's most reliable wireless network, with more than 104 million total connections nationwide. Verizon also provides converged communications, information and entertainment services over America's most advanced fiber-optic network, and delivers seamless business solutions to customers around the world. A Dow 30 company, Verizon employs a diverse workforce of more than 196,000 and last year generated consolidated revenues of $106.6 billion. For more information, visit www.verizon.com.
About The Megan Meier Foundation
The mission of the Megan Meier Foundation is to bring awareness, education and promote positive change to children, parents, and educators in response to the ongoing bullying and cyberbullying in our children's daily environment.