Telekom Logo
2020 Corporate Responsibility Report

What can I still believe?

A video shows the former US president Richard Nixon as he earnestly looks into the camera. He announces to the people of the United States that the Apollo 11 lunar mission has failed: “Destiny has decided that the men who flew to the moon with peaceful intentions will stay on the moon to rest in peace.” Hold on a second – something isn’t right here!

It's all fake

In reality, Apollo 11 was of course the first successful moon landing. The video of Nixon is a “deep fake” – a video in which people’s faces are transposed and their voices overlaid. In this way, you can have people say and do whatever you want them to – and even change history. The fake video of President Nixon was shared by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in 2020 on the 51st anniversary of the successful moon landing. The institute’s researchers wanted to highlight everything you can do today with deep fake videos. After all, fake content like this can have drastic knock-on effects. There are lots of opportunities on the internet for us to be influenced, such as deep fakes, fake news, and social bots. And it’s not easy to identify them. We need to learn to not only read the news itself, but to pay attention to other things as well: Who is the sender? Is the source reputable? In short: We need media literacy. However, this involves more than just distinguishing between “true” and “false”. For instance, we need to know how to navigate the internet, protect our data from unauthorized access, and avoid posting anything that could be misused by others. In short, we need the skills to ensure that the internet enriches our everyday lives instead of being a burden.

Inclusive and equitable quality education

Our measures support the fourth goal of the United Nations Agenda 2030.

Making sure everyone can #TAKEPART

Media literacy is key to being able to use digital media with confidence and skill. Yet media literacy alone is not enough. We want to ensure that everyone can #TAKEPART in the web. As we see it, this means the internet has to be a space in which everyone can feel equally safe and where we coexist on the basis of democratic principles.

Barbara Costanzo, Vice President for Group Social Engagement

“As a society, we cannot afford to leave people behind on the road to the digital future. That’s why we are promoting media literacy among children, young people, and adults of all ages through various projects and initiatives.”

#TAKEPART stories from the digital world

How do bots and algorithms actually influence my opinion? We answer such questions on our #TAKEPART stories page. Under the headings “Digital democracy” and “Online civil courage”, the focus is on how our opinions are influenced on the internet and the best way to shield ourselves from this. The #TAKEPART stories initiative is not just about fake news, however. It also highlights a string of other current issues relating to our everyday digital life, such as how to protect yourself against online harassment and marginalization. What opportunities and risks does the internet present to democracy? Our #TAKEPART stories are full of practical tips. Opinion leaders can find guidelines and materials for workshops to suit all ages. That way, no one already has to be an expert before they can engage with and discuss digital issues. The materials are available in English, German, and simple German language versions.

All aboard

We are working to build media literacy skills in the population. In 2020, our diverse range of initiatives and communications campaigns reached 15 million people in Germany alone. This figure does not include those people reached via opinion leaders who carried out workshops using our information materials.

Some examples from Germany and Europe:

1
Media, sure!
But secure

Our “Media, sure! But secure.” website provides a platform for our initiatives to improve media literacy and carries our #GoodMagenta label for socially sustainable offerings.

2
Teachtoday

Our multi-award-winning „Teachtoday“ initiative supports children and young people, parents and grandparents, and teaching professionals with practical tips and materials. In 2020, we published a toolbox featuring over 100 educational formats for nine- to 16-year-olds.

3
SCROLLER

The SCROLLER children’s media magazine is geared specifically to children aged nine to twelve to improve their media literacy. Topics are presented in an age-appropriate manner. Content focused on children being brave on the web, for example, looks into online civil courage.

4
SCROLLER TV

SCROLLER TV is a children’s television format from Magenta TV. It aims to give children a constructive but also entertaining way to fill the time they are having to spend at home instead of going to school during the coronavirus pandemic.

5
Senior citizens

In collaboration with BAGSO – the German National Association of Senior Citizens’ Organizations – we promote media literacy among older people and support the Goldener Internetpreis (golden years internet award), which is presented to committed individuals who help older people use the web.

6
International

Our national companies are also committed to promoting media literacy. The Junior Engineer Academies (JIAs) in Greece are a good example. The program teaches STEM skills  img to secondary-level students (grades eight to ten).


20

20 million people – that’s how many individuals we reached internationally in 2020 with our Magenta Moon event communications.

Stop by and join in

At the IFA 2019 consumer electronics trade show, our stand broke with tradition, focusing on digital participation and media literacy in addition to new products and services. Using short-form content, discussion sessions, and workshops, we introduced lots of visitors to the subject of digital democracy. In 2020, IFA was canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic. Fortunately, our newly established event format Magenta Moon enabled us to pick up where we left off so successfully in 2019. This event particularly focused on digital learning, with 47 online sessions offered on the topic of online civil courage alone.

abschalten

Just take some time out

Let’s be honest – was grabbing your smartphone the first thing you did this morning? Nowadays, we hardly notice just how much digital content we actually consume. And through this consumption, we are giving our devices a great deal of power over us. Our “We Care” magazine shows you how you can easily switch off. More information Find out more.

Don’t forget to turn it off

Children of the 80s and 90s may recall that at the end of every “Löwenzahn” (Dandelion) TV show, Peter Lustig asked them to turn off the TV and go outside to play. As adults today, our smartphones are always in our pockets – and for many of us, it’s very hard to switch them off. One consequence: Researchers have discovered that the “smartphone generation” spends less and less time with their partners – for fear of missing out. For us, media literacy therefore means not only learning to use the internet critically and competently, but also knowing when it’s better to give the smartphone a break. But it’s not all that easy to talk about it, which is why we are addressing this by all means serious topic in a humorous way with our „lovemagenta connected underwear“: By connecting with the smartphone, the underwear can signal to the partner when it’s time to put the phone away and enjoy time together instead. And something that amuses us will maybe encourage us to think about our smartphone use.

Responsibility is key

Our various media literacy projects and initiatives share a common goal – to help people feel confident and secure in using digital media. For us, that means doing everything possible to ensure that data entrusted to us is in safe hands – and that children and young people are protected from unsuitable content. And last but not least: The basic prerequisite for media literacy is that everyone has fast access to the internet. For a number of years now, we have been investing huge sums in expanding the network for this very reason.