Daily practice with digital tools, no matter how intensive, does not guarantee proficiency. This is the observation of Afnic, the association tasked with promoting the use of digital technologies throughout the country thanks to the .fr. For several years now, Afnic has been working with VSEs/SMEs, tradespersons and businesses to help them manage their online presence through the Réussir en.fr [‘Succeed with .fr’] scheme and the Foliweb training programme, which trained more than 30,000 structures last year. Afnic has been using this know-how to benefit young people since 2019 through the programme Commence par réussir en .fr [‘Start by Succeeding in .fr’], and raising awareness among 16/25-year-olds of the opportunities and pitfalls involved in managing their digital identity. Today, Afnic is taking a further step in this essential process by joining forces with Pix.
The two players have designed a self-assessment scheme for a wide target group of students, apprentices, young professionals, and in many cases both students and workers. So how does it work? Young people are put through practical tests in what is essentially a cross between a role-playing game and the more traditional questionnaire. This immersive learning experience teaches them to reflect on their uses and test their digital skills in the following areas:
- Knowledge of the Internet, how it works and rules to be obeyed
- Online visibility, domain names and e-reputation
- Data Protection and Cybersecurity
The course has three main objectives: understanding your true level, evaluating what is at stake (a job search, for example) and improving your skills! The target set by Afnic and Pix is to reach 1,000 young people by spring 2021.
Benjamin Marteau, Director of Pix, gave the following statement: “Pix’s mission is to encourage everyone to cultivate their digital skills throughout their lives. Particularly the youngest amongst us, who have many uses for digital technologies, but who also have a lot to learn. By joining forces with Afnic, a key player in the French digital sphere, we are further intensifying our action to enable everyone to manage their online presence, whether for professional purposes or simply as active citizens.”
Afnic CEO Pierre Bonis concluded: “It is Afnic’s mission to provide genuine solutions that give individuals the autonomy they need to manage their digital lives. Pix is a public service that has a clear view of the digital world and, like us, is driven by an ambition to give everyone the means to be independent and to master their digital presence.”
Afnic is the acronym for Association Française pour le Nommage Internet en Coopération, the French Network Information Centre. The registry has been appointed by the French government to manage domain names under the .fr Top Level Domain. Afnic also manages the .re (Reunion Island), .pm (Saint-Pierre and Miquelon), .tf (French Southern and Antarctic Territories), .wf (Wallis and Futuna) and .yt (Mayotte) French Overseas TLDs.
In addition to managing French TLDs, Afnic’s role is part of a wider public interest mission, which is to contribute on a daily basis, thanks to the efforts of its teams and its members, to a secure and stable internet, open to innovation and in which the French internet community plays a leading role. As part of that mission, Afnic, a non-profit organization, donates 90% of its profits to its Foundation for Digital Solidarity. Afnic is also the back-end registry for the companies as well as local and regional authorities that have chosen to have their own TLD, such as .paris, .bzh, .alsace, .corsica, .mma, .ovh, .leclerc and .sncf.
Established in 1997 and based in Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines, Afnic currently has 80 employees.