‘Codey Avatar’ cyber safety workshops

NT Aboriginal Cyber Safety Project Background 

In 2012 AMSANT gave funding to Barkly Regional Arts to develop a social media product to address cyber bullying issues happening within the communities. This was in response to a ‘Strong Choices Service Providers Workshop’ on 15th March 2012, called ‘Us Mob Our Country’ with Apparr Wangkijj-Kari-Council of Elders and Respected Persons. In essence their cyber concerns were social and emotional, in particular ‘Phone Humbug’. The elders were sick and tired of being threatened/bashed and emotionally black mailed to hand over their pin numbers for young people to gain credit for their mobile phones and make trouble.

Codey-behind-the-scenes Screen Shot 2012-12-10 at 4.42.34 PM

Artistic Director, Kathy Burns led the BRA project and created a series of content which would act as a platform for future cyber safety development. The content that was created centered around a character called ‘CODEY’ (play on word for coding) who would help show the way for people in how to be ‘Digi-Smart’ (digital smart).

Content created included:

  • Creation of Techno Codey character- He knows all the latest technology and is passionate about people being ‘Digi-Smart’. Codey provides advice, shares good examples, explains some dangers to be aware of using digital technology and reminds people to be smart when using digital technology.
  • Creation of Culture Codey character- He is there to make sure that culture is being respected in the digital world. To show ways of how culture and technology can work together respectfully and find ways to make it easy for everyone to understand digital technology.
  • Codey Avatars- using cutting edge technology (at the time) BRA turned the Codey characters into online avatars using CLIVE (Customer Live Internet Video Experience). Codey walks onto your computer screen, delivers a digi-smart message and invites you to click on him. The technology then navigates you directly to the CODEY website page, to be able to find some more content.
  • CODEY video- This is an introductory video that explains who CODEY is and what his mission is.
  • Background Video- The video is from community member, Martin Bruce Elliss, who explains what some of the digital issues have been in the community and why there is a need to get ‘Digi-Smart.
  • Codey Digi-Deadly’s – This a PDF guide that can be printed out and hung up in classrooms or offices to remind people to be smart when using digital technology.
  • Codey Facebook page – This is a platform in which people can go to, to find information on how to be ‘Digi-Smart’. It’s future purpose is for community organisations to contribute content that relates to being digital smart.

All of this content is contained in one line of code, making it easy to give to organisations to put on their website.

Screen Shot 2012-12-10 at 11.11.32 AMScreen Shot 2012-12-11 at 10.28.31 AM

 Cyber Safety Development 

Swinburne University and Telstra are conducting a 3-year research project titled, Cyber Safety for remote Northern Territory Aboriginal people. It is a research project for the benefit of Indigenous people in the NT.

Part of this project is practical content creation from the Barkly communities. The CODEY platform is being used to begin having discussion around cyber safety and create content that has ‘Digi-Smart’ messaging. This means locally created content that feeds directly into the community through the CODEY platform.The first stage is a Digital Design workshop being run in Tennant Creek, creating digital content that will then be placed on the CODEY Facebook page.


Techno CodeTechno-Codey-behind-the-scenes-2Aims:

  • To provide an interactive environment for remote Aboriginal people to learn about digital issues and online safety.
  • To gain a better understanding of remote peopleǯs awareness of cyber safety and digital issues.
  • To evaluate the effectiveness, cultural appropriateness and sustainability of cyber safety resources and strategies.


  • Learning digital arts skills
  • Learning key facts about cyber safety
  • Creation of Codey digital content
  • Sharing of content by participants in a joint event

Digital workshops 

Tennant Creek- 21st-24th March 2016

Barkly community TBC- July

For more information, please contact Artistic Director, Kathy Burns E | artisticdirector@barklyarts.com.au

Barkly Arts Media Mob

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