I’ve seen the harm online platforms can do to children, but the government is slow to respond. Its latest plans don’t go far enough
This week, the government announced plans to target “sexting and cyberbullying” as part of an initiative to make the internet safer for young people. It is to meet with technology companies, charities, academies and mental health professionals to develop a strategy. All this sounds wonderful, but the speed of reaction to what has been a very real situation for years has been painfully slow.
TEENAGERS are being blackmailed by online crooks pretending to be interested in having a relationship with them.
Glasgow youngsters have been tricked into sending compromising images of themselves to people they have met online, only to be told to cough up cash or the pictures will be published for friends and family to see.
The desire to explore and manipulate our identity is a normal process of development and underpins much of the appearance-driven behaviour that we see amongst young people.
Up until recently, this was done in front of the mirror; experimenting with clothes, hairstyles and makeup. More recently the selfie has begun to play a role.
While there is a benefit to articulating one’s identity and getting feedback from one’s peer group, the problem is that doing this via selfies means that this feedback group, which reflects back to us how we appear, has increased exponentially, and with it the uncertainty of how we are perceived, and indeed valued, by others.
Just two weeks after her daughter took her own life, Megan Evans’ mother Nicola shares how her daughter’s secret battle with cyber bullies drove her to commit suicide.
Checking social media at night means that teenagers are constantly tired at school, academics say
One in five secondary pupils regularly wakes up in the night to check social media, meaning that they are constantly tired at school, new research shows.
More than 900 pupils between the ages of 12 and 15 answered questions about how often they woke up at night to use social media, as part of a study conducted by Welsh academics. They were also asked what time they went to bed and woke up in the morning.
Image © GETTY IMAGES
Police are likely to see a rise in cases involving children bullying and threatening each other by posting naked images online, a chief constable has warned.
His remarks come days after a public schoolboy who threatened to publish explicit photos of a girl on Facebook was given an eight-month jail sentence suspended with a lifetime restraining order banning him from contacting his victims.
Safer Internet Day 2017
On 7th February 2017, Safer Internet Day will be celebrated globally with the slogan ‘Be the change: Unite for a better internet’ with millions of people around the world uniting for a better internet.
It has given a voice to a generation, and helped unite people and communities far and wide. But social media is not always used as a force for good. In recent years, the misuse of social media has resulted in children and young people becoming both the perpetrators and victims of crime.
OVER a third of 13 to 15 year old students have been sent explicit images on their phones, according to a recent report.
The report also shows that less than half of the students knew who the sender was, and only a quarter had asked for it. The research, presented at the annual conference of the Association of Scottish Principal Educational Psychologists, was collected from an online survey of 800 students in Fife. The study found that 38% of students in S3 had received inappropriate messages, as well as 14% of students in S1, aged as young as 11.
The NSPCC has spoken out to warn high-profile YouTubers that they have a responsibility to make sure that relationships with young fans were appropriate.
Emily Cherry, who is head of participation at the children’s charity told the BBC that “blurred boundaries,” between prominent vloggers and their viewers can put young people at risk. YouTube, meanwhile, has said that educating fans and creators is key.
Pokemon Go players have been involved in hundreds of police incidents since the gaming app phenomenon launched, the BBC has learned.
Robberies, thefts, assaults and driving offences were among 290 incidents recorded across England and Wales throughout July.
Lancashire Constabulary logged 39 incidents – the highest figure from 29 forces that provided data.
The force has reiterated safety advice for fans of the monster-hunting game.
A spokesman for Pokemon Go developers Niantic also urged people playing the game to “abide by local laws”.
New research by the Department of Education has found that the mental well-being of teenage girls in the UK is worsening. The survey, which took the views of 30,000 14-year-old pupils in 2005 and 2014, found that 37% of girls suffer from psychological distress, up from 34% in 2005. (This compares with 15% for boys in 2014, down from 17% a decade earlier.) The report’s authors noted that one of the things that has changed between 2005 and 2014 is the “advent of the social media age”.
The Duke of Cambridge has urged everyone to be ready to challenge bullying behaviour in a video message to support the first ever National Stand Up To Bullying Day.
E-safety Factsheet for Parents
Read More….ESS_Esafety_Factsheet (pdf)
Students at UK universities have been warned of a new scam which aims to gain access to their bank accounts.
The phishing campaign sends an email claiming the student has been awarded an educational grant by the Department for Education.
A 13-year-old student from the Central Coast was met with a slew of online abuse from people she considered friends after breaking up with her boyfriend, highlighting a worrying trend in cyberbullying.
Social networks like Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat are part of everyday life for most young people. They use them to stay in touch and share their lives and opinions with family and friends all over the world.
When you add a smiley face to the end of a message, you may be saying more than you realise. Emoticons, faces formed from punctuation symbols such as :-), and emojis, picture symbols such as , are now common features of the way we communicate using phone and internet messaging services and social media. They can help your recipient understand a potentially ambiguous message, reinforce the emotion in what you’re saying, or communicate your feelings rapidly with a single character. But not everyone uses them – or interprets them – in the same way.
Police investigate complaint and Inverclyde Council urges parents to be vigilant.
Schoolgirls have been targeted online by a fake model agent who tried to convince them to send pictures of themselves.
Childnet launch the 7th Childnet Film Competition
E-safety charity, Childnet, have launched the 7th Childnet Film Competition to encourage young people aged 7-18 to create a short film to educate their peers about staying safe online.
With the aim of celebrating the positive things that young people are doing online, the competition showcases young people’s creativity and their understanding of online safety issues.
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Child Online Safety:
A practical guide for parents and carers whose children are using social media
View the Guide: Social Media Guidance for parents UKCCIS – Dec 2015 (pdf)
O2 and the NSPCC have joined forces to help parents and families in the UK learn how to keep kids safe online.
They have launched a free helpline where you can get advice from experts on the following topics:
- Setting up parental controls on your computer or other devices
- Help adjusting privacy settings
- Understanding social networks
- Concerns about online gaming
- App advice
- Online bullying
- Strangers online
- Online addiction
- Paying for extras
- And much more…………..
Helpline opening times:
Monday – Friday: 9am to 7pm
Saturday & Sunday: 10am to 6pm
Bank Holidays: 10am to 4pm
The number for the helpline is 0800 800 5002. For further information see www.o2.co.uk/nspcc