In this new decade it is important that parents, teachers, guardians are aware of how kids use the Internet and its potential impact on our children.
Firstly, Access to the Internet
With the introduction of the smartphone children are able to access the Internet in numbers not previously seen.
According to a recent study in the UK, 50% of all 10 year old’s had a smartphone in 2019, that is double the previous year.
In addition, this study shows that 24% of all 3 – 4 years old had their own tablet and of these 15% of them take them to bed.
The image below shows nicely how kids are using the Internet, what their online behaviour is and at the various different development ages.
Why is this important for parents to be aware of?
There are the obvious reasons that everyone knows about, that being the sheer amount of explicit adult material on the Internet.
Here are some stats released by Pornhub in 2017. Since smartphone access doubled in 2019 we can assume that the numbers are likely significantly higher:
- 19 28.5 billion annual visits to the website.
- 81 million daily average visits.
- 25 billion searches performed.
- 50,000 searches per minute.
- 800 searches a second. 4,052,542 videos uploaded.
- 68 years worth of content uploaded. 3,732 pentabytes of information transferred (enough to the fill the memory of every Iphone on Earth
The studies of the impact of pornographic material on the developing brain demonstrate that this is certainly something children should be protected from.
Here are some stats on teenagers and pornography
- Nearly 27% of teens receive sexts.
- Around 15% are sending them.
- 51% of male students and 32% of female students first viewed porn before their teenage years.
- The first exposure to pornography among men is 12 years old, on average.
- 71% of teens hide online behavior from their parents.
- A 2016 study on Canadian adolescents showed that 45.3% admitted to problems in erectile dysfunction.
Social Media Access and Cyber-bullying
Social Media is also an area parents need to have oversight and management. In our previous blog we discussed social media and suicide rates. To summarise this in an easy to read format here are some stats:
- 34% of students reported cyber bullying in there lifetime – study done in 2015 (it must have significantly climbed recently with the smartphone and high speed Internet
- Over 60% of students reported that cyberbullying immensely impacted their ability to learn and feel safe at school (stat from 2018)
- 59% of US teens have been harassed or bullied online (Pew Research 2018)
- Over 90% of teens report it as a major problem for there age (Pew Research 2018)
- Targets of cyberbullying are at greater risk for self harm and suicide
- Students who are targets of cyberbullying are twice as likely to commit suicide
- Research shows that the number of students who kill themselves has doubled since 2008
- Cyberbullying related suicide is now the 2nd leading cause of death for 10 -34 year olds according the to the CDC in 2017
- Cyberbullying reportedly is a leading cause of depression, low self-esteem and other mental health problems experienced by teens.
- 15% of students admit to cyberbullying while 34% admit to being cyberbullied (source www.cyberbullying.org)
- Research presented at the 2017 Pediatric Academic Societies Meeting revealed the number of children admitted to hospitals for attempted suicide or expressing suicidal thoughts doubled between 2008 and 2015. Much of the rise is linked to an increase in cyberbullying (Source: CNN).
Protecting our youth
The only way we are going to be able to protect the youth today and in the future is by providing Clean Internet, Oversight into there activities and management of the time they spend on the Internet. It is essential that these basic steps are taken to protect our children and their futures.
LucidView has developed a Free Clean Internet Solution that will allow the grown ups to decide what their children can view as well as when and for how long. All you need is a MikroTik Router, we provide a step by step how to and a config script that converts your router into a powerful and advanced web Content Filter.