Social media is now vital for people, especially for millennials. If you’re looking for a place to stay on vacation, meet new people, or hope to find your soul mate somewhere, social media platforms will be the bridge.
Communication is now more accessible thanks to social networks. However, each of them has its flaws – they can be a gateway to immoral or hostile acts, which makes them dangerous for every user to use.
Why is social media bad for your kids?
In 2019, “about 45% of the world’s population uses social media, with an average of two hours and 23 minutes spent per day on social media,” according to the report. As indicated by UNICEF, this considerable time spent on these platforms will then have negative effects on the social behavior of people, especially children. Here are some of its effects:
Designed for excessive use
As UNICEF said, the most negative impact of social media is once your children are addicted to using it. Browsing social media feeds can trigger different emotions in children, such as “envy, inadequacy, or less life satisfaction.”
Just liking and reacting to someone’s posted images or videos can also lead to massive distraction for someone. According to a study, once a teenager or child posts a photo on social media and only a few people like it, the child’s tendency to feel lonely and sad can occur at any time.
Harassment on the internet
Whether online or in a physical world, bullying is not a good thing. This is why, as UNICEF said, cyberbullying can lead to more problems once encountered by children. This can result in school dropout, alcohol use, or even drug use.
Apps that don’t have or have poor age verification
Under federal law, effective April 21, 2000, the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act of 1998 (COPPA) states that social media platforms must prohibit children under the age of 13 from using and to access their media.
For example, Facebook already asks its users when they sign up to enter their age to follow federal law restrictions. However, there are still social media apps that do not follow the protocol of US laws and simply choose to ignore the law.
According to an initial report from Techcrunch, Instagram is not taking any action in said COPPA law regarding their support. Indeed, you can easily join their app by downloading it and simply answering whether you are under 13 or not.
However, starting Dec. 5, CNN reported that Instagram will now have an age verification requirement on its platform, making it “safer for young people.”
As noted via Family Education, TikTok which aims to share and produce short videos can also be dangerous for your children. Although it has age verification on its sleeve, kids can still access the app by simply downloading it.
Some parents say that a lot of inappropriate videos are shown on the app. Some also say that since all the videos are made public, the possibility of strangers chatting with children can happen at any time.
While Dating might be considered adult-only, kids can also access it once Tinder is on their mobile devices. Tinder is said to be suitable for 17 year olds above, but 13 year olds can still enter their data on their system. Since this is a dating app, catfishing and sexual harassment can happen anytime once an innocent child enters the stream.
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