What conversations should we be having as parents, siblings, grandparents, childcare providers, and friends among ourselves and with the children in our care about the internet and how to use it?
Growing up with access to the internet at a very young age, I encountered my fair share of “disturbing” content. Internet trolls are never going to stop lurking on the internet and I think it is necessary to explain to children growing up online the importance of understanding the motives for the trolling. Children should learn the difference of real content versus the content that is conjured up to instill fear and create a commotion on different platforms. There are predators on the internet and the best way for parents to protect their children from these predators is to address the potential problems and train their kids how to react and who to alert in certain situations.
“Someone or something or some combination of people and things is using YouTube to systematically frighten, traumatise, and abuse children, automatically and at scale, and it forces me to question my own beliefs about the internet, at every level.”
Why is this content created and who does it target?
What other website can be “triggering” for viewers?
Who has the right to shut a website down or report the content?
At what point does the content cross the line from fun form of freedom of speech to an act of hatred, bullying, or terror for viewers?
How can we explain the purpose of this content to children in order to protect them?