LIVE-STREAMING apps are the new trend for children so if you are buying laptops, phones and tablets for children this Christmas; read on to find out what parents need to know.
Live-streaming apps are a type of technology which allow users to film, post and share what they are doing and this is instantly shared to the web.
Millions of tech savvy children and young people use these apps. A survey carried out by Comres for Children’s BBC Newsround found that 78% of 10-12 year olds in the UK have at least one social media account, even though most apps require the user to be 13 years-old or older to join.
Ben Black, 19 is a social media influencer from Manchester, he has over 500’000 followers on Musical.ly and shares sport content. Ben said:
“I can understand why parents are worried about their children and teens being online. I would advise that they check out the accounts of the people that their children are watching, to make sure you are happy with the content they are seeing.
“Most of the content on the platforms I use, such as Instagram and Musical.ly are safe, but I know there can be inappropriate material around too”.
CEOPs animation highlights the importance of parents and carers talking openly to their children about being safe online, about healthy relationships and encouraging them to speak out if anything happens online that worries them or doesn’t feel right.
Talking to your children about the dangers online
It’s really important for parents to be able to chat to their children about what sites they use and what they do online.
Children often worry about telling their parents when something as gone wrong online, as they think they will receive a ban or not be allowed on the app anymore. Overcoming this and letting your child know that they can talk to you without them getting into trouble is key to having open and honest discussions about the risk posed online.
Facebook live, Instagram stories, Musical.ly and Live.ly are just three apps which have this function.
Many apps such as Facebook and Instagram now offer a live stream function, so talk to your children about their privacy settings.
Let them know the importance of not giving away personal details and what things are not ok to share online.
Sharenting – are you mirroring good online behavior?
It’s equally as important for parents to mirror this behavior too ‘Sharenting’ a term given to parents that share too much online, has also become an issue. In a survey for Channel 4 news, it was found that 99% of parents who use social media upload an image of their child every week.
Musical.ly and Live.ly
Musical.ly is a one app which has become increasingly popular with children and young people. Users of the app should be 13, but many are much younger.
Users create short video clips showing them dancing, lip-syncing, playing sports or even cooking and share them with their followers. Many celebrities now have an account too.
Musers (the name giver to Musical.ly users) can also watch live streams, this function is available to users who have downloaded the sub app, live.ly.
We ask teen social media users, what is good and what is bad about the apps.
Good “Its good when you are at concerts and gigs and you can share this with your friends”
Bad “I have seen people who have been filmed when they are drunk or in embarrassing situations and that’s not nice”
Good “It’s great how people can tag things and link it to the website, so with one swipe you can find the exact thing that someone is wearing”
Bad “I can make you feel down, Instagram is so full of people with perfect lives, bodies and and endless supply of cash”
Good “I love using live.ly because I get to comment on famous peoples live stream and they sometimes reply which is really cool”
Bad “Some people write inappropriate things, I’ve seen some nasty and rude comments”