Most people know the story by now. What started out as a morally questionable (but technically accomplished) mechanism for rating female college students’ pictures evolved into the flagship platform of a planet-spanning multi-billion-dollar empire – making a household name of its creator and adding an entirely new dimension to the 21st-century concept of ‘friendship’.
Facebook’s slightly questionable beginnings may seem a lifetime ago now, but similar concerns and controversies have continued to haunt the platform even during its phenomenal growth. Our updated #WakeUpWednesday guide to the social media titan alerts trusted adults to potential issues around inappropriate content, oversharing and contact from strangers.
Please find more information, in the above guide.
Launched in 1997, Netflix is now one of the world’s leading online streaming services, providing users with unlimited access to a huge
selection of TV shows and films. It’s available on any internet-connected device that supports the Netflix app, from smart TVs and games
consoles to tablets and smartphones, and is becoming increasingly popular with a younger audience. This is unsurprising given
consumer attitudes are changing more towards video-on-demand (VoD) services. That’s why we’ve created this guide to help parents
and carers understand exactly what Netflix is about.
Please find in the above post, updated information regarding Netflix.
It’s always comforting to be reminded of humanity’s natural compassion: how, in adversity, we tend to rally round to help those less fortunate than ourselves. That’s fundamental to Comic Relief, which raises millions every year to combat issues including poverty, homelessness, domestic abuse and mental health stigmas.
The theme of 2022’s fundraiser is ‘You’ – inspiring people to do something, however modest, to brighten someone’s day. A lot of those uplifting actions, we’d venture, can easily be accomplished online: so this #WakeUpWednesday, we’ve designed a display poster highlighting ways that we can all spread some much-needed happiness through the digital world.
Please find more information, in the above post.
Financial Fraud Action estimates that, in the UK, a financial scam is committed every 15 seconds. Some of these dishonest schemes continue to take the traditional route through our letterboxes or onto our doorsteps – but an increasing majority now target that commanding gateway to our attention that’s with us throughout our waking hours: our phone.
From bogus bank personnel to counterfeit couriers, scammers now adopt a whole gallery of convincing aliases from behind a keyboard. In this week’s #WakeUpWednesday guide, we profile some of the most frequent attempted cons, highlight ways to avoid them and suggest what to do if you or someone in your family does inadvertently fall foul of a phone scam.
Please find more information in the above link.
Digital technology, and its increased influence on our lives, remains a keenly debated topic as the world takes further tentative steps into ‘the new normal’. Central to that conversation, of course, are the ways that young people’s online activities – which naturally evolve rapidly, even without the seismic shock of a pandemic – are developing in the 2020s.
Every year, the UK’s communications regulator, Ofcom, carries out an in-depth study into how young people are using and experiencing the online world. For our #WakeUpWednesday guide this week, we’ve trawled the report’s 79 densely packed pages to bring you an accessible digest of the most relevant and informative findings.
Please find information from the report, in the above link.
Siren Head is a Fictional Character, first created in 2018 by Trevor Henderson. Siren head is a 40-foot tall, humanoid monster, covered in mummified flesh, and an air raid siren for a head. It communicates by emitting air raid siren noises, or an amalgamation of old radio broadcasts.
As Siren Head has being receiving more attention, it is trending online. More people are talking about it and spreading the word. This is also an opportunity for people to cash in on the popularity. There are several games on Roblox and mobile that I have found just from searching ‘Siren Head’. Some will be horror games; however, others aren’t related. The initial thing that was trending can spill into other medium. People have made siren head in Minecraft. As well as the increase in games, streamers with be both playing these games, and talking about the subject. It will be easy for young people to come across, even if they weren’t looking.This has happened with other trends, such as Squid Game, and going even further back, IT and MOMO and will continue to do so. When children and young people are talking about these things, they may not always have seen the real thing, but have come across some other content based around it.
Please take extra care when yourself or your children are on online.
Netflix’s Squid Game is set to become the streaming service’s most successful show of all time, with huge numbers of viewers taking to social media to discuss each new episode. The South Korean thriller features some scenes of fairly brutal violence and is rated 15 by the BBFC. It follows a group of adults who compete to win innocent-looking playground games, but who are killed if they do not succeed at the tasks.
An unexpected success in terms of viewing figures, Squid Game’s popularity is beginning to spread across various online platforms. There has been a slew of content created – ranging from memes to apps – that convey the violence of the show, so it is important for parents, carers and educators to understand the basis of Squid Game and the potential risks to young people who might be exposed to it.
Please find the attached link below to learn more about Squid Games.
According to the Office for National Statistics, 12% of British children who don’t use any social networking apps or sites on a normal school day exhibit symptoms of mental ill health. When those parameters are extended to include young people who spend three or more hours on those platforms in a day, however, the proportion with mental health difficulties leaps to 27%.
Many of the staunchest challenges that children face in modern life are encountered online – but they don’t have to overcome those obstacles alone. To tie in with Children’s Mental Health Week, our #WakeUpWednesday poster has tips for how young people can also use the digital world to support any friends who may be enduring a tough time.
Please click the link below, to access the help guide.
It’s a sad fact of life that where technology leads, crime usually follows. The printing press was eventually perverted to produce counterfeit money. The first car theft took place only three years after the vehicle’s invention. It was perhaps inevitable, then, that social media – as the overwhelming fascination of the digital age – would soon become a conduit for criminal activity.
The risks usually associated with social media are personal in nature: abusive comments, distorted perceptions; cyber-bullying and so on. Increasingly, however, criminals are using networking platforms to snare potential victims. Today’s #WakeUpWednesday guide examines social media scams – outlining some common examples and providing ways to avoid them.
Please click the link above, to learn more about social media scams.
Some adults tend to ignore the parental controls on their smartphone, because they expect them to be hard to understand and complicated to set up – but actually it’s surprisingly simple! This #WakeUpWednesday, we’ve produced step-by-step guides to help parents adjust these settings to block unsuitable games and apps from their child’s iPhone or Android smartphones.
Whether a young person plays games and enjoys apps on their own phone or borrows a family member’s, it’s worth spending some time reviewing the parental controls on that device. Our guides walk you through the process, to help reduce the chances of children downloading and using apps or games which aren’t appropriate for their age group.
Please click the above links for help on how to apply parental controls onto a smart device.
Options for reporting or talking through online problems:
The Child Exploitation and Online Protection (CEOP) Centre is dedicated to eradicating the sexual abuse of children. It is part of UK policing and very much about tracking and bringing offenders to account either directly or in partnership with local and international forces. Anybody with concerns that a pupil is being groomed or sexually exploited, including involvement in Sexting, should contact them directly using the link below. I would strongly recommend that if possible, you also contact Mr Lindsay or any member of the Safeguarding team here at Hurworth as we may need to make additional referrals to Children’s Services.
Childline Instant Help
The link provided below will take you to the Childline website where you can click the explore button to find out more about topics such as Cyber Bullying and Online and Mobile Safety. More importantly if you click on the 1 to 1 Chat Online link you can contact a Childline counsellor in a 1 to 1 online chat (like instant messenger) about any online problems. Childline state that no problem is too big or too small.
Here you can find the latest information on websites, mobiles and new technology. Find out what’s good, what’s not and what you can do about it. If you look after young people, there’s an area for you too with resources you can use at home or just to get yourself up to speed with the latest developments. Most importantly, there’s also a place which anyone can use to report if they feel uncomfortable or worried about someone they are chatting to online.
Here you can find a parents/carers guide to safely stream online and share images.
Internet Watch Foundation
If you have inadvertently stumbled across potentially illegal online content, specifically images of child sexual abuse, criminally obscene material or anything that incites racial hatred then please submit a report to the Internet Watch Foundation (IWF). The IWF works in partnership with the police, government, the online industry and the public to combat this type of material and you are helping to make the internet safer for all by taking this action.
Options for finding information about online safety guidance:
All the websites listed above have both reporting tools and sections of information and advice relating to e-safety. In addition to these you may find the following useful:
The Twitter feed from the CEOP website has many tweets with up to date information about online safety. It covers the type of current activity taking place not only across the UK but also specifically what is happening regionally.
Get Safe Online
Get Safe Online is the UK’s leading source of unbiased, factual and easy-to-understand information on online safety.