Daily Management Review

Internet addiction and children: Global plague


08/22/2018


Parents and officials are concerned about excessive immersion of children and adolescents in the digital world. Anxiety often materializes in prohibitions. At that, experts say there is a positive side in the online activity of young people.



Nevit Dilmen
Nevit Dilmen
In late July, the US Congress began to consider a bill to allocate $ 95 million for a five-year study of the impact that Internet and media content have on children. The bill includes a study of "the impact of social networks, applications, websites, television, cinema, artificial intelligence, mobile gadgets, computers, video games, virtual and augmented reality and other media formats" on the cognitive, physical and socio-emotional development of kids.

"Our children are immersed in technologies that did not exist five years ago and which probably will not be widely present in another decade. Some of them are good, and some are bad, but what is clear is that we know less about it than we should," said Ben Sasse, the Republican Senator from Nebraska, who supported the initiative.

At the same time, France passed a law that prohibits children aged three to fifteen years from using smartphones, tablets, laptops and other gadgets at school. According to the French telecommunications regulator ARCEP, more than 90% of adolescents aged 12 to 17 years had smartphones in 2016. Now the students will have to leave gadgets at home or keep them off while they are in school.

Meanwhile, children and adolescents themselves are no longer just consumers of content, as it was in the television era or at the dawn of the Internet. They create it very actively by blogging and recording video.

According to the British non-governmental organization Internet Matters, 13% of children and adolescents aged 11 to 16 have their own channel or blog. More than a third upload videos to YouTube or other platforms.

The survey, which involved 1.5 thousand parents, states that by the age of 15, 41% of people have at least once downloaded video on the Internet. According to the company First Choice, which last year conducted a survey among thousands of British children and teenagers under the age of 17, 34% of respondents would like to be YouTube stars, and every fifth would like to run their own channel.






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