Children spend hours online every day. Here’s how parents can protect them

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Born in the late 1990s, the oldest members of Generation Z witnessed the end of VCRs, landline phones, and dial-up Internet connections.

The youngest members of Generation Z, born in the early 2010s, may not know what all those things are.

But today’s youth knows the internet like the back of their hand. And with the proliferation of a social media platform like TikTok, whose use is dominated by children and teens, today’s youth spend more time on the Internet than any generation.

According to a recent survey of nearly 3,700 parents in the US, Canada, France, Germany and the UK, conducted by Mozilla in partnership with YouGov, American children spend an average of four hours a day online.

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While that figure may pale in comparison to the seven hours parents spend online each day, it’s more than double the two hours of mobile media consumption reported by the Kaiser Family Foundation in 2010 — a number researchers previously thought was could not rise higher.

Cathy Pedrayes, internet safety guru and TikTok’s “mom friend,” told me News week that many kids spend time scrolling through fun videos, playing mobile games, and using a handful of other apps.

Pedrayes also said parents are relatively satisfied with their children’s online safety, despite a new rise in time spent on the Internet.

According to Mozilla’s research, children in the United States are introduced to the Internet around the age of six.

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Those same children usually become acquainted with online safety a year later, in some capacity.

However, one in 5 parents in the US, along with others in Canada and France, wish they had introduced their children to online safety sooner, creating an open dialogue that lasts into adolescence.

“Parents are concerned,” Pedrayes said News week. “Not so much about how much time they spend online, but more.

“What are they doing?” she continued. “What do they consume? Why do they consume it? How do they feel?”

While certain conversations about online safety can get awkward, especially with older children, keeping channels open for discussion can make the difference between harmless browsing and dangerous internet interactions.

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And while Mozilla, along with other platforms, has provided parents with useful information about digital privacy, the effects of social media use on mental health, cyberbullying, and the dangers associated with public Internet connections, real discourse remains the most effective way to to hold children. safe online.

“Parents feel comfortable having these conversations,” Pedrayes said News week. “Children, hopefully… feel comfortable having an adult they can trust, and family members to care for them.

“Research has shown time and time again how important it is to have these kinds of open conversations,” she added.

The post Kids Spend Hours Online Every Day: Here’s How Parents Can Keep Them Safe appeared first on Newsweek.

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