The Living Experiment
Hundreds of years ago, families lived in extended communities in which people worked together to make sure everybody was taken care of. Children had responsibilities from an early age and a general sense of frugality was deeply impressed upon them.
As time went by and family finances improved, children were allowed to play outside freely until the street light came on. It was the only way to stay in touch with friends because the Internet and mobile devices had not arrived yet.
Nowadays kids can pick up any mobile device and ‘intuitively’ know how to operate it, way before adults can catch up. This means that they are going to have to navigate it by themselves and make tough decisions much sooner than they might be mature enough to do so.
Ask any kid today and he or she will tell you the Internet is awesome. Most of them are unaware of the dangers that lurk behind their screens. It’s the best way to stay connected, share photos and even learn new things. For parents, it has become a way to be able to keep track of the whereabouts of their children.
Many parents worry more about the physical dangers their kids might face than the online dangers. So they warn their kids about not talking to strangers on the street and looking both ways before crossing, but they are not giving them useful advice regarding online safety. This is mostly because parents are not using technology in the same way that kids are using it.
Statistically speaking, the dangers online pose a bigger threat than physical harm out on the street. On their screens, kids have easy access to sex, cyberbullying, and a wide range of criminal activities. For instance, children are sending nude pictures of themselves at ages 10 and 11 on average. Most expect to start having sex without actually being in a relationship with the person.
Cyberbullying has led to high levels of anxiety and suicide in kids under age 11. Suicide rates are at an all-time high. Maybe we need to focus less on keeping them safe on the street and more on protecting them from the Internet.
Watch this poignant documentary now.