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  • Writer's pictureKirra Pendergast

Because it seems no one else has......we did.

Here is what our Youth Advisor Madison Jones found out when she asked a stack of her friends whether or not they agree with social media bans for kids under 14/16 in some Australian States. (Please note this is raw responses). Young people need a voice in this discussion so we are giving them one.

S, 14 years old- no, they could have older siblings or friends who have the social media and just show them everything, and all the 12-13 year old’s would feel really left out especially if there the youngest in their group they would be last to get it.

C, 17 years old- No, I think by the age 14 people are mature enough to understand what social media is about. However, I think they shouldn’t be posting ass pics on insta. (Feel free to edit/filter this one).

O, 17 years old- I would say no. Social media has some crazy benefits that can't be ignored due to its flaws which bluntly, majority of the time, is caused by management of it within minors. Humans are extremely social and although we don't kill ourselves over losing connection with someone like other social animals we still are extremely dependent on being social, loneliness is one way to be depressed which makes alot of people, you guessed it, anti-social. You could argue it's addictive with its constant dopamine boost like other things but the same kids who gets addicted to video games are more than likely the ones being addicted to social media just because they don't know how to limit themselves and so they get super absorbed. That's my view anyway. We shouldn't ban something that is so vital to the future of humanity because kids can't control themselves. We should teach how to control ourselves and encourage discovery how to use it appropriately, with barriers of course. The amount of people I know that don't know basic computer functions like quick searching key words with ctrl + g is crazy and that's because I was raised with access to computers and games and yet my time was managed and I was encouraged to share my time online with my brother's and I'm not addicted at all. My little brother, however, had a more free treatment and he commonly resists every time he is asked to get off and will stay up hours past when he was supposed to sleep, often times waking everyone up with his screaming and when the games go he's glued to his phone, hiding it and saying he doesn't know where it is when asked to take it off him for a night. It's not a problem associated with the thing as a whole. It's a problem with restrictions and proper managements.

A, 17 years old- If people under 14 didn’t have social media children the world would be so much better.

F, 15 years old- Yes. It is vital to maintain young people's mental health. Over exposure to dangerous or explicit content is bad for a developing brain and mindset. It could lead to other issues such as self-harm and potential suicide.

H, 17 years old- yes it would be beneficial if it was actually implemented, but thats what would be the biggest problem is trying to get everyone to enforce it so it might not work for that reason

S, 11 years old- I think the government shouldn't ban social media for under 14 year olds because it is a way for young people to reach out to friends as well as getting inspired by older users of social media. For me i would use it to learn tricks for dance, Talk with friends and look for inspiration to do hard tasks.


M, 17 years old- I think it would be beneficial IF it would work. Limiting kids from being exposed to so much negativity and harmful content could make such a difference on the declining mental health of young people. I know people use social media for good, but waiting until they’re 14 isn’t going to kill them. Honestly, I wish I waited until I was 14! But I don’t think it would work. Kids would be secretive. They always find their way around things and if they want it that bad, they WILL get it. It would be great if they could make it work, but I just don’t see a world in which it does

A, 14 years old- No. I think 14 would be a good age limit, but I don’t think it would work, so many kids are already on social media, so if they enforce it, how will it work? Will they kick off anybody under 14, if so how will that work/help, most kids don’t even put their real age when signing up onto platforms anyway. All the kids that they will be trying to keep off social media, will find some other way.


A, 18 years old- Yes. Kids are so naive. Banning social media until 14 would prevent them from being exposed to horrific things and people, hopefully lessening their chances of being a victim of sextortion or online bullying.


P, 12 years old - I think people under 14 should be allowed to have social media because well im under 14 and I use social media and I don’t think its that bad but I think u need to be over 10 atleast because that’s when u should have social media.

C, 14 years old - I don’t think it will work.. 1) bc kids r gonna lie and fake their age, I do it, many ppl do it, and theirs no way to monitor and make sure they r actually that age to stop them from faking. 2) some parents don’t care what their kids do online and won’t block social media on their phone or make sure they don’t have anything. Also YouTube is a type of social media and if that was banned for ppl under 14 I think their will be an uprising. With all that said I still think that banning social media for kids under 14 would actually be a rlly good thing bc social media is rlly bad for ppl, especially kids who r impressionable and learning from the ppl online. We can tell from the kids born and are around the ages or 5-10 that they don’t rlly have any imagination anymore bc of the social media, they don’t do appropriate stuff for their age bc they are watching adults do stuff and they want to do it cool cause they idolise the influencers. Also they might start posting and haters will always be in the online community so that may affect their mental health. Also it distracts kids from their studies.

S, 14 years old- i think it could work, but it would take time. So many people would be against it because it is their life, but others like me, would be fine with it.

W, 17 years old- I feel like banning social media for kids won’t be super realistic or at least very difficult to implement. Parent involvement and rules are probably the most effective way of preventing children from accessing social media, but it’s clear that it’s not a large priority since there are parental tools and ways for parents to control their children’s screen time but kids are still using social media. There is very evidently detrimental effects of children using social media which have been widely documented and so their use and exposure should ideally be limited or restricted at those younger ages. However, with social media playing such a large role in the way people remain connected and “up to date” this may drastically change the way children are already communicating with each other. Not only that, but social media can foster community and senses of belonging for children. Obviously that can occur in very damaging ways like communities that promote bullying, violence, sexism, etc (think Andrew Tate, incels, indoctrination). But this can also manifest in ways that provide inspiration for kids (creatives, sport, role models?). It can also become safe zone for children from marginalised groups or those who do not feel accepted in their lives to learn more about themselves in an accepting environment and supportive community, which is very common for queer and trans kids, sometimes even acting as a lifeline. Overall I feel like banning social media for children is probably going to be a hard thing to impose, and while there are definitely reasons to do so, it may be better to implement more supervisory and safety measures instead if considering some of the benefits of social media since it is merely a platform which can be used in different ways.

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