Learning to use the Internet safely is an important skill. Making children aware that anything they share, can be copied by taking a screenshot or a photo of it, and shared with people they never intended to see it. Parents and teachers can make opportunities to talk to children about online photo sharing and how easily it can get out of hand. Children benefit when they become more responsible in their photo sharing practices.
Try this exercise and talk to your children about the result you discover!
1. You have a photo = 1 photo
2. You share it with just 20 pals 1 x 20 = 20 shares
3. That 20 share with 20 pals 20 x 20= 400 shares
4.These 400 share with 20 more = 8,000 shares
5. 8,000 share with 20 pals = 160,000 shares
6. 160,000 share with 20 more = 3,200,000
7. 3,200,000 share with just 20 more friends =
Within a very short period of time, the ONE photo you shared has been viewed and shared 64 million times.
This is called a viral effect because the photo has spread like a virus… luckily you were proud of the photo and you chose to share it!
Imagine if the opposite was the case!
What if you hated the photo or it was a nasty message posted by a bully and you were embarrassed by it?
Imagine if it was shared without your consent!
How would it make you feel? Discuss with your children how individuals can deal with being bullied, or what they can do if they know that others are being bullied or if an individual is being the bully. Remind children of the definition of cyber bullying…
“Placing a once-off offensive or hurtful public message, image or statement on a social network site or other public forum where that message, image or statement can be viewed and/or repeated by other people will be regarded as bullying behaviour.”
Anti-Bullying Procedures for Primary and Post primary Schools (2013, 2.1)
Source adapted from MySelfie and the wider world.
Have you or your children ever shared an image and been surprised by the attention it received? Has cyber bullying been an issue for you? What emotions were involved in that cyber bullying situation and what strategies did you develop to help you or your children cope effectively?
Mindfully Marie xx