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Logan Paul and Teaching Kids About Social Media Responsibility

By now, you have probably heard about the video shared by YouTube star, Logan Paul, which included images of a person who died by suicide. Though the video was removed from YouTube, and Paul has publicly apologized, the fact remains that the video was viewed 6.3 million times – and no one knows how many of those views were by children.

While families are taking this opportunity to have conversations about depression and suicide it is also a good time to talk to children about responsible social media use. As social media’s reach continues to expand, kids may need help navigating what’s acceptable to share.

Review Before You Post

Before publishing a social media post, tell your children to stop and think about their message. Regardless of the purpose of the content or who they are trying to reach, ask them to consider whether the post could offend someone. What may be funny or entertaining to one person, may be hurtful to someone else.

Think Before You Reshare

Special effects and storytelling are not limited to the movies. There are many popular social media accounts that share inaccurate or offensive messages. Teach kids where they can find trusted resources and not to share from accounts that may spread incorrect or hurtful information.

Consider Privacy

Although Paul removed the video from YouTube, that didn’t stop numerous people from getting around YouTube guidelines to repost the content. It is important for kids to know that once something is shared on the Internet, they cannot undo it. That means they lose all rights to their own privacy and they forfeit the rights of other people tagged in their posts or featured in their photos or videos.

Be an Advocate

If children see something offensive online, encourage them to take action. Teens can use tools provided by social media channels, while younger children should be instructed to talk to a trusted adult who can report the content. Simply ignoring the content is not a safe alternative and should be discouraged.

To learn more about smart phone safety and how to help your kids navigate a digital world, click here.

Diane Lang
Diane Lang is the Senior Account Manager, Social Media for Nationwide Children's Hospital and the Managing Editor of the 700 Children's Blog.

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