It seems the world we are living in is changing drastically. When I was a preschooler’s age, I did not even know what a computer was, how it operated or anything. I guess as we become more technologically advanced, it helps to have our youth exposed to technology as soon as they are able to comprehend it. However, like in this story, children having early exposure to technology comes with risks, as this story suggests.
In February, Google has released an app called YouTube kids, which is supposed to be an app safe for preschoolers to navigate, as they should not find any material that would be inappropriate for them to view at the time. However, this is simply not the case. The Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood filed a big complaint against the app, saying it was not appropriate for it’s audience at all. There were videos featuring sexually explicit language, use of violent weapons such as nail guns and throwing knives, and also videos of people tasting battery acid. Google states that they take their feedback very seriously and are ensuring that content like this will be removed from their app so they can live up to their family name.
It is rather difficult for me to relate to a topic like this, since I did not start really interacting with a computer in terms of free browsing until I was nine or ten years old. By this age, my parents had already firmly disciplined me in terms of me knowing what is right and what is wrong and what was appropriate for children and what was not, so I knew what kind of videos and websites to avoid if I saw them on my screen. What I can comment on a little more strongly however, is the uploaders of such explicit content on to an app intended for children. I mean, it is first and foremost Google’s fault for allowing this content to stay up long enough for children to see it, but you have to stop and think, what exactly are these people trying to accomplish? are they trying to make parents’ lives difficult ? Because just about everyone knows, the worst thing you can do to a child is tell them no to something because they are not old enough. Why? Because kids will one way or another find a way to do something similar to what they have seen in the videos anyway.
This next part may just come from my upbringing, but when I was growing up, technology was not even an option in terms of having fun. If anything, it was boring because you had to sit in one place and focus diligently on what you were doing! I would have rather been running around with friends playing tag or whatever the game was that we would play. Anyway, I have rambled on for long enough. Hopefully Google fixes their app to a child friendly standard, and these people who are uploading these videos think twice about how stupid they are being and how many kids they are corrupting because of it.