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AIBU?

Smart phone ban for children

37 replies

Signalbox · 07/02/2024 16:47

Following the tragic death of teenager Brianna Ghey, Brianna's mum is calling for a ban on children having unrestricted use of smart phones.

AIBU to think that this is a really great idea.



https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p0h9h4nt

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/av/uk-68197138

BBC Radio 4 - Best of Today, The parents calling for a 'smartphone-free childhood'

The mother of murdered teenager Brianna Ghey is calling for an under-16 social media ban

https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p0h9h4nt

OP posts:

Am I being unreasonable?

90 votes. Final results.

POLL
You are being unreasonable
34%
You are NOT being unreasonable
66%
Allfur · 07/02/2024 16:48

I agree but it will never happen

Meadowfinch · 07/02/2024 16:53

I don't agree. I have a 15yo ds who has a phone. He is not addicted to it, doesn't use social media and uses it as....a phone.
He rings me if he needs picking up or there is an emergency. And to play games on.

The main thing is I didn't let him have unrestricted access to social media until he was mature enough to deal with it. That is the main problem that I see.

Even now, he doesn't take selfies, doesn't worry about tiktok fads. Isn't interested in all that self obsessed introspection. That's the bit that isn't healthy.

Janiie · 07/02/2024 16:54

I'm so sorry for her family but imo phones aren't the problem. There have always been evil people who murder others. Look at Venables and Thompson killing James Bulger way before the Internet. Or Mary Bell etc.

I'd obviously want to campaign for something too but banning phones seems absolutely futile.

lalalala2 · 07/02/2024 16:55

Nope

justasking111 · 07/02/2024 16:57

Our local secondary school has banned them completely.

Syndulla · 07/02/2024 16:59

People who experience trauma often seek out simple solutions or explanations to try and help them understand what they have been through.

This is, sadly, just another example of that.

Smart phones weren't around when little James Bulger was killed by two children. History is scattered with killer children whose crimes are utterly shocking and incomprehensible.

Fortunately it is rare, but it's too simplistic to attribute this event and future events to smart phone use.

Smart phones are such an ingrained part of our society now. You need internet access to be a modern citizen.

Bans generally don't work. Vapes are banned for children but that hasn't stopped them being used by children.

Far better to focus on education of young people regarding e-safety and of parents on how to manage this use.

LilBus · 07/02/2024 16:59

Nope

Bladwdoda · 07/02/2024 17:02

I think parents should take more responsibility for checking their children’s phones and internet use, having appropriate restrictions on devices. Although in theory a smart phone ban would be great, I don’t see it working in reality. There’s so many issues I can see with it…how would it be enforced? How do you rewind the fact that so many kids already have them, much of school home work etc are on apps now…

This was such a sad case and it should be a wake up call for all parent whose children sue any form of internet connected device. I know my sons 8 yr old friend was searching inappropriate things on his switch!!

thing47 · 07/02/2024 17:06

They can't be banned completely in schools as increasing numbers of DCs use smartphones to manage their T1 diabetes. Admittedly this is a small number right now, but it may be that the tech is used to monitor other medical conditions in the future. Not allowing an exception for medical conditions covered by the 2010 Equality Act would fall foul of disability discrimination legislation.

Silvergreenblue · 07/02/2024 17:07

How would it have prevented this crime? Teenagers can look things up on computers and can communicate other ways. Are we going to ban them using computers next?

SleepingBeautySnores · 07/02/2024 17:17

She doesn't want phones for kids to be banned, she just doesn't want them having access to the internet on their phones, and bearing in mind how much teen suicide due to cyber bullying has increased so much, I don't blame her, just for that fact alone.

Think about it, why do we give our kids a phone?

Is it so that they can contact us in emergency?

Or do you want them to have access to things that you wouldn't in a million years dream of giving them if they were in the shops. You wouldn't buy them porn magazines would you?

Surely you haven't bought your child a phone in order that their so called friends can bully them, did you?

If you answered yes to the first question, but no to the other two, then why not agree that she actually has a point?

Or is it that most of us are simply scared of having to deal with our kids having a tantrum if we take their access to the internet via their phones, away from them that makes us automatically say no, won't happen? If that's the reason, then let's face it, we're shit parents!

ForTheLoveOfSleep · 07/02/2024 17:21

They would have hurt someone whether they had phones or not. People that way inclined (murderous psychos) always do and always have done.
Thankfully they did have phones which meant they left a very easy to find trail of evidence in this case.

StopTheBusINeedAWeeWeeAWeeWeeBagOChips · 07/02/2024 17:24

No, banning is rarely the way.

Better education for children, and parents coming to the time when their kids will want phones would be far more effective.

All that will happen is we will have a bunch of people hitting 16/18 and having no real clue how to use these things appropriately and not being supervised properly while they find out the hard way.

I totally understand why her Mum is calling for this, but I don't think it should happen.

Signalbox · 07/02/2024 17:24

SleepingBeautySnores · 07/02/2024 17:17

She doesn't want phones for kids to be banned, she just doesn't want them having access to the internet on their phones, and bearing in mind how much teen suicide due to cyber bullying has increased so much, I don't blame her, just for that fact alone.

Think about it, why do we give our kids a phone?

Is it so that they can contact us in emergency?

Or do you want them to have access to things that you wouldn't in a million years dream of giving them if they were in the shops. You wouldn't buy them porn magazines would you?

Surely you haven't bought your child a phone in order that their so called friends can bully them, did you?

If you answered yes to the first question, but no to the other two, then why not agree that she actually has a point?

Or is it that most of us are simply scared of having to deal with our kids having a tantrum if we take their access to the internet via their phones, away from them that makes us automatically say no, won't happen? If that's the reason, then let's face it, we're shit parents!

I think the point made in the BBC Sounds piece, that it is too late for children who already have smart phones, is about right. The idea would need to be aimed at delaying younger children from having access to them. That way you are not depriving an older child of something they already have but you are recognising the harms and acting to reduce them for the next generation.

OP posts:
CurlsnSunshinetime4tea · 07/02/2024 17:29

It’s not really the “phone” but access to influencers/social media content.
phones can be safely used to coordinate pick up and drop offs in this busy world.

DancefloorAcrobatics · 07/02/2024 17:34

I won't deny that phones and more so social media can be evil.
But how would you enforce a ban?
Education and exposure is the better way forward.
We invented this online world, now we need to teach our children how to negotiate it.

Briannas death is tragic. I won't deny that the hatred has been fuelled by social media, but its the killers who are fully responsible for her death.

Signalbox · 07/02/2024 17:45

CurlsnSunshinetime4tea · 07/02/2024 17:29

It’s not really the “phone” but access to influencers/social media content.
phones can be safely used to coordinate pick up and drop offs in this busy world.

Yes I think it's a call to limit what children have access to on their phones rather than banning phones completely. I think often parents are completely unaware of the content that children have access to or otherwise monitoring what they are looking at can become such a battlefield they just give up.

OP posts:
Janiie · 07/02/2024 17:48

I mean surely banning the dark web and torture clips is the way to go.

CurlsnSunshinetime4tea · 07/02/2024 17:48

teaching children and young people how online content can be "faked" would be the way to go.
teaching and modeling responsible usage is the way forward.
it's one thing for a child to watch muana at a restaurant vs a teen watching a gang development and a live altercation.

Signalbox · 07/02/2024 17:50

All that will happen is we will have a bunch of people hitting 16/18 and having no real clue how to use these things appropriately and not being supervised properly while they find out the hard way

This is the situation we have now only it is children age 10 / 11 / 12 who are not being supervised properly while they find out the hard way.

And I think the argument is that phones for children would limit what they can access on the internet rather than an all out ban.

OP posts:
Newbutoldfather · 07/02/2024 17:53

I think parents need to control their children’s access to the internet, not the state.

It would be impossible to control, anyway.

iamveryearlytoday · 07/02/2024 17:53

I would love to see them banned for children under a certain age. My kids are still very young, but I really hope there is an enormous social shift before they get to secondary school.

Allfur · 07/02/2024 17:55

Syndulla - 'people who have experienced trauma often search out simple solutions' - what like the Dutch guy whose kid was killed by a car, whilst cycling to school and subsequently campaigned for bike lanes? Look at Holland now. Real change can indeed come from trauma.

StopTheBusINeedAWeeWeeAWeeWeeBagOChips · 07/02/2024 17:57

Signalbox · 07/02/2024 17:50

All that will happen is we will have a bunch of people hitting 16/18 and having no real clue how to use these things appropriately and not being supervised properly while they find out the hard way

This is the situation we have now only it is children age 10 / 11 / 12 who are not being supervised properly while they find out the hard way.

And I think the argument is that phones for children would limit what they can access on the internet rather than an all out ban.

Which is why education is important for parents and kids.

Responsible parents will have various measures in place to restrict things already.

The kids without supervision need educating, not banning.

Janiie · 07/02/2024 18:30

Newbutoldfather · 07/02/2024 17:53

I think parents need to control their children’s access to the internet, not the state.

It would be impossible to control, anyway.

This. Parents need to snoop and snoop until they are 100% sure their kids can use sm safely and appropriately. So, random checks. Know their passwords. They have to earn trust it isnt just given when a smart phone is handed over. How can the murderers parents have had no idea what their 15yr olds were looking at?!

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