As many as 76 per cent of children in the age group of 7-13 years visit ‘YouTube’ portal daily in metro and large cities which can lead to cyber bullying and online sexual abuse, industry body Assocham said in a report today.
As per the norms, children below 13 years are prohibited to open account at ‘YouTube’.
The statistics are sad and worrying, the chamber said.
“Despite strict norms that prohibit children under 13 from joining the social-networking site, nearly 76 per cent of children ages 7 to 13 visit ‘YouTube’ daily in tier-I and tier-II cities which can lead to negative outcomes such as cyber bullying and online sexual abuse,” it said.
It said YouTube requires account holders to be 18, but even a 5 year-old can easily sign up with parent’s permission, it said adding “despite these clearly stated and published age restrictions, large and growing numbers of children between the age of 7 to 13 are using social media networks, access Youtube assistance from their parent’s knowledge and consent”.
“Children are gaining access to social media sites like Youtube at a younger age, which could expose them to content, people or situations that are out of their depth,” it said.
It said that children of working parents are found to be more technology addictive in the absence of parental supervision.
“Having a genuine and transparent two-way communication with children is absolutely fundamental to establishing a safe and positive cyber experience,” it added.