The Channel 4 drama I Am Ruth, starring Kate Winslet and her daughter Mia Threapleton, shone a light on the damage to teenagers' mental health an obsession with social media can wreak. We explore what more social media companies - and Government - should be doing to protect our children.
What is my child seeing on social media? Do I really know? Questions anxious parents often ask themselves.
“Time spent online can be an important part of a child’s development, but it can also pose real-life dangers, including bullying and exploitation, sexual abuse and grooming and exposure to pornography and self-harm forums,” warns Barnardo’s Chief Executive, Lynn Perry MBE.
“New technologies must be designed and developed with children’s safety and wellbeing in mind, to avoid harmful content appearing on these sites.”
She isn’t the only one saying that enough is enough.
When the inquest into the death of 14-year-old Molly Russell released its findings in October, senior coroner Andrew Walker said that the material she viewed on social media “shouldn’t have been available for a child to see”.
Molly ended her own life in November 2017 after viewing suicide and self-harm content online.