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Ban on Social Media for Under 18s

  • 06-09-2022 10:46am
    Registered Users Posts: 796 ✭✭✭Stephen_Maturin

    Would you support a ban on the use of public social media e.g. TikTok, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat etc for people under the age of 18?

    Why/why not?

    For my part I see very little positives to allowing children use these platforms.

    They destroy attention spans, promote unhealthy body images and trends, provide a platform for grooming and bullying, make children obsess over their “worth” as measured by numbers of friends, followers likes etc. Promote a superficial and shallow view of life, destroy individuality and self expression in favour of crushing conformity etc etc

    As far as I can see the negatives far outweigh the positives. Obviously it’s 2022 and children are going to need some kind of access to messaging/social media hence I would be okay with them using instant messaging services such as WhatsApp. You might say bullying etc can still happen on WhatsApp. While this is true, at least it isn’t a public forum and there are also no “likes”, friend/follower numbers to be teased over and most importantly no damaging vacuous influencers.

    How would this be policed? The exact same way online gambling is policed. If you wish to open a ladbrokes/paddy power/whathaveyou account you must submit your drivers license/passport along with a verification photo of your face. Simple enough.

    Would such a thing ever be possible?



  • Registered Users Posts: 4,977 ✭✭✭c.p.w.g.w

    In relation to attention spans, any screen time does that. Not only social media

  • Registered Users Posts: 796 ✭✭✭Stephen_Maturin

    True enough.

    But the likes of TikTok, Instagram reels etc where the child is scrolling through hundreds of 9 second videos at a time is that on steroids

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  • Registered Users Posts: 2,166 ✭✭✭Pauliedragon

    How would it be implemented? A passport photo could be an older sibling/ friend etc. We can't even stop under 18's drinking and smoking under our noses let alone put in place restricictions on companys who as mentioned are a world onto themselves right now and can be acccessed anywhere.

  • Registered Users Posts: 36,557 ✭✭✭✭Gatling

    The horse has long bolted ,

    There is no real way of bringing in a ban ,it's like banning smart devices for under 18s

    Langley, Virginia. 6410

  • Registered Users Posts: 796 ✭✭✭Stephen_Maturin

    I would agree generally but you can hardly expect a 10 year old to have personal accountability for themselves

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,823 ✭✭✭eggy81

    Crushing conformity?? Have you seen the get up of some of the kids going around these days. I don’t think kids have ever been more individual and non conformist. Would lgbt trans movements and all of that freedom of thought and expression ever have come about without social media? Has its negatives alright but really I think parental and personal responsibility is what should be the controlling influence as well as the companies themselves being better at banning and removing bully’s and predatory elements using the platforms.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 796 ✭✭✭Stephen_Maturin

    The account would be linked to the identification document provided. If sibling/overage friend has their own account already underage friend/sibling can’t use already provided documents for their account

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,195 ✭✭✭Sam Quentin

    Absolutely.. we(as adults) have no idea what the kids are getting up to. We can kid ourselves all we like and keep burying our heads in the 'sand'. Hoping and wishing that when they are constantly on their phones, that it is for the better and that our kids are being educated in a good respectful way.. but this is not the case.. the non functioning and laziness it brings to children is absolutely shocking.

  • Registered Users Posts: 796 ✭✭✭Stephen_Maturin

    Yes they’re a lot more conformist than prior generations - you see sfa goths and other nonconformist subcultures amongst the youth of today, it’s a noted phenomenon.

    LGBT and trans liberation movements were not promulgated by children - social media was helpful in spreading these movements but it was nothing specific to childrens social media? Children can’t even vote ffs

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,274 ✭✭✭EOQRTL

    It's too late unfortunately. The genie is out of the bottle.

    Social media is used as a tool by governments to control events and as we seen recently in the US to get Biden over the line in the election. There is no way governments will relinquish that power now especially on young minds/future voters.

  • Registered Users Posts: 50 ✭✭sasco

    Way too late for this, at least 5 years too late and lockdowns just pushed more kids to these platforms as they were a means of remaining in contact and engaging/gaming with friends.

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,083 ✭✭✭Montage of Feck

    Ban TikTok anyway, the Chinese have been using social manipulation tech for some time now and so should not be trusted.

  • Registered Users Posts: 725 ✭✭✭3d4life

    "Would you support a ban on the use of public social media e.g. TikTok, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat etc for people under the age of 18?"

    Might be better to ban over 18's

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,823 ✭✭✭eggy81

    Im probably thinking in terms of late teens here as opposed to children. Was focused on the under 18 part of the thread title. My kid won’t even have a phone until he turns 15 and won’t be on any open social media until at least that time. I’d support banning kids under 16 tbh.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,630 ✭✭✭Glaceon

    This is a big reason why I couldn't have kids. I'd be inclined to not allow them on social media at all. So yes, I would support such a ban.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 25,827 ✭✭✭✭AndrewJRenko

    The problem with your “simple enough” solution is that it relies on evil empire social media companies to keep very important documents secure and not to misuse them.

  • Registered Users Posts: 207 ✭✭j2

    There's an issue when you have multi billion dollar companies employing every resource at their disposal to get kids (and adults) hooked on social media. They know what, and more importantly how, people think and use that knowledge to keep them addicted their pestilential websites. There doesn't seem to be anything that can be done about it other than the usual vague bleating about "mental health" etc. these companies have woven themselves so deeply into the day to day life of so many people while not seeming to care much about their wellbeing, rather they are concerned that you come back again and again. I'd like them restricted at a structural level, reduce the number of features these websites can actually display for people under a certain age, but that ain't happening. Hopefully they'll just keep getting more gross and superficial that people realise they suck and stop using them.

  • Registered Users Posts: 16,378 ✭✭✭✭osarusan

    Impossible to enforce.

    It needs to be adressed at home and in school, as part of a focus on safe and judicious use of devices and internet.

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,174 ✭✭✭Sunny Dayz

    Issues like those in the opening post were around before mainstream social media was. You had magazines, tv, music, word of mouth (gossip). There was still plenty of bullying and nothing done about it, issues with body image and diet culture and comparison with other people and their lives and popularity.

    Banning social media for under 18s makes it more desirable, brings it underground where there is less monitoring or regulation. Consumption of alcohol and cigarettes is already banned for under 18 - how many of us here had our first drink or smoke before 18?

  • Registered Users Posts: 7,267 ✭✭✭bladespin

    No, by all means limit time on SM etc but when you start to ban stuff it conjures images of book burnings which is a far more creeping evil in the world.

  • Registered Users Posts: 331 ✭✭NiceFella

    That's not realistic though, because irresponsible parents who give in to their kids every desire put pressure on all parents by extension. First it's a handful of kids that have it, then the next parent rolls over until your kid is the only one in class who doesn't have it.

    It's very difficult to be a responsible parent without making your child the odd one out which can impact a child's mental health.

    Sometimes banning is worth while. It would be difficult to achieve.

  • Registered Users Posts: 771 ✭✭✭thegame983

    When it comes to tech your kids will always be able to outsmart you.

    Whilst I'm not in favor of banning in general if social media disappeared over night the world would be a better place.

  • Registered Users Posts: 23,489 ✭✭✭✭Strumms

    Would it be legal ? Probably not.

    would it be practical to restrict ? No.

    parents just need to parent… but as we know that’s not exactly in fashion these days…too much effort.

  • Registered Users Posts: 331 ✭✭NiceFella

    Social media is a drug at this stage. Carefully curated to make sure you stay on it and ignore your own life.

    It's not fit for anyone to be honest, not in it's present anyway. The truth is if it vanished tomorrow I'd saw the majority would be happier without it.

    The thing is we cannot expect our kids to not want to go on it if we are on it ourselves.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 5,206 ✭✭✭Jequ0n

    The whole idea isn’t implementable anyway because both children and adults would actively circumvent any ban.

    As for enforcing/ giving in/ kids being singled out…tough, it’s part of growing up.