Most of the time that kids spend online it’s done so playing online video games, browsing through their social media accounts, and watching shows on online streaming sites. Kids are easily enticed by these and other online activities since they are fun, convenient, and readily available. A simple search, a simple click, and voila, they have what they want on their device screen. Video streaming services are especially appealing to kids as it allows them to enjoy various television shows and movies.
Video Streaming Basics
In simplest terms, video streaming is watching videos without downloading them. It’s like watching live TV, but you have access to your favorite TV shows anytime and anywhere over the internet. Users get access to millions of TV shows and movies instantly with just a click of a button. These are usually accessible on any internet-enabled device via a website, app, or smart television.
There are several streaming services and platforms available including:
Each of these provides different plans and pricing options depending on your budget, how many people will be using the account, bundle options, and more.
To cater to families, these services often include the option to create a “kid profile”, where only kid-friendly content appears. Otherwise, they often include parental controls that can be customized on a specific user profile or account.
Video Content To Watch Out For
A major concern many parents have when it comes to video content is their children having access to inappropriate and mature content. Many of the services listed above include content that is rated PG-13 to MA that is not suitable for children. This isn’t limited to content that contains foul language or nudity, but violence as well.
Overall, parents should be wary of:
- Pornographic materials or those with sexual and other mature content.
- Videos that contain swearing or forms of violence and cruelty to animals or other people.
- Videos that encourage vandalism, racism, sexism, terrorism, and other crimes.
- Videos that romanticize eating disorders, mental disorders, and even suicide.
- Live video streamings that are unmonitored.
Keep Your Kids’ Video Streaming Fun and Safe
In this digital age, video streaming has become a favorite pastime for children and families. However, the fun of video streaming is dampened by the various dangers that lurk on the internet. This includes inappropriate content, device hacking, and stealing account personal information.
Fortunately, there are several ways to ensure that video streaming remains fun and safe for kids – just the way it should be.
– Educate Kids On Video Streaming and Online Safety
There are plenty of tools and even built-in features on devices and streaming platforms to help you keep close tabs on your child’s streaming habits and activities. Still, educating them on proper online etiquettes and precautionary measures makes for the most concrete foundation when it comes to your child’s online safety.
Talk to your kids and keep the communication lines open. In terms of video streaming, talk to them about the videos that they like and enjoy watching. As much as possible, make time to regularly watch videos with them. This way, you will be able to monitor whether they are watching appropriate content or veering dangerously close to the more inappropriate side of video streaming.
Also, educate your child on what makes a video inappropriate and layout consequences if they happened to watch such content. Make them understand the dangers of them watching such content.
– Check The Details of Videos and Streaming Platforms
Make a habit of checking the details on the videos that your child usually streams. Be vigilant on the age restrictions and other content warnings explicitly stated. Also, check on the age requirements on various streaming platforms or services before allowing your kids to use them. It is always better to be on the side of caution.
If you are unsure about particular videos, you may consult reviews online. There are several sites, particularly parenting sites, that may have lists on content that are deemed appropriate or otherwise. There are even sites like Common Sense Media that advocate and promote safe technology and media for children. It provides family and child-friendly entertainment and technology recommendations.
– Take Advantage of Parental Controls and Filters
One of the appeals of streaming services for parents is in-app or built-in parental control options. To better ensure that your kids do not accidentally come across inappropriate content, opt for streaming services that allow you to set up child accounts. This way, the content will be automatically filtered. Even then, make it a habit to regularly review what your child watches or whether they have circumvented the parental restrictions and controls that you have set up.
Like with most devices, video streaming has its pros and cons. The pros of course are to enjoy appropriate content by yourself or with your family with just a click. The cons, however, must be diligently monitored to prevent your child from viewing content they shouldn’t.
We know that your kid’s safety always comes first. Hence, we strongly advise that you opt for a streaming service that offers more comprehensive parental controls and restrictions. It also wouldn’t hurt to avail of various monitoring options that can help you keep an eye on your child’s device use.