Introduction in the social media landscape
Social media networks have experienced stormy growth in recent years. People have literally become connected through all sorts of points of interest. Facebook Twitter Instagram Telegram and many other networks make it possible to exchange a lot of data in a very simple way.
Research has been done into the speed at which fake news is thrown into the world. It turns out that if an article is so coarse or absurd, it generates a lot more website visits. Regardless of whether the facts presented are actually true. With the MetaVerse, there are a number of additional dimensions in the form of who am I really dealing with on the other side of the Internet connection. After all, a large part of these virtual characters is also synthetic in nature controlled by specific artificial intelligence to make the gameplay as addictive as possible.
Children are not yet at all engaged in filtering information at this level. What is real and what is false is still completely diffuse to them. If you read the manual provided by the VR manufacturer, it also states explicitly that it is not recommended to use VR for children under 13. The reason is obvious: a child’s mind is extremely vulnerable and has enough trouble in the real world to determine the difference between good and evil.
When I look at my own children I see that they feel comfortable playing titles that are meant for 18+ while they themselves are in the age range between 9 and 12. In short, it is an illusion that you can control everything yourself. It is therefore important that you keep talking to your children about what they are experiencing in the real and the physical world. Also, in recent years, there has been an increasing focus on the topic of digital bullying and this has itself become a criminal offense.
In this course module, we look at the potential additional dangers that the metaverse can pose to children. But of course, the other social media are not forgotten. It is essential for parents and children to understand the risks they may face and how they can easily overcome them. But the basic attitude of parents towards children should be involvement. Don’t give a phone or VR AR headset just to get rid of your child’s whining. Determine how you can follow this journey of discovery together in a sensible way. It could be a lot of fun.