This week Karl, a man who works for Zeeko, came to St. Colmcille’s S.N.S to talk to the boys and girls about Internet Safety and Health. Zeeko is a company that have designed a range of educational seminars and workshops that cater for kids, parents and teachers of all technical proficiencies, to empower them with the knowledge and tools to tackle the digital issues facing Internet users today. Here are some of the topics he dealt with
Children today use the internet for many things like, YouTube, Snapchat, Instagram, research and much more, so we need to keep them safe when online.
The first thing he talked about was Digital Identity. Digital Identity is the information about yourself that you make available to others online. There are three and a half billion people on the internet in the world. Let me asks you a question, do you want all the people on the internet to know everything about you, cause I know I wouldn’t?
It’s just like going up to a stranger and telling them your name, your age, where you live etc. That’s where your digital footprint comes in. A digital footprint is a record of when you are active on line, what websites you have visited, what social media sites you have subscribed to. Your digital footprint gives away all about you, your online story that lasts forever, it never goes away.
That’s why you need to protect it. It costs nothing to download APPS such as Snapchat, Instagram, Facebook or Twitter but yet they are worth billions of euros. You ask yourself, how is that possible? Well, when the term and condition comes up we all press accept and carry on, but if your break down the terms and condition it’s saying that you agree to give that site or APP permission to access information and save your photos and messages. The site can then sell your information to marketing companies who target specific adverts to pop up when you are online. Have you ever wondered why the pop up ads are all for Sports Shops or Movies?
Jack Maynard, a You Tuber, posted racist comments when he was a teenager and later deleted it. But when he went on I’m a celebrity, he got kicked out because of this. This was a real wake-up call for us all to realise that nothing is EVER deleted once it goes online. Scary?
Karl from Zeeko told us to use the T-Shirt Rule! Before you send something, think would you wear it on a t-shirt and go out to dinner with your parent or grandparents. This is a great rule to go by as it means you will never post nasty messages or unkind comments on line because I’m certain you wouldn’t like your parents to see that.
The second thing he spoke about was Cyber bullying. Cyber bullying is a big deal today! There is no difference in bullying in the real world and bullying online. There is no difference between saying mean things because you are still offending the person on the other side. Sometimes bullying can be accidental if they are angry but if you are rude and men online for one day it is still classified as bullying.
Karl taught us the rule, STOP, BLOCK and TELL. This means if you are getting bullied or saw a bully online you should stop using the program where the bullying is occurring, block the person and tell someone close to you. He also said to take a screen shot. Do not help to escalate the situation or retaliate. If you see someone being bullied in a group chat, don’t fight back. Reach out and change the subject for example, start talking about homework or something like that. You should always have someone you can trust to be your cyber buddy so you can tell them whenever you come across something that makes you feel uncomfortable.
Karl then spoke to us about excessive use of devices and the negative impact they can have. Did you know that if you go on screens for a while before you go to bed, it can affect your sleep? This is because the blue light from the screens stops the production of the hormone, melatonin, which helps you sleep. So it can trick the brain into thinking it is still day time. Karl also mentioned that screens can cause headaches and sore eyes. Karl recommended if you want to have a good sleep, put down any devises an hour before you go to bed.
The final thing he spoke to us about was online deception. He told us that online friends should never become real friends but real friends should become online friends. We never know who is at the other end of a computer and should always make sure we protect ourselves.
The talk was really informative and we learned loads of really interesting and important things about using the internet and staying safe.
By Eoghan Woodcock and Shemen Eroje - Ms. Synnott's Class Room 28