Momo Update

Momo Update

MOMO Game Update from Darlington Safer Internet Partnership

Just a quick update on this game, please share the information on your webpages etc. to support parents and carers helping their children stay safe online, we know from our most recent healthy Lifestyle Survey data that the use of the internet and online gaming has grown again for primary aged children and continues to develop and change rapidly.

Some of you may of heard about the MoMo Game as it has featured in a number of newspapers in recent weeks and we have had reports about parents having issues with primary age children getting very upset after coming into contact with MoMo images online.

Fortnite Update

One key thing for all to share at this time of year, is if you are buying a games console this Christmas, please set it up with the correct controls prior to Christmas morning – this will save time, reduce stress on a busy morning and hopefully avoid these settings being skipped and not set up correctly.

 

The most popular video game currently being played by children and young people is Fortnite. For those of you who don’t know much about it Fortnite is a Battle Royale Online game. This involves 100 players battling each other on an island with the aim of being the last man standing. While the aim of the game is to kill one another the game doesn’t feature any blood or gore and has a cartoon feel to the graphics and animations.

Fortnite currently has over 80 million registered users worldwide playing the game. Please note the recommended age rating for Fortnite is 12 years of age.

 

Rarely does a week go by without hearing about scare stories in the tabloid press and media about the so called dangers of children playing the game. The majority of these stories more often than not tend to be made up or if true extremely exaggerated. That’s not to say that the game doesn’t have its risks though. The most worrying of these risks is children playing the game with strangers and using in game voice chat to communicate with one another. Online chat can be muted and turned off in game and we always recommend that children and young people turn off this option.

Sadly the option to turn off text chat in game is not possible at this stage. We are aware off and know children being bullied by other players and the language used by other players can be very explicit and offensive at times.

There has been lots of reports of children and young people being targeted by online predators while playing the game. These reports tend to be based on hearsay accompanied by quotes by the national crime agency that online games popular with children could potential be targeted by predators. We agree that the potential is there the same as with any popular space, game and app used by children and young people

 

 

Some of you might of heard of a so called Fortnite craze called Strip Fortnite. Some of the tabloid newspapers have been running stories about children playing the popular video game Fortnite and taking off items of clothing for every kill they get in the game. The reports also claim that children are streaming footage of themselves stripping off online.

These reports while claiming it’s going on don’t actually have any evidence that children are taking part and a lot of the reports do seem to be the usual scare stories you get at this time of year in relation to popular video games that will be on children’s and young people’s Christmas wish lists.

 

However it should be noted that Strip Fortnite is being played by some popular YouTubers who are uploading videos on to their YouTube channels. These videos tend to feature adult males playing the game with their girlfriends who take off items of clothing for every kill their boyfriends get. YouTube has a strict policy when it comes to nudity and these videos rarely get to the stage of full blown nudity and when they do they tend to be censored. The videos tend to be more suggestive then explicit. Some female YouTubers have also made these type of videos as well to tempt people to watch their content.

These videos are being made as clickbait to tempt people to watch their YouTube channels as the more people viewing the more money they can make.

These so called Strip games are nothing new and we’ve seen Strip FIFA being played in the past. The tabloid newspapers tend to hear about them and then run stories about children taking part. The evidence they run is always hearsay and rarely has any proof that it is happening.

 

What is clear though is children and young people do enjoy playing Fortnite and watching others play Fortnite on YouTube, Twitch and Mixer. So it is reasonable to expect that some of them will of watched a Strip Fortnite video some may even be tempted to copy what they have seen.

 

What we need to do is to talk to children and young people and educate them on the potential risks and dangers of copying these videos. We also need to work with parents and provide them with the correct information about certain video games, there content and issues around what’s age appropriate.

Just some interesting links...

The PSHE Association have created ‘Life Online’ which you can find here:

https://www.pshe-association.org.uk/curriculum-and-resources/resources/life-online-and-pshe-education

Think u Know have launched some new resources which highlights the issue of online streaming: https://www.thinkuknow.co.uk/professionals/resources/WhoIsSam/https://www.thinkuknow.co.uk/professionals/resources/live-streaming/

Trust me from Childnet has a primary and secondary teaching pack available for free download https://www.childnet.com/resources/trust-me

The NSPSS Share Aware Resources and videos can be found here: https://www.nspcc.org.uk/preventing-abuse/keeping-children-safe/share-aware/

MediaSmart have some great online resources linked to having ‘eyes open’ looking at advertising and the media and body image including a new film and resource aimed at young men: http://mediasmart.uk.com/resources/teaching-resources

Newswise are producing a range of materials to help develop critical thinking in relation to ‘fake news’ with a range of up to date resources: https://literacytrust.org.uk/programmes/news-wise/

Doki Doki

An email from the Darling RESH Coordinator that we received that I thought it would be worth sharing.

Afternoon Everyone

You may be aware of some media and social media coverage or sharing concerns related to Doki Doki

In response to this you might find the information and links below useful.

Doki Doki is a Japanese style horror/dating game based on some popular manga books. The game has you interacting with some female characters who you are trying to date. Initial investigation highlights that the game starts off ok and then slowly turns into horror  and the story line involves suicide.

The game does come with this warning but has been criticised for not having the warning more prominent:  

“This game is not suitable for children or those easily disturbed. Individuals suffering from anxiety or depression may not have a safe experience playing this game.”

There is lots of reviews online and lots of links to other Doki Doki games and books and animations and yes while it isn’t for children the art style is your typical manga and anime which lots of children are into.  

Here is a review

https://www.rockpapershotgun.com/2017/10/31/doki-doki-literature-club-horror-game/

Here is a very interesting article about the how the game covers suicide https://gameluster.com/suicide-gaming-doki-doki-gets-wrong/

YouTube again has many, many videos of people playing it and you can see adults reacting with distress when they see the suicide so I can imagine a child or  young person being very disturbed by the content and ever more so if they have EHWB issues.

Anime and manga can be very dark and very, very adult in content with graphic sex  and violence.

There is some links identified with young people who are socially isolated and maybe experiencing EHWB or mental health issues as they  relate to it and therefore become highly involved. Although not all young people who engage in this type of game play have these issues. 

Please be mindful the urging parents / carers to delete it or ban it will be unlikely to work and potentially cause conflict as with other games and social networks or apps, parents and carers need to be properly informed and aware on the game play and how to best manage this safely then encouraged to take time to talk to their children about it and similar other games/content. They need to be supported in order to make the effort to find out what it is their children are playing, accessing or watching other people play or access online. 

Remember websites like: https://www.everybodyplays.co.uk/

And you can also signpost and access support from O2 Gurus: https://www.o2.co.uk/help/guru book a slot online or call into a store (you don’t need to be an o2 customer) and they can support

Many thanks

Catherine

Fortnite: A Parent's Guide

Fortnite: A Parent's Guide

I am sure you are all aware of FORTNITE, one of the biggest games currently being played, talked about in the media, on TV and in the news.

Here is s link which takes you to a parent / carer guide, found by one of the media team it at least gives parents/carers an overview of what to expect within the game.

Movie Star Planet

Movie Star Planet

Following reports from Parents who felt the need to find and inform the Cyber Squad delivery team  - which is fantastic!

 

We felt the need to share some information on the Move Star Planet App for your information and to disseminate where appropriate, we still know that this app is widely used and a lot with young children

NSPCC Internet Safety Resources

Here is some useful information that you might like to share with your staff and parents / carers about services offered by 02 and the NSPCC in partnership in relation to Internet safety:

  • Anyone can call the free O2 NSPCC Online Safety Helpline on 0808 800 5002 for guidance, support and answering questions to manage devices
  • You can download the  Net Aware app on the App Store or Google Play
  • You can pop into your local O2 store for online safety help from a Guru – you don’t even have to be an O2 customer! Or book a session online using this link