Safer Internet Day
Today is Safer Internet Day. This day is celebrated across the world in over 100 different countries. This event is designed to help young people take control of their and feel safe and empowered online. This year, we are asking you to question what you put online and ask yourself if you feel truly free to be yourself on social media?
It is good to remember what you see on Instagram is not someone’s everyday life, it is their highlights. Comparing yourself to social media posts can be harmful, as can pretending online. Feeling able to be yourself is as important online as it is in person!
Some questions to ask yourself…
“Most people are themselves online” Do you agree? Are you yourself on social media?
Do you think being yourself makes you more vulnerable to trolls and bullies?
Do you see people like you online? Is this important to you?
Some people might feel pressure to be themselves online but really it is their choice what they share. It is not easy to ‘just be yourself’ online. Deciding how much you want to share of yourself can be difficult. A lot of people worry about the amount of likes on a post or how many retweets they get. They will only post the best possible version of themselves and leave out anything they don’t think good enough for their followers to respond to. Do you see people who look like you, dress like you, have the same opinions or have the same hobbies and interests? It is important for people to see others like them online, so they know the are not alone.
The internet is a big place and being real can make you feel vulnerable. It is always sensible to keep personal details private. Feeling able to be true to yourself is hard sometimes. Try putting your profile on to private or close friends only, this is not only safer but it also makes it less scary to share as it will only be seen by your family and closest friends who will love and support you no matter the filter!
Other ways you can help make the internet a safer place is by reporting negative comments, replying with positive ones and reaching out if you need to.
Get involved by using #FreeToBe on twitter and tag @YCPKingston in your posts too!