!As parents we would ask you to discuss with your children their use of social media and the responsibilities they have using it. It is your responsibility as parents to ensure that they are not abusing this communication medium. Whilst we understand that swimmers have....

 

a right to privacy including all forms of social media, if our swimmers are included in the conversation the club has a right to get involved.  Any one of our swimmers taking part in or targeting another swimmer will find themselves sanctioned. Swim Ireland, Swim Ulster and this swimming club have a zero-tolerance policy towards such behaviour and will, in future, sanction the individuals involved.

Recently it has become come to our attention that there has been an inappropriate use of social media and while we are unsure to whom the remarks were made it contained inappropriate language.

In an article on the BBC online it was noted that

"More than three quarters of 10 to 12 year olds in the UK have social media accounts, even though they are below the age limit, according to a survey from BBC Newsround.  The study, marking this year's Safer Internet Day, also showed more than one in five had faced online bullying.  The global event encourages "safe and responsible" use of the internet.

Social media network Instagram said if anyone suspected accounts were run by under-13s, they should report them.  The BBC Newsround survey, based on 1,000 young people aged between 10 and 18, found social media to be an important part of everyday life.

Among 13 to 18 year olds, 96% were signed up to social media networks, such as Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat and Whatsapp.  But even when under-13 year olds were not meant to use some of these services, the survey found 78% of these younger children were using at least one social media network.

    Facebook was the most widely used by under-13 year olds - with 49% claiming to use the            online network. 

    Instagram was used by 41% of 10 to 12 year olds - and a spokesman said "keeping the                community safe" online was the "number one priority". "We require anyone on Instagram to         be over the age of 13, and we have clear community guidelines and in-app tools to help               people report anything that may make them feel uncomfortable," said an Instagram                    spokesman. 

Most of the experiences of users were positive, but particularly for older children, online networks could be used for more destructive purposes.

Among 16 to 18 year olds, two in five had used social media to spread gossip and a quarter had used it to say something "unkind" or "rude" to someone else online.

But a report from cybersecurity firm, Kaspersky Lab, warned of the dangers of teenagers becoming involved in hacking and cyber-crime.  The report says youngsters are often attracted by the rebellious image of hackers and can be ambivalent about "pushing boundaries" online.  The cybersecurity firm says many teenagers are sophisticated users of the internet, such as knowing how to conceal their identity online."

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