April 25, 2012
For example, Second Life, ActiveWorlds and The Sims Online.<br /><br /><strong>What are the risks for kids in virtual worlds?</strong><br /><br><ul><br /><li>Children and teenagers can easily get abso
Short URL: http://bgm.me/r/1771449
For example, Second Life, ActiveWorlds and The Sims Online.What are the risks for kids in virtual worlds?
- Children and teenagers can easily get absorbed in a virtual world. It is an enjoyable pastime allowing them to try different points of view and avatars. The danger is when a child is invested more in the virtual life than in real life. This may result in withdrawal from real life activities, poor social skills, loss of ability to distinguish between the real and the imaginary, etc. It is important to limit the time a child or teenager spends surfing virtual worlds in order to keep the child's base in the real world.
- Private information may be exposed in virtual worlds when a child is persuaded to give up his/her real identity to strangers. It is important to emphasize to the child not to give away private information under any circumstances.
- Sometimes virtual worlds especially ones that are intended for teens can become violent environments. Many virtual worlds have guardians - adults that have avatars in the game and are there to keep the peace. These guardians can not always stop violent behavior. It is important for parents of teens to be involved in their children's online activities and to instruct them how to behave in problematic situations.
- Online predators sometimes use social network services and virtual worlds to target potential victims. They pose as children and gradually seduce them into an online relationship. This relationship might end in sexual abuse.
The chance of your child being targeted by online predator is low, but since such an encounter has severe consequences, parents should be aware and make sure that their kids don't get involved in online relationships with strangers.
- All of these risks are worrying, but it seems that the greatest risk in virtual worlds for kids is the inherently commercial nature of many of them. Kids are encouraged to buy clothes, toys, food, books and more for their avatars using the virtual world currency. In some worlds they have to play games in order to earn "money", in some they buy the virtual world currency with real money. You can see in many virtual worlds, avatars that are dressed in high fashion clothing and have expensive cars and homes.
Teenagers - age 14-18. Teens have fully developed technological and language skills. They are confident surfing the Internet (sometimes more than their parents). The Internet becomes a strong social and educational tool in their life. Teens are usually more aware of the risks that exist on the web. On the other hand, in this age group there is a tendency for risk taking. In addition, teens usually use a PC in the privacy of their own room, or they go to places that allow them to surf without supervision. So it is nearly impossible to monitor the teenager's Internet activities.
Teens will usually be attracted to adult virtual worlds. Adult virtual worlds are not always suited for teenagers. In some you can encounter cybersex activity and violence. It is important for parents of teens to keep being involved in their kids' online activities. Offering teens appropriate websites that may interest them could be a great solution. There are virtual worlds for teens that offer great content and are non-commercial. vpn solution, usa vpn