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Kids’ summer of illegal downloads is a disturbing site for young eyesCreated by Verity in Age: At School, Things to do
Holby City actress and mum of three, doctor Tina Hobley is urging parents to keep an eye on what their kids are watching online this summer, as new research reveals children and teens across the country are downloading or streaming films from illegal pirate websites, with many disturbed by what they are viewing.
One in five young film fans (18%) admit they have been disturbed by the movies they have watched on pirate websites and two thirds (65%) wish they had checked the film’s official age rating first. While almost half of children and teens (42%) admit to being aware of rules in place at home designed to restrict what they can and can’t look at on the internet, the research commissioned by The Industry Trust for IP Awareness, in partnership with the British Board of Film Classification (BBFC), shows a quarter (25%) download or stream movies from unofficial sources, which offer no guidance on age ratings.
The online study asked 1,000 UK 11-15-year-olds about their online viewing habits:
- A third (37%) of younger children aged 11-12 admit to having recently downloaded or streamed a film rated 15 from a pirate website
- One in five 11-15 year olds (21%) say they use pirate websites to keep up with what their friends and older siblings are watching
- More than a quarter of 11-15 year olds (27%) say their parents don’t know what films they are watching online, and a third (32%) wouldn’t feel comfortable with younger siblings copying their viewing habits
Responding to the research, Lucy Brett, Head of Education for the BBFC, said: “There is a wealth of free digital tools and advice available for parents and children to take advantage of so they feel confident about their family accessing films safely and legally online. FindAnyFilm.com, the easy-to-use gateway to legitimate film, now carries BBFC age ratings and BBFCinsight, so families know what they are accessing is not only from above board and safe sources, but that they have at their fingertips information which allows parents to make informed decisions about the right film choices for them and their families.”
Find official films safely and legally. Start by visiting www.FindAnyFilm.com – a one stop-shop where you can find all films, all above board, and all with BBFC age ratings and BBFCinsight to help you make informed decisions for you and your family.
Top Tips for grandparents:
- Get to grips with all the BBFC age ratings. You can find a guide to age ratings at http://www.bbfc.co.uk/what-classification. You know your family best – children develop at different speeds and react differently to things they watch. It’s worth bearing in mind that a PG is suitable for children aged around eight or older and when the BBFC rate a film 12 or 12A this means it is suitable for 12 year olds, but a parent can decide if a 12A is suitable for a younger child.
- Explore how to use parental controls. Check the settings on the tablets and smartphones that your kids are using – you can set up access controls which allow you to decide if you want films with certain ratings to be password protected and block certain websites. If you’re not sure how, contact your Internet Service Provider who will be able to help
- Start them young! Kids have a great appreciation for films and TV, and the younger they are when they understand why films have to be given age-ratings and why it’s important to access films via legal channels, the safer they will be when it comes to watching films online.
- Do your research. Remember that some films are rated U or PG because they contain no material that is unsuitable at that category, but they might not necessarily be a children’s film. The film GONE WITH THE WIND (PG) is a good example. This classic Hollywood film is rated PG but it isn’t just for children.