Sunday, 22 November 2009

Third of kids get net sex messages, survey shows

ABOUT a third of children have received internet messages containing “unwanted sexual suggestions, jokes or threats”, a survey found.

A survey of 2,000 West Midlands children, including those from Solihull, found 28 per cent had received the messages.

Of those surveyed, 30 per cent had received a “threatening message online”.

Also, 53 per cent had received a mobile phone message containing “unpleasant name calling” while 29 per cent got “scary or threatening” messages.

Councillor Ken Meeson, Solihull Metropolitan Borough Council’s cabinet member for children and young people said the news was concerning.

He said: “You do not have to be face-to-face with a bully to be seriously affected by their remarks and threats.

“These initial findings show that cyberbullying is a real problem for many young people in West Midlands and something that needs to be addressed both regionally and nationally.”

Cllr Meeson, who represents Dorridge & Hockley Heath, said: “Modern technology remains a positive and productive outlet in the lives of children and young people.

“We need to promote the ways in which technology can be used safely and constructively, as well as ensure there are methods of protection and help available for those who encounter cyberbullying.”