In the present times, the development of technology has led to various changes in how people conduct their daily activities compared to before. Internet network is considered to be among the elements of technology that have changed people’s lives. The use of the Internet has become unavoidable in modern daily life. However, even though the internet has brought positive changes in the lives of human beings, it is also known to have content that could be harmful and ill-mannered, especially to children. Therefore, this essay will provide both the argument for regulation and non-regulation for internet use to children aged 14 and below.
Role of Parents in Children’s Growth
The growth and development of a child’s brain depend on their immediate surroundings and the different contents that they consume at a tender age. Additionally, the adolescence phase is critical in the transition of a child such that they tend to be heavily influenced by their peers (Ahmad et al., 2021). It is an age where teenage children tend to listen more to what their peers say than what their parents tell them. In raising such children, parents should be keen and strict in checking what their children consume online. Digital technologies and the internet have dominated the present world. There has been a shift in how individuals work, communicate and learn from the old traditional ways to the new modern technology ways. This means that children have access and are therefore exposed to the internet regardless; hence how the children use the internet depends on the parents and their relationship with the child. Therefore, it is important for parents to have an open relationship to be able to monitor the activities of their child. An open relationship helps with knowing exactly what goes through a child’s mind.
Argument for Regulation
Compared to ancient times, children at this age tend to be more connected than ever. The internet has become freely available to absolutely anyone as long as one has a smartphone. This means that parents could have a hard time regulating its use at all times. Research shows that children at this age are more ill-mannered and rebellious due to exposure to the internet compared to ancient times (Benedetto & Ingrassia, 2021). Through various social media platforms and channels, the internet tends to put some unnecessary pressure on children and even adults, and if a child or young adolescent sees something online, they want the same thing and do not consider that one can lack such things. This can lead children to have hatred for their parents for not affording what other children have.
It is very likely for children to get access to illegal content and exposure to harmful and offensive content, which in the long run can lead to damage to a child’s mind and behavior. For instance, it is very easy for anyone using internet platforms to access pornography websites and consume the content freely (Nair, 2018). Children in the age bracket between 10 and 14 years are quite explorative such that they are interested in the things they see and want to know more. When such children get access to websites with pornographic content, they are at risk of practicing the acts that they see online.
The Argument for Non-regulation of Internet Use
The internet is extremely praised, considering that it has eased up our lives since its creation, making things fast and simple. The internet can be used in education, where students of all ages can use it to learn new things and even acquire degrees online. In matters of communication, children can also connect and interact with their family, friends, and peers through the Internet. It may also be important if the internet is not regulated for children considering that the internet provides a variety of opportunities that children of a young age can use to grow and develop themselves socially, education-wise and also financially. Exposure to children can be considered to be helpful in the recent world, considering that most operations are being conducted online.
In conclusion, different people have varying perceptions based on the question of whether the Internet should or should not be regulated. However, many people agree with the aspect of internet use being adjusted and controlled for consumption by children aged 14 and below. This is in consideration children in that age bracket are delicate human beings whose minds develop and grow based on the content they consume and, as the famous phrase goes, garbage in, garbage out. The regulation would benefit not only the children but also society as it will produce well-behaved individuals with minds that are not altered by the internet. On the other hand, some people think that regulating the use of the Internet could be seen to lead to the loss of various positive opportunities that have been brought about by the Internet.
Ahmad, N., Sharmin, T., Akter, J., Tuhin, R. A., & Das, A. K. (2021, January). Behavioral issues of children in terms of internet usage time in Bangladesh. In 2021 15th International Conference on Ubiquitous Information Management and Communication (IMCOM) (pp. 1-6). IEEE.
Benedetto, L., & Ingrassia, M. (2021). Digital parenting: Raising and protecting children in the media world. Parenting: Studies by an ecocultural and transactional perspective, 127-148.
Nair, A. (2018). The regulation of Internet pornography: Issues and challenges. Routledge.
Shalini, P. (2019, June). A novel technique to regulate access to immoral content for minors. In 2019 7th International Conference on Smart Computing & Communications (ICSCC) (pp. 1-5). IEEE.