TWO out of three school­child­ren would not mind if social media had never been in­vented.

First News - - Front Page -

That’s the find­ing of a sur­vey of 5,000 stu­dents at schools across Eng­land.

The study shows that young peo­ple are be­com­ing tired of the bad side of the tech­nol­ogy, such as on­line bul­ly­ing and fake news.

Nearly two thirds of the stu­dents in years nine, ten and eleven said they would not care if social media didn’t ex­ist. Even more (71%) said they had taken time out to es­cape social media.

The sur­vey was car­ried out for Dig­i­tal Aware­ness UK and the Head­mas­ters’ and Head­mistresses’ Con­fer­ence (HMC).

Many of the young peo­ple who took part said that social media was hav­ing a bad ef­fect on their emo­tional well­be­ing.

Some 57% said they had re­ceived abu­sive com­ments on­line, 56% felt they were be­com­ing ad­dicted and 52% said social media made them feel less con­fi­dent about their looks or how in­ter­est­ing their life was. Many also felt that friends showed “fake” ver­sions of them­selves on­line.

Sa­man­tha Price, head teacher of Be­nen­den School in Kent, said: “When young peo­ple have time away from social media, they see and feel the ben­e­fits. They sleep bet­ter, con­cen­trate and there­fore learn bet­ter and feel bet­ter. Of course, social media and the in­ter­net are not the en­emy – there are enor­mous pos­i­tives to them – but it is a mat­ter of find­ing the right bal­ance.”

Stu­dents said they liked some things about social media, such as memes, fil­ters and sto­ry­telling fea­tures.

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