Juvenile screen time, the story of digital parenting

ring his press conference on the Champs Elysees on January 16, Emmanuel Macron expanded his announcements, especially regarding the youth. The President of the Republic launched a commission of 10 experts responsible for specific proposals to “determine the correct use of screens” by children, both in the family circle, at home and at school.

Several countries, especially in Asia, have introduced restrictive measures to limit the time spent with minors. China has taken the most radical decision to restrict access to online video games for young players. However, due to the ineffectiveness of their drastic measures, the authorities had to abandon this electronic embargo. In 2011, Korea also implemented the same type of “digital curfew”. Here, however, the device once again ran into a problem of feasibility in effectively verifying the age of users. Parents’ associations in Spain and Ireland have recently decided to strip their children of mobile phones until the age of 13 or 16, without proving its effectiveness.

In recent years, a number of scientific reports have published disturbing results about the screen time spent by young children?

Most show that a child under the age of two worldwide spends an average of almost 56 minutes a day in front of a screen. Excessive use, which could cause behavioral and developmental problems in toddlers, explains the director of Internet Sans Feare and the coordinator of Safer Internet Day, which will be held this February 6. However, Axelle Desaint, who is one of the 10 experts of the “Screen Commission” founded by Emmanuel Macron, specifies that the dangers of the Internet should not be limited to the time spent in front of the screen.

Are there already a large number of apps, free or paid, made available to parents to control the surfing of minors?

Some have been developed to limit screen time, others to prevent access to inappropriate content or to geolocate a minor by tracking their mobile. But no remote control technology or no restrictive legislation in the world can replace dialogue in a family environment, experts from the “Screen Commission” have already warned.

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