ONE in five parents of 5-15s are concerned about the things their child has seen on television, pre-watershed, and concerns about offensive language, sexually-explicit content and violence are most prevalent.
But – says the Children and Parents: Media Use and Attitudes 2013 report, produced by broadcasting and telecoms regulators, Ofcom – parents of 8-11s are now more likely to say they are not concerned about TV content (72 per cent versus 65 per cent in 2012).
Other figures in the report include…
* In 2013, parents of 5-15s are most likely to be concerned about television (21 per cent) and mobile content (19 per cent), followed by online (16 per cent) and gaming content (13 per cent), with relatively few being concerned about radio content (four per cent).
* One in seven parents of 3-4s feel their child knows more about the internet than they do The majority of parents of 5-15s (79 per cent) say that they know enough to keep their child safe online, but around half of parents continue to feel that their child knows more about the internet than they do, as do 14 per cent of parents of children aged 3-4. Also, parents of 8-11s are more likely to agree with this statement now than in 2012 (44 per cent versus 35 per cent).
* Around one in four (24 per cent) parents of 5-15s who go online at home are concerned about cyberbullying, while one in seven (14 per cent) said they were concerned about their child cyberbullying someone else.
* Twenty-three per cent of parents are concerned about their children downloading viruses, while 22 per cent are concerned about their child giving personal details to inappropriate people, which may belie the level of trust that parents have in their children to use the internet safely (83 per cent).
* Although 83 per cent of parents trust their child to use the internet safely, the majority of parents (85 per cent) also provide some kind of mediation to help keep their child safe online. Parents of 5- 15s use a combination of approaches to mediate their child’s internet use, including: having regularly talked (at least monthly) to their children about staying safe online (45 per cent), having rules relating to parental supervision (53 per cent) or using some kind of technical mediation (62 per cent) which includes 43 per cent having installed parental controls.
* Eighty-five per cent of parents of 5-15s whose child ever goes online at home through a PC/ laptop or netbook use at least one of these approaches, (20 per cent use all three, 35 per cent use two, 30 per cent use only one). Fifteen per cent do none of the things asked about. Parents of 12-15s are more likely to do none of these things (22 per cent) compared to parents of 5-7s (11 per cent) and 8- 11s (nine per cent). Less than one in ten parents of 3-4s (eight per cent) use all three approaches, while close to one in five (18 per cent) do none of them.
* Compared to 2012, parents of 12-15s are now more likely to say they have spoken to their child about staying safe online (91 per cent versus 86 per cent) and this has been driven by an increase among parents of girls aged 12-15 (95 per cent versus 88 per cent).
* More than four in ten parents have parental controls installed and feel that their children are safer, as a result. Forty-three per cent of parents of 5-15s (35 per cent of parents of 12-15s) say they have some kind of parental controls in place on the PC/ laptop/ netbook used by their child, as do 40 per cent of parents of 3-4s. A majority of parents of 5-15s with parental controls installed on the media their child uses agree strongly that these controls are effective and that their child is safer as a result (66 per cent for online controls and 75 per cent for TV controls).
* Since 2012 there has been a decrease in the incidence of parents setting access controls for television services in households with children aged 5-15 (45 per cent versus 50 per cent). In 2013, parents of boys aged 12-15 are more likely than parents of girls to have controls in place (46 per cent versus 34 per cent) and 26 per cent of parents of 12-15s say their child knows how to override these controls.
* Thirty-one per cent of parents whose child uses YouTube on a PC/ laptop/ netbook have the safety mode set. Parents of 5-7s (38 per cent) and 8-11s (37 per cent) are more likely to have the safety mode enabled, compared to parents of 12-15s (26 per cent) although 80 per cent of 12-15s visit YouTube on a PC/ laptop/ netbook.
* Although, compared to 2012, parents of 8-11s are more likely to have controls on the fixed games console (26 per cent versus 16 per cent), this is still significantly lower than for other media. Four in ten parents of 12-15s (40 per cent) whose phone can be used to go online and close to half of parents of 8-11s (47 per cent) have applied filters to mobile phones to exclude websites aimed at over-18s.
* Around one in five 12-15s who go online at home or elsewhere (18 per cent) say they know how to disable online filters or controls, but considerably less (six per cent) say they have done this in the past year. Similarly, three in ten (29 per cent) say they know how to amend privacy mode settings on a web browser, and one in eight claim to have done this (12 per cent).
* Among parents of children aged 12-15 with a profile on Facebook, 87 per cent are aware that there is a minimum age requirement, but only 37 per cent are aware that the child needs to be 13 years-old. Parents of 5-15s in the ABC1 socio-economic group are more likely than parents in the C2DE group to be aware of this.
Source: Children and Parents: Media Use and Attitudes 2013, Ofcom, October 3 2013.