Live streaming is the ability to broadcast a video in real time, a bit like live TV. It allows people to connect with friends, family or a global audience and share moments online that can be recorded for future playback, such as a birthday message to loved ones, a Q&A with fans or a talent showcase. Live streams are usually public with viewers able to leave comments and interact in the moment using emojis and virtual gifts, such as coins, which appear on screen.
Watching or creating live streams can be exciting for children and young people as it gives them a chance to create a persona and build their confidence by connecting with their favourite streamers (influencers) and sharing content. It can also give them a sense of achievement, particularly if their live stream is successful.
However, live streams can expose children and young people to age inappropriate content and can be a means for people to contact them with sexual or other harmful intent. In addition, it can be easy for them to forget that their actions are in public and what they say or do on a live stream may be recorded and shared more widely.
It’s important to talk with your child about how they use live streaming and discuss any concerns you might have. Remind them that they can speak to you or a trusted adult if they’re worried and to report their concerns directly to social media platforms or CEOP if they’re concerned about contact from someone. youtube live stream viewers bot