Safer Internet Day 2015

February 10, 2015

Technology plays an essential role in friendships today…

ResearchBods recently conducted a study of more than a thousand 11 – 16 year olds in support of Safer Internet Day 2015.

Not surprisingly, the study found young people are using a diverse range of digital platforms to communicate with their friends.

  • 26% of UK 11-16 year olds use 6 or more social networks or messaging apps on a weekly basis
  • YouTube proved the most popular digital platform amongst young people, followed closely by Facebook.


The study highlighted how technology affected friendships between young people:


Safer Internet Day results

For the majority of young people, the internet is a positive place.

  • 55% of young people said that they see people posting kind, positive or supportive things all or most of the time
  • 63% felt that people are kind to them all or most of the time


However, there is a significant minority of young people who face difficulties.

  • 1 in 20 11-16’s feel that people are mean to them most of the time on the internet
  • Approximately 1 in 8 (13%) young people feel that people post negative, mean, critical or upsetting things all or most of the time on their social networks and messaging apps.


Experiences of 11-16s in the last year:

Someone was mean to me – 30%

I was deliberately left out of a conversation or group – 23%

Someone posted something to embarrass me – 21%

Someone I don’t know said something mean to me – 19%

Someone posted something about me that wasn’t true – 19%

Lots of people saw something mean that had been posted about me – 12%


Many young people are taking positive steps to tackle these negative experiences, 75% of young people who experienced mean behaviour saying they have blocked someone in the last year. While 68% said they have supported someone else who was being targeted online.  More positively, 64% of young people said they felt able to cope with anything negative that might happen online and 81% said they know what to do if someone is abusive towards them online.


Will Gardner, Director of the UK Safer Internet Centre, said:

“It’s heartening to hear that the majority of young people are finding the internet a positive place on the whole, but there’s more to be done to make sure that’s the experience for everyone. We’re encouraging everyone to take action today – whether that’s sharing a smiley face or making a promise about your online behaviour. It really is up to us to make the internet a better place.”


For more information on the activities taking place to celebrate Safer Internet Day, visit the UK Safer Internet Centre website.




Jonathan Clough    Jonathan Clough