It has come to our attention that lots of children have been talking about, and even playing a game based on, Momo. Momo has been heavily linked with apps such as Facebook, WhatsApp, YouTube and more recently (and most worringly) …YouTube Kids. The scary doll-like figure reportedly sends graphic violent images, and ask users to partake in dangerous challenges like waking up at random hours, and has even been associated with self-harm.
What parents need to know about Momo:
Children’s videos being ‘hacked’ – there have been recent reports that some seemingly innocent videos on YouTube and YouTubeKids have been editied by unknown sources to include violence provoking and/or other inappropriate content . As a parent, it is difficult to spot these videos as the harmful content doesn’t always appear until partway through the video.
Distressing for children – Poplular YouTubers and other accounts have been uplaoading reaction videos, showing their experience of the Momo challenge. The image of the Momo character can be deeply distressing to children and young people and its important to note that it may slip through parental settings and filters.
Suggested videos on YouTube – Video apps such as YouTube include an ‘upnext’ feature which automatically starts playing another video based on the video just watched. During research carried out it was found that when watching one Momo related video, countless other Momo themed videos and other scary content which would be age inappropriate for children under 18.
Top Tips For Parents:
Tell them its not real. Just like any urban legend or horror story, the concept can be quite frightening and destressing for young people. It is important to reiterate that Momo is not a real person.
It is important for you, as a parent or carer, to be present while your children are online. As the nature of each task becomes progressively worse it is important to recognise any changes in your child’s behaviour.
Talk regularly with your child.
As well as monitoring your child’s activity, it’s important for you to discuss it with them too. Not only will this give you an understanding of their online actions, but those honest and frequent
converations will encourage your child to feel confident to discuss issues and concerns they may have related to the online world.
If your child sees something distressing, it is important that they know where to go to seek help and who their trusted adults are. They could also contact Childline where a trained counsellor will listen to anything that is worrying them. The childline number is 0800 1111.
Further information can be found at the NSPCC https://www.nspcc.org.uk/keeping-children-safe/online-safety
The following link also offers information and advice if you or your child sees anything upsetting online https://www.bbc.com/ownit/its-personal/when-you-see-something-scary-online
This is considered an out of date browser. This website has been developed with modern browsers in mind to allow it to display at its best in a wide variety of viewing situations - including mobile viewing. But we haven't supported older browsers like IE8. Please upgrade to the latest version of Internet Explorer - or try Mozilla Firefox or Google Chrome. Both are excellent browsers.
Head teacher: Liz Powell
Ashby de la Zouch
Tel: 01530 412243