TikTok jumps on online shopping bandwagon  

  • While TikTok is famous for its short lip sync videos and dance routines, the platform is now producing its first live shopping and entertainment event in the UK, due to take place today.
  • Users of the platform can buy products directly from the platform.
  • This is a style of shopping accelerated by the pandemic. According to an Insider Intelligence Report, from 2019 to 2020, the number of US social e-commerce shoppers grew 25% to 80 million.
  • For information on how to stay safe on TikTok, read our safety card here.
  • Full story, here.



Instagram makes it easy for teens to find drugs, report finds  

  • A report by the Tech Transparency Project (TTP) has found that Instagram’s algorithms recommend drug dealers’ accounts to minor users, alongside suggesting drug-related hashtags.
  • These findings came after the TTP created seven fake accounts for teen users aged 13, 14, 15 and 17.
  • This follows the renewed scrutiny of Instagram and Facebook parent company Meta, in how their platforms adversely affect the mental and physical health of their adolescent and teen users.
  • For more information on Instagram, read our blog here.
  • Full story, here.



Young people are facing unimaginable mental anguish and terror online 

  • The Countess of Wessex has warned of a rise in online child sexual exploitation (CSE) and has called for tech firms and politicians to act to protect children and young people from harm.
  • The WeProtect Global Alliance’s Global Threat Assessment said harm in some parts of Europe had risen by 50%.
  • This follows the Internet Watch Foundation’s report that there were 8.8 million attempts to access images and videos of CSE during the lockdown in the UK.
  • Furthermore, in the year ending March 2021, there were more than 90,000 child sexual abuse and image offences recorded by the police in the UK.
  • Full story, here.


Too many children left at risk too long – Ofsted  

  • Ofsted Chief Inspector, Amanda Spielman, has warned that too many vulnerable children have been left at risk of harm for too long in many areas across England.
  • Ofsted’s annual report found that almost half (48%) of council children’s services were inadequate or required improvement.
  • This follows the tragic murder of Arthur Labinjo-Hughes in Solihull.
  • Speilman also stated that closing schools has significant risks, not only due to the reduction in quality education, but also for those children that may be vulnerable at home.
  • Full story, here.

Pupils pressured regularly for nude photos, Estyn report finds  

  • A study into peer-on-peer sexual harassment among secondary students in Wales has been conducted by Estyn, with around 1,300 secondary school children taking part.
  • The study found that almost half of secondary pupils said they had experienced sexual harassment from fellow students and that many pupils had not informed a member of staff at their school about the incident(s).
  • 95% of Year 13 pupils reported seeing sexual harassment, with 72% claiming to have seen it happening in school.
  • This follows the change to the curriculum in Wales which includes mandatory relationships and sex education, something that pupils in the study said was severely lacking.
  • Full story, here.


Most adolescents dying by suicide or harming themselves known to health services  

  • New research shows that 80% of adolescents who died by suicide or had self-harmed had consulted with their GP in the preceding year.
  • The research argues that lower than expected rates of diagnosis of psychiatric illness were due to a lack of contact with mental health services, rather than the absence of the illnesses’ themselves.
  • Also, research found that while suicide was more common among boys, non-fatal self-harm was more common among girls.
  • For information on Talking to Young People about Suicide, read our blog here.
  • Full story, here.