After Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, younger and younger children may see pictures and videos related to the war in the social media services. The social media channels popular with children and young people distribute not only news images but also content related to war and violence, which may be upsetting.
For example, channels have distributed videos and pictures of soldiers preparing for war, civil defence shelters, the destruction of war, and people who are fleeing and asking for help. Among authentic pictures and videos, there is also content that has been modified, for example, with frightening sounds. Many children and young people comment on videos and pictures shared from the area of the crisis with comforting words and emojis, using the flag of their own country as a sign of support for Ukraine. Children and young people share their thoughts and fears related to the news and comfort each other in social media.
Not all of the platforms used by children and young people offer reliable content distributed by the authorities. It is not possible to verify the reliability of all contents shared in the social media channels. Upsetting pictures and videos may cause fear and anxiety. It is important that we talk with children and young people in schools and educational institutions about the contents that they have seen.