It’s been a while since I’ve written – I have been doing a million different things. A little warning in advance for the amount of sass in this particular blog, and here we go…
The internet is awesome. I love it. It’s so helpful and educational and I love how it really inspires the younger generation. For example, the following are a few wonderful messages that the youth of today are receiving from their so-called “role models” from social media:
-Bullying is ok as long you call it “pranking”, and it’s ok to do so to your friends and complete strangers.
-Calling your friends bad names is ok because it shows how much you love them.
-Teens don’t need to have big dreams for their future because evidently, they can make millions talking crap and acting like apes as long as they upload it onto a social media platform.
-It’s ok to be a jerk as long as you have lots of money and a good body.
WHAT. THE. ACTUAL. FRUIT????
I woke up this morning angry – angry at the lack of online security and monitoring that so much inappropriate material can be so readily available for young children; at the lack of adult supervision that these children are even able to access this kind of material; at the lack of internet safety awareness and education that children receive; at the lack of common sense of these children and teens who watch this stuff and imitate ridiculous behaviours and idolise these people; and most of all, angry at the people who upload all this OBVIOUSLY INAPPROPRIATE DISRESPECTFUL POOP on social media, completely aware of the ages of their viewers and followers, but whatevs “dab at the haters” “lol yolo” “swag” and other nonsensical acronyms and made up modern slang, you irresponsible moldy eggplants!
I mean, did you know…. That there is a reason why there are age restrictions in order to register for an account on YouTube or Instagram?
Did you know…. That there is button you can click when you upload videos on YouTube if you feel like your videos aren’t appropriate for certain ages?
Did you know…. That there’s an amazing device called a BRAIN which should help you control the things you do or say before you put it out there on social media, making it accessible to the entire world?
-Annnnnnd, did you know…. That there’s an equally wonderful app called COMMON SENSE (which sometimes comes already installed in the device but usually not, depending on the model) which allows you TO NOT IMITATE BAD BEHAVIOUR you see on a screen, or idolise those people who you don’t even know (and who are oftentimes adults and should also have already downloaded this app but clearly have not).
Did you know all that? I didn’t know that. JUST KIDDING!
I am not just angry – I’m disappointed and scared for the future of humanity…. yet again.
It’s bad enough that things like school shootings are STILL happening and alllllll the other global issues that I don’t even have the energy to go into right now, but now our children are being exposed to so much unsuitable, vulgar and tasteless content and we don’t even know. Just because the video icon seems innocent, or it’s a cartoon, or it hasn’t been flagged and isn’t on the restricted list, doesn’t mean that it’s ok.
Look, I know that practically every child nowadays has a device; whether it’s a phone, a tablet, or a laptop or whatever; and these things are great, they really are. My children (10 and 5) each have one, and this is what they use it for: educational research (reading), looking up images for drawing inspiration, music, how-to tutorials for crafting, dancing, and Minecraft, finding song lyrics, cartoons on YouTube, movie streaming, games, and designing and editing.
This is how we go about it: the 10yo has a Google account to which I have access on my Google drive (and actually, vice versa) and all settings are on safety and restricted mode to prevent inappropriate search/ video suggestions popping up. The 5yo’s device is set up with the 10yo’s account and all devices have the same security settings, which I double check every week or so because sometimes settings get changed accidentally. They have a time limit on how much screen time they get, depending on what they want it for, but I’m not overly strict. Both of my children check with me if they are unsure of whether or not a video or website is appropriate but more importantly, they both have the common sense to know that some content is just not meant for them to watch, regardless of what their friends say (“It’s so funny” “He’s so cool”) and every day I am grateful for that.
By the way, as I’m writing this, I’ve calmed down a bit 🙂 (breaaaaaaaathe Tash)
However, I can’t completely blame the youngsters for what they watch or see online -they don’t have enough internet safety awareness for the countless social media platforms available to them. Nowadays, it’s not as simple as “Don’t talk to strangers online (or meet them)” or “That song has swearing in it” because the dangers are more subtle.
Too many songs are filled with inappropriate innuendos that warp and damage people’s self-esteem and self-worth, but they are so catchy and youngsters are oblivious to the underlying, and oftentimes vulgar, messages of the lyrics (then there are also some songs are just blatantly obscene). Song titles are innocent and many artists are very talented, but the messages they are belting out to the younger generation aren’t respectful or inspiring.
*Quick but important shout out before I continue to such people as Kidz Bop Kids and AsapSCIENCE who have taken these fun beats with bad lyrics and made them appropriate and educational for children I LOVE YOU!*
I really don’t want my son thinking that “The club isn’t the best place to find a lover” so the bar is where he should go, nor do I want my daughter thinking that love is painful but “It’s alright because I love the way you lie”.
“But I’m gonna keep your jeans/ And your old black hat – cause I wanna/ They look good on me/ You’re never gonna get them back/ At least not today, not today, not today” That’s good. Teach girls that after a break up, stealing is acceptable.
“I don’t care who you are, where you’re from, what you did As long as you love me…” So abusive relationships are also fine, as long as you love me and also “It ain’t my fault you keep turning me on/ It ain’t my fault you got, got me so gone/ It ain’t my fault I’m not leavin’ alone/ It ain’t my fault you keep turning me on” Perfect, teach our kids to not be accountable for their actions and to just blame it on someone else because they’re “too irresistible”, but hey, catchy beats to dance to.
Now, vlogging (video blogging) is an amazing way to share your stories, talents and messages to the world and some vloggers have really inspired not only youngsters, but adults as well. I am touched by some of these people on YouTube who open up and share difficult, personal experiences in order to inspire others. I am in awe of the incredible talents of so many people that I’ve watched online; musical, artistic, scientific, physical, and ….. other. Inspiring children, teens, and adults, who make vlogs sharing amazing thoughts, opinions, and advice on different topics and are wonderful to watch! Then, there are vloggers who encourage ridiculous, sometimes dangerous, and at times just completely moronic challenges; vloggers who complain, talk badly about everything and everyone, swear, pull pranks, bully people, are disrespectful, ungrateful, and ramble pointless froth for the sake of viewers, likes, followers, “reactions”, and money.
WHY would anyone in their right mind challenge others to: pour boiling on someone, get sunburned intentionally and turn it into art, or cut off your air supply and see how long it takes to faint?!?!?!?!?!
“It’s just a prank, bro!” LOL, you’re right, it’s hilarious: I got murdered prank, blowing up my kid prank….. How is any of this acceptable, or funny and NO – calling it a “social experiment” does not justify your disgusting or cruel behaviour.
In addition to absence of value in these messages that are influencing our children, these idolised people on social media are promoting and encouraging a whole new version of the English language which includes acronyms of like 20 words put together and a selection of new slang that irritates me to no end. Acronyms like LOL and OMG have been around for awhile, but some of these new ones just have me reaching for more coffee because I just don’t get it! Whyyyyyyy? Why you all teaching children to speak like disssssss???? I no understand!!!!
Youngsters are communicating with each other (and in general) in this obscure language; it’s like modern Morse Code; and it’s getting a little…… OTT ;P Seriously though, English is already a difficult language to master, with all the strange pronunciations, sly silent letters, grammatical rules, spelling rules and then all the exceptions that don’t follow those rules; but with this new urban slang, the youth of today are losing the ability to communicate and express themselves clearly, coherently, effectively or intelligently.
Personally, I already have difficulty with posts like: “OMFG i luv freinds, there the best!” but now I need to scroll past: “dam #mcm my bae hawtaf “ and “b!%$ hbd ilu 4evr #squadgoals” or “bruh cant go out rip fml so not cool #kms i hear the partys gonna b lit af” OMG WHAT ARE YOU EVEN SAYING, CHILD?!?
Here is a short guide to help you decipher some the things our our children are messaging, posting, and saying:
THESE YOU MIGHT ALREADY KNOW
ASAP – As Soon As Possible
LOL – Laugh Out Loud
BRB – Be Right Back
OTW – On The Way
G2G – Got To Go
BTW – By The Way
FYI – For Your Information
OMG – Oh My God
OMFG – Oh My Fruity God
PM/ DM – Private Message/ Direct Message (the latter used in apps such as Instagram and Snapchat)
PPL – People
TGIF – Thank God It’s Friday
YOLO – You Only Live Once
IDKIDC – I Don’t Know and I Don’t Care
OTT – Over The Top
HARMLESS SLANG THAT DOESN’T ALWAYS MAKE SENSE BUT GOOD TO KNOW
FBO – FaceBook Official; used when a relationship status is officially changed on Facebook.
FOMO – Fear Of Missing Out; used to express anxiety over the possibility of missing out on something like an event or party.
TBH – To Be Honest
IMO/ IMHO – In My Opinion/ Humble Opinion
MCM – Man Crush Monday; usually used as a status only on Mondays to show off to the world the man you have a crush on, regardless of whether you are in a relationship, married, or not.
MYOB – Mind Your Own Business
TMI – Too Much Information
IRL – In Real Life
TLDR – Too Long Didn’t Read
SMH – Shaking My Head
BD – Big Deal; sometimes used sarcastically, as in “who cares?”
NBD – No Big Deal
NTS – Note To Self; used as a reminder for oneself, but usually posted publicly, thus reminding everyone so…..
NVM – NeVer Mind
HTH – Hope This Helps
WBU – What aBout You?
RIP – used to indicate that something has failed or fallen through; e.g. “I tried to do a trick but I fell. RIP”
WDYM/ WDYMBT – What Do You Mean/ By That?
WYD – What are You Doing?
ORLY – Oh Really?
Bruh – nickname for “bro” but mispronounced
Fam – used for close friends that are like family
Squad – used to describe your close friendship group; e.g. “(pic of beach holiday) squad goals” = Future aspiration for my group of friends one day.
Lit – adjective; cool; awesome
Gucci – adjective; cool; awesome
Straight fire – adjective; hot; cool
Savage – adjective; cool
I’m weak – That was so funny (therefore I am so weak from laughing)
Extra – adjective; overly dramatic; over the top
Noob – an amateur; beginner
Woke – adjective; to describe being highly aware of social issues
SPOKEN AND WRITTEN (TYPED) ACRONYMS AND SLANG TO LOOK OUT FOR
BAE – Before Anyone Else; a term of endearment usually used when dating; also short for “baby”
Curve – verb; to reject someone romantically
HMY – Hate My Life
I can’t even – I’m speechless
KMS/ KYS – Kill MySelf/ YourSelf
Lit – adjective; when describing a person, it means highly intoxicated
Low Key – adjective; secret; private; don’t tell anyone; e.g. “I low key have a crush on him.”
MFL – Fruit My Life (you know what I mean)
NSFW – Not Safe For Work (or school or home if parents around); used to let other people know when a topic, conversation or content to share is not appropriate at the moment because authority figures are present
Salty – adjective; to be bitter about someone or something
Sip tea – mind your own business
Skurt – verb; go away
Thicc – adjective; used when objectifying a curvy female body
Thirsty – adjective; to be desperate for something (usually sexually)
Throw shade – verb; to give someone a nasty look or say something unpleasant to/ about them
Turned/ Turnt – highly intoxicated
9 – a parent is watching me
99 – parent is gone
HASHTAGS TO LOOK OUT FOR
#ana – anorexia
#deb – depression
#sue – suicide
#svv – self-harming behaviour
#thinsp – thinspiration (content that inspires a person to want to be thin)
So! In conclusion, (because I am exhausted) GET WOKE PPL! Communicate with your children and get to know what they’re watching/ reading/ listening to so you know what’s going on. Educate them so they can be aware and make better choices online. Introduce them to more inspiring and educational content (preferably content that uses proper English too 🙂 ). We do our best to raise kind, loving, well-mannered, children, but we are not their only influence and unfortunately, many youngsters will choose to emulate the behaviour and language of a savagely lit vlogger who is totes phat and is woke af and them weak than their boring parents or teachers.
We can’t control what is posted on the internet, but we can educate and raise awareness.
Please, let’s do something about this ASAP because TBH, I can’t even.
x Pistachio x