Internet Culture and Child Sex Trafficking
March 27, 2022
Hosted by The Express Yourself! STAR On-Air Teen Team
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“Child slavery is a crime against humanity. Humanity itself is at stake here.” —Kailash Satyarthi The internet is a powerful tool and an integral part of modern society. Living in a fast-paced digital world, individuals can contact others worldwide at the simple click of a button. Applications like social media and Google have created many benefits, such as staying up to date with important events and global news, increased interaction with other individuals, and increased accessibility to educational material. As of 2019, 59.5% of the worldwide population used some form of internet. That is 4.66 billion people, all interconnected through one single platform! However, with this increased communication and exposure to potential strangers and outsiders, internet safety is a top priority that should be taken seriously when searching and using the Internet and technology. The internet can be a dangerous place, prone to predators ready to pounce on innocent children and teens. Ruhani and Hannah highlight the isolation and loneliness that the pandemic has caused in young people and the exploitation that has resulted. • 10 is the average age of child being groomed online • 8 days is a how quickly a predator can groom andrecruit a child into sending nudes or leaving home tomeet a stranger • 98 is the percent increase in child online exploitation between 2020 and 2021 • 21.7 million reports of child sexual exploitation made to the CyberTipline in 2020 included 65.4 million images, videos, and other files. They each provide a powerful segment of advice from teens for teens to keep them safe and also converse with one another about personal experiences. HOW to STAY SAFE: • Keeping all information secure and private • Setting strong passwords and safeguards for all social medias and applications used • Double check and verify information and links sent to you, as it could possible be a scam • Be extremely careful when talking to strangers online • Using secure wifis and VPNs (Virtual Private Networks) to avoid getting hacked or having your IP address leaked They advise to never give out home or school addresses or send sexually explicit photos via the internet, even to a boyfriend or girlfriend as those could be used in a nefarious way. “Grooming” refers to when someone builds a relationship, trust and emotional connection with someone so they can manipulate, exploit and/or abuse them. They discuss catfishing, when someone claims to look like a specific person, but they may be using someone else’s profile. Now more than ever children are at risk for online child exploitation and it canhappen at home. Any child can be targeted and is susceptible. How to Get out/How to Get Help If you or someone you know is being trafficked, these organizations can help: National Human Trafficking Hotline: 888-373-7888 Shared Hope International: 866-457-5433 National Center for Missing and Exploited Children: 800-843-5678
Sunday at 3 PM Pacific Time on VoiceAmerica Empowerment Channel
Express Yourself! is an entertaining adolescent fusion program where passion, productivity, and possibility populate the airwaves. Produced by Starstyle Productions, LLC as an international outreach program of Be the Star You Are! charity, the radio program, Express Yourself! is a show for, by, and about teens. Hosted by teens and teenage field reporters from around the country, Express Yourself! is THE destination for teens to be heard. Within the walls of the young adult community, listeners are uplifted and encouraged to be the stars of your own life. Through collaboration and conversation, a global campus of young people express their views. Topics include anything that kids talk about-books, music, making a difference, technology, school, art, humor, writing, tough talks, health, sports, films, family, friends, foes, fashion, and fun. Come play in STAR country and Express Yourself!, Sundays at 3 PM Pacific on VoiceAmerica Empowerment.
The Express Yourself! STAR On-Air Teen Team
Broadcasting since 2011, twenty-seven young people from around the United States have regularly shared their passions and interests as hosts and reporters on Express Yourself! These teens are not afraid of the tough topics and thrill at the opportunity of interviewing a variety of guests including authors, actors, Olympians, scientists, musicians, poets, and experts of varied disciplines. As volunteers with Be the Star You Are! 501 c3 charity (http://www.BTSYA.org) the Express Yourself! teens are accomplished youth striving to make a difference on our planet and are dedicated to sharing ideas while having fun and giving a voice to the voiceless. Meet our STARS at http://www.ExpressYourselfTeenRadio.com.