Parents around the country were upset and flagged videos on YouTube Kids that were altered to include tips on how to commit suicide.
It took YouTube Kids several days to take down the videos.
John Gilger in State College has a 16 year old son.
He says it’s extremely difficult to completely shield him from dangers of technology.
“Every kid has a cell phone right now” Says Gilger, “it doesn’t matter if they’re six years old, eight years old, and kids are experiencing this stuff younger in life then really what you want and that’s a danger.”
Local suicide experts are concerned what videos like this could lead to.
“It’s called a contagion effect, so a lot of times, after a suicide, if it is glamorized, then children or teens or whoever’s at risk might then complete suicide.” Warns Samantha Benz, the Director of Central and Eastern Pennsylvania for the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.
Gilger knows that the solution is to know what his son is watching, but more importantly, to trust that his son will make good decisions and talk to him if something isn’t right.
“When you’re telling them that this is not something you should investigate in or spend time on, you want to trust them that they will listen to you, and do it the right way.” Says Gilger, “You can’t just stand over them twenty four-seven.”