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Hey Owlettes

BannerI wanted to just write a little bit about keeping safe when using the internet because I wouldn't want anything nasty to happen to any of you. The internet is a wonderful thing and it allows us all to find out things and also to use it talk to our friends. But the internet is a bit like a wood or a forest with loads of trees. Sometimes you can't see what is going on behind the trees. You can, perhaps, see things you shouldn't, sometimes completely by accident, and the difficult bit is that, what is OK for a 14 year old to see may not be OK for a six year old to see.

Also it could be that your friends have apps or visit sites that your parents don't let you. Don't worry about that. Just remember that you probably have parents who want you to grow up gradually, enjoying things while you are young.

My site is as safe as sites can be. We don't have links that allow you to get to any other sites except really safe ones like the government site to give you a list of Prime Minister. So, once on my site you won't find yourself on a site you shouldn't be on.

Another thing with the internet is sharing information with anyone. Like that forest where you can't see things, the internet is like that too. You may think you are sharing things with your friend but what if someone has used their identity to create a false account. You might be telling things to someone you don't know. You may think you know, it seems like your friend, they know lots about you, but is it? Call out in the forest to someone and they might answer but, until you see them, maybe someone is impersonating their voice. Even if you see them, they could be disguised as your friend. The same is true of the internet.

If something doesn't feel right or someone is asking a lot of questions, tell an adult. The thing is once you share something on the net, you lose complete control of it. It might be your date of birth, it might be your address, it might be a picture but once it leaves you, then you no longer can really control who reads it or sees it. Remember that.

The only other thing I want to say is that I hope none of my owlettes would even be such a coward as to bully someone else on the net. If people read things about themselves and know that loads of other people can see those words, it can hurt an awful lot. And what's the point. It's not clever, it's not funny and certainly it's not nice and if you do it through the internet so no one knows who you are, it is just so spineless and lily-livered. It's the way of a nasty, stupid coward. Everyone of us is unique. Everyone of us is different and yet nearly all of us are normal. We don't need to make fun of people who are not like us. And remember if something like this does happen to you that no one has the power to ruin your day. Forget it, ignore it, keep on being you and maybe feel really sorry for people who have such sad lives they have to spend their time trying to hurt someone else.

BannerOK, end of Owlbut's serious side. Let's enjoy the internet (or internest as I call it because it can be where we give birth to so many great ideas), have fun and learn as much as we can and help others to learn too. Fly with me