Yubo User Poll Reveals Gen Z Views On Online Safety

Recently published results from Yubo’s UK-based in-app user poll show that online safety is a significant concern for Gen Z, with close to half of those polled saying the current online landscape is “unsafe and hostile” for young people.

The Gen Z social discovery platform partnered with Childnet, a U.K. charity focusing on youth online safety, and the UK Safer Internet Centre (UKSIC) to learn more about young users’ views on today’s digital landscape based on their online experiences.

Key insights from the poll of over 600 young people and teens in the U.K. include:

  • Gen Z users believe safety & security will be the area of their online experiences most affected by emerging technologies.
  • Almost half (49.3%) of young adults and teens polled say that getting input from users (including young people) would be most impactful to ensure new technologies have a positive impact. 
  • Fewer than half of those polled (45.7%) say they have participated in online campaigns or movements to promote internet safety. 
  • A modest 36% of Gen Z users say there is awareness about online safety among their peers, and 33% say “not enough.”
  • On emerging technologies, nearly half (48%) of those surveyed say generative AI tools, like Chat GPT, have had the biggest impact on their daily lives.

The UKSIC’s findings from their research on the topic were similar, with notable insights including:

  • An impressive majority of young people (80%) believe “they should be listened to more about changes in technology, including how it can remain safe.” 
  • Over half of young people polled – aged 8 to 17 – who have used generative AI, say they have seen people their age use AI tools in negative ways.
  • Around half of those surveyed say they feel confident that as technology gets more intelligent, their safety will be a priority to those who are creating it.
  • Nearly 70% of young people say they have helped a friend in the last year to identify safety features, such as the privacy settings or blocking tools, when they set up an app, highlighting the importance of community support.

“It’s the responsibility of digital platforms today to adapt and evolve their safety infrastructure according to new technologies and new potential safety risks,” said Yubo’s CEO, Sacha Lazimi.

In a statement, Lazimi also reaffirmed Yubo’s commitment to online safety following their recently unveiled policy toolbox document for youth online safety.

The poll results’ publication marked Safer Internet Day 2024, and their findings point to the need for platforms to prioritize the online experience of social discovery from a user-safety standpoint.

You can read the report on Yubo’s poll results here, and the results of UKSIC’s survey in full here.

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