How Old Do You Have to Be to Join Facebook

How Old Do You Have To Be To Join Facebook, Nearly half of British children aged 9 to 12 are using social networking websites, despite minimum age limits, a report claims.

One in five has a Facebook page, even though rules say they must be 13, inning accordance with EUKidsOnline.

The report's authors recommend that getting rid of such requirements would make it simpler to monitor online behaviour.

How Old Do You Have To Be To Join Facebook

However, kids's charity Kidscape criticised the concept and warned it would cause more cyber bullying.

The research, brought out by the London School of Economics for the European Commission, was based upon a survey of 25,000 young people - aged in between 9 and 16 - from across Europe.

It asked if they maintained a social networking profile.

In the UK, 43% of 9 to 12-year-olds answered yes, along with 88% of 13 to 16-year-olds.

The Netherlands had the greatest portion of kids on social networks at 70% - however a lot of these were users of Hyves, a website that does not have a minimum age.

Throughout Europe the average figure for 9 to 12-year-olds was 38%.

Report author Elisabeth Staksrud, from the University of Oslo, informed BBC News that it was inevitable children would be drawn to sites such as Facebook: "If you're twelve you wish to be where your peers are".

Parental guidance

The report also suggests that where parents do enforce a rigorous policy on social networking, most of youths regard that assistance.

In France, 45% of moms and dads said their children were forbidden from using social networking websites, the highest of any nation in the survey.

Consequently, that country had the most affordable proportion of children utilizing social networking at 25%.

Peter Bradley, from child protection charity Kidscape, stated it revealed that moms and dads should be firm with their children when it concerns internet usage.

" Children are children, adults are adults. Sometimes you need to say no to your kid," he said.

' Cop out'

Nevertheless, Elisabeth Staksrud thinks that by acknowledging children listed below the age of 13 are utilizing services, social networking websites might develop measures to safeguard them.

" Given that kids often lie about their age to sign up with 'prohibited' websites it would be more practical to determine more youthful users and to target them with user friendly protective procedures," she stated.

The report yields that while this technique would assist keep existing users much safer, it could likewise cause a substantial boost in minor kids registering.

Mr Bradley informed the BBC he highly believed that lowering the minimum age for Facebook would be wrong.

" Without doubt, if the age limitation was eliminated from Facebook, the effect would be an increase in the variety of young individuals accessing the website," he told the BBC.

" Instantly you'll have a higher increase of those at threat of bullying online.

" Eliminating the age limit is an absolute police out really."

In a statement, Facebook said that it invited the attention that the study had focused on the issue.

" Current reports have actually highlighted simply how difficult it is to execute age constraints on the Internet which there is no single service to ensuring younger kids don't prevent a system or lie about their age," it stated.

The company said that functions such as the Facebook safety centre assisted to keep kids safe while using the website. But, it included, families had a function to play too.

" Simply as parents are constantly teaching and advising kids how to cross the roadway safely, discussing internet safety should be simply as essential a lesson to discover."