BBC Own It App updated to help support young people during COVID-19

Posted on 17 April 2020

The BBC have released an update to their Own It App so that it can now recognise Covid 19 related chat, triggering a supportive response that can help with fears and emotions.

What is the Own It app?

The BBC Own It App provides a helping hand to young people who are starting to use social media and the internet more widely. The main aim of this free app is to ensure that young people have a healthy experience in the digital world.

As well as young people being able to access the app when they’re looking for help, the app runs in the background to give them instant, on-screen advice and support the moment they need it. The app includes tools for young people such as:

  • Analysis of how messages and the use of certain words could be perceived by others before a young person hits send.
  • Tracking their mood over time – and guidance on how to improve the situation if it’s needed.
  • Showing a message when they are about to share their mobile number on social media before they do so, and why they might want to think twice.

The latest update includes:

  • Guidance and support during online chat - the special keyboard can be used like any other keyboard, but it also offers advice as messages are typed.
  • Wellbeing help – the app has a diary feature that helps young people to express themselves in a fun way, allowing them to track their emotions.
  • Connecting with others - The keyboard has loads of age appropriate gifs and emojis to help children express themselves.
  • Entertainment – The app contains quizzes and videos for young people to enjoy, these centre around how children can make the best decisions in their online lives.
  • More privacy settings- Everything that is typed is kept completely private and never leaves the Own It app.

 The Own It App is free to download from the Google Play and Apple App stores.

More information and a step-by-step guide to using the app.

Other resources to support you:

Digital Wellbeing Guidance

At Childnet we have created  age specific guidance about digital wellbeing. This includes guidance for parents and carers of:

Advice for each age bracket includes information about how the age group are interacting with the internet, top tips to help you support young people at this age, and ideas to help you start a conversation about digital wellbeing.

For families to use during COVID-19

In the coming weeks, as young people may be spending more time at home, with their families, and on devices, we have pulled together a list of resources that you can use with them to explore online safety in a fun, engaging and educational way. This includes tailored resources for use with:

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