TikTok and Netflix – how Sheffield’s young people increasingly went online during the Covid lockdowns

TikTok and Netflix dominated children and teenager’s lives during the pandemic, according to a new report.

By Lucy Ashton, Local Democracy Reporter
Wednesday, 23rd February 2022, 11:23 am

The national report says there was a large increase in young people spending time online during lockdowns and Sheffield Council is going to look further at how youngsters in the city were affected.

A council report says: “A cornerstone of the online safety strategy in Sheffield has been consulting with children and young people about their online lives.

“These consultations show that the use of apps and games and the associated risks and opportunities to young people in Sheffield are in line with national trends.

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There was a large increase in young people spending time online during lockdowns, particularly TikTok and Netflix

Ofcom have produced Children’s Media Lives: Life in Lockdown and it is likely that their findings will be replicated in Sheffield.

“The report highlights a lack of daily structure resulting in a large increase in time spent online, an increased consumption of online content such as Netflix and a more simultaneous and blended use of gaming and apps such as chatting on one app whilst gaming on another.

TikTok use has largely increased and there are concerns around extreme body conscious exercise.

“Young people also report a disengagement with the news, whilst gathering news indirectly from unreliable sources. They also report problems with disturbed sleep patterns.”

The Ofcom report found children learning remotely were lacking structure and routine and were spending a large amount of time alone in their rooms.

Parents talked about relaxing some of their normal rules around routines and online activities, given this was ‘a hard time’ for their children.