Internet filters can have a large role in protecting children from pornography, mainly limiting or delaying their exposure to it. Unfortunately, internet filters are not enough in permanently blocking children from ever seeing pornography.
According to Covenant Eyes, an internet filter alone is not a good, safe internet solution because:
- Filters will always have a way around them.
Anyone actively seeking a way to bypass a filter can easily find it. Even kids who are not intentionally bypassing filters can stumble upon ways around them.
- Filters do not teach children how to use the internet or their devices.
At some point, our kids will leave the protection of our home and live in a world without filters. We want to equip our kids for this moment. We want them to have had practice saying no to things that want to destroy them or distract them from their purpose. We want them to know how to make wise media choices
- Filter users are more likely to seek out porn.
Stats from the Barna study The Porn Phenomenon show that filters do not work for those who want to live porn-free lives. The study found that 54% of the general population say they "never" seek out porn, while 0% of filter users say they "never" seek out porn. This stat is alarming if we are only using a filter to raise porn-free kids.
What is the best internet solution to protect children from graphic content online? Should we keep children's devices until they are 18? Never allow them to use any form of social media or text their friends? Move to one of the few remote villages left with no internet? Surely these are not the only solutions for protecting children.