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Montreal Families

TVO podcast tackles screen time

In the age of cell phones, tablets, apps, and social media, navigating screens and making informed choices for your family’s wellness isn’t easy. In fact, it’s downright bewildering. A new podcast on TVO.org aims to answer questions and alleviate some of the pressures surrounding digital devices.

Premiering Thursday, March 10, 2022, Screen Time will explore how the technological revolution has outpaced research about what’s healthy for children. The series helps cut through the noise — sharing questions, information, and insight to help parents, caregivers, and educators everywhere find confidence while navigating the ever-changing digital world.

“Modern life is deeply entangled with online experiences that have become vital to our sense of self, and yet questions remain about how these experiences impact our development and well-being—and this is more profound for children today and in the future,” says John Ferri, TVO’s VP of Current Affairs and Documentaries. “Screen Time is essential listening for anyone interested in or concerned with young people’s interaction with technology.”

Co-produced by TVO and Antica Productions, the six-episode podcast includes a unique combination of expert, parent, and child conversations. Hosted by Beaverbrook Chair of Media, Ethics & Communication at McGill University, Taylor Owen, and technology journalist Nicole Edwards. Through Screen Time, listeners will hear from the researchers making evidence-based findings on this topic at McGill University.

“We, and our kids, are part of an ongoing experiment–and we all have to make tough choices about how to integrate technology in our lives,” says Stuart Coxe, the show’s Executive Producer and President of Antica Productions. “We are thrilled to partner with TVO and some of the world’s top researchers at McGill University and beyond to provide some provisional answers.” 

Each episode features engaging conversations with real-life advice on topics like screen time and brain development, online games as virtual playgrounds, online safety, and the impact of social media on mental health in teens.

  • Episode 1: Gaming, the metaverse and online socializing for kids. “Are kids’ virtual friendships as healthy as in-person socializing?”
    Episode 2: Brain development and phones/tablets. “Are tablets breaking my kid’s brain?”
  • Episode 3: Social media apps and how they shape reality for teens. “What makes apps like Instagram so powerful, and how can parents tell if a child’s social media use is harming their mental health?”
  • Episode 4: YouTube and collecting kids’ data. “Is YouTube exploiting my kid for profit?”
  • Episode 5: Children’s online safety. “How safe is my teen online?”
  • Episode 6: Where do we go from here? A conversation about regulation. “Why do big tech companies treat my kid as an adult at 13?”

The podcast is on Thursdays, starting March 10 on TVO.org, Apple Podcasts, Spotify and anywhere podcasts are available.

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