ChildLine Fapz campaign broaches kids' relationship with porn

ChildLine is biting the bullet with a YouTube series tackling the damaging effects of online porn on children.

ChildLine: campaign tackles porn addiction
ChildLine: campaign tackles porn addiction

The light-hearted series is titled ‘F.A.P.Z’, which stands for "Fight against porn zombies" and also plays on youth slang for masturbation.

It comprises four episodes featuring fictional teenagers whose sexuality has been negatively impacted by porn.

The campaign, created by youth agency Livity, highlights the effect of over-consumption, rather than criticising the existence of online porn per se.

One episode highlights how young men might become desensitised to the female body after bingeing on porn.

Another shows a girl taking a cue from pornography to impress another teenager. Each video features famous vloggers such as TomSka and Beckie0.

According to a survey accompanying the campaign, nearly one in ten children aged between 12- to 13-years-old fear they may be "addicted" to online porn. Some 12% admitted to either making or participating in a sexually explicit video.

Patronising to teens?

Three episodes of 'Fapz' are already online, though not everyone is impressed.

While the videos have received more thumbs up than thumbs down ratings on YouTube, several commenters described the material as "patronising", or being unintentionally comic.

In comments defending the videos, the charity said its aim was to start a conversation.

Peter Liver, director of ChildLine services, said: "Access to porn has increased amongst young people and exposure is starting younger.

"With this campaign we aim to open up a dialogue with young people about the impact online porn can have on their wellbeing and the effect it can have on the way they think and behave in real life, while highlighting the vast difference between sex in the real world and fantasies portrayed in porn."