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Accidentally saw something bad

Hi Sam,

When I was on youtube I came across a video of the bottom part of someone’s face and their top was a bit low so you could see part of their cleavage. It was hard to tell their age to me. The comments kept saying it was a child and to report it but I panicked and clicked off. Another time I found a video of a girl swimming nothing sexual but the comments where creepy and it had a weird vibe because there was no speaking and I felt that some of the shots were kind of close to her butt but I couldnt really tell if it was on purpose so I reported it anyway to youtube just in case. Can I be arrested for viewing this because I cant sleep anymore thinking I could be and humilated in front of family and have my life ruined. It was an accident and I reported it and the nature of these videos is hard to tell if its dodgy.

Many thanks

Ask Sam

Sam

Hi there

You might be worried about something you’ve seen online. It could be something that you’ve seen on social media, a music or gaming site or a link you clicked on in your search results. If you see an image or a video that makes you feel uncomfortable or upset there are things you can do.

You might see something online accidentally and feel worried about getting into trouble for watching something bad or illegal. Being online can be scary sometimes and you might not be sure about what you’ve seen. Sometimes people create films of young people’s bodies on purpose. Or people might make sexual comments on videos that are about normal, everyday things. It can be hard for you to know what’s okay and what’s not.

Online safety is all about keeping safe online and knowing who to tell if you’re worried about something you’ve seen. It’s against the law for anyone to share a naked or sexual image of someone who's under 18 or someone who might've turned 18 since the film was made. The law is there to protect young people, not to get you into trouble. If you’ve seen something you think could be illegal you can report it to the site where you saw it. Don’t share it with anyone and don’t keep watching anything that upsets you.

If you want, you can tell the police about what you saw. If you see sexual photos or videos of young people online you can report them using ThinkuKnow - a website for young people run by specialist police. This helps to keep other young people safe and you might feel better having done something about it. Your online safety and your feelings are what matter most.

Seeing disturbing things online can be hard to forget so you should make sure you look after yourself as well. You might feel like talking to an adult you trust about what happened if you see something that makes you feel uncomfortable. You could also talk to a Childline Counsellor, they’re always here for you.

Take care,

Sam

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