The world went digital, and one of the best manifestations of that is the internet. This is a global computer network providing a variety of information and communication facilities, consisting of interconnected networks using standardized communication protocols.

The internet consists of content that is textual, visual or aural that is encountered as part of the user experience on websites. This content is always growing. Every day a new website or app pops up and soon enough there will be lots of people using it.

At the moment there are more than 3.5 billion users of the internet in the world. That is more than half of the world’s population. In Africa, there are more than 455 million internet users. This makes internet more readily available than water. Kenya alone has more than 18 million internet users. These numbers very much make sense as the internet has been quite a blessing, going as far as creating jobs and opportunities. As such, a very huge number of individuals rely on the internet in one way or the other for their livelihood.

One of the most popular uses of the internet is media sharing. There are more than 3 billion users of social media in the world and more than 12 million in Kenya. These platforms form a huge part of the online content that has so many people hooked to the internet. A huge percentage of the users of these platforms are the youths and teens. Unfortunately, 50% of teens are addicted to the internet.

It is a scary thought, considering the internet contains just about everything. With more than 1.9 billion websites, a user can find almost anything, regardless of it being good or bad. Worse still, most of these are very easily accessible.

In Kenya currently, there is a waving trend of music with obscene language and videos that has many parents worried. And these can be easily found on YouTube or other social media sites. It is also common to find post of nudity or morally ambiguous messages on social media. There are also the memes, which is currently a global trend. We all love the good laugh we get from a joke, and unfortunately part of what we love is dark humor. Some memes are filled with very negative messages, but we still love them because they make us laugh.

Unfortunately for some people, especially the young ones, filtering out the negative content isn’t very easy for them. Some of them emulate whatever they see, read or hear. For example, ever since the “Lamba lolo” song released, so many songs with almost similar content have followed. Many people have condemned this type of music, labelling it an indication of the immorality of the young generation.

At the moment, different people deal with this in different ways. Some parents have put a ban on certain content in their homes. Some go as far as barring their kids from social media. The government works hard in monitoring the content available to the public and in some instances they ban some of them. A good example is the taka taka song that was recently banned after heavy criticism from some people. Social media administrators also have some policies in place to reduce the amount of negative content on their platforms.

Unfortunately, the problem keeps growing and it doesn’t seem to be stopping any time soon. It is almost impossible keeping the young people away from the internet. As such they’ll keep getting exposed to all the negative content. Furthermore, it is human nature to attempt whatever they are barred from. This applies a lot to teens. The government couldn’t possibly ban everything someone complains about. And the social media administrators are mostly out to make money, a lot of which comes from the negative content. The controversial music that is trending in Kenya will keep on trending for a while because that is what many people love at the moment. Producers will keep on producing such until they are finally replaced by another type of music that will be equally controversial.

As children, our parents never wanted us listening to or singing the song “John” By Wakimbizi. But back then most of us could only hear then song when it came up on a radio channel. Kids today don’t go through that. Whatever they want to listen to or hear is just a click of a button away. The young generations will continue being exposed to the negative content.

A good way to deal with this is parental guidance. Parents or guardians should try to be more involved in their children’s lives. While Africans generally consider their parents very strict, most of them only go as far as enforcing their law and failing to understand or involve themselves with whatever is going on with their kids. This works in some instances, but most of us have heard the saying that kids with the most strict parents do the worst things.

In as much as one should limit the level of negative content the teenagers would be exposed to, the teenagers would still be exposed to some. As such, giving them guidance and advice is a good way to ensure they understand and don’t emulate whatever negative content they get from the internet. This would go a long way in ensuring the young generation isn’t a lost generation, as some people are already