Mom carrying her son on her back outside.

Quick Parents’ Guide to Roblox: Is It Safe Enough?

by Screen Time Team on 29/05/2019
Two young teens using a tablet.

What Is Roblox?

Roblox is a massively multiplayer online game (MMO) that lets members develop their own games and play the games developed by other users, using the proprietary design software built into the game and with character design and styles not dissimilar from Lego toys. These can range from simple experiments to elaborate games hidden within the game itself. The goal is to inspire users to explore STEM topics by learning how to interact with game code.

What Controls Does Roblox Have For Parents?

Roblox is compliant with the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act. While children can sign up for an account, their age will dictate certain features, such as whether they can reply to chats by typing or selecting prewritten responses. Roblox allows parents to shut off chat and messaging with other users, limit what content children can see, set a PIN to lock settings, and to report and block users who act rudely or abusively towards others. 

The platform also recommends that parents play the game with their children and to learn about how it works and what it does. This helps parents to have more productive conversations with their kids and to be better able spot potentially offensive behavior. Parents can also report content for violating Roblox’s terms of service, which allows the company to remove it.

Unfortunately, these controls only go so far. One of the inherent problems in MMO games is that you gather an enormous crowd in one place, and that will inevitably lead to conflict and other issues.

Mom carrying her son on her back outside.

How Can Parents Keep Roblox Safe?

Education is indeed a cornerstone of safe online use. Kids should be empowered as they explore certain parts of the internet, for example, and they should know that they can come to you to talk about things that anger or worry them.

Other aspects of tech usage, however, should be strictly enforced. For example, time limits should be imposed so that kids don’t spend every waking moment playing games, Roblox or not. Parental control apps can help enforce rules and schedules, making sure kids get their homework done and do their chores before logging on, and keeping them from doing so in school.

Finally, if your child is a Roblox fan, be available and play Roblox with them when you can. Not only will it strengthen bonds and let you have some fun together, it’ll let you spot potentially toxic situations before they cause problems. You can move to close the game, have a conversation about the content, and then report it.

Online multiplayer games are always going to present problems, simply because they’re large gatherings of people. Children should have a degree of freedom to develop the social skills needed to handle difficult people in groups. But this also means that there are situations kids simply shouldn’t be expected to handle, and that’s where you step in.

Parental control apps like Screen Time can help parents keep an eye on Roblox and other online games, To learn more, try it for free.

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