A Safety Guide for Parents, Carers and Educators:
We want you to have a better understanding of who we are as a brand, learn about the Pickle app and our approach to user safety and our app. Young people all over the world are part of the Pickle community. We want to give them the best possible user experience and that includes helping them navigate potential online-risks. In this guide we’ll keep things simple: no filters, no technical jargon… just straightforward answers.
First Things First:
Pickle is an on-demand socialising app that allows 16-28 year olds to find friends to collaborate on ideas, experiences and activities with.
The Problem We Solve:
Social media piles immense pressure on people to conform to ridiculous standards (aka #goals) which end up having a direct impact on their mental health and well-being. Studies have shown these negative social media trends are correlated to the increasing cases of isolation, depression and suicide amongst young people. Pickle challenges the negative trend of “filtered” relaties, we use technology to create a space where people can find new friends and actually be social.
How Does it Work:
Through a simple job post (open-ended + user filled) we want our users to come as they are. A plug (job post) empowers young people to reach out and ask for help, challenge the six degrees of separation, all within a ‘social’ space. A persons wants, dreams or desires are put forward to the wider community and other users bid to do the job. Ultimately the decision of who gets to do the job, lies with the person who posted it.
Users need to be 14+ to use Pickle, users aged below 16 should get parental consent before signing up.
During the sign up process we ask users for their:
- Real Name
- Telephone Number
- Social Media profile link or
- Email Address
Phone Number Verification:
We verify the mobile number used to register the account by sending a confirmation code.
A users phone number is not published on their profile.
Pickle uses location data so the users current location shows on their profile and also alert them to other posts that have gone up near them. Location data settings do not apply, if the user has not allowed the app to have access to their location. Once a users profile has been set up, they can personalise how they use the app in settings.
Ps* Location data is provided by the users mobile phone but can be switched off at any time by the user in their phone settings.
Every user on Pickle has their user profile, which lets other else on the app know a little bit about you. You can also see a users job history (completed and posted jobs) which from a someones profile.
The gallery on someones profile allows them to upload images/videos to give other users an insight into who they are. Pictures uploaded in the profile gallery are assessed against the community guidelines.
What Personal Information Can Other People See (Profile):
- User Name
- Location (City/Country)
- Bio (A little bit about them)
- User Image Gallery: Photos or Vids
The “Trending Jobs” tab shows the jobs on the app that have the most activity. It gives users a chance to join conversation in the comments section, or look through different posts that they might be interested in applying for.
Pickle users can instant message each other via the app, they can also chat via the comment section on a job post or chat directly with a user if they are chosen to do a job.
Pickle is a great place for young people to connect with friends, but as with any social platform, you may have concerns about your child/students being bullied, strangers making contact, other users sharing inappropriate content and peer pressure that may cause they to behave a certain way online. The community guidelines (sent out in the welcome email and available in-app and on our website) outline what is acceptable and what is not on Pickle. We encourage both our users and their parents/guardians to contact us about anything they are concerned about.We take action, once we are made aware of any rules that are being broken.
We are available 24/7 at firstname.lastname@example.org
With this guide we want to address the concerns you may have head on and also make you a part of Pickle by giving you advice on how you can help to ensure your child/student remains safe on Pickle or any other social platform.
Inappropriate, harmful and Illegal Content:
Your child or students may come across things that you would rather they not see online, such as sexual images, violence, homophobia, racism and extremist views.
How can you help?
Ensure that your child/students know that they should report inappropriate or illegal content to us and not sharing it with other people. Our team will take the necessary actions which could include takes action which could include removing the content, banning the user and reporting the case to law enforcement.
Bullying can be really hurtful, online or in the real world. On social media its amplified – whether its nasty comments, embarrassing photos, low ratings or even dislikes. Our community guidelines take a hard stance against bullying on Pickle, as it goes against everything Pickle is about.
How can you help?
Encourage your child or students to respect other online users and to think carefully before making a comment, sharing an image or rating someones’ post. It’s often a good idea to take a step back and ask: Could it hurt their feelings or embarrass them? Let them know that, if they or someone else is being bullied on Pickle, they should report it to us immediately so that we can do something about it.
Flirting and exploring sexual feelings are a natural part of growing up and increasingly happens online. For teenagers surrounded by sexual images in the media, it can be difficult knowing where to draw the line with sharing photos and videos on the internet becoming the norm. They might decide to copy their favourite celebrity by posing in their underwear, topless or naked. For example, some might believe this will give them attention or help them get more followers or they could be pressured by boyfriends, girlfriends and even complete strangers to share these images/vids (often called sexting).
They could actually be trying to get peopleâ€™s attention or help them to be more popular or they could be pressured by. The reality is, they could be breaking the law by taking, sharing and even having these images/videos. In the really bad cases, these images or videos could be shared with other people without their consent (often called revenge porn or sextortion). To help protect young people, nude and sexual images are not allowed on Pickle and we take steps to remove them.
How can you help?
Discuss with your child/children why it’s important to respect their own body and why they shouldn’t feel they have to share intimate photos or videos just because celebrities do or because someone has asked them to. Explain why they should only share images that meet the Pickle community guidelines and that don’t break the law. They should not put pressure on other people to send them nudes and they should report anything inappropriate to us.
Unfortunately, some people go online to target young people for the wrong reasons, such as to groom them for sexual abuse or to share extremist views. Some users may pretend to be younger and set up fake profiles into trick young people into speaking to them and they might give lots of compliments or offer things like concert tickets and modelling opportunities to draw them into a conversation.
We have zero tolerance for the exploitation of young people and work with law enforcement to take action against it.
How can you help?
Look out for changes in your child(s)or student(s) behaviour. Are they increasingly secretive about the devices and apps they use? Do they go to their room as soon as they receivea message or get defensive when you ask them who they are talking to? Encourage them to trust their instincts about people they meet online and to recognise that if what someone says to them seems too good to be true, it probably is. If they feel uncomfortable about someone who has approached them on Yubo, they should report it to us..
Visit the CEOP website for information about how to deal with online sexual abuse.
In a world of Photoshopped/ filtered images, there’s even more pressure for teenagers to look and behave a certain way and be part of the right crowd (or wrong crowd). It’s our aim for Pickle to be a community where people come as they are and post jobs that are related to issues that they are dealing with, on our platform there is no place for body shaming, bullying or any other form of humiliation.
How can you help?
Help them to understand that comparing themselves to Insta- celebrities or getting fixated on the number of likes or ratings they get on social media isn’t healthy. Encourage them to be themselves and not be defined by what others think of them. If they or their friends receive nasty comments on Pickle, they should let us know so we can investigate and take action.
Fake profiles (Catfishes):
As with other social networks, some people set up fake profiles on Pickle just to pretend to be someone they are not. We want to know the real identity of all our users as we believe it makes the Pickle community safer. We close down fake profiles as soon as we know about them.
How can you help?
Explain to your child or students why it's important to give real information when setting up their profile. If they are concerned that someone has stolen their or someone else's identity to set up a fake profile on Pickle, they should contact us so our team can remove it.
Self-harm and suicide:
Sadly, the pressures of growing up especially within this age of social media and the internet means that young people sometimes experience depression, low self-esteem, questions about their sexual identity and other issues.
They might choose to share their experiences online and, in some cases, try to encourage others to discuss and participate in things like eating disorders, self-injury and suicide.
For the safety of our users, we remove any posts on these topics.
How can you help?
Encourage them to look out for their friends and to report any posts on Pickle about self-harm and suicide to us so that we can take the appropriate action.