You Taste You Tube | Bitrex - Keeping children safe
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You Taste You Tube

What was life like before the internet was invented? It’s hard to tell. Even those of us who are prepared to admit we can recall those times, have to stop and think.

But the reality is that we now live in a world of vibrant possibility. And embracing the opportunity, Child Safety Week has taken a leap off into digital space. 

Bitrex has worked with CAPT on Child Safety Week for a long time – certainly long before Twitter was a twinkle in the tablet’s eye. Both we and CAPT are absolutely of the view that the core work of CSW is on the ground in the hundreds of events that take place in nurseries, church halls, parks, schools and all the separate venues that can be booked and filled with parents. 

This year was no exception, with the Taste Test again creating shrieks of fun and horror from St Austell to St Andrews. 

But there is no doubt about the value of sharing the fun and the serious message through social media. Last year many shared pictures of the never-to-be-forgotten experience of sampling Bitrex. This year there were many more. Each share is a way of spreading the word, not just about the role of Bitrex in keeping children safe, but about child safety 
in general.

Social media is an unpredictable electronic animal. A few high profile media references to CSW, Bitrex and the Taste Test triggered off a rolling stream of social media that literally circled the world in a few days.

A report on BBC news – broadcast in Scotland and accessible everywhere 
on the BBC website – featured Bitrex 
in connection to the story that the European Union had introduced legislation requiring the addition of an aversive agent in liquitabs. 

In addition, there were several radio stations that featured on-air samplings of Bitrex. BBC Radio Scotland, Heart FM, Sun FM and others posted their experience online via You Tube and Periscope. This was the catalyst for vloggers to pick up the idea and do their own online video Taste Tests. We recommend to you Allan Smith and Maisy Chapman and their very lively responses to the unique and bitter taste. 

The Twitter activity and requests we received for Bitrex samples followed a rolling trajectory across Europe, North America and eventually Australia as people woke up and clicked on links. It was a great example of how social media can spread the word worldwide.

What can we make of this global flurry? Well, it’s a clear sign that social media is the perfect way of spreading the message about safety in the home. The people who requested Bitrex Taste Tests were childcare professionals, parents, grandparents and people with an interest in the topic. Each view, re-tweet and request is one more person who has thought about the risks to children from the most innocuous looking household material. 

All good, of course. But what was also clear was that social media is hugely important, but isn’t a substitute for face-to-face interaction and discussions about child safety. The fun and laughter from a Child Safety Week Taste Test is a real experience that stays with people. If we can share those experiences through social media, spread the word and encourage others to try the taste, then it’s all to the good. But we won’t be switching away from the support of groups on the ground, running the Taste Test any time soon. It’s time and effort well spent for us and for you. 
But don’t forget to post 
your pics and videos.