As the year comes to an end, and your kids get older, some of you may have kids who are beginning to ask for your permission to get on social media. So, this calls for careful decision making in the right balance.
How old your kid should be before he or she starts using social media with your permission is really up to you. However, most social media websites and apps require that kids be 13 to sign up. Despite what many people think, the reason isn’t to limit kids’ exposure to inappropriate content but because of the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA), which prevents companies from collecting certain information from kids under age 13. Rather than create an environment that protects kids from data tracking, Facebook and some other websites/apps choose to restrict access to those under 13.
♡ Yoursphere – a social network that authentically represents the voice, interests, talents and aspirations of young people, and provides a positive alternative to social networks that were created for adults.
♡ Kuddle is also a quality Instagram substitute. It is a new photo-sharing social media app geared towards children and adolescent teens. It aims to create a safer digital environment where they can learn about and explore the ever expanding world of social media.
You could possibly rally your kids’ friends’ parents to restrict their kids from Facebook, so you won’t get that “but everyone is on it!” argument. Always put up the argument about the age limit and why it is totally inappropriate to lie about their ages only to have a presence on social media. Explain in detail why it is not advisable. Tell that a good parent should stay with the rules as often demanded from kids.
Remind them that everything can be seen by a vast, invisible audience (otherwise known as friends-of-friends-of-friends), and, once something’s online, it’s hard to take back.
Visit www.commonsensemedia.org. for much more.