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Old 05-08-2014, 09:09 AM - Thread Starter
 
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What is your policy on this?  Ds1 is 10 and has a Vine account.  He only has some school friends on there and they make silly videos back and forth, but dh is concerned about this and wants to forbid it.  His fears are that ds1 is going to put something out there that would be embarrassing/detrimental as an adult, and that he will have online contact with potentially dangerous people.  Though I agree with those fears, ds1 really is upset about it, and I don't think we can prevent him from being on social media for much longer.  How should we handle this?


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Old 05-08-2014, 09:48 AM
 
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I'm not familiar with Vine, but is there anyway that you can see and approve what he posts before he posts it? Social media is so hard!  So far, my kids haven't asked to be on anything, and they're 15, 13, and 10.  I suspect the 13 yr old will be the first one to want to, and I think he'll go for facebook.  I probably won't let him get an account until he 14 though.  When I do, he will have to friend me and I will have the password for his account so I can check up on him occasionally.  We've has a lot of talks about safety etc., but I do understand your dh's concerns.  Kids don't think about what they put out there and it can be scary!  


 
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Old 05-08-2014, 10:22 AM
 
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I have three teenagers ,and I teach high school. Our policy is that whatever the kids have, we have, and we follow them. I have a twitter pretty much to follow my kids. Also, make sure they have strong privacy settings. None of my students have their twitters on private and I am amazed at the stuff they post!

 

IMO, 10 is kind of young. Mine had to be 13 before we allowed facebook. Instagram was 12. The most dangerous is snapchat because the kids think the photo disappears, but people can screen shot them and send them to others. I have seen kids expelled from school (Catholic schools) over things on social media. I have seen promising high school athletes lose scholarship offers because of social media postings.

 

Instead of forbidding it, I think parents should become informed and teach their kids how to be responsible. It is a part of our world that is not going away. I think kids need to learn what is okay to post and what is not before they are in college, in the job market, etc.

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Old 05-08-2014, 11:19 AM
 
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This is a tough call. I'm all for internet safety and I think it's wise to wait for our kids to reach a certain age before they are allowed to participate with social media. However, if he already has an account and he hasn't done anything wrong, I don't know that taking it away from him is a good idea.

 

There's a good book on this for parents called "The Digital Invasion" by Arch Hart. It might be worth checking out. Good luck!


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Old 05-08-2014, 12:31 PM
 
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to be very honest with you your dh's reasoning does not have any logic. logic enough to completely take away the Vine account. i mean adults are posting detremental stuff, so why hold that against ds - something that he MIGHT do in the future. 

 

unfortunately what was once a simple thing has been blown out of proportion. and suddenly social media is a big bad thing.

 

the key is education. defining boundaries. assessing both your stand on that. i dont see why ur son cant have Vine if you guys are overseeing it. if he posts something inappropriate you can just delete it. 

 

i think a teenager might make a bigger silly mistake than a 10 year old. 

 

i think we are living too much in the 'fear' world. i dont see how any of the fears are logical - if you are a parent who is staying in touch with their child and are a close knit family who knows what their kids are doing. 

 

my dd had a facebook account when she was 8 years old. i got that for her. yes i knew the 13 year old policy - but i was into farmville games and so was she and i was getting tired of her using my login. it was a 9 day wonder. today fb is old fashioned and she has moved on to other media. 

 

i know my kid. i've walked her through security and online common sense. she logs into places using my email address not hers to play online games. she knows how to talk on the web without giving out too much information. 

 

vine is about looping silly videos. is your son making his own videos or posting others links. heck if you had the money you could buy the necessary stuff and turn it into a learning moment. mac's imovie is so 'logical' and therefore easy that kids can easily create and edit their own videos. 

 

i personally dont see why your son cant have vine with supervision. you can guide him what is appropriate and what is not if he makes his own video. plus if you have teh security right no one can 'find' him unless he gives them permission. plus i also think growing up with boundaries and guidance and knowing what is right and wrong - even at 10 - will make him a much responsible user as a teen than not. 


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Old 05-08-2014, 03:49 PM
 
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I think you and your DP are wise to be cautious. I think being a savvy internet user is just not going to be a reality for the vast number of users because things change so quickly.  I'm not personally afraid of my DC getting tracked by some internet predator but I just feel like the trail of information that we can never get back is something to be especially cautious about. With our own DC we have a special concern because she is the only person in the world with her first/last name combination. If she should decide as at some point that she'd really not like to have her childhood videos as part of her internet persona, she will only have that freedom if she thinks carefully about what she shares online. 


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Old 05-09-2014, 07:49 AM
 
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I think it's good to be cautious and aware.  And it's also good to keep communication lines around social media open.  My children and I have had many discussions about social media use.  All three of my kids have a google+ account.  But it's really only my two oldest that use it.  My youngest, who is 9, barely ever even checks her email.  My son knows not to post his own pictures or personal information online.  He really does seem to understand that and prefers to remain anonymous, whether or not I had said anything to him about it.  He uses his google+ account to share DJ videos and music videos he likes.  He also has instagram and posts funny pictures he finds to it. He shows me his instagram sometimes.  I do not have instagram.  My daughter has only some school friends on google+ and might say she has homework or share a dog picture or a cute animal video.  I am more likely to share pictures of them (with their permission) on my fb when I was on it, than they are to share anything.  

I have explained to the kids how their stuff never goes away and showed them stuff I have posted to the internet NOT on social media and how it is still sitting there, 12 years later.  We have also talked about people pretending to be other people on the internet and my son has seen that in action recently.  I think it's more important to have the conversation and have it often as a reminder (omg, they roll their eyes at me sometimes when I bring it up again! lol) than to outright ban things because they don't learn how to safely use it if they don't get the opportunity.  The result of not banning is that the kids are pretty upfront with me about their social media use and they don't feel the need to hide it because I haven't banned it.  


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Old 06-28-2014, 10:57 PM
 
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Thought I'd post this, because I thought it was funny but also because I think it illustrates how kids who grow up using the internet independently and getting clear teaching early on about safety can become pretty savvy. My dd posted this on Facebook:

Quote:
Just recieved this in skype. He does seem like a very caring person. Do you think we are as compatible as he does? I'm just afraid that his bad grammar and capitalization would cause a rift between us. Should I meet him so that our souls can witness the beauty of "rays of dawn seek[ing] out a waking world" together? Comments? thoughts?
Quote:
Hi
I am Mr. Johnson Kelly From California United States of America. I am a kind and sincere man, open minded and honest, affectionate. I am also a simple, easy going and caring person. I am equally happy watching the rays of dawn seek out a waking world or enjoying a nice brandy,i like traveling share ideas with friends. I love to joke and put smile to the face of people around me. I'm Looking for good and kind woman, loyal, caring,thoughtful, creative, compassionate, imaginative, serious, sensual and passionate......But dislike women who lie, cheat, dishonest, Disrespectful, and who just play tricks.
I am a US military officer in Afghanistan and I will like to know more about you. if you don't mind you can contact me directly on my private email address(______@####.com) so i can tell you more about my self and also send you my pictures to you as well.kisses...Johnson.
Dd is 11. She seems to have a pretty firm grasp of sarcasm as well as internet safety.

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Old 06-30-2014, 05:50 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Lol! She handled that pretty well!

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Old 07-02-2014, 03:27 AM
 
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I have been debating this same issue with my 13 yr old daughter. I do not lack confidence in her spotting the yuckies, I just am not sure I want her to spend more time on her device. My situation is her wanting an instagram account for an upcoming trip. She is begging for this as it's "an easy way for my friends to see what I'm doing" and a little "all my friends have one" with a bit of "the age limit is 12 so I'm not breaking the rules like everyone else on Facebook" It's getting thick. As a good mom I know that I can limit her time on it but am worried about her spending more time staring at a screen.
I understand that the mainstream world is moving towards a certain direction, I may just want another year or two before she goes with it… is that selfish?
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Old 07-02-2014, 04:39 AM
 
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I have been debating this same issue with my 13 yr old daughter. I do not lack confidence in her spotting the yuckies, I just am not sure I want her to spend more time on her device. My situation is her wanting an instagram account for an upcoming trip. She is begging for this as it's "an easy way for my friends to see what I'm doing" and a little "all my friends have one" with a bit of "the age limit is 12 so I'm not breaking the rules like everyone else on Facebook" It's getting thick. As a good mom I know that I can limit her time on it but am worried about her spending more time staring at a screen.
I understand that the mainstream world is moving towards a certain direction, I may just want another year or two before she goes with it… is that selfish?
instagram does have the potential to increase screen time.... but usually not too much.

she'll just post her photographs. doesnt take very much time to post and tag.

initially she might take a little bit more time as she catches up. but pretty soon. nope.

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Old 07-02-2014, 01:39 PM
 
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For us, the general rule is 13 and we had access to their codes and accounts until high school graduation. We did say that we wouldn't pry but reserved the right to go through the accounts if we felt anything was "off." We followed them and were "friends" as well.

DD 17 has a facebook but largely uses instagram under a username. She had a Sherlock/Dr. Who TUMBLR but took it down after about a year. DS 13 has a Facebook and thinks it's so lame he has not been interested in any other social networking. I admit to not being all that worried. My kids have always been pretty careful and half their "friends" and "followers" are other adults I know well (parents of friends, old teachers, theatre directors, ect.) They've both been in the press a good deal and so learned early how easy it was to google themselves for pictures and activity history. DD 17 totally revamped her facebook at 16. There was nothing inappropriate on it but she didn't want college admissions to see all her silly "young" posts. They both are aware that DH has chosen not to hire individuals due to social media (yes, one time a guy interviewed and then proceeded to blog about how he planned to get around the drug test.... not smart.) They've often pointed out to me bad choices friends have made. They know what's up.

The only issue we had was when DD was 14 and using the message feature on facebook to communicate with friends in the middle of the night. We took away her electronics at night until she developed some better self-control. That's been about that.

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Old 07-03-2014, 08:22 PM
 
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My 10 yr old and 13 yr old have to have google accounts for school so they automatically have all the google stuff (google+, blogger, youtube, etc). They have set up blogs, but under pseudonyms, and have google+ accounts under pseudonyms as well. They still have the accounts in their real names, but don't use those except for school related stuff. They don't do facebook or instagram. I think dd1 might be interested in Tumblr, but she hasn't asked for it yet.

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Old 07-03-2014, 08:35 PM
 
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Thought I'd post this, because I thought it was funny but also because I think it illustrates how kids who grow up using the internet independently and getting clear teaching early on about safety can become pretty savvy. My dd posted this on Facebook:



Dd is 11. She seems to have a pretty firm grasp of sarcasm as well as internet safety.

Miranda
That's so scary!

At what age did she acquire the ability to see this for what it is? How could you tell?

My daughter is only a few months old but this terrifies me
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Old 07-03-2014, 10:07 PM
 
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That's so scary!

At what age did she acquire the ability to see this for what it is? How could you tell?

My daughter is only a few months old but this terrifies me
I'm sorry, I didn't mean to scare anyone! I honestly just thought it was funny.

To answer your question.... She's had pretty good critical thinking skills for long time now. I would guess that three or four years ago she might have been confused about what was going on. She would never have written back, but she might have thought someone accidentally sent it to her because of a typo and come to me asking whether she needed to do anything about it. Not that she had a Skype account when she was 7! And my kids have always known that you don't share personal information with people that you only know through social media.

I guess what I've noticed in my family is that once my kids have got to the age where they were interested in social media they've also been at an age where they also cared about being (and coming across as) savvy. So they find it really interesting to discover and discuss scams and misinformation. We often talk as a family about ridiculous phishing attempts, read aloud Nigerian scam emails we've received, talk about the intent and payoff of various shady marketing techniques, describe various stupid scams people have fallen for, look at how misinformation spreads so quickly, talk about clever new clickjacking ploys and so on. The interest in how the internet works (including its unsavory bits) and wanting to be part of the internet has always gone hand in hand with my kids.

It seems to me that a decade or so ago you used to hear occasionally about a 14-year-old girl who had "met" a nice 16-year-old boy in a chat room, developed an on-line relationship with him, and then sneaked off to meet him, only to find out he was a forty-something man. The technology was new, and people didn't sense the differences between the real and virtual worlds -- never thinking that people could be impersonating someone different on-line. You don't hear those stories much anymore, despite the fact that social media consumption by tweens and teens has absolutely skyrocketed. Why? Well, I think kids who grow up with the internet and whose parents have had experience with it, they grow up smart about it. I can't imagine a 14-year-old nowadays who doesn't know that people (their friends or themselves, quite possibly) can set up fake social media accounts, say things that aren't true and impersonate and manipulate others online. Today's kids, thanks to having tech-savvy parents and exposure to the internet throughout their lives, are pretty smart.

Miranda

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Old 07-04-2014, 12:29 PM
 
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I've seen some Vines. Some of them are funny but most of them are stupid jokes between friends. Many of them are completely inappropriate for kids to watch. Just like Youtube. My kids (7 and 11) love to look at silly Youtube videos (America's Funniest Animal type videos) and how-to videos for crafting but I tell them not to do so unless there is a parent in the room, since it's easy to click on something inappropriate without meaning to. So far, they are good about it. That is one of the good things about my kids not having many friends...they don't learn about all the social media, or desire to have accounts because "so and so" is allowed! I know it will happen eventually though.

If there is a way to monitor it, set restrictions (as to who can see it and who can't) and to block what he is able to see beyond his friends...then I wouldn't worry...if not, you may run into issues. Also, if there is a way to permanently delete stuff easily...that would be good. I know nothing is REALLY permanently gone...but I understand that concern of saying or doing something stupid and having it come back to haunt you years later!
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Old 07-04-2014, 01:54 PM
 
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If there is a way to monitor it, set restrictions (as to who can see it and who can't) and to block what he is able to see beyond his friends...then I wouldn't worry...if not, you may run into issues. Also, if there is a way to permanently delete stuff easily...that would be good. I know nothing is REALLY permanently gone...but I understand that concern of saying or doing something stupid and having it come back to haunt you years later!
Just a couple of words of caution about this, having raised three teens so far and having talking frankly a lot with them and their friends about these issues. First, the ability to delete things permanently has repercussions that run both ways. Although it allows kids to make minor mistakes and "undo" them, it also sets up an environment where kids figure they can get away with almost anything, and that their parents or future employers will never be able to track. Snapchat and Vine, for instance, have a bit of that culture about them. There's almost no accountability for one's behaviour in that kind of situation, other than a clear set of personal values.

Also, when restrictions are placed because children are not trusted, they often become very adept at undermining those limits. They set up shadow accounts that only their friends know about which aren't monitored, they access the internet via an alternate desktop, they reset the password on the router, learn how to use proxies, install an alternate hidden browser that they use when they want to sneak access. Or they just do all the fun stuff at a friend's house or a café where internet use is unsupervised.

Raising kids with strong values and good critical thinking skills, and then trusting them to handle what they think they're ready for (but of course being willing to support them if they do need help coping with mistakes) is I think the better approach.

Miranda

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Old 07-04-2014, 06:05 PM
 
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Just a couple of words of caution about this, having raised three teens so far and having talking frankly a lot with them and their friends about these issues. First, the ability to delete things permanently has repercussions that run both ways. Although it allows kids to make minor mistakes and "undo" them, it also sets up an environment where kids figure they can get away with almost anything, and that their parents or future employers will never be able to track. Snapchat and Vine, for instance, have a bit of that culture about them. There's almost no accountability for one's behaviour in that kind of situation, other than a clear set of personal values.

Also, when restrictions are placed because children are not trusted, they often become very adept at undermining those limits. They set up shadow accounts that only their friends know about which aren't monitored, they access the internet via an alternate desktop, they reset the password on the router, learn how to use proxies, install an alternate hidden browser that they use when they want to sneak access. Or they just do all the fun stuff at a friend's house or a café where internet use is unsupervised.

Raising kids with strong values and good critical thinking skills, and then trusting them to handle what they think they're ready for (but of course being willing to support them if they do need help coping with mistakes) is I think the better approach.

Miranda
This is true...Thank you reminding us that trust is very important. The open communication you have with your teens is key too. Teaching strong morals, having good thinking skills...all of that is important. Also, being able to choose their friends wisely...knowing who is a true friend. Sadly, almost every news story of grooming/abusing/bullying kids starts with texting, FB, Kik, etc. I think that is what has a lot of parents on edge about social media.

Her child is 10. Most parents I know think their child is too young for social media at that age. I guess it depends on the child.
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Old 07-04-2014, 06:18 PM
 
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I do agree that strong critical thinking skills are super important. My grandmother just experienced a pretty good scam. Fortunately for her she was skeptical but it was scary and disturbing for her. AI just don't think she understood how much information about her is available online so the scam had some legs and nearly got her.

Trouble with me believing that critical thinking training can take my DC all the way is that it is a skill that seems to be lacking in our culture. I have seen so many adults, educated, smart, well-meaning adults forward absolute JUNK. At some point or, I guess in some forums, people just stop thinking.

That said, I think my grandmother's core thinking skills and instinct are what saved her from a scam. Here's hoping that we can nurture those skills in our kids.

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Old 07-04-2014, 07:56 PM
 
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Dd is 11. She seems to have a pretty firm grasp of sarcasm as well as internet safety.

Miranda
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Old 07-04-2014, 09:35 PM
 
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Her child is 10. Most parents I know think their child is too young for social media at that age. I guess it depends on the child.
Every child in my 10 year old's public school class is required to have a google account. I don't think it's too young at all to start dealing with this stuff.

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Old 07-04-2014, 09:50 PM
 
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You're right. Very standard to set up accounts at school (I think they start at age 9 at my kids' school). I wasn't talking about accounts set up for school purposes. I was talking about the type of social media the OP was talking about (Vine). When I see Vines, they are mostly done by older teens and young adults. They do silly, meaningless stuff...a lot of it could be considered inappropriate material for 10 year olds.
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Old 07-04-2014, 11:09 PM
 
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Trouble with me believing that critical thinking training can take my DC all the way is that it is a skill that seems to be lacking in our culture. I have seen so many adults, educated, smart, well-meaning adults forward absolute JUNK.
Yeah, but your dd isn't just growing up in our culture, she's growing up in your family. When you get that junk from your well-meaning adult friends, share it with your dd and talk about why it's junk. She'll soon be able to spot it a mile away.

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Old 07-05-2014, 05:49 AM
 
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Yes, I will and when/if DC is heavy into social media I will be her "friend" and talk with her about these things for sure. This does make me wonder, though, what makes a good critical thinker. I (think I) have a pretty good "BS" meter for the sorts of mild spam, untruths, and misinformation that floats around.

But you know what they say about drivers, right? Over 80% of drivers think they are a better than average driver.

I didn't grow up with critical thinking education. I suppose I'm a little skeptical about what, exactly, makes a critical thinker in the digital realm. I'm not sure it's as simple as parent education.

Some of it, I think, will come down to our personalities. I'm a visual person so my BS meter is very high for misuse of visual imagery. I think my parents did a good job of sharing with me the old saying, "Nothing in life is free," so I don't tend to fall for scams that offer deals that are "too good to be true". But, I may not be as well adept at scams that have to do with technology. I can see a pop-up getting me. I don't understand why a scammer can't put a false "x" (close) button, for instance.

This is where I do think it comes down to A. our kid's personalities and strong suits. Maybe a kid is just generally very trusting or is the type to want to give a chain mail message the benefit of the doubt. And, B. some help from us in terms of blocking some things and having updated security (and talking to our kids about updating their security, removing spyware, not clicking on links). And then, of course, C. the fact that our kids will have their own unique value systems about these things that may conflict with ours.

We absolutely have child-settings on DC's computer. I think I even have them on mine (set to mild). I'm not a prude but I just don't want to be distracted when I search by the underbelly of the internet.

I know it may be old-fashioned and perhaps even naive (in that all parents in history feel this way) but I feel like the internet is such a different animal than what was available to us as kids. I admit to worrying that it is going to change the face of adolescence in a way that may have unforeseen consequences.

My DC's interest in social media (she got Instagram this summer) has me revisiting sleep-away camp. I have other reasons for wanting that for her but the idea of being 100% media-free for several weeks with her peers has stronger and stronger appeal.

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Old 07-05-2014, 08:25 AM
 
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You're right. Very standard to set up accounts at school (I think they start at age 9 at my kids' school). I wasn't talking about accounts set up for school purposes. I was talking about the type of social media the OP was talking about (Vine). When I see Vines, they are mostly done by older teens and young adults. They do silly, meaningless stuff...a lot of it could be considered inappropriate material for 10 year olds.
True, but you can post animated gifs on google+ and link to Vines and YouTube. Once you have a Google account, you have Google+, YouTube, Blogger, etc automatically. My kids were quite excited to find that their google accounts gave them YouTube accounts.

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Old 07-05-2014, 10:31 AM
 
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Once you have a Google account, you have Google+, YouTube, Blogger, etc automatically. My kids were quite excited to find that their google accounts gave them YouTube accounts.
which means you have to be careful of what google id you use. dd's dad signed her up for a gmail years ago using her real name. and dd discovered she could post on youtube. yikes. i had to get her another gmail account which was very anonymous. and she has to be careful about which account she uses.

there is social media and then there is computer time. dd got into social media quite a bit when she was younger... fb, instagram and a few writing sites... but the charm is gone.

instead as she grows older she is into other things - vbloggers and music. i have to say its hard for me to watch her spend so much time listening to music. but then i look around and that's what all kids are doing.

vbloggers and music are coping skills for dd. when she is having a hard time with life - she watches and listens more.

today dd texts more. she used to chat a lot on fb and post pictures on friends instagram. but now they text and email. still sending silly things. but for us social media was a phase and it lost its charm. but when dd was in it, she did initially spend a lot of time in it.

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Old 07-05-2014, 11:35 AM
 
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dd's dad signed her up for a gmail years ago using her real name. and dd discovered she could post on youtube. yikes.
Maybe I'm missing something here, but what's the "yikes" for?

I live in a small town that has a small-town newspaper in which my kids are quite regularly photographed and written about. That's kind of my litmus test for internet content. If I'm comfortable with their names and activities being posted in a printed publication circulated widely throughout our area (and, incidentally, also published on-line) then why would I be worried about similar content being posted to YouTube or Facebook? And YouTube has some pretty reasonable privacy settings in any event.

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Old 07-05-2014, 05:03 PM
 
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Maybe I'm missing something here, but what's the "yikes" for?
I can answer for myself and for the concerns I have for my DC about this sort of thing. To me, it's not so much that specific information that we welcome is out there associated with our or our children's names - it's the web of things that are out there.

One of the things I want to teach my DC (which is something I and I think a lot of adults are still learning) is the ways in which our online identity can mingle to create a much broader and more interconnected picture of our lives than we are aware of.

For instance, if your DC uses an email with their full name on a site with their handle - those two things are now linked. And, while all the things that person posts about are knowingly posted online, not all of those things are knowingly posted as connected to a person's full name, or other handle, or whatever.

These are the kinds of things that I am concerned about and I don't think common sense is always the answer if there are connections that we just didn't know existed or information available to the public that we weren't entirely aware of.

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Old 07-05-2014, 06:29 PM
 
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Certainly there are some differences in philosophy here ... personally I think lack of anonymity creates the accountability that promotes better on-line behaviour. But I was wondering more specifically what it was about being about to post on YouTube (as opposed to simply having a Gmail account, with which one could, of course, sign up for all sorts of other memberships and services) that made meemee so concerned.

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Last edited by moominmamma; 07-05-2014 at 06:52 PM. Reason: grammar
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Old 07-05-2014, 07:29 PM
 
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Certainly there are some differences in philosophy here ... personally I think lack of anonymity creates the accountability that promotes better on-line behaviour.
Yes, and I suppose I do agree, however I think teens and certainly adults have perfectly valid reasons for wanting to discuss issues online in a way that is somewhat anonymous or compartmentalized from other parts of their lives.

I decided recently that I would rather not have my full name associated with any public sites (here, FB, my blog, Pinterest) because I just don't really want to be searchable in that way. This is a choice that our kids may not be able to make unless they start out pretty carefully.

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