internet safety for children

remember all those internet safety classes we took as children and how we proceeded to disobey literally every single one of the safety rules

Parents! Please!

Teach your children about internet safety. Since being on Youtube, our twitter handle has been bombarded with little kids (age 6-12) that tell me all about where they live, what their parents do, their favorite food etc. I’m sure if I was a creep they would tell me whatever I asked. Im seriously afraid for these children. Please put parental controls on devices and talk to them that not everyone is as nice as they seem. Protect the babies of the internet! 

anonymous asked:

About the whole reading your daughters online stuff or diary and things I have a question. I agree it is a violation of privacy I've had it done to me and I've seen it done to others. But my question is, is there a way the kids can meet the parents halfway without breaking the trust? I've also seen issues, especially with younger kids, that they don't know what's really all out there at times. There are some messed up people who will take advantage of a child's naivety.

Absolutely! Back when the post was fresh I discussed this a lot with rebloggers; I recommend you root around in my parenting tag to check out the lengthier stuff I’ve said. If I were to summarize it now:

Communication is key. Springing on your child that you’ve been monitoring them without their knowledge or consent and then using that to metaphorically pin them to the wall in a confrontation is terrible, full-stop. If you’re going to monitor (which I still don’t recommend regardless), at the very least discuss with them how you will monitor their online behavior and establish some sort of agreed-upon protocol for (1) the monitoring and (2) confrontations – and why you’ll be doing so in both cases.

Also, remember: when you ask your child how they are, actually listen to them if they choose to share and do not comment judgmentally thereafter, and do not react with indignation at the exercise of their autonomy if they choose not to share. And be alert to when your child comes to you; it’s very important not to shut them down when they decide to share without prompting.

Full-on privacy invasion is for emergencies only. If you’re going to log into your child’s accounts, I sure hope that it’s because you are already really worried something’s wrong based on other signs, and not just because you want to make sure they aren’t talking shit about you or making friends that are gay or something – because the former is a totally understandable and possibly necessary intervention, but the latter are not.

Being present and/or available while your child is online is not the same thing as monitoring them, especially when that child is young. That is totally a-okay, and in fact I highly encourage it if you have the time to do so (I recognize that many parents won’t, which sucks, but isn’t their fault). Also, there’s a huge difference between requiring that your child be friends with you on Facebook and requiring that you are able to log into your child’s Facebook account at any time – just for example.

Finally, communicate with young children about internet safety! Kids will take that very seriously if you convey its seriousness to them. My parents didn’t need to be paranoid about me revealing personal info online because I was already paranoid about revealing personal info online – thanks, internet safety lessons, for scaring the shit out of me in a helpful way.

As a final point: I’m sure you mean well, and I do recognize that there are people online who can be a real threat to children. But the online boogeymen who will steal your babies are, honestly, a distraction from the fact that the original question my post responded to was about policing, not protecting, the child. The original question was specifically about monitoring the child’s texts and online activity for, and I quote, “bad language and inappropriate content.” So while I don’t mean to diminish the importance of your question, I want to recognize that neither the original question nor my response were about things like online predators or cyberbullying, and to act like they were is missing the point in a potentially very harmful way, as it encourages parents who police their child to justify it as “protection.”