Tuesday, April 5, 2011

4/5/11: Follow Me, Like Me, Tweet Me

Think back to a time without social media outlets...  It seems like so long ago, doesn't it?  Can you imagine growing up today and being a teenager in High School with all the ways you could be popular or not popular on the Web.  In one online article Facebook was compared to the Burn Book in the movie "Mean Girls".  It can be used for good and bad and people can write some terrible things that are broadcast to a large group of your peers.  It was bad enough back in the day being made fun of in school by a person live, but imagine this also being done over the web.  Also with all the camera phones out there, how embarassing would it be to have someone post an unflattering picture of you and tag you.  Granted you can untag yourself, but at that point it is too late, it is out there.
And what age is it ok for your child to have a Facebook account and do you as a Mom/Dad/Family member want to "Friend"them?  Family friendships on Facebook also seem dangerous to me.  I have seen kids ask their parents if they can go to a friend's house on their Mom's Facebook Wall.  This is insane to me!  Should kids have a Twitter account?  Again this is dangerous.

Then as far as relationships go, think of how detrimental this could be.  After a breakup your boyfriend/girlfriend could post some horrible or personal things about you.  Did you know that Facebook actually contributes to Divorce.  From ZDNet it is cited that Facebook is blamed in 1 out of 5 divorces.

Our kids will not know what it was like to type a book report on a typewriter, or if you were lucky a Word Processor.  They will never know of a time when you fall out of touch with people. 

Call me old fashioned, but in some ways I think we were better off.  We only had the pressures of live interaction and not so many other media sources to make our youth stressful.
Comment and let me know your thoughts.


jjzmgailey (NDM#30) said...

I have such mixed feelings about this. As a parent of a 9 and 13-year old, I read most of the articles posted by @TheOnlineMom because she does make some really good points. My 9-year old has been asking for a cell phone for 2 years. Not happening. We allow her on www.kidzui.com which is a really cool place for kids...no names or personal info at all. It's a bit more difficult with the 13-year old.

Elizabeth said...

My kids are too young for this worry... but watching my 14yo niece makes me shudder with fear. She's on facebook, meeting older guys, cussing up a storm, trash talking her parents. I don't know WHY my brother thinks it's okay but he says "she's just being a normal teenager."

Man, I'm 99.975% sure I need to homeschool my kids.

Elizabeth said...

Maybe I should explain why I threw homeschool into it... Because I'm terrified of the peers my kids will have!

Amiyrah said...

My kids are still way too young to be effected by these things, but I do see the issues in my 15 year old sister. She is constantly grounded because of her actions on facebook, twitter, etc. She says things on there like she's my age when she has yet to experience life. Facebook seems to be the "devil" in a bunch of situations with teenagers. We even found out about one of her friends being sexually active through facebook and texts on the girls' cell phones. He parents were mortified that she was not only sexually active at 14, but would have no issue broadcasting it online and through her phone.