Social Media for Parents of Teens

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Information about Social Media for Parents of Teens

Published on March 14, 2014

Author: kategukeisen



This presentation was prepared for a high school Parent Teacher Organization to inform local parents in the Hinesville, GA area

Social Media An informational class for parents of teens and tweens. March 18, 2014 Bradwell Institute Hinesville, GA

What we’ll cover today:  Introduction  Overview of Laws that Affect Social Media Use  Sites Local Teens are Using  Your Role in Keeping Your Teen Safe  Talking to Your Teen About Their Digital Footprint  Resources for Keeping You & Your Teen Informed

CIPA & COPPA CIPA Children’s Internet Protection Act COPPA Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act

CIPA CIPA requires school and libraries receiving E-rate funding for Internet access to adopt an internet safety policy that addresses:  Safety and Security of minors using e-mail and other forms of direct electronic communication  Unauthorized access or unlawful activity by minors online  Unauthorized disclosure, use and dissemination of the personal information of minors  Measures to restrict minors’ access to material harmful to minors  Education for minors about appropriate online behavior

COPPA Websites that collect information from children under the age of thirteen are required to comply with the Federal Trade Commission Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act. COPPA applies to websites and apps that are directed to children under 13. Most of the apps we’ll talk about are intended for 13+ or 17+.

Trust Your Good Sense, Parents

Your Good Sense  Check out this video from Common Sense Media on YouTube:

Specific Sites Popular with Local Teens The sites we’ll cover today are used by teens in this school. The purpose of showing you these sites is not to scare you, but to inform you, so that you can make the call whether these sites are appropriate for your teen.

Smart Phone Apps

Name of app  How the app works  Special features and additional information  Issues or concerns Screenshot or Example  users ask questions and answer questions posted by other— anonymous—users.  users have the option of recording themselves with a webcam to answer a question.  Bullying is a major concern. In 2013, ten teen suicides were directly linked to bullying on

Yik Yak  Yik Yak users may send comments anonymously.  Those who see the comments don’t have to have an account; they only have to be logged on.  Yik Yak uses location services to bring comments to a user’s feed from other users nearby.  Bullying is a major concern with Yik Yak, which has specifically been a platform for racist bullying and violent threats at a number of high schools and colleges.

Snapchat  Snapchat has major privacy issues. Contrary to Snapchat’s FAQs statement that “snaps disappear after the timer runs out,” snaps can be saved via screen capture or through a built-in retrievability code.  Teens don’t initially go to Snapchat to sext or bully, they go to socialize in an online environment that seems “safer” because they think the data they share disappears.  There are numerous ways to “screen capture” a Snapchat photo. Once you send your photo digitally, you lose control of it. Snapchat advertises itself as an app that lets you send media to your friends that will get deleted automatically.

Apps to Hide Apps  There are a number of apps that “hide” pictures, folders, and other apps.  Can you tell which of these icons represents my Secret Folder?  Don’t be afraid to investigate what is in your teen’s folders.  Don’t be afraid to talk to your teen about which apps they are using and who they connect with on them.  And, don’t be afraid to reset or take away your teen’s access if they are putting themselves in danger.

kik  Kik Messenger is an app-based alternative to standard texting as well as a social networking app for smartphones.  Kik should only be used by teens who can discern the difference between texting people individually, with groups, and within a social networking environment.  This tool is for older teens and adults who will use it to communicate with family and friends, and who will not give out personal information to Kik users they don't know.  Teens will need close guidance on safety and privacy if they're going to use it.

Tumblr Search results for #Divergent Search results for #Hinesville These represent things a typical teen may search for on Tumblr—and the results may include things you either don’t want your teen exposed to or that you at least want to be aware your teen is being exposed to.

Privacy & Safety Strategies for Tumblr  Tumblr is a blog format that allows users to combine text, videos, photos, and audio clips.  While Tumblr does provide an option for users to filter out any NSFW (not safe for work) content. The catch? Tumblr relies on users to flag their own content as adult-oriented, NSFW, or explicit.  If your think your mature and responsible teen is ready for Tumblr, talk with them and monitor the content they post.  Talk to your teen about the content they could be exposed to on Tumblr and make clear what they should do if they discover inappropriate content.  If you are not comfortable with your teen using Tumblr, block it until you think they are ready.

Twitter  Twitter is a free "microblogging" and social networking site that allows users to post 140-character messages called “tweets.”  Users can keep their tweets private and approve individual followers. This is a potentially good way for teens to “get their feet wet” in social media.  Twitter is increasingly being used as a promotional tool for products and celebrities so limit your teen’s exposure to ads by keeping their Twitter circle among real friends.  Users can choose to post their location along with each Tweet—not a great idea for teens.  If your teen is ready for social media, Twitter can be used as an education tool as well as a social networking tool.

Instagram  Instagram is a photo and video sharing social networking service.  If your teen is ready for Instagram, go through the privacy settings together and talk about what is (and is not) appropriate to share on social media.  Search results for graphic terms can include graphic pictures.  Instagram does have built in features to report inappropriate content, but your teen cannot “unsee” what they have seen.

Facebook  Facebook is an online social network on which users can share status updates, pictures, and video.  Facebook updates its features frequently, which can change privacy settings—so if your teen is ready for Facebook, regularly check their privacy settings.  If your teen is ready for Facebook, check regularly to ensure they are “Friends” with only people they know in real life.

Trust Your Good Sense, Parents

Danger Zone Avoid social media tools and apps that allow users to avoid responsibility for what they post, or that promise what you post is “anonymous” or will “disappear.” Nothing on the Internet disappears, or is truly private.

Proceed with Caution • Talk to your teen about the types of social media you are comfortable with them trying. • Investigate and set the privacy settings together. • Check regularly to ensure your teen is making good decisions and is online friends only with people they actually know.

Only you can give the Green Light You know your teen best. It is up to you to decide whether they are ready for social media at all.

Restricting Access

Your Teen’s Digital Footprint Nothing ever truly disappears in the digital world, and everything you post on social media shapes people's impression of you. The impression that you give on social media and the Internet is often called your Digital Footprint. What impression are you giving? Are you happy with your Digital Footprint? And, if you aren't, what can you do to change it?

Discovering Your Teen’s Digital Footprint  Use a search engine like Google or Yahoo to search your teen’s name and username(s).  Use a site like Spokeo or PeekYou to review what information is publicly available about your teen.  Review the apps your teen uses on their smartphone and the computer and talk about what information they gave to sign up for each account.  Look at what your teen posts, blogs, and shares on the Internet (even the information they share “privately” can easily become public).  Talk about how what they posts is viewed by others and how it could affect them if it is seen by a college admissions office, military recruiter, or hiring manager.

Building Your Teen’s Digital Footprint  Talk with your teen about how everything they do online combines to create their Digital Footprint.  Make your teen aware of the importance of having a Digital Footprint they are proud of.  Point out and share news stories and other information about positive and negative consequences of online behavior.  Explore online resources with your teen to discover more about the social media tools and apps they hear about and want to use.

Tips to Take With You  Get involved  Learn about social media platforms with your teen  Investigate the social media your teen is using  Check and use privacy settings  Advise your teen about what content is appropriate to share  Delete and block inappropriate content

For Further Information Please visit our website at To find more resources, information, and links to online tools that will help you and your teen use social media for positive social interaction and learning.

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