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An article published by Minneapolis local paper the Star Tribune entitled “Social media 101: What parents need to know” but could these tips do more harm than good?

This recently published article contained several tips in the form of bullet points for the use of parents to familiarize themselves with social media. Though some of the points were you’re standard precaution and safety warnings for the likes of predators, I found there to be a pervasive tone of disregard for any amount of personal privacy. Using terms like “keep tabs” and implying that parents should always use blocks on television and the internet makes it seem like they want Big Brother to raise the next generation.

Growing up, my house had both the Internet and a television, and yet without any of these controls I knew I had limits to what I could access in each medium. The article strongly advocates a parents right to be involved in every aspect of the social media. To be honest, that’s a parent’s own decision and I can’t judge, but the allowance of a cell phone or a computer is often a bond of trust. No trust is seen here when points include statements such as “Areas to look would include the camera roll and text messages along with photos and messages within all social apps. A web browser history or search history may also be available within the device’s web browser”.

A lot of the points on the other hand are a lot more rational, and I can admit that. But the thing is, a parent should have taught a child enough common sense for them to use a website before letting them run wild on the internet. When the Tribune says to avoid embarrassing or violent behavior, that’s common sense. If a parent needs to invade a child’s personal life and demand passwords to investigate toward this end, then maybe the parent shouldn’t have introduced social media into the home in the first place. It is ok for parents to have rational conversations with children reminding them to be safe, but a can hardly envision a parent, at least one I have seen at least, go rummaging through a child’s online social life because they are that neurotic about safety. I believe this article fosters the wrong mindset about parent-child relations on the topic of online social behavior and safety.

Check it out and decide for yourself http://www.startribune.com/lifestyle/278133351.html 

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