Parent Internet Safety for Teens. North Shore 9 Campus Charlotte Rogers, Campus Technology Specialist. Today’s Agenda. Today’s teenagers are Digital Natives Social Media Sites Your Teenager Might Be Using and What They Are How to Keep My Teen Safe Online and on Social Media
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North Shore 9 Campus
Charlotte Rogers, Campus Technology Specialist
Definition of digital native
a person born or brought up during the age of digital technology and therefore familiar with computers and the Internet from an early age:
Tips for talking to teens about Facebook
Talk to your teens about controlling their information. Encourage them to be selective about what they share by customizing the recipients of their posts. Activities on Facebook, including the applications teens use and games they play, can be viewed by others.
Use strict privacy settings. Review all of the options on your privacy settings page. Facebook's default settings tend to keep information public until a user makes it private (although Facebook is a little stricter with minors' accounts). "Friends Only" is a good choice for most items, but you can be even more selective.
Pre-approve tags. Choose the settings that allow you to see everything you've been tagged in (including photos) before the tag links to your page.
Use notification settings. You can tell Facebook that you want to be notified of any activity performed on your name, including photo tags.
Don't post your location. Facebook lets users post their location on every post. Teens shouldn't do this for safety and privacy reasons. Teens can also "tag" their friends' location but you can prevent anyone from tagging your location in the How Tags Work section.
Set rules about what's appropriate to post. No sexy photos, no drinking photos, no photos of them doing something that could hurt them in the future. Teens also need to be thoughtful about their status updates, wall posts, and comments on friends' posts. Remind them that once they post something, it's out of their hands.
If in doubt, take it out. Use the "Remove Post" button to take down risky posts.
Encourage teens to self-reflect before they self-reveal. Teens are very much in the moment and are likely to post something they didn't really mean. Work with them on curbing that impulse. Teach them to ask themselves why they're posting something, who will be able to read it, and whether it could be misunderstood or used against them later.
Watch out for ads. There are tons of ads on Facebook, and most major companies have profile pages. Marketers actively use Facebook to target advertising to your teen.
Create your own page. The best way to learn the ins and outs of Facebook is to create your own page. A great way to start talking to your teens about their Facebook experience is to ask them to help you create your own page.
"Friend" younger teens. If your kids are in middle school, it may be a sound policy to know what they're posting, since teens that age don't necessarily understand that they're creating a digital footprint. Keep in mind that kids can block you from seeing things, so check in with them, too.
Talk to your high school-aged teens about whether they're comfortable letting you "friend" them. Many will be. But if you are your teen's friend, don't fill her page with comments, and don't "friend" her friends. Many parents say Facebook is the only way they know what's going on in their teens' life, so tread cautiously.
Choose your battles. You'll see the good, the bad, and the truly unfathomable. If you don't want your teens to unfriend you, don't ask them about every transgression. Keep it general.
Be a model friend. Remember that your teens can see what you post, too. Model good behavior for your teens, and keep your own digital footprint clean.
Review Facebook's Safety Center. Several FAQs, from General Safety to Safety for Teens, provide detailed information on how to use Facebook safely.
Twitter is a microblogging site that allows users to post brief, 140-character messages -- called "tweets" -- and follow other users' activities.
Why it's popularTeens like using it to share quick tidbits about their lives with friends. It's also great for keeping up with what's going on in the world -- breaking news, celebrity gossip, etc.
What parents need to know
Public tweets are the norm for teens. Though you can choose to keep your tweets private, most teens report having public accounts (Pew Internet & American Life Project, 2013). Talk to your kids about what they post and how a post can spread far and fast.
Updates appear immediately. Even though you can remove tweets, your followers can still read what you wrote until it's gone. This can get kids in trouble if they say something in the heat of the moment.
It's a promotional tool for celebs. Twitter reels teens in with behind-the-scenes access to celebrities' lives, adding a whole new dimension to celebrity worship. You may want to point out how much marketing strategy goes into the tweets of those they admire.
Instagramis a platform that lets users snap, edit and share photos and 15-second videos -- either publicly or with a network of followers.
Why it's popularInstagram unites the most popular features of social media sites: sharing, seeing and commenting on photos. Instagram also lets you apply fun filters and effects to your photos, making them look high quality and artistic.
What parents need to know
Teens are on the lookout for "Likes." Similar to Facebook, teens may measure the "success" of their photos -- even their self-worth -- by the number of likes or comments they receive. Posting a photo or video can be problematic if teens post it to validate their popularity.
Public photos are the default.Photos and videos shared on Instagram are public and may have location information unless privacy settings are adjusted. Hashtags can make photos even more visible to communities beyond a teen's followers.
Mature content can slip in.The terms of service specify that users should be at least 13 years old and shouldn't post partially nude or sexually suggestive photos -- but they don't address violence, swear words, or drugs.
Snapchat is a messaging app that lets users put a time limit on the pictures and videos they send before they disappear.
Why it's popularSnapchat's creators intended the app's fleeting images to be a way for teens to share fun, light moments without the risk of having them go public. And that's what most teens use it for: sending goofy or embarrassing photos to one another. Snapchats also seem to send and load much "faster" than email or text.
What parents need to know
It's a myth that Snapchats go away forever. Data is data: Whenever an image is sent, it never truly goes away. (For example, the person on the receiving end can take a screenshot of the image before it disappears.) Snapchats can even be recovered.
It can make sexting seem OK.The seemingly risk-free messaging might encourage users to share pictures containing inappropriate content.
Tumblris like a cross between a blog and Twitter: It's a streaming scrapbook of text, photos and/or videos and audio clips. Users create and follow short blogs, or "tumblelogs," that can be seen by anyone online (if made public).
Why it's popularMany teens have tumblrs for personal use -- sharing photos, videos, musings and things they find funny with their friends. Tumblelogs with funny memes and gifs often go viral online, as well (case in point: "Texts from Hillary").
What parents need to know
Porn is easy to find. This online hangout is hip and creative but sometimes raunchy. Pornographic images and videos, depictions of violence, self-harm, drug use and offensive language are easily searchable.
Privacy can be guarded, but only through an awkward workaround. The first profile a member creates is public and viewable by anyone on the Internet. Members who desire full privacy have to create a second profile, which they're able to password protect.
Posts are often copied and shared. Reblogging on Tumblr is similar to re-tweeting: A post that's reblogged from one tumblelog then appears on another. Many teens like -- and in fact, want -- their posts reblogged. But do you really want your kids' words and photos on someone else's page?
Vine is a social media app that lets users post and watch looping six-second video clips. This Twitter-owned service has developed a unique community of people who post videos that are often creative and funny -- and sometimes thought-provoking.
Why it's popularVideos run the gamut from stop-motion clips of puzzles doing and undoing themselves to six-second skits showing how a teen wakes up on a school day vs. a day during summer. Teens usually use Vine to create and share silly videos of themselves and/or their friends and family.
What parents need to know
It's full of inappropriate videos. In three minutes of random searching, we came across a clip full of full-frontal male nudity, a woman in a fishnet shirt with her breasts exposed, and people blowing marijuana smoke into each other's mouths. There's a lot of funny, clever expression on Vine, but much of it isn't appropriate for kids.
There are significant privacy concerns.The videos you post, the accounts you follow, and the comments you make on videos are all public by default. But you can adjust your settings to protect your posts; only followers will see them, and you have to approve new followers.
Parents can be star performers (without knowing). If your teens film you being goofy or silly, you may want to talk about whether they plan to share it.
Cyberbullying is Real!
Prevent cyberbullying before it starts
To stay safe with technology, teach your kids to:
Refuse to pass along cyberbullying messages.
Tell their friends to stop cyberbullying.
Block communication with cyberbullies; delete messages without reading them.
Never post or share their personal information online (including full name, address, telephone number, school name, parents’ names, credit card number, or Social Security number) or their friends’ personal information.
Never share their Internet passwords with anyone, except you.
Talk to you about their life online.
Not put anything online that they wouldn't want their classmates to see, even in email.
Not send messages when they’re angry or upset.
Always be as polite online as they are in person.
Source: National Crime Prevention Council
Monitor your child's technology use
Regardless of how much your child resents it, you can only protect him or her by monitoring what they do online.
Keep the computer in a busy area of your house so you can easily monitor its use, rather than allowing your child use a laptop or tablet in his or her bedroom, for example.
Limit data access to your child's smart phone if he or she uses it to surf the web. Some wireless providers allow you to turn off text messaging services during certain hours.
Set up filters on your child's computer. Tracking software can block inappropriate web content and help you check up on your child's online activities.
Insist on knowing your child's passwords and learn the common acronyms kids use online and in text messages.
Know who your child communicates with online. Go over your child's address book and instant messenger "buddy list" with them. Ask who each person is and how your child knows them.
Encourage your child to tell you or another trusted adult if they receive threatening messages or are otherwise targeted by cyberbullies, while reassuring them that doing so will not result in their loss of computer or cell phone privileges.
Deal with incidents of cyberbullying
Don't reply to any incidents of cyberbullying but do save and document the threats (harassing messages, sexually explicit pictures, or threatening texts, for example) and report them to the police. Seek appropriate legal advice.
Report incidents of cyberbullying to the ISP, the cell phone company, and to any web site used in the cyberbullying.
Block the cyberbully's email address or cell phone number, or change your child's email address or phone number.
If you are able to identify the cyberbully, you could contact his or her parents or notify your child's school if the cyberbully is also a student there. Many schools have established protocols for handling cyberbullying but check with your child first as he or she may prefer to resolve the problem privately.