>Today I was alarmed at something I saw on Facebook. My kids’ former tutor is one of my friends on Facebook. She is absolutely lovely and that isn’t what alarmed me, teehee. Today she had some pictures of her class at school. I went to see if I recognized any of the kids… I did. Also not what alarmed me. What alarmed me is this… several of her FIRST graders have Facebook pages. Yes, that’s right 6 year olds with Facebook pages. I knew that some of ButterBean’s class mates (8 year olds) have them and was horrified, but YIKES! 6 YEAR OLDS!
I have to admit that when I see this, I wonder what are these parents thinking? Facebook is, by no stretch of the imagination, a safe place for kids to be spending time. Not only are there pictures openly accessible of inappropriate behavior… there are also predators. February of last year, they made the news with registered sex offenders having profiles. And six year olds are spending time here? In fact, of the profiles I saw for the 6 year olds, only 1 had their pictures hidden from strangers. The other 5, I could see all of their cute pictures of birthday parties and such. Each nicely tagged with the child’s name. It seemed to be a a sort of a sign post to find the child easily. And this is leaving aside the fact that Facebook’s user terms clearly state that you must be 13 to have an account.
Now, I am often viewed as overprotective of my children. I worry about abduction, I am concerned about abuse, I still keep my kids in car seats… But, I guess, seeing this I’d rather the overprotective than naive. We have banned the kids from exposure to Facebook. There is too little control and too much potential for running across inappropriate content. So, I still wonder, what are those parents thinking?