SalemNews.com, Salem, MA

Lifestyle

April 12, 2013

On Instagram and spending April vacation with teens

Q: My 10-year-old son started using Instagram. He and his friends post and follow pictures. I was shocked when I saw that he has 200 followers and most he doesn’t even know. Help, this feels out of control.

A: As a parent, I empathize with you. Children’s access to social media does feel out of control. Instagram seems innocent enough, and yet it’s social media and not for children under 13. Even for teens, it’s questionable; they lack the judgment to know what’s right and wrong when it comes to posting comments and pictures. What seems cute or funny to them is not always appropriate or acceptable to others. How many times have we seen adults publicly apologizing for making off-color comments online? Allowing your child or teenager access to Instagram or other social media apps before they have the maturity to handle it makes them more vulnerable than they already are.

Here’s what you need to know:

Instagram is social media and, like Facebook, is meant to be restricted to users ages 13 and older with parental guidance.

Photos uploaded on Instagram can, by default, be viewed by anyone, anywhere.

Sharing the photo location is also an option, which allows followers to know your child’s location.

Instagram can be and has been used for cyberbullying.

When your son uses Instagram (or any social media), add privacy restrictions, follow his account, and learn how he portrays himself by reading his posts and viewing his pictures.

Remind him often that his posts can’t be taken back once out there in the world. Messages remain and can make a lasting impression.

Keep ahead of him regarding social media; learn about the social media he is asking to access. Even if you don’t intend to allow it, learn about it and the risks associated with it.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Lifestyle
  • macaws Vet Connection: Pet birds need training, social interaction and time out of the cage People are fascinated with the big colorful birds on display at Animal Kingdom and wild bird sanctuaries. It's always fascinating to see someone walking down the street with a big-beaked bird on his or her shoulder as a companion. We are all drawn to

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • Ask Dog Lady: Her little dog is obsessed with food Dear Dog Lady: I have a 3-year-old, long-coated Chihuahua named Mexipep (after a brand of hot sauce). She has many fine attributes -- she's very sweet, not nervous and barky like the short-coated Chihuahuas can be. On the subject of food, however, th

    July 25, 2014

  • howe Book Notes: Local novelist sees ‘conversion’ syndrome in witch trials The parallels between 1692 and today are so close, they're frightening. That's one conclusion you could draw from reading "Conversion," Marblehead resident Katherine Howe's new novel, which compares the world of the Salem Witch Trials to the life of

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • vehicles Quick pick: Festival of vehicles

    Festival of vehicles Take a ride over to the Hamilton-Wenham Public Library for the 16th annual Vehicle Night on Wednesday from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. The festival of fire trucks, emergency vehicles, cruisers and snow plows takes place in the library park

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • Friday's Best Bets Best Bets for Friday, July 25

    Looking for something to do today? Here are The Salem News' Best Bets:

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • Dear Abby: Tyke becomes a terror when mom takes back her cellphone Dear Abby: When my friend "Fran" and I get together with our kids, they often play games on her cellphone until the battery dies. If she tries to take the phone from her 6-year-old to make a call or recharge the phone, he starts yelling at her, pushe

    July 25, 2014

  • misselwood_2 Rare, classic cars make an appearance at annual Endicott College show

    The original Concours d'Elegance was a fashion show on wheels. "It did start in 17th century France, where some of the aristocracy wanted to show off the fashions they were wearing," said Patrick Cornellison, chairman of the event. "Mainly women woul

    July 24, 2014 2 Photos

  • twenties_3 Ipswich's Castle Hill braces for 1,000 at Roaring '20s Lawn Party

    The latest dance craze started in the 1930s. The Lindy Hop, which first flourished in the ballrooms of Harlem, is expected to draw hundreds of people to a dance floor at the Crane Estate this Sunday. Organized by Boston Swing Central, a dance club in

    July 24, 2014 4 Photos

  • kallyson North Shore entertainment calendar Good cause YARD SALE TO BENEFIT JIMMY FUND. Saturday, July 26, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., 11 Anna Drive, Danvers. Family yard sale with all proceeds benefiting the Boston Marathon Jimmy Fund Walk. WOOSHIE'S WARRIORS FUNDRAISER FOR MS. Sunday, July 27, 10 a.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • The reader's eye Name: Erika Torkildsen Hometown: Beverly Description: "I took this at the Salem Common around a park where I noticed a ripped basketball net amid the blue sky. Instead of taking the picture from my original view, I tipped the camera up from under the

    July 24, 2014

NDN Video
Comments Tracker