Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Myspace and our kids

Hi All,

This post is intended to be a barometer reading. Is anyone out there dealing with the use of as an issue in your school or household?

For those of you who don't know what I am talking about go here.

While my 8th grade son doesn't currently have a myspace page, most of his friends do. It's just a matter of time. I have been having an open conversation with him about how I feel about internet safety and what I consider "risky" on-line behavior. I also am letting him know that there is nothing wrong with blogging but that there are some things he needs to keep in mind. Although the look on his face says, "Whateverrr", I am sure that we understand each other on this.

This medium has great potential for good and I am sure that most kids are using it appropriately. I am just a bit concerned about how much information some of them are willing to post about themselves and their friends. I am also concerned about the images that kids are using to portray themselves on-line. It all feels a tad unsafe.

Here is a good blog on the topic. The post is part of a series on the topic.

I know...I know...I should get over it. Right? No? Let me know what you have experienced.

Jim :-)


Jim Forde said...

Here is a USA Today article on MySpace.

The Article

Jim :-)

Anonymous said...

Hi Jim, Liz from I Speak of Dreams here, thanks for the link. After I wrote the articles, there was an issue with uhhmmm certain teenagers I know. I had previously told a particular teenager that I pay for the connectivity, so I reserve the right to inspect her on-line presence. I drilled down through the comments and looked at her friends' comments too--we discovered some, well, violations of family standards. The parents concerned all met & we are continuing to talk, and reduced some of the freedoms we allow our children. I think we are on the right track.

The teenagers' school, which is private, also monitor the MySpace accounts that use the school's email addresses. Oops that's not so clear. Some of the kids' only email address is an account they get through school, and they used that address for their MySpace accounts.

I like the way the school is handling it--it's a values-driven school, and faculty and staff are emphasizing the school's values when they talk to the kids. They are also reminding the kids that what they post may come back to haunt them, in college and later in the work world.

The intensity of MySpace use seems to vary quite a bit by school, and within a school by social circles.

As we went through this exercise, it became clear to me that some kids do present themselves in inappropriate ways. I think parents of minor children ought to be aware of their kids' MySpace, and look in on it from time to time.

Jim Forde said...

Hey Liz,

I am not sure how you ever found my teeny corner of the blogosphere but thanks for stopping by!

I believe that you are describing a very healthy reaction to the issue from a thoughtful school community. One that is respectful and instructional.

It isn't easy parenting in a cyber-age but for the sake of our kids, we have to get over ourselves and do it.

jim :-)

Jim Forde said...

Here is a school doistrict that is bsning kids from

can they do that?


JIm :-)