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It’s facebook • it’s not exactly a private playground.

•• Published: Dec 7, 2012 

Over the summer I read an appalling article in the Sunday Irish Independent (August 2012) trying to give parents an excuse not to be tech savvy and even worse suggesting that facebook is difficuilt to use. I’ve participated in conversations with customers and friends concerned about their childrens safety on facebook. The subject of social website safety again became a public issue in the printed and broadcasting media for Irish parents last November. Bullying it is a big deal.

Remember, First off Facebook is a social network not a personal diary. Yes facebook timeline is great you can see what you were doing on facebook, 12 months ago, beyond and inbetween. It’s not a diary. Parents please don’t use that as an excuse to be lazy about the tech, you need to be there in some capacity. You tell your children not to take sweets from strangers, don’t get into strange cars etc. the same must apply to facebook and it’s up to you to make sure your children are safe. After all if they are subject to third parties abuse you want to be the first to know, before it gets too far

As a child my parents knew who I hung around with what kids clubs, classes, groups  I was involved in. If your children are on facebook you need to be there too. On facebook your children are exposed to millions of people, of all kinds, you never were as a child. Who’s going to protect them, who do they discuss their concerns about things they come across if their parents don’t know even the basics of Facebook. There is a reason why facebook has an age restriction of 13 years and over.

Facebook is not a baby sitter. It is a place for people to interact. That has always been it’s purpose. Facebook shuns the notion of privacy and to be honest they are proud of that. It’s important that parents & children understand this. Facebook prides itself on it’s universal appeal. 

What about basic discipline surely while the child is under the age of consent, your receiving child benefit, they are living under your roof aren’t you responsible for them. Are you really going to let them wander the virtual world via a rather public social network without your supervision. How do they know what is safe to post or talk about if they don’t have you there to give them a good example. To begin with they should have gotten your consent to be on Facebook at the very least you should have had the talk. 


Internet safety talk. Help them •

•   Set up their personal accounts properly

•   Maintain their privacy settings

•   Connect with “friends” safely

•   Think about what they post

•   Post appropriately

•   Spot and deal with inappropriate behaviour

•   “Unfriend” and Block certain users

•   Report Bullying

For more information you can read Fuzion Marketing’s article on cyber bullying control or  read the facebook guidelines on guarding against bullying. Learn about using facebook lists to set up selections of family, close friends, etc. and control who see what post.

Parents if you’re not on Facebook & friends with your children, your children should not be on Facebook until they are old enough to make their own way in the world as an adult. You’ve heard this before, you grew up with the notion! While children live under your roof, you are the boss of them. Facebook is a public, social network. Most of the information on the internet is available through search engines, to anyone, if you know what your looking for and how to find it. Safety on facebook it’s common sense, Parents be there.

It’s up to you.

Lead by example.

2 responses to “It’s facebook • it’s not exactly a private playground.”

  1. mt says:

    nice graphic.

    should I use for “child safety campaign on the internet”?

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