Wednesday, February 09, 2011

No Facebook for Michelle Obama's Kids

anti-facebookMaybe it's just me, but I think Michelle Obama needs a little visit from the fun police. Our nation's First Lady appears to be a nice fun person on the outside but with some of the things she has done and is doing, I'm not so sure. I mean first, we have the dried fruit debacle during Halloween and now we have her campaigning against Facebook.

Do you think Facebook is an o.k. website for your kids to be a part of? Well, Michelle Obama doesn't. In fact, she is rather happy that her two young daughters are not using the biggest social media outlet in the world. But why would Michelle Obama be pleased that her kids are not using Facebook? I mean, it isn't like MySpace, which I deem a little worse with all the teenage girls on the site posting scantily clad pictures of themselves all over the place.

Well, the Obamas two young daughters, Sasha, 9, and Malia, 12, are not allowed to use the social networking site for security reasons. O.k., I can deal with that. I mean I'm sure there are a lot of people out there that would love to use the girls' Facebook accounts for other reasons than connecting with their friends. However, Michelle Obama is not too concerned with her children missing out on Facebook. According to her, "Facebook is not something they need."

Michelle was quoted on NBC's The Today Show as saying, "I'm not a big fan of young kids having Facebook." President Obama is also not keen on the "perils" of social networking sites like Facebook and MySpace. President Obama recently spoke to students at a high school in Virginia and warned them about Facebook. Obama made it a point to tell them to be "careful about what they post on Facebook" because it could "be pulled up again later somewhere in life."

I'm not so sure about that. I can honestly say that I do not believe that somebody would search through years and years worth of Facebook updates and comments to find something about a person. Now granted there are a few security risks with allowing your child to have a Facebook account but I do not feel that they are any different than the risks your child could face out in the real world.

Facebook does have a "requirement" that users be 13 years of age or older but, as we all know, it is pretty easy to lie about your age on the internet. There is also the question of what age parents should allow their child to get a Facebook account or another social media account. To be honest, I feel like that is all up to the individual parent but with how tech savvy kids are these days I don't think a parent could do much to stop them.

What do you think? Do you think there should be an age limit for kids on Facebook? Do agree with Michelle Obama about not wanting her kids on the social media site? Let us know in the comment section below.

Source: Mashable - Michelle Obama Doesn't Want Her Kids to Use Facebook

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chris said...

Instead of ignoring social why not teach kids to be responsible digital citizens? There is an age appropriate, safe and secure social networking site for kids, check out WhatsWhat.Me and its Parent Resource Center. 

There are organizations out there doing great work keeping kids safe on the internet. The Family Online Safety Institute (FOSI) cites that 99% of children ages 8-17 access the internet and spending 25% of their time social networking. The answer isn't keeping kids off the internet, because they are going to be on social networks, regardless if their parents know or not.  Let's teach kids how to be safe on the internet and instead of hiding them from it.

While Facebook is definitely not appropriate for kids under 13 that doesn’t mean these “tweens” should be banned from social networks altogether. WhatsWhat.Me is a safe, secure, “kids-only” social network for “tweens” ages 7-13 – launches today using patent-pending facial recognition technology, moderation and kid-friendly features to teach kids positive online behavior, Internet safety and related life skills. Compliant with the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA), (Beta) provides an age-appropriate, “no-bullying allowed” community that requires parental permission to join.  For parents, offers its online Parent Resource Center providing expert advice, news, Internet safety tips and information on cybersafety for children.

Eris Dulig said...

Being on Facebook severely compromises your privacy and (if you are a public figure) your safety. Any parent that allows their kid on Facebook is throwing them toi the wolves.